DMZ is a buffer zone between South and North Korea, dividing the Korean Peninsula
DMZ has been the most popular tourist place of Korea for foreigners after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. The object of the zone is to head off the recurrence of war between two Koreas.
The zone occupies 2 km north and south respectively from the truce line of 1953. The zone stretches across the Korean Peninsula 155 miles from the mouth of the Han River to the East Coast.
It’s one of the best preservation, wildlife shelters where peace and tension coexist. The President of Korea, Park Geun-Hye, is pushing to make a “peace park” in the DMZ as a new symbolic icon of political pacification and ecological conservation.
Historical Background of Tour
The submission of Japan in 1945 at the end of Pacific War saw the division of Korea by the 38th parallel line when the US and the Soviet Union came into Korean Peninsula. The separation line was supposed to be a temporary political border, but the failure to hold free elections through the peninsula in 1948 deepened the division between the two Koreas.
The North Korean tanks crossed the 38th parallel line at the dawn of June 25, 1950. The war continued for three years and one month to lose more than two million people’s lives. The truce agreement was made at Panmunjom on July 27, 1953. The armistice, not a peace treaty, is still in effect today.
Main Tour Spots
In essence, any DMZ tour is to undergo the actuality of the division and to find the hope of the future. The climax of the tour is to tour a tunnel dug by North Korea. The tunnel was founded by South Soldiers as the third one out of four tunnels, consequently the name “The Third Tunnel”. It is a surreal experience to discover a 1,635 meter tunnel at the depth of 73 meters underground. The infiltration tunnel was made by perilous manual excavation work with dynamites, shovels and pickaxes. The tunnel is located only four kilometers away from JSA, where the representatives of North Korea repeat their version of peace and reunification.
The other tourism spots comprise an observatory and a train station. The observatory sits on the hilltop, from which you can watch the north area comprised of the “Gaesung Industrial Complex”, the “Propaganda Village”, a big statue of North Leader Kim IL-Sung, etc. The train station is the northernmost one of South Korea and it is physically connected to the North railroad system, which again is linked to the Trans Eurasian Railroad Network. Regardless of the negative diplomacy surrounding the Korean Peninsula, here you can find a hope to go to Europe by TRS (Trans-Siberian Railroad).
What is the good way to go to the DMZ? By joining the DMZ tour service of Seoulcitytourbooking!
The west side of DMZ lies only 52 kilometers far from Seoul in the north direction. However, there is no public transportation directly linked DMZ to Seoul. Even after you manage to arrive at the DMZ, you can see that the pass check is sellout after a long standing in the waiting line of the ticket office. Some traveler finds out that they have forgotten to bring their passport only after they are requested to show them to an MP of the military checkpoint.
Yes, the wisest way to DMZ is to use the particular service of Seoulcitytourbooking. You don’t need to worry by one simple booking with Seoulcitytourbooking, which has run a DMZ tour service for over 15 years. You will be offered with:
• The best storytelling tour guide for DMZ
• The most comfortable transportation to and from the DMZ (containing a morning pick-up service at your hotel in Seoul)
• The total service, including the entrance fee to tour the facilities of the DMZ
All in one day tour for Knowing tension of peninsula and peaceful and dynamic city in term of double-sided character paradoxically.
Travel with us to just outside the Demilitarized Zone, where we will descend into the tunnel dub by the North Korean army in to the south, in preparation for a sneak attack.
Imjingak, located 7 km from the Military Demarcation Line, is now at the forefront of tourism related to the Korean War. It was built in 1972 with the hope that someday unification would be possible. Three-storied Imjingak is surrounded by several monuments, Unification Park and North Korea Center.
400 kinds of photos and documents showing the stark reality of North Korea are displayed in the North Korea Center of Unification Board. Outside Imjingak, there are 12 kinds of tanks and crafts on display that were used during the war.
Mangbaedan Alter, which stands opposite of Imjingak, is famous for the place where people from North Korea visit and perform ancestral rites by bowing toward their hometown every New Year's Day and Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving). The Bridge of the Freedom, South Koreans crossed when they came back to their mother country from North Korea, stands behind Mangbaedan Alter.
In front of Imjingak is the Gyeongui Train Line which was destroyed during the Korean War in 1950. It has been under construction since 2000. Every year many events for unification are held at Imjingak. Imjingak is now one of the famous tourist spots for foreigners in Gyeonggi-do because it is possible to visit without going through any security check points
The bridge is more like a symbolic bridge built back in 1998, wishing unification between two Koreas.
It was built by Hyundai Business Group of South Korea. Underneath the bridge you can see a river which is called Imjingang, coming down from North Korea. The bridge also has a nickname which is the “Cow Bridge”. The founder of Hyundai whose name was Jung Juyoung crossed this bridge and went to North Korea back in 1998 with precisely 1,001 cows. Since then, we have been calling it the cow bridge. Of course all the cows he took with him were part of humanitarian donations for North Korean people.
If you look outside, you can see some soldiers wearing a green color camouflage uniform. They are South Korean soldiers or ROK soldiers currently serving their mandatory military service for 21 months. All men in South Korea have to serve the military mandatorily for 21 months, but it’s not required for women. I also served for 26 months a long time ago right after college, and it was longer than right now. Military service is getting shorter and shorter. However, the situation is a lot more terrible in North Korea. First of all, it’s mandatory for both genders, men and women. Men have to serve for 10 years while women serve for 7 years, but this is just for normal kinds of soldiers. For a special forces like Marine Corps and Airborne, they have to serve for 13 years.
It’s a unique museum within the civilian control line. The museum, on which the nation and provinces had spent 44.5 billion Korean won, officially opened on 08, 14, 2009. DMZ Showroom displays leaflets used during the 6.25 Korean Civil War, military letters, bayonets, empty cartridges, pottery found in DMZ, taxidermied birds and etc. DMZ Video Room features three-dimensional moving pictures. By watching them, you can easily understand how Korea got divided.
The highlight of the DMZ tour is to explore a tunnel dug by North Korea.
Since 1974, South Army has discovered four tunnels crossing the MDL. The tunnels are believed to have been planned as a military invasion or infiltration route. Each tunnel is large enough to enable the passage of thirty thousand soldiers in one hour.
The 3rd tunnel discovered in 1978 penetrates into South Korea by 435 meters beyond the ceasefire line. You are going to hear how the tunnel was discovered with more detailed information. After listening to the story, you will enter into the actual tunnel to find the ambition of North Korea to make another sudden invasion. In addition, you are going to watch a short documentary film at the DMZ theater, and look around relics and reproductions of Korean War at its small exhibition hall.
Dora Observatory, or OP Dora is the closest observation post to North Korea.
From the observation platform, North Korean scenery is visible, and so are the outskirts of Gaeseong City, the 3rd largest city of North Korea. Especially, you can view the Gaeseong Industrial Complex operated by both Koreas. If you use the binocular, a statute of Kim Il-sung can be found near the Gaeseong City.
You can also observe a fake North Korean border village. Within DMZ of North side, there’s a small village called “Propaganda Village.” On a clear day, you can view through binocular that it is actually a deserted town. Like a multi-million dollar Hollywood filming set, some lights flicker on and off at set times to create the illusion of people living there.
A sign in the station reads, “Not the last station from the South, But the first station toward the North.”
For now, it is the northernmost station of South Korea which is only 700m, or a half mile away from the southern boundary of DMZ. The milestones of Dorasan Station (205km to Pyeongyang, 56km to Seoul) imply the reality of the division between two Koreas and the hope of a future. Although the tracks are connected, the north regime doesn't allow trains to pass through, making $40 million station sit unused.
However, it serves as a beacon of hope for the reunification of two Koreas. Currently, it’s the last stop, but someday it will take you to Europe through the Trans-Siberian Railway.
The colour of Amethyst is as unique as it is seductive, though in fact this gemstone of all gemstones is said to protect its wearer against seduction. Korean Amethyst is extravagance in violet since it has been formed from granite stone base since 5000 years. Moses described it as a symbol of the Spirit of God in the official robes of the High Priest of the Jews, and the Russian Empress Catherine the Great sent thousands of miners into the Urals to look for it. It was said to protect crops against tempests and locusts, bring good fortune in war and in the hunt, drive out evil spirits and inspire the intellect.
Ginseng is renowned for its effectiveness as a great healer for living ever so young.
Especially if you eat ginseng when you lose your energy, it really helps to regain energy.
Korea is acknowledged by the world because of the quality of ginseng as if it is the birthplace of ginseng.
You can experience various kinds of ginseng products like gingersnap, extract, ginseng preserved in honey, and other great quality of products made in Korea.
Bibimbap (Korean pronunciation: [bibimbap], sometimes anglicized bi bim bap or bi bim bop) is a signature Korean dish. The word literally means "mixed rice". Bibimbap is served as a bowl of warm white rice topped with namul (sautéed and seasoned vegetables) and gochujang (chili pepper paste), soy sauce, or doenjang, a salty soybean paste. A raw or fried egg and sliced meat (usually beef) are common additions. The hot dish is stirred together thoroughly just before eating. In South Korea, Jeonju, Jinju, and Tongyeong are especially famous for their versions of bibimbap. In 2011, it was listed at number 40 on the World's 50 most delicious foods readers' poll compiled by CNN Travel
Kyeongbokgung Palace is one of the oldest of the five places in Seoul. It is such a great and magnificent building as a representative of Joseon Dynasty. It shows off the beauty of its construction.Through this, it can be a representative tourism spot for foreigners to understand the tradition and history of Korea.This tour course takes around one and a half hours; you will see remarkable pavilions like Kyunghoiru and Hyangwonjung, and beautiful/classy wooden and stone structures as Kyungcheonsaji 10-story tower, you also will see Kyotaejeon and Kangnyungjun places where you can experience the life of noble people with a guide.
The choicest tour place for foreign tourists.
Gyungbok-gung Palace is the starting point of 500 years of history in Joseon Dynasty.
You will defiantly enjoy the stroll around the place feeling the quiet and peaceful mood.
It can be a representative tourism spot for foreigners to understand the tradition and history of Korea.
If you want to know the history of Korea properly, you should visit this place.
National Folk Museum of Korea has been researching daily life of Korea from the past to present and preserving and displaying folk culture of ancestors in Korea as a representative life history museum.
This is one of the best location to explain Korean history and culture easily to foreigners.
When foreign celebrities visit Korea, they always stop by this area; the closest Korean styled avenue, this is Insa-dong.
Not only hundreds of art galleries are there but, dozens of traditional handcraft shop, antique art markets, and traditional tea houses. Because of the development of modern civilizations, many foreign Coffee shops and restaurants have launched around the place, yet this area unconventionally use Korean on their gate signs.