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North Korea

North Korea, officially known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, is a country in East Asia, occupying the northern part of the Korean Peninsula, bordered by China and Russia to the north and South Korea to the south. It operates under a centralized, authoritarian government led by the Kim dynasty, with Kim Jong-un as its current leader, and its political and economic system is based on a unique form of Marxist-Leninist socialism.

Despite its rich cultural history and natural beauty, North Korea is known for its severe restrictions on human rights, extreme secrecy, and ongoing tensions with international communities, particularly over its nuclear weapons program and human rights abuses.

Places to visit

Day plans

Spend a day exploring around

day 1

Exploring Pyongyang

morning:Visit the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun, a grand mausoleum of Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il. Try Pyongyang-style mul naengmyeon for breakfast at Okryu Restaurant.

afternoon:Explore the Grand People's Study House, showcasing North Korean education and culture. Enjoy a traditional North Korean meal at Pyongyang Folk Village Restaurant.

evening:Spend the evening at Moranbong Park, popular among locals for leisure activities and strolling.

day 2

Historical Insights

morning:Tour the Mangyongdae Native House, birthplace of Kim Il-sung, and the Revolutionary Martyrs' Cemetery. Savor bibimbap at Chongryu Restaurant.

afternoon:Learn about the Korean War at the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum. Experience a diverse array of local cuisine at Pyongyang Taedonggang Seafood Restaurant.

evening:Experience the vibrant nightlife at Rakwon Department Store, a popular hub for shopping and entertainment.

day 3

Nature & Serenity

morning:Take a scenic hike to Mount Myohyang, home to the International Friendship Exhibition. Enjoy a hearty meal of naengmyeon at Chongchun Restaurant.

afternoon:Visit the Pohyon Temple, a tranquil Buddhist complex. Indulge in delicious Yukgaejang at Pyongyang Koryo Restaurant.

evening:Embrace a peaceful evening stroll at the Kim Il-sung Square, surrounded by stunning architecture and vibrant city life.

day 4

Cultural Immersion

morning:Discover the Juche Tower and capture panoramic views of Pyongyang. Delight in a traditional Korean breakfast at Okryugwan Restaurant.

afternoon:Immerse in art and culture at the Mansudae Art Studio. Relish a sumptuous meal at Chongryu Restaurant.

evening:Attend a performance at the Pyongyang Grand Theatre, showcasing the rich heritage of North Korean performing arts.

North Korea Famous Food

Must-Try local dishes

Bibimbap

A popular mixed rice dish topped with assorted vegetables, meat, and a fried egg. Can be found in local eateries and street food stalls.

Must-Try!

Naengmyeon

Cold buckwheat noodles served in a tangy iced broth, often accompanied by slices of meat, pickled vegetables, and a hard-boiled egg. Best enjoyed in traditional North Korean restaurants.

Chonggak Kimchi

Young radish kimchi known for its refreshing taste and crunchy texture. Widely available in local markets and served as a side dish in restaurants.

Food Markets & Street Food

A food market and street food guide

Kwangbok Supermarket

A prominent food market offering a variety of local produce, snacks, and condiments. Visitors can sample street food like tteokbokki (spicy rice cakes) and hotteok (sweet pancakes) in the surrounding area.

Pyongyang Street Food Stalls

Exploring the streets of Pyongyang reveals an array of street food stalls offering dishes such as kimbap (seaweed rice rolls), odeng (fish cake skewers), and sundae (blood sausage).

Dietary Restrictions

Navigating dietary restrictions locally

Vegetarian Options

Navigating as a vegetarian in North Korea may require flexibility. Look for vegetable-based dishes like bibimbap, naengmyeon without meat, and vegetable kimbap.

Vegetarian

Vegan Options

While vegan options are limited, visitors can still find veggie-based dishes such as vegetable stews, stir-fried vegetables, and tofu-based meals in local restaurants upon inquiry.

Vegan

Gluten-Free Options

Communicating gluten restrictions may be challenging due to language barriers. Opt for rice-based dishes, fresh seafood, and inquire about the use of wheat-based ingredients in sauces and marinades.

Gluten-Free

Restaurants & Cafés

Best places to eat and drink in North Korea

Okryu-gwan

Famed for its quality cold noodle dishes, this restaurant provides a unique dining experience with beautiful traditional interiors. Reservation is recommended.

Ryugyong Hot Pot Restaurant

Specializing in hot pot dishes, this restaurant offers a cozy atmosphere and a selection of meats, seafood, and vegetables for cooking at the table.

Pyongyang Coffee Shop

A tranquil cafe serving locally grown coffee and light bites. Visitors can savor the serene ambiance and engage in cultural exchanges with locals.

Things to do in North Korea

Unique local experiences...

Popular cities in North Korea

Explore local food, attractions and more!

PyongyangHamhŭngNampoCh’ŏngjinSunch’ŏnWŏnsanSinŭijuTanch’ŏnKaesŏngKaech’ŏnSariwŏnKanggyeHaejuAnjuP’yŏng-dongRajinKusŏngHyesanChŏngjuChaedŏkHŭich’ŏnHoeryŏngSinpoSongnimMunch’ŏnManpoSariwŏn-siP’yŏngsŏng-siNamsanOngjangŎjŏk-tongChangyŏnSil-liCh’osan-ŭpP’ungsanTaedong