|06 Oct - 13 Oct|
A 7 night / 8 day ‘highlights’ package, this tour focuses on the southwest of the DPRK, the most developed and accessible corner of the country, and coincides with the 10th October—the 75th Anniversary of the Foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea, one of the most important dates in North Korea’s 2020 calendar.
We kickstart the adventure with one full day of sightseeing in Pyongyang before travelling to the beautiful Mt. Myohyang region for a two night stay. From the mountains we return to Pyongyang to take in and witness as many celebratory events as possible, all taking place to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea. From here we head to Sariwon for an overnight stay before we push as far south as possible, to stay in Kaesong, from where we will visit Panmunjom and the DMZ. Return to Pyongyang for final sightseeing and one last night in the city before this whistle-stop tour comes to an end.
This small group tour will operate for a minimum of 2 and a maximum of just 16 persons.
This morning make your own way to Beijing Capital Airport, Terminal 2, to depart at approximately 1305 on the Air Koryo flight to Pyongyang (schedules TBC). The short flight will bring you into Pyongyang at approximately 1605 local time. On arrival meet with your Korean guides and driver. After passing through immigration and customs head into the city centre to visit the Benevolence Bar (or similar) for a drink or two (at your own expense), giving the opportunity to chat with your guides and get a quick insight into plans for the next few days. After a welcome dinner in the Arirang Restaurant transfer to the Yanggakdo Hotel and here check in for a two night stay. (Snack On Flight/D)
Enjoy the full day sightseeing in Pyongyang, starting with a walk in the city centre from the exterior of the Pyongyang Grand Theatre to Kim Il Sung Square and then onto the Foreign Language Bookshop, a good spot to pick up a wide range of publications, postcards and the like. From here pop into the Vienna Coffee Shop to relax over a hot drink (at your own expense) before heading to the Mansudae Fountain Park. From the fountain park ascend Mansu Hill to visit the Mansudae Grand Monument, the centre piece of which are the spectacular 20-metre tall bronze statues of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Here, millions of Koreans visit annually to pay their respects to the leaders, and the group will be expected to lay a wreath of flowers at the foot of the monument before bowing in unison before it (flowers purchased locally for a small fee). We will also see the nearby Chollima Monument.
After lunch in a nearby restaurant visit the Grand People’s Study House — the national library and a major centre of learning. The view from the upper balcony of the study house affords a commanding panorama over Kim Il Sung Square. Moving on head underground for a ride on the impressive Pyongyang Metro, travelling one stop from Puhung to Yonggwang (arguably the two most impressive stations) before pressing on four stops to the recently refurbished Kaeson Station. At Kaeson surface beside the Arch of Triumph, 10 metres higher than its Parisian counterpart; for a small fee it is possible to ascend (by lift and then foot) to a viewing platform near the top of the arch—from where you will have a good view over north central Pyongyang, including a number of buildings such as the TV Tower & Kim Il Sung Stadium. End the day with a walk in Ryomyong New Town, a new high-rise residential district, and have dinner in Ryomyong also before returning to your hotel after a busy first day of sightseeing. (B/L/D)
Start the day with a visit to the awesome Kumsusan Palace of the Sun, the former residence of Kim Il Sung, and now the Mausoleum for both Kim Il Sung & Kim Jong Il. You will here see the bodies of both leaders lying in state. The Mausoleum itself is followed by exhibits showcasing medals of honour bestowed upon the leaders. (Please note for this site you will be expected to dress smartly). Moving on head to Mt. Taesong to visit the Revolutionary Martyrs’ Cemetery, home to the graves of more than 200 of Korea’s leading resistance figures over the years of Japanese rule and the Korean War, including Kim Jong Suk, the wife of Kim Il Sung. If the weather is clear you will from here be afforded good views over Pyongyang. Return to your hotel to change to into more comfortable clothes, check out and have lunch.
This afternoon visit the Fatherland Liberation War Museum and the USS Pueblo, an 850 tonne US spy boat captured in 1968 by the Koreans off the coast of Wonsan. The very large museum dedicated to this devastating war has some truly fascinating displays and exhibits and you will visit just some of the highlights before it is time to depart the capital and start the 155km journey north towards Mt. Myohyang. On arrival in the mountains we will check into the Hyangsan Hotel for a two night stay. This evening enjoy dinner at the hotel. (B/L/D)
Start the day with a visit to the picturesque Pohyon Temple, founded in 1042 yet sadly heavily damaged in the Korean War. Moving on, spend the morning touring the impressive International Friendship Exhibition, a massive complex housing the many thousands of diverse gifts presented to Kim Il Sung, Kim Jong ll & Kim Jong Un over the years. The buildings, built into the mountainside, are home to seemingly endless corridors and rooms lined with diverse gifts from all over the world – keep an eye out for the gifts from Regent Holidays! After lunch enjoy the option of an afternoon hike in the hills. The difficulty and duration of the hike will depend on the inclination of the group, weather and quality of the paths, but we plan for a walk of around 3-4 hours. Those who would prefer a more sedentary afternoon may relax in the comfort of the Hyangsan Hotel, which offers all manner of facilities to keep one busy for a few hours. This evening enjoy a lamb BBQ dinner back at the hotel. (B/L/D)
This morning check out of the Hyangsan Hotel and return to Pyongyang. On arrival in capital we will enjoy the day taking in any events & celebrations marking the 75th Anniversary of the Foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea, with sightseeing scheduled to include the Monument to the Foundation of the Workers’ Party of Korea and the Juche Tower. The Juche Tower is a symbol of the Juche Idea (national self reliance, literally “Master of one’s self”) penned by Kim Il Sung. Those who wish can pay a small fee (5 Euros at current) and be whisked via a lift to the top of the tower for spectacular views over the city. We expect to have lunch in the National Restaurant (one of our favourite options in central Pyongyang) and in the late afternoon will depart the capital and drive to Sariwon, the provincial capital of North Hwanghae Province. On arrival in Sariwon check into the March 8th Hotel for dinner and an overnight stay. (B/L/D)
Today is an important national holiday, and as such we anticipate various special events and celebrations, and a general jovial atmosphere across the city. Celebrations / events in Korea are normally not known until the 11th hour, and we have thus today factored in a flexible afternoon in Pyongyang – allowing the group the best chance of seeing any events and getting the most out of the day. All meals will of course be included, and your guides will do their upmost to ensure you will see as much as is permitted on this special day. Local fees will be payable to attend any special events. At this time of year common events are mass dances in the main city squares, together with special opera/circus performances.
Checking out of our hotel this morning head to the Sariwon Migok Cooperative Farm, as good a spot as any in the country to try and glean an insight into rural life in the DPRK, where the excursion will, if fortunate, include a brief visit to a farmer’s home. While in this sleepy city we will also enjoy a quick visit to the centrally located Folk Customs Street and Kyongam Pavilion, which dates to 1798. Should you wish, a short steep path leads from here to the Songun Pavilion—from where you will be afforded good views of the city and farmlands in the distance. Departing Sariwon make the short drive to the Pongsan Cooperative Farm, where we hope to witness a traditional Mask Dance before enjoying a packed lunch (either at the farm itself or in the nearby Sohung Tea House). This afternoon head south towards Kaesong, stopping en-route to visit the UNESCO world heritage listed Tomb of King Kongmin, one of the best preserved royal tombs in the country. Upon arrival in Kaesong visit the Koryo History Museum and the excellent stamp / souvenir shop next door to the museum before we check into the Janamsan Hotel for dinner and an overnight stay. (B/L/D)
After checking out of your hotel pay a brief visit to Sonjuk Bridge before we head South to Panmunjom - the DMZ and border with South Korea. Upon arrival at Panmunjom, which is often the highlight of any visit to North Korea, we will meet with an army escort who will explain the background to the history of the DMZ, before moving on to the Armistice Talks’ Hall and the building (and attached small museum) where the Armistice was signed. From here head right down to see the border itself, where the group will be (local conditions permitting) escorted, possibly under the watchful eyes of South Korean soldiers, into one of the huts which straddle the North/South Korean border. (Please do note that in the last couple of years, more often than not, access to the border hut hasn't been possible). Enjoy lunch back in Kaesong before hitting the road and returning to Pyongyang, where we will check back into the Yanggakdo Hotel for one last night. We have factored in a little flexibility this afternoon to strive to take in any sights missed from earlier in the tour, or to visit any sights the group may be keen to visit. After some time to freshen up back at the hotel, head out for a farewell dinner aboard the Taedonggang Boat Restaurant, as pleasant a spot as any to enjoy our farewell meal. (B/L/D)
This morning you will be transferred to the airport to depart Pyongyang at 0835 on the JS151 flight to Beijing. On arriving in Beijing at 1000 your arrangements will end (times TBC). (B)
We can arrange your international flights to Beijing at an additional cost if desired, please speak to Carl Meadows for further information.
|Itinerary Dates||From Price||Single Room Supp.|
06 Oct 2020
13 Oct 2020