April 4 - April 11/12 2019

7 Night Pyongyang Marathon Tour from Beijing

Early bird pricing! Offer
ends 30th September!

Take part in the amazing and unique Pyongyang
Marathon and explore more of this fascinating
country!

From 1,472 EUR per person

Please apply by 28th February, 2019.

7 Night Pyongyang Marathon Tour from Beijing

Early bird pricing! Offer
ends 30th September!

Take part in the amazing and unique
Pyongyang Marathon and explore
more of this fascinating country!

From 1,472 EUR per person

  • Overall

    Book and pay your deposit by September 30th, 2018 to secure the early bird rate! Regular price is 1,549 EUR

    Koryo Tours is excited to offer the chance for amateur runners to take part in the Pyongyang Marathon 2019! This race can be run either as a full marathon or as a half marathon, and there are also 10km and 5km races. In addition to the foreign amateur runners, hundreds of local runners and some elite foreign runners will be participating as well.

    For the more adventurous traveler, this 7-night tour gets you to the lively city of Pyongsong where you will meet the incredibly talented students at one of the local schools. You will then head deeper into the country to Mt Myohyang – the mountain of sweet fragrance – where you can go hiking to experience the beautiful scenery. You will then tour the infamous International Friendship Exhibition where you can see the gifts given to each leader all housed in a massive mountain cave vault.

    You’ll also go south to Kaesong, down to the DMZ, where North and South Korea continue their face-off, and tour Pyongyang including the metro system and the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum featuring the captured spy ship – the USS Pueblo.

    Please read the following for important information about your transport options for this tour, and how each one relates to the visa requirements for China. The default option is round-trip train travel from Beijing to Pyongyang, and back again. Flight upgrades are available. See below for more details.

    Transport Options

    Option 1 // Round-trip train (Beijing-Pyongyang-Beijing): A 24-hour train journey each way in hard-sleeper class (six bunks per berth) with a transfer in Dandong, China. The train arrives in Pyongyang approximately three hours after the flight so train arrivals will miss one or two activities in the city. This option is for those travelling on a budget with time to spare (and train enthusiasts, of course). [+0 EUR]

    Option 2 // Flight departure (Beijing-Pyongyang // 90 minutes) + train return (Pyongyang-Beijing // 24 hours): In our view, this is the most comprehensive way to visit the DPRK. We highly recommend this option: it maximizes your time and sightseeing opportunities; lets you experience both Air Koryo and the international train; plus allows you to start the trip rested, while taking the leisurely route home. [+199 EUR]

    Option 3 // Train departure (Beijing-Pyongyang // 24 hours) + flight return (Pyongyang-Beijing // 90 minutes): An alternative to Option 2. This option is ideal for those wishing to take the train one-way of the journey, but need to transit through Beijing by flight on their return. Please note the train arrives in Pyongyang approximately three hours after the flight so train arrivals will miss one or two activities in the city. [+199 EUR]

    Option 4 // Round-trip flight (Beijing-Pyongyang-Beijing):Choosing the round-trip flight option gets you between Beijing and Pyongyang in 1.5 hours (each way), and lets you experience the infamous Air Koryo ‘burger’ twice! For many nationalities, this also allows for the possibility of transiting in Beijing, rather than having to get a Chinese visa (please see below). This option is for those with little time to spare, travellers wanting simply to transit through China, or aviation enthusiasts. [+299 EUR]

    Visa Information

    We arrange your North Korean visa as part of your tour package [+50 EUR]. However, given the tour starts and finishes in China you may also need to consider entry and exit procedures in China for your trip. This can be obtained at a Chinese embassy abroad. We recommend obtaining at least a double-entry Chinese visa for your trip.

    Over 50 nationalities can obtain a visa-waiver for up to 144 hours when in transit through Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) using direct international flights. Most other nationalities can transit for up to 24 hours. If you don't want to visit China as part of your trip, this could be the easiest option for you. It is not possible to obtain a transit-waiver when using a train for entry or exit from China.

    Please be sure to check your visa status for travel through China while planning your trip. We are unable to arrange Chinese visas, but can provide documentation in support of visa applications upon payment of a tour deposit.

    See below for an overview of all tour options and extras.

    Highlights

    • 2019 PYONGYANG MARATHON!
    • Panmunjom & the DMZ
    • Historic Kaesong
    • Pyongyang City
    • Beautiful Mt Myohyang
    • Pyongsong
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 3 — Wednesday

      *Pre-Tour Briefing // We require all travellers to attend a pre-tour briefing that covers regulations, etiquette, safety, and practicalities for travel in North Korea. The briefing lasts approximately one hour followed by a question and answer session. Please be punctual for the briefing. You can come early, meet your fellow travellers, pay any outstanding tour fees and browse our collection of Korean art. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For Pyongyang Marathon tours, we will hold several briefings - in the morning for those departing by train in the afternoon, and in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • Briefings for those departing by train (exact times TBC)

      PM

      • Briefings for those departing by flight (exact times TBC)
      • 17:00 // Train travellers depart Beijing Station by domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with the DPRK. Please arrange independent travel to the train station and arrive at least an hour and a half early for the train departure.

      Overnight // Hotel in Beijing not included in the tour for those taking the flight the next day. Contact us for recommendations near out office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 4 — Thursday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to the Dandong-Pyongyang local train. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.
      • Free bus from the Koryo Tours office to Beijing Capital Airport Terminal 2. Exact time TBC at the pre-tour briefing. Alternatively, meet the group at the Air Koryo check-in counter.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing on Air Koryo flight JS152 at 2:00 pm.  A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (no vegetarian option).
      • Arrival to Pyongyang's Sunan International Airport (FNJ) expected at 5:00pm. DPRK immigration and customs, meet your Korean guides and transfer to the city.
      • Train arrival to Pyongyang Railway Station expected at 6:45pm.
      • Kim Il Sung Square // Pyongyang’s central square lined with government ministries, museums, and The Grand People’s Study House.
      • Foreign Languages Bookshop // Store selling Korean publications translated into English, German, French, Russian, Chinese, and Spanish. Also pick up DVDs, postcards, and small works of art.

      Overnight:

      Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang // Home away from home for most (but not all!) foreign visitors to Pyongyang, this 47-story hotel is located on an island in the middle of the Taedong River and offers great views of the city. Comfortable rooms and comprehensive leisure facilities: swimming pool, spa, billiards, bowling, gift shops, tea houses and beer brewed on-site.

    3. April 5 — Friday

      Historic Kaesong and the DMZ Tour

      AM

      • Drive 160 km south the 'Reunification Highway' to Kaesong, the historic capital of the Koryo Dynasty (918-1392) and today located near the Korean Demilitarised Zone. 3 hour drive.
      • Panmunjom Armistice Village and DMZ // The site of the signing of the 1953 armistice that ended the Korean War and the demarcation line between north and south. On some days it is possible to visit the hut straddling the line, where negotiations between both sides once took place. Here we will be accompanied by military guides from the Korean People's Army.
      • Kaesong Koryo Museum // Once the Songgyung Academy, a Confucian school, and now a museum on the Koryo Dynasty exhibiting historical objects, statues, pagodas, and porcelain from that era. A UNESCO World Heritage Site.
      • Kaesong Korean Stamp Exhibition Hall // Store selling stamps, postcards, local ginseng, souvenirs, art, and more! One of the best postcard collections in the country and friendly staff.
      • Traditional Royal Korean Lunch (pangsanggi) // A meal made of 12 dishes served in brass bowls fit for the kings of old. The more dishes, the more distinguished the guest! Traditional Korean 'sweet meat soup' is an option here (5 EUR).

      PM

      • Concrete Wall and view of DMZ // View of a complex fortification system erected on the southern boundary of the DMZ accompanied by a military guide. The wall is seen as evidence of intent to permanently divide the nation. A 45 minute drive each way from Kaesong through scenic countryside.
      • Drive back to Pyongyang via Sariwon Folk Village and City View // Mock-up of a traditional Korean town which includes a history museum, food street, and pavilions. There is a small tavern selling Makkoli, traditional rice wine. Climb a nearby hill for a view of Sariwon City and the surrounding plains.
      • Monument to the Three-Charters of the Reunification // Iconic arch over the Pyongyang-Kaesong Highway dedicated to joint meeting between Koreas, north and south. Also known as the ‘Arch of Reunification’.
      • Golden Lane Bowling Centre // Where Pyongyang locals go for their ten-pin fix (2.5 EUR per person per game). Also has billiards and arcade games. Non-bowlers can head next door to the Kumrung Leisure Centre for an airgun shooting range (approximately 6 EUR per 20 round cartridge) and some of the best coffee in Pyongyang.
      Overnight: Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang. 

    4. April 6 - Saturday

      Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • Mansudae Fountain Park // The historic center of Pyongyang popular with local citizens after school and on weekends. Flanked by examples of ancient and modern architecture from different eras.
      • Mansudae Grand Monument // Enormous bronze statues of President Kim Il Sung and Leader Kim Jong Il overlooking downtown Pyongyang. A presentation of flowers and bow by the group is customary here (5 EUR). Please note this is a government-administered sight and visits are subject to cancellation. Visitations are by special request only and decent dress is required (close-toed shoes and covered legs and shoulders). Here we will also see the Chollima Monument, or ‘thousand ri (400 km or 250 mile) horse’ -a symbol of speed- commemorating the quick rebuilding of the country in the 1950’s following the Korean War.
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum // Tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guide. Renovated in 2012 and it exhibits the Korean War from the DPRK perspective containing artifacts, documents, photos, and lifelike dioramas. The exterior grounds house the War Victory Monument and displays of Korean People’s Army Hero Equipment and captured equipment from the US military, including the USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
      • Monument to the Party Foundation // Iconic stone hammer, sickle, writing brush representing the workers, farmers, and intellectuals which make up the Worker's Party of Korea.

      PM

      • Pyongyang Metro Tour // One of the deepest metro systems in the world with artwork reflecting the name of each station. Ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
      • Arch of Triumph // A massive archway made for the 70th anniversary of the birth of President Kim Il Sung in 1982 and commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule in 1945. Larger than its counterpart in Paris.
      • Kim Il Sung Stadium & Marathon Route Preview // Visit the stadium where you will start and finish your race, and then drive the marathon route to familiarise yourself with the roads, turning points and toilet stops.
      • Optional screening of Comrade Kim Goes Flying // a DPRK film about a young rural coal miner, Kim Yong Mi, who dreams of becoming a trapeze artist at the Pyongyang Circus. Her plans are complicated by the arrogant trapeze star Pak Jang Phil who believes miners belong underground and not in the air. North Korea’s first “girl power” movie about a young woman achieving her dreams. Produced and directed by a British, Belgian, and Korean team. The film is 78 minutes long and will be shown at the Pyongyang International House of Cinema, a short distance from our hotel. (100 RMB entry fee). A Koryo Tours Exclusive!

      Overnight: Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang. 

    5. April 7 - Sunday

      The big event! The Pyongyang Marathon 2019!

      AM

      • The 2019 Pyongyang Marathon // this is your chance to run the streets of Pyongyang in the DPRK’s largest annual sports event!
        Join the Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 10km or 5km race — all of which follow a return course that starts and ends in Kim Il Sung Stadium in front of a 50-000-strong capacity crowd of local Koreans. The full route, which has been certified by both the IAAF and AIMS, leads right through the city centre, past a number of iconic landmarks, and then out into Pyongyang's less urban districts. Don’t miss this incredible opportunity to see more of the capital and interact with people along the course. Prizes are available for the winners of each race.

      PM

      • Shower, resting time and lunch // After the marathon's closing ceremony, we'll be heading back to the hotel to recharge, shower and rest
      • Munsu Water Park // We’ll take a break at this outdoor and indoor water park with water slides, lap pools, and hot tubs. Bar, coffee shop, and shops for non-swimmers (Entry fee 2 EUR; swimming fee- 10 EUR with suit rental; tennis- 5 EUR).
      • Local Beer Bar // Relax at one of Pyongyang’s local bars to wrap up an exciting day.
      Overnight: Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang.

    6. April 8 - Monday

      Pyongyang

      AM

      • Grand People’s Study House // Huge national library and public university housed in a large neo-traditional Korean building overlooking Kim Il Sung Square and the downtown Pyongyang.
      • Mansudae Art Studio // The DPRK’s centre of artistic excellence, where the majority of sculptures, mosaics, and paintings around the country are made. Visit workshops to see artists at work and an exhibition where pieces are sold.

      PM

      • Mangyongdae Native House // Birthplace of and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a park-like setting.
      • Kwangbok Department Store // Opportunity to use Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stand on the first floor for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
      • Maeri Shooting Range // Shoot at targets with low caliber sports pistols and rifles in the facility that trained Olympic medalists. Pay by the bullet (0.50 -1 EUR) depending on the type of gun and target.
      • Drive to Pyongsong. A 45 minute to 1 hour drive.

      Overnight:

      Jangsusan Hotel, Pyongsong // The only hotel in Pyongsong open for tourists and one of the most fun in the whole country! Basic facilities with fairly reliable electricity and hot water. One of best bartenders in the country mans the bar. Billiards, karaoke, hair dresser, and outdoor eateries in summer.

    7. April 9 – Tuesday

      Pyongsong

      AM

      • Pyongsong City Square // Central square of Pyongsong City with statues of the DPRK leadership and flanked by the provincial revolutionary museum. Presentation of flowers customary.
      • Tok Song Primary School // The area's top primary school for gifted students. Tour the school's classrooms & facilities, watch music & dance performances by the students, and test your ping pong skills against them in the gymnasium.
      • Konji-ri Revolutionary Site // Location of the headquarters of the Korean People's Army & home of Kim Il Sung during the Korean war. Tour the renovated buildings and learn about life there during the war.
      PM
      • Drive to Mt Myohyang (approx. 2 hours drive north of Pyongsong)
      • Manpok Valley Walk // A gentle stroll passing waterfalls, interesting rocks, lovely wooded areas and viewing points.
      Overnight: 

      Chongchon Hotel, Mt Myohyang // Basic but clean hotel at Mt. Myohyang. Book and souvenir shop, billiards, ping-pong, and karaoke. 
    8. April 10 – Wednesday

      Mt Myohyang

      AM

      • International Friendship Exhibition // A subterranean exhibition hall displaying gifts of all kinds given to the DPRK leaders by foreign states, leaders, and organizations. The exhibition is a fascinating look into material culture in the second half of the 20th century. Highlights include a plane given by the Soviet Union, basketball signed by Michael Jordan from the US State Department, and vodka given by Dennis Rodman. The visit takes most of the morning.
      • Pohyon Buddhist Temple // A peaceful temple dating back to 1042 with stone pagoda and repository of a print blocks and historic text of the Tripitaka Koreana, Buddhist scriptures first produced to invoke divine assistance from foreign invasion during the Koryo Dynasty.

      PM

      • Drive back to Pyongyang via Ryongmun Caves // A subterranean complex of limestone caves and grottoes. Led by an experienced local guide, you will see weirdly (and suggestively) shaped rocks and stalactites/stalagmites and hear a wealth of stories and legends about each - some not appropriate for young audiences.
      • Taedonggang Bar No. 3 // Upscale bar across the street from the Tower of the Juche Idea. There are a variety of beers on tap produced at Pyongyang’s Taedonggang Brewery outside of town (2-2.5 EUR per glass).
      • Duck Barbecue Restaurant // South Pyongyang’s famous grilled duck restaurant that has seen many teary-eyed farewells. 

      Overnight: Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang.

    9. April 11 – Thursday

      Departure Day from Pyongyang and Return to Beijing by flight or train. Please indicate your preferred exit method upon booking*

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS151 with a scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at approximately 11:35 am.

      OR

      • Train departure by local train to the Korean-Chinese border at 10:25, transfer in Dandong and onward travel to Beijing with scheduled arrival to Beijing Station on Friday April 12th at 08:30. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).
      End of Tour.
  • Extras

    • Visit the DPRK border town of Sinuiju

      If you're heading back to Beijing by train this option lets you get off for an overnight in Dongrim before the next day's tour of Sinuiju — the border city with China. Spend an extra 24 hours in the DPRK seeing the sites of North Pyongan province. You will then continue on through to Beijing.

      See more
    • Visit Dandong — the Chinese gateway to the DPRK

      Instead of immediately returning to Beijing when your tour ends you can take some extra time to visit this fascinating border city, which directly faces the DPRK town of Sinuiju, but lies on the Chinese side of the Yalu River. We offer both one-night and two-night fully guided extensions that take in all the sights of Dandong, with a special North Korea theme.

      See more
    • Helicopter flight over Pyongyang

      Why not take a helicopter sightseeing flight over the DPRK's capital? Grab this rare opportunity to tour the skies above the city in a 40-minute helicopter trip aboard an Air Koryo Mi-17 chopper. The flight offers an unrivalled view from above, and great opportunities for photos and video from a completely different angle.

      See more
    • Pyongyang Marathon - running shirt size

      Koryo Tours will provide free running shirts to everyone signed up for a Koryo Tours Pyongyang Marathon Trip. Male shirts are a regular fit, while female shirts are a slim fit. Please pay attention to the sizes as they are smaller than western shirt sizes.

    • Pyongyang Marathon — official race entry

      The Mangyongdae Prize International Marathon is now open to foreign amateur runners. You can run the 5k, 10k, Half or Full Marathon. All four take place on the same day in April, and follow the same course, which is fully recognised by the International Association of Athletics Federations. We are the EXCLUSIVE travel partner for foreign amateurs. Don't miss out on this rare opportunity to become one of the few people in the world to have run the Pyongyang Marathon. We'll see you at the start line!

    • Hotel booking in Beijing

      Koryo Tours is able to arrange hotel bookings in Beijing at the following hotels on behalf of people travelling with us. We have four hotels on offer with different levels of comfort and all located a short walk from our office. Select which hotel you are interested in and your Tour Manager will confirm the dates and cost for you. We will make the booking and add the cost to your tour invoice.

      See more
    • Upgrade to your own room — marathon tour

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself during the extremely busy Pyongyang Marathon period then you can upgrade for an extra 50 EUR per night.

    • Entry and Exit Method

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang train each way in a hard-sleeper carriage (6 bunks per compartment). The train journey takes 24 hours with a transfer at the city of Dandong. One-way or round-trip flights are also available. The flight takes around 90 minutes. For an extra 199 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 299 EUR.

    • Insurance (7 to 9 nights)

      We're unable to take you on one of our tours if you do not have medical insurance that covers the destination in question. Issues of isolation and infrastructure where we go mean it would be irresponsible of us to do so. We can provide this if you do not have it — or you can use your own.

  • What is / is not included?

    • Included
      Train Beijing – Pyongyang with transfer at Dandong
      Train Pyongyang – Beijing with transfer at Dandong
      All meals on the tour apart from the meals on the train between Beijing-Pyongyang
      Hotel accommodation in the DPRK
      A Koryo Tours tour leader, two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
      All transportation in the DPRK
    • Not included
      Marathon registration fees - to be paid in cash (clean USD notes only) before the race in Pyongyang, amounts are 5 km or 10 km: $70 USD / Half Marathon: $100 USD / Full Marathon: $150 USD
      North Korean (DPRK) visa fee 50 EUR
      Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 199 EUR; return: 299 EUR)
      Optional single room supplement of 50 EUR per night
      Tips for the local Korean guides + driver (approx 10-15 EUR per day)
      Optional activities such as the lift up the Juche Tower (5 EUR) or a visit to the funfair (approx. 2 EUR entrance fee per person)
      Entry tickets for special events if applicable – for example Pyongyang Circus (approx. 20 EUR per person)
      Meals include a complimentary beer and water, but you will need to purchase extra drinks if needed
      Spending money for souvenirs
      SINUIJU EXTENSION: RMB 50 for the bus across the bridge to Dandong to be paid on the spot to the local guides
  • Notes

    Early bird offer requires you to have booked and paid your deposit by September 30th, 2018 to secure the early bird rate. At the conclusion of this promotional period, the rate will revert to a higher price. Regular price is 1,549 EUR.

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides. Furthermore, for groups of 10 or more, a member of the Koryo Tours team will accompany the trip.

    Please note that when on tour your day-to-day itinerary may differ to what is advertised above. Your tour leader will ensure, however, that everything available at the time is covered, and replacement options are provided where needed. We will also add in extras when there is time (such as a visit to a local bar or amusement park). We visit the DPRK regularly so know all the best places to go, and how to make the most of your days there to guarantee the experience of a lifetime. After the tour, we will send out a list of all participants' emails so you can keep in touch, swap photos etc. If you do not wish to be on this list then please let us know.

Please apply by 28th February, 2019.

info@koryogroup.com | + 86 10 6416 7544
27 Bei Sanlitun Nan (East Courtyard).
Chaoyang District. Beijing 100027. P.R China

中国北京市朝阳区北三里屯南 27 号 (东侧院),
邮编:100027
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