Five years ago, our team at Young Pioneer Tours ran our first borderlands research tour. The trip had us driving along the North Korean and Chinese border, much of which used to be part of the historic Koryo nation. We had also had a lot of interest in us running a tour that would see us visiting both sides of the Korean peninsula, particularly seeing both sides of the iconic DMZ.
It was with this in mind that we conceived of making the ‘All Koreas Tour’. The tour would take in South Korea, North Korea and the historic Korean lands that are still part of Mainland China. The main idea was that, whilst these parts remain divided today, these were the parts of the old Koryo nation that made up ‘The One Korea of the Korean peninsula’.
Part one of the All Koreas tour started in Dandong and worked its way east, following the natural border that is the Yalu/Amnok River and visiting every major Chinese city at the border before terminating at Far-East Tumen, where those continuing will walk over the border on foot! This is truly one of our most unique and underrated trips, which offers some great views into cities such as Manpo, and Hyesan, the latter which has recently opened to tourism.
Part Two continues onto the unseen parts of the North-East of North Korea, such as Chongjin and the stunning Mount Chilbo, before going onto to Pyongyang and, finally finishing back in Dandong.
We then board the ferry to Incheon to complete our journey to find a unified Korea, the ROK!
Part Three of our All Koreas trip has us taking in all the main sites of Seoul with a particular emphasis on the entities that divide Korea, such as the southern side of the DMZ and Panmunjom. Following this we will head to some of the highlights of the tour – the South Korean borderlands, and a county of South Korea that would have been part of the North had it not been for the Korean War.
The All Koreas Tour truly is one of our best itineraries and in our minds the only way to see every element that makes up One Korea.
keep your eyes peeled for our 2020 program where we are looking to add Sakhalin!
Check out some of our other North Korea tours here!