A Pyongyang Home Companion No. 14 // Golf in North Korea and the P.G.J
Even if you are not a fan of golf, this video introduction to the Pyongyang Golf Course, aka the P.G.J (평양골프장), may be of interest. Some thoughts on the video below:
1. The video is illustrative of a North Korean advertisement. Perhaps the first thing many visitors notice on arrival in Pyongyang is the lack of advertisements on the street. This does not mean the country is devoid of advertising. On the contrary, there is quite a bit of subtle (and not so subtle) advertising that goes on all around in the form of printed or video ‘introductions’ or ‘guides’. This is one such example. Today even Pyongyang’s local newspaper runs a limited number of advertisements for different services and
2. In the video you will see any number of service staff, decked out in blue trousers, white shirts, blue vests, and pink hats. Don’t let their quaint dress deceive you. It is often the case in North Korea that service staff of recreational facilities are typically extremely good at whatever sport or activity takes place at their work place whether it be bowling, shooting, ping-pong, or golf. Most are probably not born that way nor any good at it when they start the job, but people do take their work seriously and responsibilities can often be extremely specific, leaving little to do but practice, practice, practice.
3. The Pyongyang Golf Course is one of few organisations in the country apart from hotels and travel companies that includes foreign lettering in its logo. The only other example I can think of right now is the Chinese restaurant on Kwangbok Street. There are probably some others. Write us if anything comes to mind!
4. The best part is at 05:59 when the show host learns to play golf.
5. Despite the name, the course is actually located in the administrative domain of Nampo, not far from Kangso, along the Youth Hero Highway.
It is possible to play golf at the P.G.J as part of a custom private tour. Green fees and rentals for the day cost 150 USD. It is an 18-hole 72-par course.