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North Korea

Discussion in 'Less Travelled' started by teckel, Oct 30, 2013.

  1. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    I spoke today with one of my suppliers who has recently returned from a holiday in North Korea - why on earth anyone would ever want to go there is beyond me. No, he didn't see that fat little turd Kim Jong Un. But some of his observations:
    Only 2500 foreigners are given visas each year (approx 50 per week)
    The airport is tiny - as hardly anyone arrives or leaves.
    He was one of a group of 7 foreigners. They were escorted at all times by a team of 4 - 2 interpreters, a driver and a guy who videoed everything they did!
    Cameras - not allowed to take photos of the military or the poor.
    They were meant to go to about 20 places - they only went to about 14. The others were cancelled without reason or notice (eg: a visit to JVC North Korean HQ)
    One place they did get to was a maternity hospital ward - quite a luxurious one, obviously for the party & military elite. They claimed it was typical [​IMG] It was almost deserted, but they went into one room and there was a lady in the bed - they saw her high heels sticking out from the covers.
    Another place they went to was a pier. Yup, exciting places! There was an old guy there who wanted to show the tourists his catch of crabs. They hit him with a stick for talking to foreigners!
    They were taken to particular restaurants - no choice where they ate. Prices obviously inflated for foreigners. They were only allowed in to certain shops. If they strayed more than 10m from the group, they were called back into line.
    There are 4 roads leading into the capital. They are each 8 lanes wide (4 in each direction) and paved with concrete. But they're deserted - hardly anyone has cars, and the citizens aren't free to travel - armed check points in and out of the capital. Apparently these roads are to be used as runways and military staging areas to defend the capital in case of an invasion.

    What a f***ed up country!
     
    #1 teckel, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2013
  2. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    [​IMG]

    Governed by the proletariat, right?
     
    #2 Sandy, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2013
  3. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah, can't for the life of me understand the point of a trip like that. I found it bad enough on the few occasions I've been on a guided city group tour in a western country. Really appreciate the freedom to wander randomly, get lost, discover things for myself, see regular people.
     
  4. markopolo

    markopolo Naughty Corner Resident Ski Pass: Gold

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    Are they not building a ski resort there ?
     
  5. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Here's the ski slope:

    [​IMG]
     
    #5 teckel, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2013
  6. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    If they are what would be your chances of venturing off-piste?
     
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  7. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Heinz, this guy only travels to weird places that are right off the tourist trail. His travel agent contacted him suggesting this one - travel agent knowing what weird places his client likes.
     
  8. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    With that military guy ordering you on to the slope? [​IMG]
     
    #8 teckel, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  9. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Weird places is one thing, but places where you are completely dictated to in what you are allowed to see are another thing. Just seems completely pointless if you can't go and see what you want to see. If that what he wants good luck to him, he can have it, it's just not for me.
     
    #9 Heinz, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  10. BobGnarly

    BobGnarly One of Us

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    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    rope ducking not recommended
     
    #10 BobGnarly, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  11. BobGnarly

    BobGnarly One of Us

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    However the guy filming everything you do would be cool as you wouldnt need a gopro
     
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  12. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Trips to Kim Il Sung's birthplace and the Museum of the Glorious Revolution (or whatever it's called) are mandatory. You can even buy flowers to leave at his birthplace if you want! [​IMG]
     
    #12 teckel, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2013
  13. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    if you were able to get the footage out of the country.
     
    #13 Heinz, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  14. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    [​IMG] What more could you possibly want?
     
    #14 Heinz, Oct 30, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  15. markopolo

    markopolo Naughty Corner Resident Ski Pass: Gold

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    I think it was AlanD who spent time there consulting on a casino development, strange little niche attractions they have !
     
  16. webberchoked

    webberchoked Hard Yards

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    lots of people have known this for years since this popular video and numerous others which have followed.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24R8JObNNQ4

    which is pretty much point for point what you described so the only reason i think people go there now is to say theyve actually been to north korea which is kinda pointless since you can just watch the video and save like 5k and know exactly what its like.
     
    #16 webberchoked, Oct 31, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2013
  17. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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    I know several people who have been) and I defiantly would like to go soon.

    Many of the most fascinating countries your visits are tightly controlled. But doesn't make it any less interesting. To me it is certainly more interesting than going to the UK and visiting Stonehenge.

    I've backpacked/travelled some seldom visited places, like Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Sudan.....the last two, are incredibly hard to get visas. And its no coincidence that these are some of my favourite countries (except Turkmenistan).

    Anyway there are several companies operating tours to the DPRK, the two largest are Koryo Tours and Young Pioneer.
     
  18. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    I definitely would not go there defiantly!
     
    #18 Charlie, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
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  19. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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    #19 Fmr_Mr_Eski, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2013
  20. Nozawaman

    Nozawaman A Local

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    This is exactly what happens with Chinese tourist on the Gold Coast !!!!
     
    #20 Nozawaman, Nov 3, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 14, 2013
  21. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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  22. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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  23. crackson

    crackson A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Weed is legal in NK.

    Couple of dollars per kilo.


    Would not go.
     
  24. cin

    cin Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Little Kim Jong spur
     
  25. Chondro

    Chondro One of Us

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    Very poor quality tho
     
  26. piolet

    piolet Better make it three Ski Pass: Gold

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    Off piste would be like a minefield
     
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  27. greensnow

    greensnow Hard Yards

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    North Korea would have to be one of the most fascinating places in the world to visit. A few insights from those that have done the trip here:
    http://qr.ae/zBZqP
     
  28. essjaywhy

    essjaywhy One of Us

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  29. Kash

    Kash Hard Yards

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    Just saw that North Korea video the other day. It was really entertaining actually. It actually seemed from that video that the guy got out and explored the country a bit without guides. I'd like to go there, but maybe when they relax a bit.
     
  30. absentskier

    absentskier Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    You'll be waiting a long time then!
     
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  31. Jellybeans

    Jellybeans Walking on a cloud Ski Pass: Gold

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    If there's not a guide, there's a dozen others watching you.
     
  32. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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    I went to North Korea in July. Absolutely fascinating place. If anyone intends to go PM me and I'll put you in contact with the right people.
     
  33. Jellybeans

    Jellybeans Walking on a cloud Ski Pass: Gold

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    Did you go skiing?
     
  34. Fmr_Mr_Eski

    Fmr_Mr_Eski Hard Yards

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    No. I don't ride anymore. My passion eroded a while ago now. I was also there in Summer.
     
  35. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    OP sounds very similar to accounts of visits to the Soviet Union in the 70s.