For everyone dreaming of a chance to visit the Hermit Kingdom of North Korea, it is becoming easier than ever due to the North Korea Travel App.
This app will feature information on over 350 locations throughout the country. Each location will feature “Tour Guide Tips” provided by Simon Cockerell, who works in the North Korea travel industry and has visited the country over 120 times.
North Korea might not be most people’s first choice to visit for vacation — especially since American tourists have been arrested in the country. For those brave enough to risk the potential of an arrest, however, a visit to North Korea would be an amazingly unique experience.
Below are some of the most famous and highly recommended travel locations in this secretive country.
Namsan Square is your best location for eating deep fried sparrow.
Namsan Square is a major location for eating local food from outdoor kiosks and sampling some of the local beer — although, be warned, it apparently tastes like a mix of old coffee and dishwater.
The Ryongmun Cavern offers a six kilometer hike underground.
These caves in outer Hyangsan are impressive due to the oddly shaped stalactites and stalagmites throughout. Hikers are encouraged to bring their own flashlights since the electricity in the caves does at times fail.
Yangakkdo Hotel has an infamous fifth floor.
The Yangakkdo is the main tourist hotel in Pyongyang, and it is topped with a revolving restaurant. There are also rumours that the fifth floor, which is not accessible by elevator, is used as a surveillance suite for the rest of the hotel.
The North Korea Maternity Hospital places great importance on expectant mothers.
Mothers who have more than five children are given the title ‘hero mother.’ North Korea places great emphasis on childbirth due, possibly, to the fact that Kim Jong Il’s mother died while delivering him.
Youth-hero highway is the most empty highway in the world.
The ten-lane Youth-hero highway was built during the famine of the 1990s by “young people,” aged 17 to 40. Some claim that the almost totally empty highway was built to be able to double as an aircraft runway in the event of a war.
The Ryugyong Hotel is still unfinished after 25 years.
The 105-story glass pyramid is planned to contain around 3,000 rooms, with additional space for offices, shops, a casino, and a health complex. Work on the hotel is now being undertaken by Egyptian conglomerate Orascom.
The Runga Dolphinarium in downtown Pyongyang features highly trained dolphins and handlers.
The show is only about 20 minutes long, but the dolphinarium uses real salt water pumped all the way from the ocean.
The Majon Pleasure Resort is one of North Korea’s most recent ‘7 star’ hotels.
Built in 2009, the Majon Pleasure Resort offers the highest level of luxury available in North Korea. The hotel comes equipped with 10-pin bowling, a swimming pool, and a bar.
The Masik-Ryong Ski Resort has only just opened in 2014.
As of publishing, no tourists have yet been allowed to ski at this location due to safety concerns. It should open to tourists in the future, however.
The Ryonggang Hot Spa Hotel offers a unique local delicacy.
The local speciality, clam BBQ, is cooked with gasoline. A pile of clams is spread out on the ground, doused in gasoline, and then set alight. Generally. the clams are nicely cooked, although occasionally you might encounter a clam that did not ignite and is full of gas.
Pujon Town is the remotest part of North Korea open to tourists.
Pujon Town is deep in the south of Hamgyong Province, and most tour guides have not visited here before. Visiting it provides a chance to see as close to a real slice of North Korea as possible.
The Chilbo Mountain range is almost completely free from revolutionary propaganda.
Various rock formations in the Chilbo Mountains have unique folk tales associated with them. Hiking is possible along the mountain paths, and you are also able to swim in the local rivers.
Tongbong Farm gives a glimpse of what collective farming is like.
Tongbong Farm is a model farm and a tourist destination; however, it is still very much a functioning farm. Thousands of residents live on the farm, and it is also host to a revolutionary farm museum.
No visit to North Korea would be complete without seeing the Taedonggang Brewery Bar.
The Taedonggang Brewery Bar, in eastern Pyongyang, produces some of the best beer in North Korea. Beer aficionados can buy beer and brander beer glasses here.
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