North Korea (DPRK)

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A tour to North Korea (DPRK) is the ultimate in adventure travel. Join Koryo Tours as we explore Pyongyang and some of North Korea's most remote locations for an experience you'll never forget, all in the safe hands of North Korea tour experts.

Our North Korea tours are designed with the purpose of making sure you see and do as much as possible on tour in North Korea (DPRK). Touring this country is the opportunity of a lifetime for many, and we use our 27 years of North Korea experience to ensure you get the most out of your time there.
We have classic, speciality, and budget North Korea tours scheduled throughout the year. Get in touch for help on deciding which North Korea tour is best for you. Our experts are happy to answer all your questions.

Unsure if a North Korea group tour is for you?
Read Why Choose a Koryo Tours Group Tour or contact us.
Alternatively, head to our North Korea Private Tours and get in touch for a bespoke North Korea tour itinerary.

North Korea Country Profile
North Korea FAQs
North Korea Map

NOTICE: The North Korea border is currently closed due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Please check COVID-19 & North Korea for updated information.

N0 Tours to North Korea (DPRK) will be taking place until the border is open again - the tours below are planned departure dates but until the country is open to tourists again all tours will remain suspended

Use the search function below to find tours. Please note that our tours for May Day start in April and tours for China National Day (1 October) start in September.

April 2022 — 6 tours

April 14 - April 16/17 2022

Kim Il Sung Birthday Mini Break

2 nights in North Korea with return
flights between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s biggest national
holidays in years as well as seeing highlights of
Pyongyang

From 999 EUR per person

Please apply by 27th March, 2022.

Kim Il Sung Birthday Mini Break

2 nights in North Korea with return
flights between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s
biggest national holidays in years
as well as seeing highlights of Pyongyang

From 999 EUR per person

  • Overall

    Experience a city tour of Pyongyang including the Mansudae Grand Monument and Pyongyang Metro as well as the iconic monuments of the Tower of the Juche Ideology and the Monument to the Party Foundation.

    More importantly, joining us on this tour means you’ll get to join the local North Koreans in celebrating one of the most important dates in the Korean calendar; Kim Il Sung’s Birthday. Officially known as the ‘Day of the Sun’. Expect mass dances and even the possibility of a firework display over the Taedonggang river. We will also get a chance to see the orchid named after the President, the Kimilsungia.

    Many special events are expected to take place in Pyongyang over this time that might include a military parade - come along and join in!

    Have more time to spare? Interested in seeing the DMZ and rural Nortj Korea? See our Kim Il Sung Birthday Short Tour!

    Scroll down for an overview of the full Kim Il Sung Birthday Tour highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    BROWSE KORYO TOURS INTERNATIONAL DESTINATIONS
    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Russia | Kazakhstan | Tajikistan

    Highlights

    • The Day of the Sun, the birthday of Eternal President Kim Il Sung: join in the celebrations on the biggest national holiday in years
    • Highlights of Pyongyang including the Manusade Grand Monument and Pyongyang Metro
  • Itinerary

    Day 1 of 3
    1. April 14 | Thursday

      Pre-Tour Briefing and Arrival day in Pyongyang

      *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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      AM

      • Pre-Tour Briefing at 08:00 | 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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.
      • Free bus to Beijing Capital Airport Terminal 2.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing on Air Koryo flight JS252 at 14:05. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability).
      • Kim Il Sung Square | Pyongyang’s central square lined with government ministries, museum and The Grand People’s Study House, Korea’s national library. See the centre of it all!
         
      • 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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    2. April 15 | Friday

      The Day of the Sun – one of the DPRK's largest holidays. April 15, 2022, is the 110th anniversary of President Kim Il Sung's birth

      On April 15th there will be large-scale celebrations in Pyongyang. A Military Parade is expected, in which case the itinerary for the day will be subject to change. Foreign travellers are typically allowed to view military units as they exit the city from the parade course and the city's residents come out en masse to greet them. Be prepared to potentially wait around for a few hours, but it will be well worth it. For The Day of the Sun we also expect student-organised mass dances at prominent locations throughout the city and the possibility of evening fireworks. Whatever happens this holiday, it will be impressive and unforgettable. Not to be missed!

      AM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.

      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. Ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre 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 the DPRK leadership overlooking downtown Pyongyang. A presentation of flowers and bow by the group is customary here. Visitations are by special request only and decent dress is required. No shorts or flip-flop sandals allowed here.
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.

      PM

      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Kimilsungia and Kimjongillia Flower Exhibition | Exhibit of the two flowers named after the DPRK’s leaders and held on the occasion of their respective birthday anniversaries in February and April. See organizations and groups from across society compete to put on the best floral display.
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.

      • Mass Dance | Large student organised dances held around Pyongyang on major holidays (weather dependent). Join in the fun!

      • Pyongyang Circus (or other available performance) | We will leave time this afternoon to try and catch a local performance — either of the Pyongyang Circus, theatre, or a revolutionary opera. Schedules are typically announced only a few weeks before the trip. If no performances are available, we will find an alternative activity in the city. Tickets to be paid on the spot (from 5-25 EUR) depending on the available performance.

      • Dinner and sunset boat cruise along the Taedong River | We will take a cruise on the Taedong River while having dinner with live music performance and waiting for the fireworks.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    3. April 16 | Saturday

      Departure Day from Pyongyang and Return to Beijing by flight.

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS151 at 08:35 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 09:55.

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • Insurance for up to six 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?

    • Flight Beijing – Pyongyang - Beijing
    • All meals on the tour
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK
    • DPRK visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and driver (approx 10-15 EUR per day)
    • Optional activities such as the lift up the Juche Tower (5 EUR)
    • 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
  • Notes

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 27th March, 2022.

April 14 - April 19/20 2022

Kim Il Sung Birthday Short Tour

5 nights in North Korea + travel
time between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s biggest national
holidays in years as well as seeing North Korea beyond
Pyongyang

From 1,199 EUR per person

Please apply by 27th March, 2022.

Kim Il Sung Birthday Short Tour

5 nights in North Korea + travel
time between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s
biggest national holidays in years
as well as seeing North Korea beyond
Pyongyang

From 1,199 EUR per person

  • Overall

    Just like every country, North Korea has much more to offer than just its capital. This 5-night Korea tour package will take you to cities and places outside of Pyongyang. Tick off must-see sites such as the Juche Tower, Kim Il Sung Square, and the Mansudae Grand Monument statues of the Leaders, as well as other highlights; KaesongDMZ, and Nampo.

    More importantly, joining us on this tour means you’ll get to join the local North Koreans in celebrating one of the most important dates in the Korean calendar; Kim Il Sung’s Birthday. Officially known as the ‘Day of the Sun’. Expect mass dances and even the possibility of a military parade and firework display over the Taedonggang river. We will also get a chance to see the orchid named after the President, the Kimilsungia.

    Only got a few days to spare? Strapped for cash? See our Kim Il Sung Birthday Mini Break!

    Scroll down for an overview of the full Kim Il Sung Birthday Tour highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    BROWSE KORYO TOURS INTERNATIONAL DESTINATIONS
    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Russia | Kazakhstan | Tajikistan

    Highlights

    • The Day of the Sun, the birthday of Eternal President Kim Il Sung: join in the celebrations on the biggest national holiday of the year
    • Panmunjom and the Demilitarized Zone: Signing hall of the 1953 armistice and Joint Security Area, patrolled by soldiers from both sides
    • West Sea Barrage, one of North Korea’s greatest feats of engineering
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 13 | 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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For this tour, we will hold two briefings. One in the morning for those departing by train this afternoon and the other in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • 10:00 | Briefing for those departing by train.

      PM

      • 16:00 | Briefing for those departing by flight.  
      • 17:27 | Train travellers depart Beijing Station by Chinese domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with North Korea. 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 our office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 14 | Thursday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to Dandong-Pyongyang local. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 on Air Koryo flight JS252 at 14:05. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability). Check-in starts 3 hours prior to departure.

      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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    3. April 15 | Friday

      The Day of the Sun – one of the DPRK's largest holidays. April 15, 2022, is the 110th anniversary of President Kim Il Sung's birth

      On April 15th there will be large-scale celebrations in Pyongyang. A Military Parade is expected, in which case the itinerary for the day will be subject to change. Foreign travellers are typically allowed to view military units as they exit the city from the parade course and the city's residents come out en masse to greet them. Be prepared to potentially wait around for a few hours, but it will be well worth it. For The Day of the Sun we also expect student-organised mass dances at prominent locations throughout the city and the possibility of evening fireworks. Whatever happens this holiday, it will be impressive and unforgettable. Not to be missed!

      AM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.

      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. Ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre 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 the DPRK leadership overlooking downtown Pyongyang. A presentation of flowers and bow by the group is customary here. Visitations are by special request only and decent dress is required. No shorts or flip-flop sandals allowed here.
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.

      PM

      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Kimilsungia and Kimjongillia Flower Exhibition | Exhibit of the two flowers named after the DPRK’s leaders and held on the occasion of their respective birthday anniversaries in February and April. See organizations and groups from across society compete to put on the best floral display.
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.

      • Mass Dance | Large student organised dances held around Pyongyang on major holidays (weather dependent). Join in the fun!

      • Pyongyang Circus (or other available performance) | We will leave time this afternoon to try and catch a local performance — either of the Pyongyang Circus, theatre, or a revolutionary opera. Schedules are typically announced only a few weeks before the trip. If no performances are available, we will find an alternative activity in the city. Tickets to be paid on the spot (from 5-25 EUR) depending on the available performance.

      • Dinner and sunset boat cruise along the Taedong River | We will take a cruise on the Taedong River while having dinner with live music performance and waiting for the fireworks.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    4. April 16 | Saturday

      Nampo and the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum

      AM

      • Drive west along River Taedong to Nampo, the port city of Pyongyang at the mouth of the Taedong River on the West Sea.
         
      • Tae’an Glass Factory | Factory producing glass and glass products for the domestic market. Watch the glass-making process from smelting to sheet-cutting and even try to break a sheet of strengthened glass.
      • West Sea Barrage | An 8 km concrete, steel, and earthen barrage constructed between the Taedong River estuary and the West Sea for land reclamation, irrigation, flood prevention, and power generation. It also acts as a ship lock and fish ladder. One of the DPRK’s greatest engineering feats.
         
      • Chongsam-ri Co-operative Farm | The DPRK’s most famous and iconic model farm. Visited hundreds of times by Kim Il Sung, the place where the ‘Chongsam-ri Method’ was developed (they will explain on-site). See how the farming system works, visit a farmhouse, the local shop, and kindergarten, see the fields and greenhouses.
         
      • Drive back to Pyongyang along the Youth Hero Highway.

      PM

      • Mt. Ryonggak picnic and hike | A popular local picnic spot in a scenic valley with an interesting and huge concrete dragon winding through the area. Also a 45-minute walk to the top for a view of Pyongyang City.
         
      • Kwangbok Department Store | Exchange for Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stands for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
         
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and USS Pueblo | We’ll tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guides. Renovated in 2012 and its exhibits of 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 captures equipment from the US military, including the spyship USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
      • Mansugyo Beer Bar | A beer bar serving seven types of beer. Popular with locals after work and on weekends. Best place to drink pints with local people.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel

    5. April 17 | Sunday

      Pyongyang City Tour and drive to Kaesong

      AM

      • Kumsusan Memorial Palace of the Sun | Mausoleum of the DPRK leadership where President Kim Il Sung and Leader Kim Jong Il lie in state and the most solemn location on the itinerary. We will need to dress formally for our visit: shirt, dress pants, and tie for men and covered shoulders, legs, and feet for women. The visit will take most of the morning and visitors are asked to bow a number of times inside. Please note that this is a state-administered site and visits are subject to local conditions. Cancellations are rare but possible.

      • 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.
         
      • Okryugwan | A meal at Pyongyang’s most famous restaurant. Housed in a huge traditional building on the banks of the Taedong River. Okgyuwan specialises in Pyongyang Cold Noodles.

      PM

      • Drive to Sariwon | Drive south on the Reunification Highway to the provincial seat of North Hwanghae Province that is a centre of agro-industrial production and home to one of the country's top agricultural universities.
         
      • 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.
         
      • Migok Co-Operative Farm | Learn about rural life in the DPRK at this farming community on the bucolic plains of Sariwon. Visit the farm's museum, viewpoint, and local home.
         
      • Continue south to Kaesong, historic capital of the medieval Koryo Dynasty (918-1392 AD). Once located in South Korea, the city changed hands during the Korean War. It is now located just north of the DMZ.
         
      • Kaesong Ginseng Factory | See how this famous panacea and aphrodsiac is harvested and processed into various forms (tea, candy, powder, etc.). Also learn the history of the root - it was first cultivated in Kaesong, the home of 'ginseng'.
         
      • Dinner with a live Kayagum performance - a traditional Korean instrument in a unique setting!

      Overnight | Minsok Folk Hotel, Kaesong. Traditional style hotel where guests sleep on heated floors in Korean style. Housed in beautiful courtyards of Kaesong’s old city, structures date back to the Ri Dynasty. Basic bathroom facilities. Hot water not guaranteed and erratic electricity supply – please bring a torch.

    6. April 18 | Monday

      Historic Kaesong and the Joint Security Area

      AM

      • Old City Walk and South Gate | A stroll from the hotel through Kaesong’s historic district lined with homes dating back to the Ri Dynasty from the city’s historic South Gate.
         
      • Panmunjom Armistice Village and DMZ | The site of the signing of the 1953 armistice that ended the Korean War and 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

      • Janam Hill | Statues of the DPRK leadership on a hill overlooking Kaesong city and historic pavilion used for archery demonstrations in days of yore.
         
      • 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. 45 minute drive each way from Kaesong through the countryside.
         
      • Drive back to Pyongyang with a stop at the Monument to the Three Charters of Reunification, a large stone archway over the highway memorializing joint agreements between north and south. A 3-hour drive.
         
      • Farewell dinner at Pyongyang Duck Barbeque Restaurant | South Pyongyang’s famous grilled duck restaurant that has seen many a teary-eyed farewell.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

    7. April 19 | Tuesday

      Departure Day from Pyongyang and Return to Beijing by flight or train. Please confirm your preferred transport method upon booking.

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS151 at 08:35 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 09:55.

      OR

      • Train departure by train to Beijing at 10:25 with transfer in Dandong. The scheduled arrival is to Beijing Station on Wednesday, April 20 at 08:40. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Transport | Train and Flights to North Korea (High-season)

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang by 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 265 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 435 EUR. We recommend flight entry with a train return for the best overall experience on your trip.

    • 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
    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • Insurance for up to six 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?

    • Train Beijing – Pyongyang - Beijing
    • All meals on the tour apart from the meals on the train
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK
    • DPRK visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 265 EUR; return: 435 EUR)
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and 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

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 27th March, 2022.

April 14 - April 21/22 2022

The Kim Il Sung Birthday Tour

7 nights in North Korea + travel
time between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s biggest national
holidays in years as well as seeing highlights of North Korea
beyond Pyongyang

From 1,395 EUR per person

Please apply by 27th March, 2022.

The Kim Il Sung Birthday Tour

7 nights in North Korea + travel
time between Beijing and Pyongyang

Be in Pyongyang for one of North Korea’s
biggest national holidays in years as well
as seeing highlights of North Korea beyond
Pyongyang

From 1,395 EUR per person

  • Overall

    Just like every country, North Korea has much more to offer than just its capital. This week Korea tour package will take you to cities and places outside of Pyongyang that many consider as the highlights of North Korea beyond Pyongyang! Tick off must-see sites such as the Juche Tower, Kim Il Sung Square, and the Mansudae Grand Monument statue of the Great Leaders, as well as other highlights; KaesongDMZNampo, and Mt. Myohyang We will also go off the beaten track for a short visit to Anju, an industrial city between Pyongyang and Mt. Myohyang and hardly ever on offer by other tour companies.

    More importantly, joining us on this tour means you’ll get to join the local North Koreans in celebrating one of the most important dates in the Korean calendar; Kim Il Sung’s Birthday. Officially known as the ‘Day of the Sun’. Expect mass dances and even the possibility of a military parade and a firework display over the Taedonggang river. We will also get a chance to see the orchid named after the President, the Kimilsungia.

    Only got a few days to spare? Strapped for cash? See our Kim Il Sung Birthday Short Tour! or Kim Il Sung Birthday Mini-Break

    Scroll down for an overview of the full Kim Il Sung Birthday Tour highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    BROWSE KORYO TOURS INTERNATIONAL DESTINATIONS
    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Russia | Kazakhstan | Tajikistan

    Highlights

    • The Day of the Sun, the birthday of Eternal President Kim Il Sung: join in the celebrations on the biggest national holiday of the year
    • West Sea Barrage, one of North Korea’s greatest feats of engineering
    • International Friendship Exhibition in spectacular Mt. Myohyang
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 13 | 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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For this tour, we will hold two briefings. One in the morning for those departing by train this afternoon and the other in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • 10:00 | Briefing for those departing by train.

      PM

      • 16:00 | Briefing for those departing by flight.  
      • 17:27 | Train travellers depart Beijing Station by Chinese domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with North Korea. 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 our office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 14 | Thursday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to Dandong-Pyongyang local. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 on Air Koryo flight JS252 at 14:05. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability). Check-in starts 3 hours prior to departure.

      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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    3. April 15 | Friday

      The Day of the Sun – one of the DPRK's largest holidays. April 15, 2022, is the 110th anniversary of President Kim Il Sung's birth

      On April 15th there will be large-scale celebrations in Pyongyang. A Military Parade is expected, in which case the itinerary for the day will be subject to change. Foreign travellers are typically allowed to view military units as they exit the city from the parade course and the city's residents come out en masse to greet them. Be prepared to potentially wait around for a few hours, but it will be well worth it. For The Day of the Sun we also expect student-organised mass dances at prominent locations throughout the city and the possibility of evening fireworks. Whatever happens this holiday, it will be impressive and unforgettable. Not to be missed!

      AM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.

      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. Ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre 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 the DPRK leadership overlooking downtown Pyongyang. A presentation of flowers and bow by the group is customary here. Visitations are by special request only and decent dress is required. No shorts or flip-flop sandals allowed here.
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.

      PM

      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Kimilsungia and Kimjongillia Flower Exhibition | Exhibit of the two flowers named after the DPRK’s leaders and held on the occasion of their respective birthday anniversaries in February and April. See organizations and groups from across society compete to put on the best floral display.
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.

      • Mass Dance | Large student organised dances held around Pyongyang on major holidays (weather dependent). Join in the fun!

      • Pyongyang Circus (or other available performance) | We will leave time this afternoon to try and catch a local performance — either of the Pyongyang Circus, theatre, or a revolutionary opera. Schedules are typically announced only a few weeks before the trip. If no performances are available, we will find an alternative activity in the city. Tickets to be paid on the spot (from 5-25 EUR) depending on the available performance.

      • Dinner and sunset boat cruise along the Taedong River | We will take a cruise on the Taedong River while having dinner with live music performance and waiting for the fireworks.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    4. April 16 | Saturday

      Nampo and the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum

      AM

      • Drive west along River Taedong to Nampo, the port city of Pyongyang at the mouth of the Taedong River on the West Sea.
         
      • Tae’an Glass Factory | Factory producing glass and glass products for the domestic market. Watch the glass-making process from smelting to sheet-cutting and even try to break a sheet of strengthened glass.
      • West Sea Barrage | An 8 km concrete, steel, and earthen barrage constructed between the Taedong River estuary and the West Sea for land reclamation, irrigation, flood prevention, and power generation. It also acts as a ship lock and fish ladder. One of the DPRK’s greatest engineering feats.
         
      • Chongsam-ri Co-operative Farm | The DPRK’s most famous and iconic model farm. Visited hundreds of times by Kim Il Sung, the place where the ‘Chongsam-ri Method’ was developed (they will explain on-site). See how the farming system works, visit a farmhouse, the local shop, and kindergarten, see the fields and greenhouses.
         
      • Drive back to Pyongyang along the Youth Hero Highway.

      PM

      • Mt. Ryonggak picnic and hike | A popular local picnic spot in a scenic valley with an interesting and huge concrete dragon winding through the area. Also a 45-minute walk to the top for a view of Pyongyang City.
         
      • Kwangbok Department Store | Exchange for Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stands for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
         
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and USS Pueblo | We’ll tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guides. Renovated in 2012 and its exhibits of 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 captures equipment from the US military, including the spyship USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
      • Mansugyo Beer Bar | A beer bar serving seven types of beer. Popular with locals after work and on weekends. Best place to drink pints with local people.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel

    5. April 17 | Sunday

      Pyongyang City Tour and drive to Kaesong

      AM

      • Kumsusan Memorial Palace of the Sun | Mausoleum of the DPRK leadership where President Kim Il Sung and Leader Kim Jong Il lie in state and the most solemn location on the itinerary. We will need to dress formally for our visit: shirt, dress pants, and tie for men and covered shoulders, legs, and feet for women. The visit will take most of the morning and visitors are asked to bow a number of times inside. Please note that this is a state-administered site and visits are subject to local conditions. Cancellations are rare but possible.

      • 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.
         
      • Okryugwan | A meal at Pyongyang’s most famous restaurant. Housed in a huge traditional building on the banks of the Taedong River. Okgyuwan specialises in Pyongyang Cold Noodles.

      PM

      • Drive to Sariwon | Drive south on the Reunification Highway to the provincial seat of North Hwanghae Province that is a centre of agro-industrial production and home to one of the country's top agricultural universities.
         
      • 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.
         
      • Migok Co-Operative Farm | Learn about rural life in the DPRK at this farming community on the bucolic plains of Sariwon. Visit the farm's museum, viewpoint, and local home.
         
      • Continue south to Kaesong, historic capital of the medieval Koryo Dynasty (918-1392 AD). Once located in South Korea, the city changed hands during the Korean War. It is now located just north of the DMZ.
         
      • Kaesong Ginseng Factory | See how this famous panacea and aphrodsiac is harvested and processed into various forms (tea, candy, powder, etc.). Also learn the history of the root - it was first cultivated in Kaesong, the home of 'ginseng'.
         
      • Dinner with a live Kayagum performance - a traditional Korean instrument in a unique setting!

      Overnight | Minsok Folk Hotel, Kaesong. Traditional style hotel where guests sleep on heated floors in Korean style. Housed in beautiful courtyards of Kaesong’s old city, structures date back to the Ri Dynasty. Basic bathroom facilities. Hot water not guaranteed and erratic electricity supply – please bring a torch.

    6. April 18 | Monday

      Historic Kaesong and the Joint Security Area

      AM

      • Old City Walk and South Gate | A stroll from the hotel through Kaesong’s historic district lined with homes dating back to the Ri Dynasty from the city’s historic South Gate.
         
      • Panmunjom Armistice Village and DMZ | The site of the signing of the 1953 armistice that ended the Korean War and 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

      • Janam Hill | Statues of the DPRK leadership on a hill overlooking Kaesong city and historic pavilion used for archery demonstrations in days of yore.
         
      • 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. 45 minute drive each way from Kaesong through the countryside.
         
      • Drive back to Pyongyang with a stop at the Monument to the Three Charters of Reunification, a large stone archway over the highway memorializing joint agreements between north and south. A 3-hour drive.
         
      • Dinner at Pyongyang Duck Barbeque Restaurant | South Pyongyang’s famous grilled duck restaurant that has seen many a teary-eyed farewell.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

    7. April 19 | Tuesday

      Pyongyang City Tour and Drive to Mt. Myohyang

      AM

      • Chilgol Revolutionary Site | The native home of Kang Pan Sok, mother of President Kim Il Sung. A Statue of ‘the Mother of Korea’ sits outside. You can also visit the school where her husband and father-in-law once taught.
         
      • A ride through Pyongyang from Kwangbok Street to Pyongyang Station on one of the city’s municipal trams.

      PM

      • Drive to Anju, a mid-sized industrial city located on the road and rail line north of Pyongyang on the Chongchon River. During the Korean War, major battles were fought near here between North Korean-Chinese forces and UN-South Korean forces. Coal is mined nearby.
         
      • Paeksang Pavilion and Anju City Walls | The greatest pavilion in Kwanso (Pyong’an Province,) which overlooks the Chongchon River. Rebuilt after destruction in the Korean War.
         
      • Continue driving to Mt. Myohyang.
         
      • Manpok Valley Hike | Various options for hikes of a range of distances/difficulties. Passing waterfalls, hermitages, interesting rocks, lovely wooded areas, and viewing points.

      Overnight | Huichon Hotel, Mt. Myohyang | Basic but clean hotel located 30 minutes north of Mt. Myohyang. Very good local food much different from the lowlands, on-site sauna, and limited electricity.

    8. April 20 | Wednesday

      Mt. Myohyang

      AM

      • International Friendship Exhibition | A semi-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. Presentable dress required.
         
      • Pohyon Buddhist Temple | A peaceful temple dating back to 1042 CE with stone pagoda and repository of print blocks and historic text of the Tripitaka Koreana, Buddhist scriptures first produced to invoke divine assistance from foreign invasions during the Koryo Dynasty.

      PM

      • Drive back to Pyongyang (2.5-3 hours) with a stop at 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.

      • June 9th Middle School | Some of the classrooms can be visited; here they teach the normal curriculum so there is science and maths, foreign languages (if a class is going on tourists can sometimes join in), revolutionary history, and so on. If students are doing sports classes at the time of the visit then a kick-about on the football pitch can sometimes be arranged, but usually, the visit ends with a performance in the auditorium.

      • Pizza Restaurant | Farewell dinner at one of Pyongyang’s Italian eateries (there are three).

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    9. April 21 | Thursday

      Departure Day from Pyongyang and Return to Beijing by flight or train. Please confirm your preferred transport method upon booking.

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS251 at 10:15 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 11:35.

      OR

      • Train departure by train to Beijing at 10:25 with transfer in Dandong. The scheduled arrival is to Beijing Station on Friday, April 22 at 08:40. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Transport | Train and Flights to North Korea (High-season)

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang by 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 265 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 435 EUR. We recommend flight entry with a train return for the best overall experience on your trip.

    • 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
    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • 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?

    • Train Beijing – Pyongyang - Beijing
    • All meals on the tour except for meals on the train and the farewell dinner at the Pizza Restaurant
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK
    • DPRK visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 265 EUR; return: 435 EUR)
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and 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
    • Farewell dinner at the Pizza Restaurant
    • 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

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 27th March, 2022.

April 29 - May 2/3 2022

May Day Long Weekend Tour

3 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations
on May Day in North Korea

From 895 EUR per person

Please apply by 10th April, 2022.

May Day Long Weekend Tour

3 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations
on May Day in North
Korea

From 895 EUR per person

  • Overall

    May Day is one of the best times to visit North Korea during the calendar year for the fine weather and festivities. Also known as International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day, May Day is a day off and locals take to the outdoors for picnics, dancing, and sports. Join in the celebrations as you experience North Korean culture like a local. In addition to the May Day celebrations we will visit the highlights of the North Korean capital Pyongyang; we’ll have time for walks in the city, dining at some of Pyongyang’s most interesting restaurants, shopping at the Kwangbok Department Store, and two picnic lunches.

    If you want more time in North Korea over this May Day Holiday then take a look at our May Day Short Tour, or The May Day Tour (8 nights).

    Scroll down for an overview of our May Day Long Weekend Tour package highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    Koryo Tours International Tours

    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Kazakhstan | Bhutan | Russia | Tajikistan 


    Highlights

    • May Day - National Holiday and best day of the year to mix with DPRK locals
    • Pyongyang city highlights
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 28 | Thursday

      *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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For this tour, we will hold two briefings. One in the morning for those departing by train this afternoon and the other in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • 10:00 | Briefing for those departing by train.

      PM

      • 16:00 | Briefing for those departing by flight.  
      • 17:27 | Train travellers depart Beijing Station by Chinese domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with North Korea. 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 our office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 29 | Friday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to Dandong-Pyongyang local. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 on Air Koryo flight JS152 at 12:20. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability). Check-in starts 3 hours prior to departure.

      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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    3. April 30 | Saturday

      Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • 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.
         
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre of Pyongyang popular with local citizens after school and on weekends. Flanked by examples of ancient, socialist, and modern architecture.
         
      • 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. Visits are optional and require a certain dress code (close-toed shoes and covered legs and shoulders).
         
      • Kwangbok Department Store | Exchange for Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stands for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
         
      • Mt Ryonggak | Enjoy a picnic lunch in this park on the outskirts of Pyongyang and popular with locals. Stretch your legs after lunch witha short hike to the top of Mt Ryonggak itself.

      PM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.
         
      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. We’ll ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
         
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and USS Pueblo | We’ll tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guides. Renovated in 2012 and its exhibits of 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 captures equipment from the US military, including the spyship USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
         
      • Mansugyo Beer Bar | A beer bar serving seven types of beer. Popular with locals after work and on weekends. Best place to drink pints with local people.
         
      • Kaeson Funfair | Take on the rides of Pyongyang’s small but excellently located central funfair with the locals: pirate ship, ‘vominator’, rollercoaster, bumper cars, arcades, and more. Entry and ride tickets purchased on the spot.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    4. May 1 | Sunday - International Labour Day

      Pyongyang, National Holiday Celebrations

      AM
      • Revolutionary Martyrs' Cemetery | Hilltop cemetery with dozens of bronze busts of those who took part in the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule. At the top of the hill are the graves of Kim Jong Suk (wife of Kim Il Sung) and Kim Chaek (Kim Il Sung's right-hand man). A presentation of flowers is customary here.
      • Taesongsan Folk Festival l Large park/funfair at the edge of the city, locals flock here on May Day for games, picnics, and general celebrations. Join them and wander freely in the crowds. the single best time of the year for mingling with the Pyongyang populace and an unforgettable experience!
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.
      PM
      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.
         
      • 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).
         
      • Dinner at Duck BBQ Restaurant | Famous restaurant in south Pyongyang specializing in duck meat barbecue on a grill. Southcentral does it like nobody does!
      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang
    5. May 2 | Monday

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

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS151 at 09:00 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 10:20.

      OR

      • Train departure by train to Beijing at 10:25 with transfer in Dandong. The scheduled arrival is to Beijing Station on Tuesday May 3 at 08:40. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Transport | Train and Flights to North Korea (High-season)

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang by 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 265 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 435 EUR. We recommend flight entry with a train return for the best overall experience on your trip.

    • 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
    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • Insurance for up to six 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 except for meals on the train
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK

    NOT INCLUDED

    • North Korean (DPRK) visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 265 EUR; round-trip: 435 EUR)
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and 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

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 North Korea 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 10th April, 2022.

April 29 - May 5/6 2022

May Day Short Tour

6 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations on May Day in North Korea, Pyongyang,
the DMZ, and two cities on the West Sea; little-seen Haeju
City and Nampo

From 1,295 EUR per person

Please apply by 10th April, 2022.

May Day Short Tour

6 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations on May Day in
North Korea, Pyongyang, the DMZ, and two
cities on the West Sea; little-seen Haeju
City and Nampo

From 1,295 EUR per person

  • Overall

    May Day is one of the best times to visit North Korea during the calendar year for the fine weather and festivities. Also known as International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day, May Day is a day off and locals take to the outdoors for picnics, dancing, and sports.

    Join in the celebrations as you experience North Korean culture like a local. In addition to the highlights of the North Korean capital Pyongyang and historic Kaesong on the Demilitarised Zone (the North/South border), we’ll have time for walks in the city, dining at some of Pyongyang’s most interesting restaurants, shopping at the Kwangbok Department Store, a picnic lunch,  On this May Day tour, we’ll also get the chance to make a rare trip to Haeju City. We will take another road less travelled between Haeju and Nampo via scenic Mt. Kuwol after crossing the West Sea Barrage.

    If time isn’t on your side, take a look at our May Day Long Weekend Tour, or for a longer trip check out The May Day Tour (8 nights).

    Scroll down for an overview of our May Day Long Weekend Tour package highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    Koryo Tours International Tours

    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Kazakhstan | Bhutan | Russia | Tajikistan 


    Highlights

    • May Day - National Holiday and best day of the year to mix with DPRK locals
    • Rarely-visited Haeju - very much off the beaten path!
    • Mt. Kuwol - scenic mountain area interspersed with temples
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 28 | Thursday

      *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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For this tour, we will hold two briefings. One in the morning for those departing by train this afternoon and the other in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • 10:00 | Briefing for those departing by train.

      PM

      • 16:00 | Briefing for those departing by flight.  
      • 17:27 | Train travellers depart Beijing Station by Chinese domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with North Korea. 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 our office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 29 | Friday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to Dandong-Pyongyang local. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 on Air Koryo flight JS152 at 12:20. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability). Check-in starts 3 hours prior to departure.

      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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    3. April 30 | Saturday

      Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • 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.
         
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre of Pyongyang popular with local citizens after school and on weekends. Flanked by examples of ancient, socialist, and modern architecture.
         
      • 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. Visits are optional and require a certain dress code (close-toed shoes and covered legs and shoulders).
         
      • Kwangbok Department Store | Exchange for Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stands for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
         
      • Mt Ryonggak | Enjoy a picnic lunch in this park on the outskirts of Pyongyang and popular with locals. Stretch your legs after lunch witha short hike to the top of Mt Ryonggak itself.

      PM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.
         
      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. We’ll ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
         
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and USS Pueblo | We’ll tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guides. Renovated in 2012 and its exhibits of 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 captures equipment from the US military, including the spyship USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
         
      • Mansugyo Beer Bar | A beer bar serving seven types of beer. Popular with locals after work and on weekends. Best place to drink pints with local people.
         
      • Kaeson Funfair | Take on the rides of Pyongyang’s small but excellently located central funfair with the locals: pirate ship, ‘vominator’, rollercoaster, bumper cars, arcades, and more. Entry and ride tickets purchased on the spot.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    4. May 1 | Sunday - International Labour Day

      Pyongyang, National Holiday Celebrations

      AM
      • Revolutionary Martyrs' Cemetery | Hilltop cemetery with dozens of bronze busts of those who took part in the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule. At the top of the hill are the graves of Kim Jong Suk (wife of Kim Il Sung) and Kim Chaek (Kim Il Sung's right-hand man). A presentation of flowers is customary here.
      • Taesongsan Folk Festival l Large park/funfair at the edge of the city, locals flock here on May Day for games, picnics, and general celebrations. Join them and wander freely in the crowds. the single best time of the year for mingling with the Pyongyang populace and an unforgettable experience!
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.
      PM
      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.
         
      • Drive south to Kaesong, historic capital of the medieval Koryo Dynasty (918-1392 AD). Once located in South Korea, the city changed hands during the Korean War. It is now located just north of the DMZ. 3 hours by road.
         
      • Dinner with a live Kayagum performance - a traditional Korean instrument in a unique setting!

      Overnight | Minsok Folk Hotel, Kaesong | Traditional style hotel where guests sleep on heated floors in Korean style. Housed in beautiful courtyards of Kaesong’s old city, structures date back to the Ri Dynasty. Basic bathroom facilities. Hot water not guaranteed and erratic electricity supply – please bring a torch.

    5. May 2 | Monday

      Kaesong and the DMZ, Haeju

      • Old City Walk and South Gate | A stroll from the hotel through Kaesong’s historic district lined with homes dating back to the Ri Dynasty from the city’s historic South Gate.
         
      • Panmunjom Armistice Village and DMZ | The site of the signing of the 1953 armistice that ended the Korean War and 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.
         
      • Janam Hill and Old City View | Statues of the DPRK leadership on a hill overlooking Kaesong city and historic pavilion used for archery demonstrations in days of yore.
         
      • Drive to the rarely visited town of Haeju (approx. 1 hr drive, very dependent on road conditions but a guaranteed adventure), the provincial seat of South Hwanghae Province and a port city on the West Sea.
         
      • Puyong Pavilion | The largest pavilion in the whole DPRK and the only one in Korea built on footstalls in water, originally built in 1500.
         
      • Haeju Central Square and Statues | As with all cities in the DPRK the centrepiece of the town; Statues of the DPRK Leaders for locals and visitors to pay their respects to

      Overnight | Haeju Hotel, Haeju | Utilitarian DPRK-style hotel in the very heart of the city. Rarely used by tourists and a quirky and memorable spot for an overnight stay

    6. May 3 | Tuesday

      Haeju, and drive to Nampo via the scenic Chaeryong Plains and Mount Kuwol, the 'September Mountain'. We'll cross the West Sea Barrage at the mouth of the Taedong River in the evening.

      AM

      • Koryo Fortress | A major military base in its day, this fortress is situated above the magnificent Suyang Waterfall.
      • Gyenam Stock Farm | While most farms in the DPRK are for crops this one specialises in livestock. See the animals, learn about the co-operative farm system in North Korea. A proper countryside experience!
      • Picnic lunch at Sokdam Ravine | Made up of 9 valleys spread over a large area the Sokdam scenic area is a worthy place to visit for the views alone. Sokdam ravine means the scenic spot which was seated on the 9 ravines with mountains, rocks and streams.

      PM

      • Drive to Nampo (approx. 4 hrs drive includiing stops, depending on road conditions)
      • Woljong Temple | Buddhist temple established in the middle of the 9th century and later rebuilt at the start of the Ri Dynasty.
      • Mt. Kuwol | A scenic mountain area on the West Coast of Korea. We’ll pass through this region on a full-day drive between Nampo and Kaesong after crossing over the West Seat Barrage in the morning.
      • West Sea Barrage | An 8 km concrete, steel, and earthen barrage constructed between the Taedong River estuary and the West Sea for land reclamation, irrigation, flood prevention, and power generation. It also acts as a ship lock and fish ladder. One of the DPRK’s greatest engineering feats.
         
      • Optional Petrol Clam BBQ (approximately 5 EUR).

      Overnight | Ryonggang Hot Spa Hotel, Nampo. Compound with holiday houses and a main building for dinner and entertainment. Spa bath in every room with mineral water from the Sindok Spring - the most famous mineral spa in the DPRK. Billiards, karaoke, and ping pong. Bring a torch!

    7. May 4 | Wednesday

      Nampo and Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • Tae’an Glass Factory | Factory producing glass and glass products for the domestic market. Watch the glass-making process from smelting to sheet-cutting and even try to break a sheet of strengthened glass.
         
      • Chongsam-ri Co-operative Farm | The DPRK’s most famous and iconic model farm. Visited hundreds of times by Kim Il Sung, the place where the ‘Chongsam-ri Method’ was developed (they will explain on-site). See how the farming system works, visit a farmhouse, the local shop, and kindergarten, see the fields and greenhouses.
         
      • Drive east along the Youth Hero Highway’ back to the capital.

      PM

      • Pyongyang International Football Academy |  Premier football school for young and promising athletes. Tour the facilities and learn about the history of football in the DPRK. Has multiple training pitches where you can test yourself against some students here.
         
      • May Day Stadium | Largest in the DPRK, this massive structure plays host to the amazing Mass Games as well as other mega-scale events. One of Pyongyang's most iconic buildings.
         
      • 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 air gun shooting range (approximately 6 EUR per 20 round cartridge) and some of the best coffee in Pyongyang.
         
      • Farewell Dinner at Potonggang Lamb BBQ Restaurant | One of our favourites, excellent Korean Barbeque joint, popular with many of our local friends. Welcome back tot he capital!

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    8. May 5 | Thursday

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

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS251 at 10:15 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 11:35.

      OR

      • Train departure by train to Beijing at 10:25 with transfer in Dandong. The scheduled arrival is to Beijing Station on Friday May 6 at 08:40. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Transport | Train and Flights to North Korea (High-season)

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang by 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 265 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 435 EUR. We recommend flight entry with a train return for the best overall experience on your trip.

    • 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
    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • Insurance for up to six 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 except for meals on the train
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK

    NOT INCLUDED

    • North Korean (DPRK) visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 265 EUR; round-trip: 435 EUR)
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and 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

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 North Korea 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 10th April, 2022.

April 29 - May 7/8 2022

The May Day Tour

8 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations on May Day in North Korea,
and travel widely around the country on this amazing
tour.

From 1,645 EUR per person

Please apply by 10th April, 2022.

The May Day Tour

8 nights in North Korea +
Beijing-Pyongyang travel
time

Join in the celebrations on May
Day in North Korea, and travel widely
around the country on this amazing
tour.

From 1,645 EUR per person

  • Overall

    May Day is one of the best times to visit North Korea during the calendar year for the fine weather and festivities. Also known as International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day, May Day is a day off and locals take to the outdoors for picnics, dancing, and sports.

    Join in the celebrations as you experience North Korean culture like a local. In addition to the highlights of the North Korean capital Pyongyang and historic Kaesong on the Demilitarised Zone (the North/South border), we’ll have time for walks in the city, dining at some of Pyongyang’s most interesting restaurants, shopping at the Kwangbok Department Store, a picnic lunch,  On this May Day tour, we’ll also get the chance to make a rare trip to Haeju City. We will take another road less travelled between Haeju and Nampo via scenic Mt. Kuwol after crossing the West Sea Barrage. We will also go off the beaten track for a short visit to Anju, an industrial city between Pyongyang and Mt. Myohyang and hardly ever on offer by other tour companies.

    If time isn’t on your side, take a look at our 3-night May Day Long Weekend Tour, or 6-night May Day Short Tour.

    Scroll down for an overview of our May Day Long Weekend Tour package highlights, tour itinerary, transport options, DPRK tourist visa information, and extra add-ons.

    ⬇⬇⬇


    Koryo Tours International Tours

    Mongolia | Turkmenistan | Kazakhstan | Bhutan | Russia | Tajikistan 


    Highlights

    • Rarely-visited Haeju - very much off the beaten path!
    • Mt. Kuwol - scenic mountain area interspersed with temples
    • The International Friendship Exhibition: Cavernous halls displaying all manner of foreign gifts to the DPRK's leaders
  • Itinerary

    Briefing Day
    1. April 28 | Thursday

      *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, and pay any outstanding tour fees. A proper briefing is an essential part of travel to North Korea.

      For this tour, we will hold two briefings. One in the morning for those departing by train this afternoon and the other in the afternoon for those departing by flight the next day.

      AM

      • Recommended latest arrival in Beijing.
      • 10:00 | Briefing for those departing by train.

      PM

      • 16:00 | Briefing for those departing by flight.  
      • 17:27 | Train travellers depart Beijing Station by Chinese domestic sleeper train to Dandong, the Chinese city on the border with North Korea. 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 our office! Those travelling by train will spend the night on the train.

    2. April 29 | Friday

      Arrival day in Pyongyang

      AM

      • Train transfer at Dandong Station from overnight sleeper train to Dandong-Pyongyang local. Our local representative in Dandong will assist with the transfer. Train crosses the China-North Korea border followed by North Korean customs and immigration.

      PM

      • Flight departure from Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 on Air Koryo flight JS152 at 12:20. A 1.5-hour flight with basic lunch (vegetarian option is subject to availability). Check-in starts 3 hours prior to departure.

      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, beer brewed on-site, and a Chinese-run casino.

    3. April 30 | Saturday

      Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • 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.
         
      • Mansudae Fountain Park | The historic centre of Pyongyang popular with local citizens after school and on weekends. Flanked by examples of ancient, socialist, and modern architecture.
         
      • 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. Visits are optional and require a certain dress code (close-toed shoes and covered legs and shoulders).
         
      • Kwangbok Department Store | Exchange for Korean currency and shop with the citizens of Pyongyang! Try the snack stands for some of Pyongyang’s best local eats.
         
      • Mt Ryonggak | Enjoy a picnic lunch in this park on the outskirts of Pyongyang and popular with locals. Stretch your legs after lunch witha short hike to the top of Mt Ryonggak itself.

      PM

      • Mangyongdae Native House | Birthplace and childhood home of President Kim Il Sung. A traditional Korean house in a beautiful natural surrounding.
         
      • Pyongyang Metro Tour | One of the deepest metro systems in the world with stunning artwork reflecting the name of each station. We’ll ride six stations on the Chollima Line.
         
      • Arch of Triumph | A 60-m archway commemorating the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule and larger than its counterpart in Paris.
         
      • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and USS Pueblo | We’ll tour this world-class museum led by a local museum guides. Renovated in 2012 and its exhibits of 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 captures equipment from the US military, including the spyship USS Pueblo. Central to the understanding of the country today and highlight of the trip.
         
      • Mansugyo Beer Bar | A beer bar serving seven types of beer. Popular with locals after work and on weekends. Best place to drink pints with local people.
         
      • Kaeson Funfair | Take on the rides of Pyongyang’s small but excellently located central funfair with the locals: pirate ship, ‘vominator’, rollercoaster, bumper cars, arcades, and more. Entry and ride tickets purchased on the spot.

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    4. May 1 | Sunday - International Labour Day

      Pyongyang, National Holiday Celebrations

      AM
      • Revolutionary Martyrs' Cemetery | Hilltop cemetery with dozens of bronze busts of those who took part in the liberation of Korea from Japanese colonial rule. At the top of the hill are the graves of Kim Jong Suk (wife of Kim Il Sung) and Kim Chaek (Kim Il Sung's right-hand man). A presentation of flowers is customary here.
      • Taesongsan Folk Festival l Large park/funfair at the edge of the city, locals flock here on May Day for games, picnics, and general celebrations. Join them and wander freely in the crowds. the single best time of the year for mingling with the Pyongyang populace and an unforgettable experience!
         
      • Moranbong Park with picnic lunch | We’ll take a stroll and have picnic lunch in Pyongyang’s central park popular with locals for picnics, dances, and sports. The park is filled with historic pavilions, walls, and monuments- modern and ancient, a few of which are among the traditional ‘Eight Great Sights of Pyongyang’.
      PM
      • Tower of the Juche Idea | Iconic tower dedicated to the DPRK’s guiding philosophy on the Taedong River. Take the elevator to the top for 5 EUR for great views of the city.
         
      • Monument to the Party Foundation | Iconic structure featuring the hammer, sickle, writing brush which make up the emblem of the Worker’s Party of Korea and represent workers, farmers, and intellectuals.
         
      • Drive south to Kaesong, historic capital of the medieval Koryo Dynasty (918-1392 AD). Once located in South Korea, the city changed hands during the Korean War. It is now located just north of the DMZ. 3 hours by road.
         
      • Dinner with a live Kayagum performance - a traditional Korean instrument in a unique setting!

      Overnight | Minsok Folk Hotel, Kaesong | Traditional style hotel where guests sleep on heated floors in Korean style. Housed in beautiful courtyards of Kaesong’s old city, structures date back to the Ri Dynasty. Basic bathroom facilities. Hot water not guaranteed and erratic electricity supply – please bring a torch.

    5. May 2 | Monday

      Kaesong and the DMZ, Haeju

      • Old City Walk and South Gate | A stroll from the hotel through Kaesong’s historic district lined with homes dating back to the Ri Dynasty from the city’s historic South Gate.
         
      • 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.
         
      • Janam Hill and Old City View | Statues of the DPRK leadership on a hill overlooking Kaesong city and historic pavilion used for archery demonstrations in days of yore.
         
      • Drive to the rarely visited town of Haeju (approx. 1 hr drive, very dependent on road conditions but a guaranteed adventure), the provincial seat of South Hwanghae Province and a port city on the West Sea.
         
      • Puyong Pavilion | The largest pavilion in the whole DPRK and the only one in Korea built on footstalls in water, originally built in 1500.
         
      • Haeju Central Square and Statues | As with all cities in the DPRK the centrepiece of the town; Statues of the DPRK Leaders for locals and visitors to pay their respects to

      Overnight | Haeju Hotel, Haeju | Utilitarian DPRK-style hotel in the very heart of the city. Rarely used by tourists and a quirky and memorable spot for an overnight stay

    6. May 3 | Tuesday

      Haeju, and drive to Nampo via the scenic Chaeryong Plains and Mount Kuwol, the 'September Mountain'. We'll cross the West Sea Barrage at the mouth of the Taedong River in the evening.

      AM

      • Koryo Fortress | A major military base in its day, this fortress is situated above the magnificent Suyang Waterfall.
      • Gyenam Stock Farm | While most farms in the DPRK are for crops this one specialises in livestock. See the animals, learn about the co-operative farm system in North Korea. A proper countryside experience!
      • Picnic lunch at Sokdam Ravine | Made up of 9 valleys spread over a large area the Sokdam scenic area is a worthy place to visit for the views alone. Sokdam ravine means the scenic spot which was seated on the 9 ravines with mountains, rocks and streams.

      PM

      • Drive to Nampo (approx. 4 hrs drive including stops, depending on road conditions)
      • Woljong Temple | Buddhist temple established in the middle of the 9th century and later rebuilt at the start of the Ri Dynasty.
      • Mt. Kuwol | A scenic mountain area on the West Coast of Korea. We’ll pass through this region on a full-day drive between Nampo and Kaesong after crossing over the West Seat Barrage in the morning.
      • West Sea Barrage | An 8 km concrete, steel, and earthen barrage constructed between the Taedong River estuary and the West Sea for land reclamation, irrigation, flood prevention, and power generation. It also acts as a ship lock and fish ladder. One of the DPRK’s greatest engineering feats.
         
      • Optional Petrol Clam BBQ (approximately 5 EUR).

      Overnight | Ryonggang Hot Spa Hotel, Nampo. Compound with holiday houses and the main building for dinner and entertainment. Spa bath in every room with mineral water from the Sindok Spring - the most famous mineral spa in the DPRK. Billiards, karaoke, and ping pong. Bring a torch!

    7. May 4 | Wednesday

      Nampo and Pyongyang City Tour

      AM

      • Tae’an Glass Factory | Factory producing glass and glass products for the domestic market. Watch the glass-making process from smelting to sheet-cutting and even try to break a sheet of strengthened glass.
         
      • Chongsam-ri Co-operative Farm | The DPRK’s most famous and iconic model farm. Visited hundreds of times by Kim Il Sung, the place where the ‘Chongsam-ri Method’ was developed (they will explain on-site). See how the farming system works, visit a farmhouse, the local shop, and kindergarten, see the fields and greenhouses.
         
      • Drive east along the Youth Hero Highway’ back to the capital.

      PM

      • Pyongyang International Football Academy |  Premier football school for young and promising athletes. Tour the facilities and learn about the history of football in the DPRK. Has multiple training pitches where you can test yourself against some students here.
         
      • May Day Stadium |  Largest in the DPRK, this massive structure plays host to the amazing Mass Games as well as other mega-scale events. One of Pyongyang's most iconic buildings.
         
      • 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 air gun shooting range (approximately 6 EUR per 20 round cartridge) and some of the best coffee in Pyongyang.
         
      • Dinner at Potonggang Lamb BBQ Restaurant | One of our favourites, excellent Korean Barbeque joint, popular with many of our local friends. Welcome back to the capital!

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    8. May 5 | Thursday

      Pyongyang City Tour and drive to Mt. Myohyang

      AM

      • Taekwondo Class | A 60 minute introductory class at the Taekwondo Arena on Sports Street to taekwondo the national martial art which all children learn to a certain degree in school.
         
      • Helmut Sacher Coffee Shop | Opened in 2012, A branch of the famed Viennese Coffee and Cake merchant Helmut Sacher’s empire in Pyongyang on Kim Il Sung Square.
         
      • Okryugwan | A meal at Pyongyang’s most famous restaurant. Housed in a huge traditional building on the banks of the Taedong River. Okryugwan specialises in Pyongyang Cold Noodles.

      PM

      • Drive to Anju, a mid-sized industrial city located on the road and rail line north of Pyongyang on the Chongchon River. During the Korean War, major battles were fought near here between North Korean-Chinese forces and UN-South Korean forces. Coal is mined nearby.
         
      • Paeksang Pavilion and Anju City Walls | The greatest pavilion in Kwanso (Pyong’an Province,) which overlooks the Chongchon River. Rebuilt after destruction in the Korean War.
         
      • Continue driving to Mt. Myohyang.
         
      • Manpok Valley Hike | Various options for hikes of a range of distances/difficulties. Passing waterfalls, hermitages, interesting rocks, lovely wooded areas, and viewing points.

      Overnight | Huichon Hotel, Mt. Myohyang | Basic but clean hotel located 30 minutes north of Mt. Myohyang. Very good local food much different from the lowlands, on-site sauna, and limited electricity.

    9. May 6 | Friday

      Mt. Myohyang

      AM

      • International Friendship Exhibition | A semi-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. Presentable dress required.
         
      • Pohyon Buddhist Temple | A peaceful temple dating back to 1042 CE with stone pagoda and repository of print blocks and historic text of the Tripitaka Koreana, Buddhist scriptures first produced to invoke divine assistance from foreign invasions during the Koryo Dynasty.

      PM

      • Drive back to Pyongyang (2.5-3 hours) with a stop at 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.

      • 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).

      • Pizza Restaurant | Farewell dinner at one of Pyongyang’s Italian eateries (there are three).

      Overnight | Yanggakdo International Hotel, Pyongyang

    10. May 7 | Saturday

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

      AM

      • Flight departure from Pyongyang on Air Koryo Flight JS151 at 08:35 with scheduled arrival at Beijing Capital Airport (PEK) Terminal 2 at 09:55.

      OR

      • Train departure by train to Beijing at 10:25 with transfer in Dandong. The scheduled arrival is to Beijing Station on Sunday May 8 at 08:40. For this tour the default option is hard sleeper (six beds per berth).

      End of Tour

  • Extras

    • Transport | Train and Flights to North Korea (High-season)

      This tour travels between Beijing-Pyongyang by 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 265 EUR you can upgrade to a one-way flight. A round-trip ticket costs an additional 435 EUR. We recommend flight entry with a train return for the best overall experience on your trip.

    • 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
    • Upgrade to your own room

      All hotel rooms on our all-inclusive group tours feature twin beds, and will be shared. If you'd like a room to yourself then you can upgrade for an extra 40 EUR per night.

      See more
    • 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 except for meals on the train and the farewell dinner at the Pizza Restaurant
    • Hotel accommodation
    • Two local Korean guides, and a driver per group
    • A Koryo Tours tour leader
    • All transportation in the DPRK

    NOT INCLUDED

    • North Korean (DPRK) visa fee 60 EUR
    • Optional Air Koryo flights (one-way: 265 EUR; round-trip: 435 EUR)
    • Optional single room supplement of 40 EUR per night
    • Tips for the local Korean guides and 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
    • Farewell dinner at the Pizza Restaurant
    • 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

    Groups will be in the experienced hands of two or three local Korean guides and an experienced Koryo Tours tour leader. 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 North Korea 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 10th April, 2022.

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[email protected] | + 86 10 6416 7544
Room A409, Jucai Building. No. 76 Caoyuan Hutong.
Dongcheng District, Beijing, 100027, PR China

中国北京市东城区草园胡同76号聚才大厦A 座409 室,
邮编:100027
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