Join us in the DPRK to partake in the Pyongyang Marathon! This incredible event is the fifth year that foreign tourists are welcomed to compete or spectate from the grandstands of Kim Il Sung Stadium!
Everyone on this tour will have the opportunity to watch the opening and closing ceremony in the heart of the stadium with 70,000 locals cheering on!
This unique Marathon tour offers tourists to not only spectate or compete in the marathon but to also join in on the nation’s biggest celebration of the year – President Kim Il Sung’s birthday! You’ll have the unique opportunity to dance, eat, drink and mingle with the locals! There’ll also be fireworks, mass dancing, and if any further surprises organised that day we’ll make sure you’re involved.
During your visit you’ll also be visiting the must see sites in Pyongyang city such as the Pyongyang Metro, Korean War Museum, and no trip to the DPRK is complete without a visit to the DMZ, where the country is separated from South Korea.
We’ll also explore beyond of Pyongyang to the newly opened to foreign tourists city of Pyongsong, where we can explore a food factory and join in on an English class at a local middle school. We’ll then head further north to Mt. Myohyang where the very famous International Friendship Exhibition lays buried into the mountain with gifts presented to the leaders from other countries around the world.
Afterwards we’ll head south west of Pyongyang to the DPRK’s busiest port, Nampo city. Here we’ll explore a local steelworks factory, a co-operative farm and the West Sea Barrage which grabbed a lot of international attention in the late 80’s.
The flight in and out option between Sinuiju and Pyongyang is included in the tour cost.
This incredible tour is a must see, run and do tour, with great opportunities for engagement with locals and an opportunity to be part of something incredible. Book now with us to secure your position for the marathon and your seat with us! Group bookings and Young Pioneer returners are most welcomed with discounts.
Marathon running fees are listed below and not included in the tour cost.
Full Marathon (42km/26 miles) – cost of entry is $150USD
Half Marathon (20km/12 miles) – cost of entry is $100USD
Mini Marathon (10km/6 miles) – cost of entry is $70USD
5KM Marathon (5km/3 miles) – cost of entry is $70USD
A race timing chip is included in the price above. The maximum time limit for the full marathon is 5 and a half hours, half marathon is 2 and a half hours and both the mini marathon and 5km marathon is 2 hours. All running participants will receive a Pyongyang marathon certificate titled to you, with the top three men and women in each distance excluding the 5km run receiving ceramic vases at the awards ceremony held in front of 70,000 people!
The Pyongyang Marathon committee also welcomes differently-abled runners. If you are interested in running please let us know more about your details so we can confirm everything ahead of the event.
Registry for all marathon runners is on a first come first served basis and limited to 1500 runners in total, so if you wish to run, book now! Registrations close mid February of 2018.
Running isn’t your thing? No problem! Join the locals in Kim Il Sung Stadium as the marathon takes off, observe the marathon from the streets of Pyongyang, or watch a football game inside the stadium during the race.
Meet your YPT guide at 1:00pm at the Beijing Zhong Gu Hotel near Beijing Railway Station found here. During this meeting, we’ll go through the tour’s itinerary, further discuss the marathon, receive DPRK visas and tickets, as well as a great chance to meet your fellow travellers and to discuss any other questions you may have about the DPRK.
All groups (both train and flight members) depart Beijing Central station at 5:25pm for overnight sleeper train to Dandong.
Saturday 7th April
Arrive in Dandong at 7:00am and we’ll begin departing Dandong and go through Chinese immigration formalities as we exit China.
Arrive into Sinuiju, the bordertown city of the DPRK. Here we’ll go through DPRK immigration and customs inspection.
Flight group: will head to Sinuiju Airport and hop aboard our Air Koryo domestic flight from Sinuiju and down to Pyongyang.
Train group: will depart Sinuiju and arrive in Pyongyang at 5:30pm
Receive a city map from your YPT guide and enjoy evening views of Pyongyang as the bus does a lap of the marathon route to give you a clear understanding of where you will be running.
In the evening your YPT guide will show you around the hotel before taking you for drinks and to get to know your Korean guides.
Dinner and overnight at the Sosan Hotel.
Sunday 8th April – Marathon Day!
Run or spectate the Pyongyang Marathon! You can run either the mini, half, or full marathon.
Lunch at the Mangyongdae District KITC Restaurant – your chance to try the famous Pyongyang Cold Noodles or the traditional Korean Bibimbap dish along with other popular Korean dishes.
Cool down at Munsu Water Park with indoor pools and amazing water slides, the park also features plenty for those who don’t want to swim, including a cafe, shop, beer bar, table tennis, billiards massage or a beauty salon – optional charges.
Visit the Taedonggang Micro Brewery to further wind down with multiple delicious draft beers on tap, coffee, soft drinks and juices are also available.
Dinner at the National Restaurant with performance from the waitresses.
Overnight at the Sosan Hotel.
Monday 9th April
Walk through Mansudae Fountain Park and see the mosaic pictures of President Kim Il Sung and the Leader Kim Jong Il.
Visit Mansudae Grand Monument to show our respects to the President Kim Il Sung and the Leader Kim Jong Il. (Optional extra – you can present flowers if you wish: small bunches are 2 euro, larger ones 4).
Kim Il Sung Square – The Main square of Pyongyang City where all the military parades are held.
Foreign Language Bookshop – the best place for pins, stamps, books, CD’s and DVD’s as well as DPRK Flags.
Lunch at the Chongryu Hot Pot Restaurant.
Pyongyang Metro! Ride from stop 1 to stop 2, then on to stop 6! Exiting to:
The Arch of Triumph – The largest Victory Arch on the planet – it celebrates the victory over the Japanese and the return of the General Kim Il Sung to his home city.
Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum, featuring dioramas, captured weapons, tanks and planes, the Victory Monument and the USS Pueblo, the only American military vessel held by another nation.
Juche Tower – the tallest stone tower in the world, it represents the eternally burning Korean Juche Ideology. (Optional extra 5 euro to go to the top of the tower).
Monument to the Party Foundation – built in 1995 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Worker’s Party.
Dinner at Ponghwa Guan restaurant.
Overnight at the Sosan Hotel.
Tuesday 10th April
Up nice and early to drive to Kaesong and the DMZ.
Koryo Museum – Korea’s first university and now a museum of history and culture. Also home of the best stamp and propaganda poster shop in the DPRK, so don’t forget your wallet!
The DMZ – see one of the most tense places on earth complete with a friendly KPA officer who will not only give you a guided tour but also keep you safe. Also the only place you can take photographs of and even with a soldier!
Lunch at the Thongil Restaurant in Kaesong City – try your hand at traditional Korean Pansangi – a series of dishes served in bronze bowls. (Optional extras- Dog soup 5 euro, Ginseng stuffed whole chicken 30 euro – can be split between several).
Tomb of King Kongmin – the only original tomb of its kind still standing in the DPRK.
Drop by Sariwon City (Capital of North Hwanghae province) to walk in the local folk custom park and view the city from the mountain top pagoda.
Photo opportunity of the Monument to the Three Charters of National Reunification, standing over the Thongil Highway.
Dinner at the famous Duck BBQ restaurant.
Overnight in Sosan Hotel.
Wednesday 11th April
Drive to Pyongsong city – a large city located 45 minutes north of Pyongyang which recently opened to foreign tourists in 2013.
Visit Mother Kim Jong Suk Middle School Number 1 – here you can meet English students and we encourage you to speak and even teach an impromptu class!
Paeksonri Foodstuffs Factory – this factory produces a wide variety of goods largely from corn.
The central Square of Pyongsong City and statue of the President Kim II Sung.
Lunch at the local Jangsusan Hotel.
Drive out to the beautiful Mount Myohyang where we’ll stay in a small quiet town located at the base of the mountain called Hyangsan – two hours further north of Pyongsong city.
Check into Chong Chun Hotel.
We’ll stretch our legs and go for a gentle hike to the top of one of the peaks of Mt. Myohyang.
Dinner, drinks and overnight at Chong Chun Hotel.
Thursday 12th April
Visit the very famous International Friendship Exhibition – two large gift houses holding the gifts presented to both Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il from people, governments and institutions all over the world. This is a must see!
Pohyon Temple – One of the five famous temples of Korea and one of the largest Buddhist temples in the DPRK.
Lunch at Chong Chun Hotel.
Ryongmun Cavern – one of the most famous cave complexes in the DPRK, the Ryongmun Cavern is famous for its stalactite and stalagmite formations.
Drive back to Pyongyang, two and a half hour drive.
Dinner at the New Stamp Restaurant – this restaurant opened up very recently and is quite popular with the locals.
Drinks at Rakwon Micro Brewery – the cheapest pints in town!
Overnight in Yanggakdo hotel.
Friday 13th April
Visit the new Science and Technology Park – here the DPRK have organised all the latest medical, scientific and warfare technology and have presented it in an interactive way.
Explore the nearby Olympic Village which was built for the World Youth Games of 1989.
Head to the Meari Shooting Range which has been recently renovated and equipped with rifles, pistols, archery, virtual games and automatic rifles. $0.50USD cents per bullet.
Lunch at the shooting range
Stop by Kwanbok Department store, this is Pyongyang’s largest department store and our chance to exchange our foreign currency into local DPRKorean Won to spend on items. Here they have a supermarket, food court, clothing retail and other small stalls selling nifty little things.
Visit the Korean Film Studio – over 1000 Korean films and television series have been made here. We’ll also explore the film backdrops of Seoul, China, a European town and old Koryo dynasty villages for our chance to dress up!
Visit the Mansudae Art Studio – where all the great statues, as well as most of the DPRK’s best art is produced.
Dinner at a local restaurant.
Kaeson Youth Park (Entry 2 euros, rides 3 to 5 euros extra each depending on how awesome they are).
Overnight at Yanggakdo Hotel.
Saturday 14th April
Drive to Nampho City – a city located on the west coast of the DPRK.
West Sea Barrage – An astounding example of socialist construction, the barrage was built to keep the salty water of the West Sea from rendering parts of the Taedonggang River and surrounding farmland useless, as well as to tame the local sea.
Chollima Steel Complex – one of the DPRK’s most famous industrial sites- named after the Chollima movement it helped lead.
Lunch at the Harbour Hotel in Nampo city
Kangso Mineral water factory – home to the DPRK’s most famous sparkling water – with samples!
Chongsan Co-operative farm- One of the top co-op farms in the DPRK and a model of the co-op method. Here we’ll be able to explore the village and possibly visit the nursery, a farmers house or even the local theatre.
Head back to Pyongyang for dinner at a local restaurant on Kwanbok street.
Overnight at Yanggakdo Hotel.
Sunday 15th April – The Day of the Sun – President Kim Il Sung’s
Kumsusan Palace of the Sun – where President Kim Il Sung and General Kim Jong Il lie in state.
Revolutionary Martyrs’ Cemetery – final resting place of many of the Anti-Japanese Revolutionaries, each grave features a bronze bust of the figure within.
Lunch at the Moran Hill Chicken Restaurant.
Visit Moranbong park to drink, dance and celebrate the holiday with the locals.
Visit the Kim Il Sung flower exhibition.
Mangyongdae Native Home – Birthplace of the President Kim Il Sung and where he spent the early years of his childhood.
Special celebratory events (optional: approx 20 euros) – Yet to be confirmed but we will take part in any birthday events that are possible for tourists to attend. These may include a parade, a circus performance, and possibly some other surprises.
Spectate and/or join in on the Pyongyang university students performing a mass dance near an iconic DPRK monument – fantastic for rare photo opportunities!
Dinner at Daesong restaurant.
We’ll join the locals on Kim Il Sung Square and watch the fireworks light up over the Taedong River.
Taedonggang Diplomatic Club. There’s local and imported drinks, karaoke, billiards, ping pong and a great chance to meet some local Pyongyang expats.
Overnight at the Yanggakdo Hotel.
Monday 16th April
Train members depart at 10:10am for the overnight train to Beijing and enjoy the peaceful countryside of both the DPRK and China
Flight members will have morning tour of the Three Revolutionary Exhibition where the ideologies of Kim Il Sung are displayed in a soviet yet interactive way. The highlight being the satellites DPRK have launched in recent years.
Flight members will depart Pyongyang on domestic flight to Sinuiju on Air Koryo and then transferring into Dandong at 5:00pm. Board the overnight sleeper train to Beijing.
Tuesday 17th April
Both group members will arrive at Beijing Railway Station at 9:00am
• Twin share accommodation (single supplements are available for an extra 40 EUR per night).
• Train in and out of DPRK
• Option: Flights between Sinuiju and Pyongyang
• All meals in the DPRK unless specified in the itinerary.
• Korean and western guides
• Air-conditioned bus and driver
• All entrances (unless otherwise stated)