Types of Tourism in North Korea
Excursions in North Korea last from 3 to 7 days and are most often combined with trips to countries such as China and South Korea. During the tours, you will be able to see grandiose structures, many of which are the largest of their kind in the world, plunge into the Soviet past, visit grandiose festivals, such as the largest mass performance in the world – Ariran, and visit the main natural attractions of the country.
Reserved areas of North Korea do not have universally recognized world statuses of national parks, reserves, etc. The country’s most famous natural attractions include Mount Geumgang-san, Myohyang-san, and Baektu-san volcano. It is worth noting that the territory of the Kumgang-san mountains was given to the use of South Korea for 50 years, so you can only get here from South Korea. Check top-medical-schools.org for travel information in North Korea.
Myohyang-san Mountain and Paektu-san Mountain offer many hiking trails suitable for outdoor enthusiasts. However, the duration of such trips does not exceed 1 day, since there are no specially equipped places for overnight stays.
In the northwestern part of the country, 150 km from Pyongyang, the Myohyang-san mountains stretch. This is a great place for outdoor activities, in particular for hiking. The mountains of Myohyang-san are covered with mixed forests, there are numerous waterfalls in the local valleys, and Buddhist temples stand on the rocks. The highest point of Myohyang-san – Mount Nannim-san – reaches 2186 m. All mountain routes start from the city of Hyangsan. The first stop on the routes is Pohyeon Monastery, which is located in the Sangwon Valley. It was founded in the 11th century AD. The monastery originally kept a collection of Buddhist scriptures in Korean, now only a few books remain in the book depository. The main building of the monastery is Tuen temple. There is also a 13-tiered pagoda, considered one of the most beautiful in the country. Opposite the monastery is a museum of gifts to the leaders. It was opened in 1978. The museum occupies 6 floors, where more than 200 thousand gifts are presented, ranging from household items of various peoples to cars and large equipment. Be sure to go to the Manphok Valley, where there are waterfalls, lakes and mineral water springs. The cave of Tangun is interesting here, where, according to legend, the hero of legends, the progenitor of the Koreans, Tangun, was born and raised. During tours of the Myohyang-san mountains, tourists are brought to the Ryongmun caves, famous for their bizarre stalactites and stalagmites.
In the northeastern part of the country, 350 km from Pyongyang, on the border with China, is the highest point in the country – the Paektu-san volcano. (2744 m). The last eruption of this volcano occurred in 1702, and it was so powerful that a cloud of volcanic ash even reached the Japanese islands. Scientists believe that the volcano fell asleep and a new eruption will occur within the next 100 years. The slopes of the mountains are white, as they are covered with a layer of pumice. In winter, Paektu-san Peak is covered with snow. Paektu-san is a sacred mountain. It is believed that it was on her that the god Hwanun, the father of the progenitor of the Koreans Tangun, descended from heaven. In addition, Paektu-san is a symbol of the revolution. In the 30s of the 20th century, partisans and Comrade Kim Il Sung were hiding here. In the crater of the volcano at an altitude of about 2200 m, an ice-free lake Cheon-ji was formed. It feeds on hot underground springs, however, the water in it is very cold. Thermal baths have even been created on the basis of local hot bicarbonate springs. The depth of the lake reaches 380 m, and the area is 10 square meters. km. The Amnok-kan River originates from Cheon-ji Lake. On Mount Paektu-san in the Sobaeksu Gorge is one of the most revered shrines of the country – the house where Kim Jong Il was born. This is again one of the legends that the Koreans came up with, in fact the Great Leader was born in Khabarovsk. At the foot of Mt. Paektu-san in the area of lakes Sam-ji, there is a historical complex dedicated to the revolutionary activities of Kim Il Sung. It includes a monumental sculptural ensemble, a monument in honor of the victory in the battle of Musan, a guerrilla command post in the village of Sinsadong and a monument in honor of the victory in the battle of Pocheonbo in the city of Hyesan.
Another natural attraction of North Korea is the mountains of Geumgang-san. or, as they are also called, the Diamond Mountains. Geumgang-san stretch along the southeastern coast of the country and are part of the East Korean mountains. The highest point of the massif reaches 1638 m. Bizarrely shaped rocks form off the coast of Kymgang-san, and in their central part there are many waterfalls, lakes, mineral springs and Buddhist temples. A special tourist zone has been created in the mountains region, which has the status of a separate province. However, it was given over to South Korea for 50 years, so if you are offered a trip from North Korea to the Diamond Mountains, then at best you will be shown their spurs on the coast, because it is possible to enter the territory of Kymgang-san only from South Korea.
Very beautiful east coast of North Korea. Here, almost close to the coastline, the slopes of the mountains covered with pine forests approach. The largest city in this part of the country is Wonsan. Wonsan is located 200 km from Pyongyang. It is the capital of Gangwon Province. There are beaches in the city, where tourists rested in the 90s of the 20th century, but now the resort areas are closed due to the difficult economic situation. The beaches are not equipped and the entrances to most of them are blocked by a fence. You can swim on some beaches if you are not afraid of their inconvenience. The swimming season here lasts from June to September. 40 km south of the city there is a picturesque area around the salt lake Dongjong and the fresh lake Sizhong, which has deposits of therapeutic mud.