According to ehotelat, the country’s capital, Pyongyang, is one of the oldest cities in North Korea. North Korean scientists believe that the city, located here in 2334 BC. already at that time was the capital of the state lying on the northern part of the Korean peninsula. Unfortunately, during the Korean War, Pyongyang was almost completely destroyed, but today it has been completely restored and is the most modern city in the country. Although most of the city’s historical attractions are reconstructions, there is no endless noise of street vendors, pollution and gas pollution as in other North Korean cities. Pyongyang lies in a picturesque place, on the banks of the Taedong River, which flows into the Yellow Sea not far from here and near the Potongan River. The city was originally built on the west bank, but after it began to get bigger and bigger, the construction of new quarters began on the east bank of the Taedong River. Both these parts of the city are connected by two bridges. The appearance of the city is quite unusual, surprisingly clean wide avenues of the city are not crowded. Various monuments of socialism are scattered throughout the city, government agencies are located in the center. Pyongyang has a unique, inimitable atmosphere. The main monument of the city is the Juche Idea Tower. The 170-meter “needle” of the tower ends with a 20-meter torch. The upper part of the tower can be seen from almost any part of the city. In front of the tower there is a sculptural complex traditional for the countries of socialism: a worker, a peasant and an intellectual, and each with his own tool of labor stretches his hand to the sky. On the island of Rungnado is a grandiose, According to the Koreans, the building is the May Day Stadium, which has a capacity of about 150,000 people. Every year on Kim Il Sung’s birthday, the stadium hosts a massive celebratory event, in which about one hundred thousand performers participate. 125 kilometers from Pyongyang, almost on the border with South Korea, is the largest industrial center of the country – the city of Kaesong. Like other North Korean cities, Kaesong was almost completely destroyed during the war, but still, unlike the capital, some historical sights have survived to this day. The main advantage of the city is the Koryo Museum, located in the building of an old Confucian college. The museum exhibits items from the history of North Korea, samples of pottery. Kaesong is also the birthplace of the famous Korean porcelain. It is definitely worth seeing the miraculously surviving Songjuk Bridge, built in 1216, and the Great South Gate, standing on this site since the end of the 14th century. The most beautiful natural attraction of the DPRK, available to foreign tourists, is the Myohyang mountain range. The ridge is located at the junction of three North Korean provinces and surrounds the Yongfang Plain, which stretches for many kilometers. This place is not just a mountain range, but a whole system of ridges and mountains, here is also the highest point of North Korea – Mount Piro. The slopes of the mountain ranges, densely overgrown with maple, chestnuts, juniper, which emits a pleasant aroma during flowering, deep gorges along which fast mountain rivers flow down, are truly breathtaking. In the same area is one of the main attractions of the region – the Buddhist temple of Pohyunsa, valid to this day. On its territory, you can see the surviving places of worship and a huge collection of ancient Korean books. It will be interesting to look at the “International Friendship Exhibition” – this is a museum that displays gifts to Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, but the size of this museum is simply huge, all gifts are placed in a six-story complex consisting of 200 halls.
National cuisine of the DPRK
The cuisine of North Korea is not much different from its southern neighbor and its surrounding countries. The methods of cooking are extremely simple, the most ordinary products are mixed, and their processing is also unpretentious. Due to the different natural and climatic conditions in different parts of the country, there is a clear difference in culinary traditions in each region, but the principles of cooking are the same everywhere. The basis of the local diet, as in most Asian countries, is rice, its role in the life of the local population is so great that in some establishments it is almost impossible to find a dish that does not use rice. Common dishes of many North Koreans are rice balls and bread, boiled rice without salt and seasonings, unleavened rice porridge “pap”, rice with vegetables and other dishes using this plant. Local appetizers are very original and varied, in most cases they give flavor to the main dish. Snack plates are placed around a plate of rice. Popular, traditional Korean sauerkraut. Such a seemingly simple dish can be found in the most unusual combinations: with radishes, carrots, various herbs and salted clams. Not only in Korea, but all over the world, such a local snack as Korean-style carrots is known. Lunch in the country most often begins with various soups. The meat on which the broth is made is usually used for cooking second courses. Soups such as soy, egg yolk and shellfish soup, seafood soup and spicy fish soup are the most popular in the country. The usual teas and coffees are practically not consumed here.
One of the advantages of North Korea can be called the presence of a developed transport system that includes all the main types of transport: roads, developed air and water transport, railway lines, the length of which is more than 9000 km.
Currency exchange in North Korea
As of October 2011, the national currency rate is 1 USD = 139 KPW. The official currency is the North Korean Won. In North Korea, you can exchange foreign currency at banks that are open from 09.00 to 17.00 and in some hotels. The most favorable exchange rate is possible on the black market, however, this is illegal, the exchanged money can be confiscated, and the exchanging tourist will be deported from the country. Anywhere in the country to pay for anything, you can only national currency. In general, tourists entering the country include everything, including food, in the cost of the tour, and it is generally forbidden for citizens of another country to have North Korean currency in their hands, so places where a tourist can buy something are limited to rare currency souvenir shops. Some hotels in Pyongyang accept Mastercard and Visa credit cards.