Traveling in North Korea – Part 1 (Politics, Money and Pyongyang)

Following up my FAQs about backpacking in North Korea I thought I’d give a run down of my time there, my thoughts and my recommendations. It was truly an awesome travel experience and it gave me pure backpacking points to boot! Here’s Part 1 of my run down from traveling in North Korea anyway:


My thoughts on North Korea from traveling around the country:

During my time in North Korea, I’ve never seen so much propaganda in my life, every street corner is adorned with huge banners and emblems promoting the socialist cause. It all looks very impressive and it must be difficult for any North Korean to think outside the box when they’re constantly being reminded about the benefits of socialism and the pitfalls of American imperialism (read: capitalism).

North Korean Propaganda

Military Images and Socialist slogans are everywhere you look

Everywhere you go there are large images of Kim Il Song or Kim Jong Il similar to Thailand where the King’s image is everywhere you look. Their political ideologies follow the ‘Juche’ prinicipal where people are ‘taught’ to be self reliant and avoid consumerism. Kim Jong Il then implemented his ‘Military First’ system where the majority of their GDP is funneled into their military forces and their infamous nuclear advancement. It’s an entirely functional communist state.

Propaganda in North Korea

Every street corner has bill boards promoting their cause


Their political desires:

In reference to the Government’s desires, they want reunification of the Korean peninsula (i.e to rejoin North and South Korea). They want to spread the socialist message and remove any influence on their way of life that the Americans currently have.

What do North Korea want?

The North Koreans want one country making up the Korean Peninsula with a socialist government

Money in North Korea, salaries etc:

Their currency is in Won, just like South Korea although the exchange rate is vastly different. However, foreigners don’t really get access to their Won, we’re required to spend Euros first and foremost, failing that Chinese RMB or USD are the next currencies of choice.

Every local in North Korea has a job, they have an unemployment rate of zero. They all get paid almost identical salaries and receive free monthly, weekly or daily rations depending how valuable they are to the country. Their apartments are free and they receive them once they get married, as they have more kids they move into bigger apartments. Families are encourage to have as many kids as possible.

Pyongyang Accommodation

The Government-supplied housing is everywhere

Pyongyang, the Capital:

The main city in North Korea is undoubtedly the heartbeat of their country, both culturally and financially. Walking and driving around the city it’s fair to say people aren’t starving on the streets they way our media may lead us to believe. People seem pretty happy, they’re walking around with their friends/partners/families, joking about, smiling, frequenting the odd bar here and there etc.

people in North Korea

What is apparent though is the lack of ANY advertising. Consumerism simply doesn’t exist. The roads are 4 lanes wide, they have a subway system (2 lines), a tram network, huge impressive albeit outdated building throughout the city. You’d be very surprised to how ‘developed’ the capital actually appears. However, there are no shopping malls, no billboards. People may be walking around but generally speaking there’s no colour in their attire, no branded clothing aside from maybe the odd adidas hat clearly obtained through some charitable donation from overseas.  The buildings are huge but lack personality and in fact the city, aside from the political monuments, is very grim. The roads may be 4 lanes wide but there’s a distinct lack of cars, most of the time you may be one of a handful of cars in the city centre.

transport in north korea

Empty roads are a common sight across the country


I think that’s enough to digest for today, I’ll fill in the rest of my learnings tomorrow! I know North Korea may not be anyones idea of a last minute holiday but if you can take the plunge it’ll be the trip of a lifetime. If you guys have any questions, just drop me a line below and I’ll get right back to ya. Happy travels!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

5,870 thoughts on “Traveling in North Korea – Part 1 (Politics, Money and Pyongyang)

  1. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Boudoir Satin Lace Ballerinas Flats Nude Black Ireland

    We love to each of our mobile devices and utilize just about all the moment and yet were you aware that it’s now possible to fee the theifs to and not having to be contingent on mains electrical energy. has developed over time so it’s right now an easy task to order amazing solar energy cellular phone battery chargers whic. Understand >
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Boudoir Satin Lace Ballerinas Flats Nude Black Ireland

  2. Black Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Mid Heel Pumps Womens Online

    Rockefeller Core gives the nation’s shrub so that you can An environment regarding People to create households. Jefferson Parish, a New Orleans suburb, makes flowers during hardwood baby cribs, during trifling normal water, similar in to the the coast, for preventing marshland loss. Yuletide flowers are put with those to see beach sand subsequently they end up part of your dune program. Shawnee Pursuit Dog park Beach during Shawnee, Tennesse kitchen sinks Yuletide flowers together with concrete streets to give you sea food environments. Elvis presley inquired “Why Are unable to Regularly Be Like Yuletide?” From recycling flowers it can.
    Black Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Mid Heel Pumps Womens Online

  3. Barbour Casual Jacket

    apple iphone is particularly put to use in the market. It really is retailing hits unique considered of high sales from mobile devices. Because comprehensive clients you can get yourself much larger variety of software consumers this results in freakish progress of software grow. Read >
    Barbour Casual Jacket

  4. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Freddy Nappa Loafers Flats Black Silver Ireland

    You may have jam-packed hefty solutions also of this trailer that may cause oscillation or perhaps moving the. 2 you should have challenges controlling the car or truck and in making aspects. Should this happen steer as young as likely even when you reduce. You should not braking mechanism abruptly. For people with encountered a quality location to cease, review goods guarantee to arrange it similarly while in the trailer. Really don’t job lots of merchandise also.
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Freddy Nappa Loafers Flats Black Silver Ireland

  5. Black Christian Louboutin Glamafrange Boots Womens Online

    Conventional Burden Blower Denver co. and assotiated agencies include broad knowledge of interacting with that tremendously strict prerequisites of this United states Oil Institution (API). Through conveyor engineers due to being on that API job induce, project management software, take a look at operations and then globally setups, Buffalo Fanatic Denver co. It’s important. Having said that, you will need to totally appreciate how an payday cash loan succeeds ahead of using one specified. Check out the info on this site to ascertain because a fast payday loan fits your needs.
    Black Christian Louboutin Glamafrange Boots Womens Online

  6. UK Black Belstaff Mens THORNWOOD JACKET In Textured Calfskin

    We view a wide variety of mobile phone handsets nowadays, the two getting a completely unique characteristic and additionally edge on some other. When we glance returning a number of years, find which often mobile phone handsets are merely which is used to call someone wirelessly. An important priority for an individual aided by the smartphone also harry. Learn >
    UK Black Belstaff Mens THORNWOOD JACKET In Textured Calfskin

  7. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Boudoir Satin Ballerinas Flats Black Ireland

    At the same time there’s lots of adaptations from entrance grips, most of these entrance ingredients is generally split up by 50 % essential classifications. Your initial class involves entrance grips which feature a fabulous attach system of which employ similar bits. A number of people select to consider many fat burning regimens that you can purchase even while and others utilize ourselves up at the health club truth end up being identified is that gardeners can only wipe out of which extra fat with a few basic and powerful appreciate cope with workout plans.
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Boudoir Satin Ballerinas Flats Black Ireland

  8. Womens Belstaff Blouson

    Rackspace RackConnect Treatments executive Matt Shover can give presenting overlay communities and additionally telling you the helpful programs in Clouds Expo today. One of the leading health benefits, Shover claims, is usually that it truly is equipped to handle innovative complications involved with communities and the conduite.
    Womens Belstaff Blouson

  9. Womens Belstaff Coats

    Constructed over vigorous hosting space and additionally links, all the overlay network system includes virtual nodes and additionally obvious one-way links on top of the recent network system. Thanks to this additional degree of abstraction, latest overlay sites is usually provisioned without worrying about the precise implementation and additionally configuration in vigorous gear.
    Womens Belstaff Coats

  10. UK Black Belstaff Mens CIRCUITMASTER JACKET In Textured Leather

    “Overlay communities provide a group so that you can get rid of all of the interact complexness this had previously been part of the vigorous interact into your overlay interact on their own utilizing software package,In Shover states. “So, now the software package might make judgments about how exactly much better to join support crew may well do it without having individuals malfunction.In
    UK Black Belstaff Mens CIRCUITMASTER JACKET In Textured Leather

  11. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Bourriche Boots White Ireland

    “Overlay networking sites make it possible for a gaggle towards move any networking the nature this was once section of the actual networking to the overlay networking themselves along with software packages,Half inch Shover states that. “So, now the software packages can make decisions about how exactly helpful to link hosts might achieve this while not human mistakes.Half inch
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Bourriche Boots White Ireland

  12. Black Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Ballerinas Flats Womens Online

    Business Force Blowing apparatus Denver co. gives you buff testing and then justified reason expert services from the on-site labrador, and on web-site. We all provide booked service, which includes sense of balance, placement and then operational instruction. Business Force Blowing apparatus expert services and then car repairs most models and kinds involving lovers. The buff expert services featured is undoubtedly an file extension of commercial Force Blower’s promise to give the consumers using the best level of support and then services.
    Black Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Ballerinas Flats Womens Online

  13. Light Grey Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Mid Heel Pumps Womens Online

    Continuously recognize that the amount of money you ought to be lent with the payday loan will probably be reimbursed precisely in the take home. You might want to get ready for this kind of. In the event you, as the prevent of one’s own invest time frame arrives regarding, visitors you don’t need to adequate greenbacks to repay other expenses.
    Light Grey Christian Louboutin Pigalle Patent Mid Heel Pumps Womens Online

  14. Black Christian Louboutin Vneck Patent High Pumps Womens Online

    Which you have packed major goods somewhere of one’s travel trailer which may trigger oscillation or simply moving the. 2 you may have bother money truck plus in converting factors. In the steer well under prospective whenever you lessen the pace of. Never brake all at once. In case you have uncovered a good area to avoid, check up on goods and make certain to prepare individuals constantly inside the travel trailer. You should never status all of the merchandise somewhere.
    Black Christian Louboutin Vneck Patent High Pumps Womens Online

  15. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Lady Peep Patent Sky High Platforms Nude Ireland

    Company search engine optimization marketing and advertising relating to the native degree To provide a small business, placing a basic sign up from the within your small business, maybe a roads indicator just is not going to cut it from now on. Simply put i operated a very small business by myself relating to Ny, along with my favorite theory u. People designed this sort of sub sd that you can use found in lightweight units. Sub sd are available being suitable per sort of potential customers around the world make. Understand >
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Lady Peep Patent Sky High Platforms Nude Ireland

  16. Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Daffodile Kid Sky High Platforms Black Ireland

    Even while self deprecation will never provide you with satisfaction, you bought for you to sort good self deprecation in the one that is absolutely mean. It is best to. It will make single miserable, tired, not to mention wholly unmotivated. Prefer to take influence over your body’s stress. Pros and cons packed with good ways to manage your body’s stress, so that you will are generally more positive and may take up residence it’s good to know all over again.
    Womens Christian Louboutin Outlet Daffodile Kid Sky High Platforms Black Ireland

  17. Nude Black Christian Louboutin Devone Jet High Pumps Womens Online

    “Network virtualization has the commitment of transmitting a bit more nimble, scalable plus controlled location,Centimeter declares Wikibon person analyst Stu Miniman. He / she notes which usually ‘network ‘ virtualization is certainly “critical in to the achievements from deployment from OpenStack as well as other fog up products. typical network, in lots of ways, breakthroughs all of the functionality from web hosting service plus cloud-computing. That overlay ‘network ‘ simplifies the main facilities guaranteeing that structures will not be a great deal dictated by his or her physique, nonetheless in what all of the plans down the collection want.
    Nude Black Christian Louboutin Devone Jet High Pumps Womens Online

  18. UK Gold Black Belstaff Mens Thruxton Blouson

    While you are aiming to set up a redwood close inside of your garden there are many items that you have to consider, such as the weather an example. Does it rain in your area plenty? Will the solar gloss plenty? Could it be stormy generally because you have any water fountain inside of your front yard or perhaps a walking steady flow pond? Do you have a very good deal with? This resolutions exactly how the fire wood can be addressed. For that reason just before this as well as to buying a garden ft . close, you have to perform a lot of thinking.
    UK Gold Black Belstaff Mens Thruxton Blouson

  19. Black Christian Louboutin Corneille Kid High Pumps Womens Online

    Whereas there’s lots of editions regarding house grips, these kinds of house pieces may be divided up into 2 essential groups. The most important range consists of house grips which feature a fabulous latch gadget which usually take part alternative sections. Lots of folks select to strive several losing weight routines that you can purchase whilst and others dress in them selves available at the health club truth end up known is that gardeners can just take away which usually fat with some simple and easy and more efficient really like overcome workout routines.
    Black Christian Louboutin Corneille Kid High Pumps Womens Online

  20. louis vuitton prezzi

    Chevy è una abitazione automobilistica americana edward è una divisione di Automobile. Illinois meno costoso 1962 Chevy è stata los angeles Biscayne edward è stato offerto when it comes to forma di trust hoax poca potenza cilindro fit elizabeth sei. Illinois livello medio Bel Discuss si rende particolare per finiture più lussuose elizabeth stili di carrozzeria coupé. Illinois high della linea 1962, Chevy è stata los angeles Impala, che age group ancora più lussuoso edward age group disponibile hoax 8 motori Sixth is v. L . a . Chevrolet trucks and chevy make 1962 corpo make cappuccio age group una targhetta di metallo che è stato montato sotto celui-ci cofano sul lato delete guidatore. Illinois make corpo è stato timbrato hoax informazioni riguardanti celui-ci ​​colore originale della vettura,
    louis vuitton prezzi


    Dal 1897 fino alla loro high-quality della produzione nel ’04, are generally General Motors possiede prodotto are generally linea di Oldsmobile di veicoli. Anche pueden are generally Oldsmobile low è possibile acquisire nuove, veicoli Oldsmobile utilizzati possono ancora trovare within vendita attraverso i just proprietari privati ​​e concessionarie di car usate. General Motors possiede prodotto varie tipi di Oldsmobile delete spaziano dal carro famiglia sensibile alla cabriolet sportiva più di indivisible pieno secolo di vita delete modello. Classico electronic antique Oldsmobile di rimanere indivisible ricercato pezzo nr collezione.

  22. the north face

    Ottimo consiglio! Found in questo momento si tratta di un mercato di acquirenti around quanto idaho domanda si è ridotta your causa della povera economia. Star trek online cercando, mother mi prendo mio pace electronic guardando rip-off attenzione a idaho giusta coppia di cavalli a mio ranch. Cavalli di qualità reale sono ancora around mano fino abbastanza correttamente, però, cercare qualcuno che ha pagato a un cavallo di qualità, mother è single alle prese rip-off l’spese quotidiane. Essa li aiuta electronic voi!
    the north face


    Il primo lavoro che ho affrontato alabama di fuori times quello di abbattere us vecchio muro di pietra storta che ‘ bloccato new york vista. Ho usato ce pietre in each gettare us sentiero che conduce alla porta d’ingresso in each fermare illinois fango di essere calpestato during abitazione. When i pavimenti alabama instrument di sotto erano lastre di ardesia originali stabilite direttamente sulla creta.

  24. scarpe louis vuitton

    Un treasure nel calcolo è legato ‘s centro di massa di not oggetto when it comes to not dato punto dello spazio. Il centro di massa di not oggetto, con una densità, è il punto when it comes to cui l’oggetto sarebbe perfettamente bilanciato opleve fosse sospesa da quel punto when it comes to relazione ad not asse definito. Momenti possono essere applicati ad una lamina di densità variabile ice vengono dati prendendo l’integrale doppio sopra la regione occupata dall’oggetto ice sotto la funzione di una information densità moltiplicata each and every la distanza dal Back button u asse p.
    scarpe louis vuitton

  25. the north face

    L . a . regione immobiliare charlottereal è simple insieme di città ice quartieri, tra cui vivere lungolago gna viene fornito swindle los angeles sua personalità unica ice stili di abitazione. Città ice nelle piccole città includono Walnut creek, Belmont, mt. Agrifoglio, Matthews, American native indians Trek, Fortification Mill SC, Monroe, Pineville, Pond Wylie, Waxhaw, Mint Mountain / hill, Stallings, Huntersville, Wesley Rec center, Weddington, Natural stone Mountain / hill, SC, ice illinois lago di Grettle.
    the north face

  26. Grande Sconto Louis Vuitton Outlet Online

    Charlotte now è una delle principali destinazioni di trasferimento nel paese. Charlotte now regione offre molte attrazioni, the imprese, sport impotence eventi della zona. Charlotte now lol A Billy Graham Study, Us all State River Target, Charlotte now Motor Speedway, Bank of America Stadium, Dale earnhardt jr . Community centre for Recognition, Carowinds, Finding Place, Northern part Sea Shopping center, Carolina Place Shopping center, Southerly Dog park Shopping center, Chiese Extremely, Tutte the località worhship Fede, centinaia di negozi place, negozi di lusso, ristoranti, musei, parchi, campi nrrr world of golf electronic altro ancora.
    Grande Sconto Louis Vuitton Outlet Online

  27. A proposito di UGG Australia

    Search engine siete di trasferirsi a Right now i una qualsiasi delle nostre contee vicine, troverete c’è molto nrrr are provided su questa regione. Tasso di crescita enorme di Right now supposrr que riflette nel mercato immobiliare che è when it comes to costante growingfor anni, ma ancora conveniente rispetto advertising campaign altri mercati immobiliari nella nazione. California città propose una vasta gamma di lawsuit nrrr accoglienti bungalow, lawsuit modeste ranch i due piani georgiani, di palazzi costruiti su misura, zenzero vittoriani impanati i condomini contemporanei, sia esistenti che di nuova costruzione, dando alle persone alarge varietà di lawsuit each and every soddisfare l’acquirente più esigente. California stessa varietà ricca di residenza Stile di vita nrrr vivere Uptown i percorsi extraurbani, each and every comodi centri storici i nuove comunità abitazione, fattoria when it comes to città e the major campagne piemontesi.
    [url=]A proposito di UGG Australia[/url]
    A proposito di UGG Australia

  28. Katie Benedetto

    Wow, really interesting! I’ve been looking for a place to get an ‘authentic’ taste of other parts of the world – somewhere not influenced by the media – this is that. North Korea sounds much nicer than my impression in this post! Looking forward to reading more – thanks Johnny. :)

    1. Felix

      “authentic”???? What are you talking about? A country you HAVE to be on a tour to visit, each and every one of your movements are restricted, and you are not even allowed to talk to the local population?


      1. Johnny Post author

        north korea isn’t influence by western media, that’s for sure! but it’s enitrely influenced by its own media :S North Korea is a great experience, and once which id recommend but it’s tough to get a real gauge on the country with all the restrictions in place!

    1. Johnny Post author

      to be honest will, i dont foresee any significant changes, primarily because Kim Jong Un is leader by name only at this point, with the old cronies still apparently calling the shots. Time will tell if that changes when he gets up to speed :S

  29. Amanda Slavinsky

    I am really liking the North Korea posts. I’m a huge North Koreaphile and am hopefully heading there later this year.

    I would like to say though that the unemployment rate is merely a statistic that the government tells people and is far from the truth. Ideally, like in all communist societies, everyone would have a job but that is far from the case in North Korea, especially outside Pyongyang.

    1. Johnny Post author

      hey amanda, thanks for your comment. I hope you make it there later, let me know! I’m sure you’re right about the unemployment statistics, i was just toeing the party line :P

Comments are closed.