Itinerary - Kim Jong Il Birthday Long Tour
February 14-21 2017

Map Mass Dance

Mon 13th February - MANDATORY PRE-TOUR BRIEFING

4PM: The group assembles in our Beijing office for a pre-tour briefing, which will last approximately 1 hour and is designed so that you will get the best out of your tour.

Tue 14th February - ARRIVAL DAY

AM: Meet together outside the office (time to be confirmed) and head to Beijing Airport T2 for our flight from Beijing to Pyongyang (1.5 hrs), the showcase capital of the DPRK
PM: Meet guides who will accompany you during your stay, Arch of Triumph – similar to the French version (but bigger)
OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Wed 15th February - DMZ & KAESONG

AM: This morning we’ll walk from the hotel though the old streets of Kaesong up to Janam Hill for views over Kaesong City. Panmunjom/DMZ (where North and South Korea continues their decades old face-off), Kaesong Koryo Museum (former Confucian college, shows history of the area), Lunch is a traditional pansanggi meal – something like Korean tapas. For anyone wanting to supplement their lunch, you’ll also have the opportunity to sample Korea’s famous delicacy: ‘sweetmeat soup’ (aka dog meat; costs EUR 5).
PM: Concrete Wall, an observation post deep in the DMZ where you can view South Korean positions and see the anti-tank barrier that stretches across the peninsular, return to Pyongyang (2.5 hrs),
OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Thu 16th February - PYONGYANG

AM&PM: DPRK HOLIDAY – 75th BIRTHDAY OF GENERAL KIM JONG IL
Kumsusan Memorial Palace (Mausoleum of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il). Revolutionary Martyrs’ Cemetery (bronze busts of anti-Japanese heroes). Kim Il Sung Square, which is Pyongyang’s largest. This is where the capital’s mass dances take place and the military parades pass through. Mansudae Grand Monument (giant statues of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il), Juche Tower. At 150m, and topped with a flickering red torch, this is the highest stone monument in the world. Take the lift to the top for stunning views over Pyongyang (entrance costs EUR 5). Next we visit the Party Foundation Monument – an iconic sculpture of a hammer, sickle and calligraphy brush which was constructed to celebrate 50 years of Workers’ Party rule. The rest of the day will be dedicated to events commemorating the holiday. The exact nature and timing of these events will not be confirmed until we get to the DPRK but based on our experience of being in the country for this holiday in previous years we expect the following: Kimilsungia Festival (Flower exhibition), Expected MASS DANCE.
Optional events: Pyongyang Symphony Orchestra
- usually held in the afternoon this concert of Korean and western music is stunning (EUR 20); Pyongyang Circus - also in the afternoon this is another stunning performance showcasing the talents of the DPRK's acrobats and other entertainers (EUR 20). Paekdusan International Figure Skating Competition (EUR 20) which is only held once a year specially to commemorate the birthday of Kim Jong Il and a Synchronised Swimming Display.
OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Fri 17th February - PYONGYANG CITY TOUR

AM: Mansudae Art Studio (where paintings, mosaics, statues, etc are made), Pyongyang Metro - the deepest underground system in the world and the designs of the main stations are stunning with superb lighting and mosaics.
Museum of Metro Construction - huge exhibition is mainly dedicated to showing the involvement of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il in the construction of the capital's underground system.
Grand People’s Study House. Supposedly stocked with over 3 million books, this enormous library/place of study has a great view over Kim Il Sung Square. We will tour the lecture rooms and hopefully get to see a few classes.
PM: Trolley bus ride around the city, in some of the classic 1950s vehicles, Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum (Korean war Museum), USS Pueblo (US spy ship captured in 1968), drive to Mt Myohyang, the Mountain of Mysterious Fragrance, two hours north of Pyongyang.
OVERNIGHT: Chongchon Hotel, Mt. Myohyang

Sat 18th February - MT MYOHYANG 

AM: International Friendship Exhibition - a series of enormous subterranean exhibition rooms housing gifts given to the DPRK’s leaders by foreign political figures, notable figures, politicians and organizationsthous. Thousand-year-old Pohyon Buddhist Temple - destroyed during the Korean War, but was rebuilt as a working temple, complete with North Korean monks.
PM: After lunch we’ll hike in Manpok Valley. We will take a 1-2 hour walk up and down the mountains, following a trail that passes waterfalls and unusual rocks, all set in a stunning landscape. We head back to Pyongyang. Evening walk along Pyongyang’s Mirae Future Street (newly opened in 2015). Dinner in the Italian-trained Pizza Restaurant on Mirae Street with view on the Taedong river
OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Sun 19th February - PYONGYANG CITY TOUR

AM: Pyonghwa Motors Showroom (one of the two car manufacturers and dealers in North Korean automotive industry), Kwangbok Department Store (where you can spend and change your money into Korean Won at the black market exchange rate), Take a walk along the Taedong River, Lunch in Pyongyang’s most famous Cold Noodle restaurant Okryugwan
PM: Jongchon Vegetable Farm, Munsu Water Park (10 EUR entrance fee for swimming), Drive north to Pyongsong
OVERNIGHT: Jangsusan Hotel in Pyongsong

Mon 20th February - PYONGSONG

AM: Paeksong Revolutionary Site, which is where Kim Il Sung University was moved to in 1952 during the Korean War; a hidden academic base! Pyongsong Taedonggang Clothing Factory – a factory that produces clothes to ship all over the world. Central Square and Statues before lunch.
PM: After lunch we have a short drive to Kim Jong Suk Higher Middle School (named after the mother of Kim Jong Il). The headmaster here is very welcoming and will take us on a tour of the school, where you can see what middle-school students typically study in the DPRK. Return to Pyongyang.
OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Tue 21st February - DEPARTURE DAY

AM: The flight departs Pyongyang at 09:00 and arrives in Beijing at approx 10:00am. The train departs Pyongyang at 10:40am and arrives in Beijing at approx 08:30am on Wednesday. End of Tour.
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TOUR COST: $2,290
DPRK VISA FEE: $75 (to be paid at the pre-tour meeting)
PRE-TOUR MEETING: Monday 13th February, 4PM, at our office in Beijing
EXPECTED WEATHER: It will be cold, not higher than 5°C so bring warm clothes.
Room upgrades available – please ask for more information.

TOUR FEE INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:

  1. Flight Beijing-Pyongyang, plane/train Pyongyang-Beijing
  2. All meals on the tour except on the train out of DPRK – see below
  3. Hotel accommodations in DPRK
  4. All entry fees
  5. Two guides and a driver per group
  6. All transportation in DPRK
  7. Transportation to Beijing airport prior to departure to DPRK.

NOT INCLUDED IN THE TOUR FEE (all payments paid in cash) :

  1. Transportation from your country to Beijing and hotel stay in Beijing
  2. Travel insurance (can be purchased at the pre-tour briefing)
  3. Optional single room supplement of $60 per night (must be booked in advance and can be pre-paid in US with credit card)
  4. Spending money for drinks and souvenirs
  5. DPRK visa fee ($75)
  6. Tip for the guides (approx $7/day)
  7. Meals on the train out of DPRK - (bring your own food or eat dinner and lunch in the buffet car approx $10 per person)
  8. Entry tickets for special events (Revolutionary opera, circus , etc).
  9. The lift up the Juche Tower (approx $6)
  10. Meals will have a complimentary beer but you will have to pay for extra drinks above those provided. If you are vegetarian or have special dietary requirements then please inform us beforehand

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