5 Reason Why You Should Visit North Korea on Your Next Vacation

Fake smiles? Photo Eric Lafforgue

This travel piece in response to “Snowboarders Should Boycott North Korea; the Kim Family is a Human Rights Disaster.” which appeared on the Inertia 4 January 2016. Instead of talking about why we shouldn’t go to North Korea, lets talk about why you SHOULD go (and it’s actually called the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea), so for the rest of the piece lets refer to it as the DPRK.

Surfing in the DPRK

electric fence

North Korea has over 1500 miles of coastline, most of which is surrounded by electric fences to prevent people from trying to flee the country. Thats one way to keep kooks out of the water. Count me in! Beaches are reserved mostly for travelers and the wealthy. Guided trips to the DPK start around $1800, for more info checkout Koryo Group.

Surfing-Near-North-Korea6

Be sure to remember you manners, and don’t claim to hard as the best surfer in this country and everyone knows it is Kim Jong-un. And before you think about punting that fancy front side air you might want to remind yourself that they can shoot you for being a shitty surfer. Odds are its safer than surfing in Indo where there’s heavy genocide going down but people still are flying there in droves..


If you think North Korea is bad, might want to watch this. And then go check out Potts video on Netflix. Makes you go hmm. If your still worried perhaps take a boogie board with and call it a done deal.

Rollerblading around DPRK

April 24, 2013. A North Korean boy on rollerblades is pulled by a woman on a bicycle on a road south of Kaesong, North Korea and north of the demilitarized zone which separates the two Korea's. Photo David Guttenfelder

Since were talking about boogie boards, why not do some rollerblading on your next vacation? What are you thinking you’re too cool to roller blade, you must have grown up skating. I did both and haven’t been on blades in a minutes. This would be sick to pop wheelies (is that what we called it) all around the DPRK, and odds are a great way to see lots of the country.

Mobbing DPRK style

Skiing in North Korea or actually the DPRK

chair

I feel like this warrants it own article, so I will keep it short. Kim Jong-un built a ski resort in record time, it looks like its all man made groomers white ribbon of death style skiing. If that’s your dream ski vacation I’m all for it, keeps people off Teton Pass. When one of the “former” legends of the snowboarding Terje Haakonsen signs up for a trip you know it must be rad, this guy wouldn’t even sell out even for the Olympics but for some ₩ (that’s the symbol for the Korean People’s Won currency) he will happily bend over.. yeah I just went there.

PSY- Gangnam Style

Enter PSY- Gangnam Style. Although this originated in South Korea, one would think that the North Koreans can throw down pretty hard too. Not sure what I’m talking about? Check the video below. (Working a desk job, crank this up for your co-workers)

Odds are you won’t know anyone that’s ever been

I remember the first time I told people I was going to El Salvador to surf. People thought I was nuts, I am however that wasn’t why I went or didn’t go. If you live you life by the United States Department of State travel warnings odds are you won’t end up anywhere cool. Imagine what a parent in some remote village of some third world country thinks when their child says they want to go to Los Angeles, New York city, talk about scary. Just look at some of the photos below, these are cultural experiences that most westerns will never get to experience. And that’s a shame..

 Ananti-Golf North Korea

bowling

Heaven Lake Border of China and North Korea Baitou_Mountain_Tianchi

cute - cnn

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Aug. 11, 2012. Two people dance at Majon beach near Hamhung, North Korea. Photo David Guttenfelder

Aug. 11, 2012. Two people dance at Majon beach near Hamhung, North Korea. Photo David Guttenfelder

The UN estimates that the DPRK government keeps as many as 120,000 political prisoners locked up in concentration camps, Guantanamo has around 700 currently while prisons in the United States house roughly 2.2 million people. I’m not arguing that some heavy stuff has gone down in the DPRK and continues to do so. The problem is the United States of America is essentially at war with North Korea. Propaganda can easily slide across borders and into unsuspecting minds.

Have we forgotten about Germany, and Hitler so soon. Or how the Japanese were treated after Pearl Harbor. Might be time we do some research and who knows go and experience the place for ourselves before we form opinions about people and places we have never witnessed in person.

Perhaps a modern city with nice people awaits you…

North Korea

or not..

north koreans

But how pissed would you be if you found out it was really like this..

Ananti Golf Resort North Korea

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About the Author

Mike Hardaker
Mike Hardaker grew up surfing and snowboarding in Orange County and followed his love of surfing to Hawaii before eventually moving to the mountains to concentrate on snowboarding. When not on a board, Mike worked for Snowboarder and later oversaw TGR's online publication. He went on to found Mountain Weekly News where he is still CEO and Editor in Chief. Mike spends most of his time splitboarding in the winter months and backpacking throughout the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem in the summer.