Young Pioneer Tours

North Korean tours for US citizens

With the U.S. currently banning all U.S. passport holders from traveling to North Korea, despite a distinct change of tone from both parties and countless positive talks between President Donald Trump and Marshal Kim Jong Un, with President Trump crossing over the border recently,  there’s unfortunately no sign of the travel ban being dropped anytime soon.

Views across the Tumen river between China and North Korea

So what options are left for U.S. passport holders with an interest in North Korea? The most obvious choice is to head down to the South side of the DMZ, with many tours on this side offering tourists the chance to step into the North via the U.N. “blue houses” running directly through the DMZ’s border. For those who’ve experienced the North side of the DMZ on any of our standard tours by all reports the South side is an extremely unique experience, much unlike the usually surprising casual atmosphere that can be found in the North side.

While experiencing both sides of the DMZ is an integral experience in understanding the conflict of the Korean War, traveling to the South side of the DMZ to make a few steps into the North to “check off” being in the North is all over in seconds.

As a result, for U.S. passport holders, “country completists” or those interested in seeing a whole other side to North Korea, we think the closest and most immersive experience you can get to being in North Korea is our Borderlands tour.

villages of North Korea can be seen from China

Running in its seventh consecutive year in 2020, our Borderlands tour is the road trip of a lifetime, traversing the China / North Korea border from Dandong all the way to Tumen over one epic week. Not only will you gain access to view some of the most uncharted, off-the-beaten-track towns and villages in North Korea but some of the most surreal and fascinating Chinese border towns – highlighting the vast differences between these two allies. Forget Pyongyang, this is one of the most authentic and eye opening insights into another side of North Korea that you won’t see on Instagram.

If you’re an American passport holder wanting to experience North Korea, traversing one of the most fascinating borders on the planet is your next best option – arm yourself with a pair of binoculars, a keen sense of adventure and a solid road trip playlist and  sign up for our 2020 Borderlands trip!

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