Exploring The World !

10 Days Beijing and Pyongyang

Rockets are carried by military vehicles during a military parade to celebrate the centenary of the birth of North Korea's founder Kim Il-sung in PyongyangPyongyang 1平壤

DPRK the untouched, mysterious land is the right place for those people who are interested in learning, growing, discovering and connecting. If you are looking for a sensational adventure, an expedition replete with thrills and strong emotions, then there is no better place than DPRK.

Special Features:

  • Since most of our customers travel to DPRK via China, our program combines Beijing, the capital city of the “Middle Kingdom” and DPRK, an excellent way to experience these two unique cultures.
  • Kumsusan Memorial Palace (Mausoleum of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il) and other Pyongyang highlights
  • Go deep underground for a ride on the Pyongyang Metro.  
  • Panmunjom/DMZ-Border with South Korea.
  • Visit three UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Forbidden City/ Summer Palace/Great Wall

Itinerary:

DAY 1  Fri 26th Sep, 2014 Departure

Your exciting journey begins as you board your international flight to Beijing.

DAY 2  Sat 27th Sep, 2014 Beijing

Arrive in Beijing, private transfer to hotel. Balance of the day free at leisure. Orientation walk.  

OVERNIGHT:Hotel Novotel Beijing Xinqiao

DAY 3  Sun 28th Sep, 2014 Beijing (B,L)

Spend the day discovering the city’s Imperial sites. Stand in Tiananmen Square, one of the grandest public plazas in the world, and explore the palaces, courtyards, and pavilions of the Forbidden City, once the exclusive domain of China’s Emperors. Enjoy a rickshaw ride along Old Beijing’s Hutongs (narrow ancient alleys) to discover the sights and sounds of local Beijing life in these traditional Chinese neighborhoods. Tour the lovely Summer Palace, once the summer retreat and playground for the imperial family and royal court during the late Qing Dynasty. Considered the finest Chinese imperial garden, the Summer Palace spans over 700 acres with breathtaking views, temples, pavilions. 

OVERNIGHT:Hotel Novotel Beijing Xinqiao

DAY 4  Mon 29th Sep, 2014 Beijing (B,L)

Morning enjoy an exciting excursion to the Great Wall of China at Jvyongguan section. In the afternoon, join your fellow travelers 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 to DPRK.

OVERNIGHT:Hotel Novotel Beijing Xinqiao

DAY 5 Tues 30th Sep, 2014 Beijing-Pyongyang (B,D)

This morning group assembles at designated place (venue & time to be confirmed) and together head to Beijing Airport Terminal 2 for our flight Beijing to Pyongyang (1.5 hrs) – the showcase capital of the DPRK with a population of approximately 2 million. Upon arrival in Pyongyang (approximately 4pm – DPRK is one hour ahead of China), we proceed through immigration and customs and meet our guides who will accompany us during our stay. On our way to the hotel we will visit the Arch of Triumph – similar to the French version but bigger. Important in Korean history as the first place Kim II Sung gave a speech to the Korean people after the surrender of the Japanese.

OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

DAY 6 Wed 1st Oct, 2014 Pyongyang (B,L,D)

Our first stop of the day is a visit to the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum (Korean War Museum)– fully renovated and reopened in 2013, tells the history of the Korean War from the North Korean perspective, complete with rooms explaining the origins of the conflict, highly impressive dioramas, tanks, planes, and much more. Then onto the USS Pueblo – American spy ship captured by the DPRK navy in 1968 and retained ever since as a trophy. Next we’re off to Mangyongdae Native House – the native birthplace of North Korean President Kim II Sung. Our first visit of the afternoon is to Mansudae Art Studio – the DPRK centre of artistic excellence where most of the paintings, mosaics, statues, etc are all made. It is possible to visit several workshops and see the artists at work – ink painting, oil painting, embroidery and ceramics. Next we go deep underground for a ride on the Pyongyang Metro - the deepest underground system in the world and the designs of the main stations are stunning with superb lighting and mosaics. A great chance to have interaction with the locals if you are prepared to learn basic greetings in Korean – and if you meet students get them to greet you in English! We then go to East Pyongyang to visit the 150m Juche Tower, the highest stone monument in the world (topped with a flickering red torch). We are given an explanation of the country’s guiding Juche philosophy often translated as ‘self-reliance’. Take the lift to the top for stunning views over Pyongyang (costs EUR 5). Last stop of the day is the Party Foundation Monument - an iconic sculpture of a hammer, sickle and calligraphy brush commemorating 50 years of the Workers’ Party rule. Before dinner we will get a chance to sample the local brew at the Paradise micro-brewery & bar  

OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang  

DAY 7 Thurs 2nd Oct, 2014 Pyongyang- Kaesong (B,L,D)

Today is dress-up day as our first visit is to the Kumsusan Memorial Palace of the Sun where North Korean leaders Kim II Sung and Kim Jong II lie in state. This is a place of utmost importance for Koreans and tourists should behave accordingly. Men should wear a shirt and tie, women should dress smartly. The entire visit takes around 1.5 hrs and you are not allowed to take your camera in but after visiting the rooms inside we come back out to take photos from the square in front of the impressive building. Next we take a short drive to the Revolutionary Martyrs’ Cemetery – superb individually crafted bronze busts of the anti-Japanese heroes including one of Kim Jong Suk – the mother of Kim Jong II. The cemetery was designed to overlook the city, giving the martyrs a view of the re-building of their country. Next we drive back into town and take a walk in Kim II Sung Square – Pyongyang’s largest square in the heart of the city. This is where the military parades pass through and the mass dances take place. From here we walk to the Foreign Languages Bookshop – a good chance to read up on what you are seeing here and buy your gifts and night time reading. First stop of the afternoon is the Mansudae Grand Monument – statues of North Korean leaders Kim II Sung and Kim Jong II flanked by powerful sculptures telling the story of the anti-Japanese War, the rebuilding of the country and finally the Korean War. This is a very important place for Koreans and visitors are requested to follow the local custom and bow in front of the statues after placing down a bouquet of flowers. Then we take a 2.5 hr drive south to Kaesong, a historical city near the DMZ which avoided being destroyed in the Korean War as it was chosen as the place for armistice talks. Upon arrival in Kaesong we take a 20 minute drive to visit the beautiful Tomb of King Kongmin – the twin-domed tomb of the 31st King of the Koryo Dynasty (918 – 1392 AD) and his wife which remained largely undamaged during the Korean War. Before checking into our hotel we will take an evening walk in the old city.

OVERNIGHT: Minsok Folk Hotel, Kaesong (beautiful courtyard hotel with Li dynasty housing where guests sleep on heated floors in traditional Korean style; basic – sporadic hot water and frequent power cuts but a great experience as you are living literally next door to the local inhabitants).

ALTERNATIVE OPTION: If you would rather sleep in a proper bed then there is the option of choosing the 1970s socialist style JANAMSAN HOTEL, interestingly decorated and with a much better chance of hot water! Please confirm upon booking which of these hotels you would prefer – there is no difference in cost.

Please note that the area around Kaesong is considered to be a malarial area by the WHO, however, provided tourists take proper precautions (use good mosquito repellant and mosquito nets – these are provided in the hotel we use) there is very little risk of contracting the disease from the places that we visit. The WHO state that there is no need to take malaria prophylaxis when visiting and in any case, this is not recommended for visits of less than 1-2 weeks. We have never had any cases of our tourists contracting the disease. However, please be warned that most travelers to an area with malaria are deferred from donating blood for 1 year after their return so this may affect you if you are a regular blood donor.  

DAY 8 Fri 3rd Oct, 2014 Kaesong-Pyongyang (B,L,D)

Our first stop this morning is to the Statue of Kim II Sung and local park and pavilion. We then take a short drive (approx 20 mins) to Panmunjom/DMZ where North and South Korea continue their decades old face-off. Next we head back into Kaesong and visit the Kaesong Koryo Museum, which is a beautiful old Confucian University, to learn about the history of the area. There is also a collection of steles and pavilions from around the area. The stamp shop here is excellent too. After lunch we return to Pyongyang (2.5 hrs) and head straight to the Golden Lane Bowling Centre where Pyongyangers go for their ten-pin fix. It also has some early 90s arcade games. Even if you do not play it is worth grabbing a seat and enjoy watching locals having some fun. It is one of the most popular places for boys and girls to meet or take their dates. We’ll have a farewell dinner followed by a visit to Kaeson Funfair Located near the Arch of Triumph, this funfair was renovated in 2010 and all the rides are from Italy. It is one of the most popular nightspots in Pyongyang. Entry costs EUR 1 and the rides are between EUR 1.5 and EUR 3. Even if you can’t summon up the courage to try any of the rides, it is still a great place for people watching and the locals are generally more than happy to have their photos taken here – bear in mind that a group of foreign tourists provides just as much of an attraction for them as the rides themselves!

OVERNIGHT: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

DAY 9 Sat 4th Oct, 2014 Pyongyang-Beijing (B)

Fly back to Beijing, upon arrival private transfer to your hotel. Rest of the day is free for you to explore the city or do last minute shopping on own.

OVERNIGHT:Hotel Novotel Beijing Xinqiao

DAY10 Sun 5th Oct, 2014 Beijing/Vancouver (B)

Private departure transfer to airport for your flight back to Vancouver.

 

Tour Price:

Per Person Cost Single Supplement
C$3169 C$ 648

 

Tour Inclusions:

  • Flights: Beijing-Pyongyang-Beijing

  • 8 nights Superior First Class accommodations

    4 nights Beijing Hotel Novotel Beijing Xinqiao

    1 night Kaesong Minsok Folk Hotel or Janamsan Hotel

    3 nights Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

  • Hotel taxes, fees & service charges

  • All transfers

  • 17 meals: 8 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners

  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned vehicle

  • Services of English-speaking tour guides

  • Entrance fees per itinerary

  • DPRK Visa fee

Tour Exclusions:

  • Spending money for drinks and souvenirs

  • Tip for the guides (approx USD 30-35 total)

  • Entry tickets for special events if applicable – for example Revolutionary Opera if being staged, or a visit to the funfair

  • The lift up the Juche Tower USD 7

  • 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

  • China Visa Fee

  • Travel Insurance