Programmes

North Korea August Special: Liberation Day Cycling Tour

北韓八月光復節暨特別單車遊

12 to 17 August 2017

Introduction

The newly elected South Korean President, Moon Jae-in (文再寅), has been known by many as the son of North Korea refugees and his engaging attitude towards his northern neighbour. It is expected that the two Koreas might enter a more stable relationship again. Meanwhile, 15th August is the only day that is celebrated both in North and South Koreas: the former refer it as Liberation of the Fatherland Day (조국해방의 날) and the South says it’s Liberation Day (광복절). Both nations commemorate the end of the Japanese colonial rule from 1910 to 1945. Given the likely new inter-Korean dynamic, the Liberation Day this year definitely bears a new meaning.

North Korea August Special: Liberation Day Cycling Tour 北韓八月光復節暨特別單車遊 is a special programme we design for you to enter the world’s most isolated country during the Liberation Day. Not only will we join the Koreans to celebrate, we will also revisit the renewed atmosphere on the Peninsula, as well as to explore the recent socio-economic changes happening in the country via a wide range of activities. The most unique is that we will include a day of cycling in the DPRK, we would have the rare chance to explore North Korean cities like a local, and to experience North Korea’s everyday life from a different perspective.

Itinerary

 Day 1: 12 August 2017

Start of Programme

  • Arrive at Great Wall Hotel (長城酒店) in Dandong, China (丹東市) within the day
  • Free time and welcome dinner at a North Korea run restaurant

Day 2: 13 August 2017

Dandong > Pyongyang

  • Train from Dandong to Pyongyang (平壤市) : throughout the train journey you will be able to meet local Koreans, from young athletes to businessmen – a great opportunity to talk with them and get a brief idea about the world’s most isolated country
  • Arrival at Pyongyang City, to be greeted by our familiar local guides
  • Mansudae Grand Monument (萬壽台紀念碑), visit the two high statues of the country’s two most important leaders, Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il.
  • Overnight at Sosan Hotel (西山飯店)

Day 3: 14 August 2017

Pyongsong, Pyongyang

  • Drive to Pyongsong City (平城市)
  • Language exchange session at Kim Jong Suk No.1 Middle School (金正淑第一中學), an opportunity to talk with local students within an informal environment
  • Back to Pyongyang
  • Extended Ride in Pyongyang Metro (平壤地鐵), the best opportunity to mingle and mix with the local Pyongyang urban dwellers
  • Grand People Study House (人民大學習堂), interact with adult English students who are from various segments of the society, and learn more about the impact of sanctions to their lives
  • Exclusive visit to a local department store (本地百貨公司) , a rare and uncommon chance to witness Pyongyang’s most popular department store that is rarely attended by foreign visitors. We will explore more about how market has started to have a impact on people’s lives, and the phenomenon of the return of capitalism.
  • Kaeson Amusement Park (凱旋遊樂場) – have fun with the locals! We always say the Koreans here have the most genuine smiles.
  • Overnight at Sosan Hotel (西山飯店)

Day 4: 15 August 2017

Pyongyang > Kaesong

  • Cycling along the Future Scientist Street (沿未來科學家街踩單車) , the new modern street built for Pyongyang’s professors and scientists.
  • Visit Kim Il Sung Square (金日成廣場), where one of the largest military parades in the world is held
  • Cycling along the Changjon Street (沿長箭街踩單車), known as the “Pyonghattan” area by foreign Diplomats.
  • Visit to the Arch of Triumph (凱旋門)
  • Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum (祖國解放戰爭紀念館), learn more about the North Korean version of the Korean War
  • Lunch at a Pizza Restaurant in Pyongyang, feel the heightening influence of Westernisation in the country.
  • Juche Tower (主體思想塔) , learn about the country’s governing idea and its survival.
  • Liberation Day Celebration (光復節慶祝活動), join the mass dance celebration with locals.
  • Drive to Kaesong City (開城市)
  • Overnight at Minsok Folk Hotel in Kaesong City (開城民宿)

Day 5: 16 August 2017

Kaesong > Pyongyang

  • Private walk around Kaesong Old Town Centre (開城中心城區) and an uphill balcony; the walk in this simple and traditional city will give you a very different Korean image, one that is the exact opposite of the hustle and bustle in Pyongyang
  • Demilitarized Zone/Panmunjom (三八線/板門店) , the most fortified border on Earth that still sees the standoff between the two Koreas
  • Koryo Museum (高麗博物館) , a UNESCO heritage that preserves ancient Korean relics
  • Return to Pyongyang
  • Farewell dinner with our Korean guides at a duck BBQ Restaurant (朝鮮燒烤)
  • Taedong River Bar (大同江酒吧) , a local bar in Pyongyang – relax and have a chit chat with our friendly Korean guides there
  • Overnight at Yanggakdo International Hotel (羊角島國際飯店)

Day 6: 17 August 2017

Pyongyang > Dandong

  • Bongsu Church (鳳岫教會)
  • Arrive at Dandong in the afternoon
  • Group Dinner
  • Discussion session on current issues related to North Korea, facilitated by our North Korean expert. We will reflect on the North Korean society under the leadership of Kim Jong Un (also called the Byungjin era 並進時代, the emphasis on both military advancement and economic development)

End of Programme

*The above itinerary is for reference only and is subject to change. Registrants will receive a full itinerary with programme details via email.

Programme fee and other details

*Note 1: Walk In Hong Kong (License No.: 353919) is the responsible tour operator of this programme.

*Note 2: South Korean, Malaysian, United States and Japan Passport Holders are not allowed to join the trip.

*Note 3: For our policies concerning the security of travelling to the DPRK, please click here.

Tour Fee:
8,880 HKD (1,130 USD)

HKD 380 early-bird discount for all successful registrants on or before 28 July!

Our Tour Fee includes

  • Application for visa to the DPRK
  • Transportation from Dandong, China to the DPRK and return (inc. taxes and surcharges)
  • Transportation in Dandong, China and the DPRK
  • Shared twin-room accommodation in China (2 nights) and the DPRK (4 nights)
  • Meals in China and the DPRK as indicated on the Briefing Note (you will receive this after registration)
  • Two tour guides and one driver per group
  • One Eastern Vision tour mentor per group
  • All entry fees to museums
  • Academic materials

Our Tour Fee excludes

  • Extra meals or activities and souvenirs in the DPRK and China
  • Tips to DPRK tour guides and driver (around 250 RMB)
  • Travel Insurance*
  • Double Entry China Visa**
  • Transportation from Hong Kong (or your place of origin) to Dandong, China***

*An appropriate and adequate travel insurance is a condition of travelling to the DPRK.

**For some passport holders who need to acquire a visa to enter China, you are reminded to secure a proper visa for double entry, as we will go in and out of China twice. We can assist you with this.

***Our programme starts and ends at Dandong. You are free to arrange your own flights/trains to Shenyang. However, we also facilitate a separate, non-bundled Group Flight Option if you depart from Hong Kong:

Outbound (Hong Kong – Shenyang): 11 August 2017
Inbound (Shenyang – Hong Kong): 18 August 2017

Both flights are operated by China Southern Airline. Connecting bus service between Shenyang Taoxian International Airport and Vienna International Hotel and transfer from Shenyang to Dandong will also be included.

Further details will be provided in the Briefing Note (you will receive this after registration).