• Firework display for Kim Jong Il's Birthday, Pyongyang
  • Frozen Taedong River, Pyongyang, North Korea (DPRK)
  • Mass Dances in Pyongyang with North Koreans on the Birthday of Kim Jong Il
  • Pyongyang Indoor stadium during Mass Dances
  • DPRK Soldier Ice Sculpture

Chairman Kim Jong Il Birthday Tour 2022

The application deadline for this tour is January 8 2022. Please let us know if you are interested in a private tour extension.

It's a very important date in the DPRK calendar and celebrations are expected. Bundle up and explore North Korea with us!

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 - 15 February (Tuesday)

  • Depart from Beijing at 13.00 flight JS 252 Terminal 2, Beijing Capital Airport
  • Arrive in Pyongyang at 16.00 (Pyongyang time)

PM

  • Night drive around Pyongyang
  • Arch of Triumph - walk around the area. See the giant mural showing the image of President Kim Il Sung upon his return to Korea after Korea's liberation from Japan in 1945
  • Hotel check-in: Yanggakdo Hotel
  • Welcome Dinner: KITC Number 1 Restaurant, Pyongyang

Overnight: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Please check our Youtube video below. It was shot during one of our Kim Jong Il Birthday Tours and will give you a fair idea of what to expect on this tour. We recommend you to watch in HD!


Day 2 - 16 February - National Holiday - Chairman Kim Jong Il's Birthday

AM

  • Breakfast: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang
  • Kumsusan Palace of the Sun - where the leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il lie in state, one of the most sacred places in the DPRK
Kumsusan Memorial Palace in the winter, Pyongyang, DPRK (North Korea)

The Kumsusan Palace of the Sun is the most sacred place in DPRK

  • Revolutionary Martyrs' Cemetery - views of the whole of Pyongyang are available atop the hill where this cemetery is located

PM

  • Fountain Park - walk by the giant mosaic images of the leaders
  • Mansudae Grand Monuments - Giant bronze statues of the leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. There will be many locals here today
  • Kim Il Sung Square - This is the square where military parades and rallies take place (the ones we usually see on TV when there are news regarding North Korea)
North Korean Ice Rocket sculpture in Kim Il Sung Square with the Juche Tower in the background
  • DPRK foreign Language Bookstore - chance to read & purchase DPRK publications in English and in other languages
  • Kimjongilia Flower Exhibition - thousands of locals go to see flowers given to Kim Jong Il on occasion of his birthday. There is usually local media interviewing Koreans
Kimjongilia Flower Exhibition held in Pyongyang, North Korea (DPRK), for the Birthday of General Kim Jong Il

People gathering at the Kimjongilia Flower Exhibition - this place is literally crowded with locals the days surrounding 16th February

  • Juche Tower - chance to go up the 150 metre tower (170 metres including the torch) that offers a panoramic view of Pyongyang
  • Monuments to the Workers' Party - monument consisting of a hammer, sickle and brush that rise 50 metres in the sky
  • Expected Mass Dances - thousands of Korean students dance in a synchronised way and we will have the opportunity to join in!
KTG staff member dancing with Koreans at the Mass Dances on Leader Kim Jong Il's Birthday in Pyongyang, North Korea (DPRK)

There will likely be optional extra activities available such as Music Concerts, the Acrobatic Circus or Synchronised Swimming shows. These will be offered on the spot once in the DPRK

  • Local beer bar - chance to have a few drinks before dinner
  • Dinner: local Restaurant
  • Expected Fireworks Display after dinner

Overnight: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Day 3 - 17 February (Thursday)

AM

  • Breakfast: Yanggakdo Hotel
  • Drive to Mt. Myohyang in the northern interior of DPRK
  • International Friendship Exhibition Centre - showing thousands of presents given to the founder of the country President Kim Il Sung, his son Chairman Kim Jong Il and his wife Kim Jong Suk. There is now too a section for the Leader Kim Jong Un. See what people and organisations from your country have sent! These buildings actually have no windows and are partly built inside the mountains!
Mount Myohyang in Winter, North Korea
  • Pohyon Temple - ancient Buddhist temple. This used to be one of the centres of buddhism in the region. Chance to meet a local monk.
Pohyon Temple in Mount Myohyang, DPRK (North Korea)

PM

  • Lunch at the Hyangsan Hotel, Mt. Myohyang - one of the most luxurious hotels in North Korea
  • Drive back to Pyongyang
  • Victorious Fatherland Liberation Museum enormous museum holding original vehicles used in the Korean War and explaining the DPRK version of the war. This was restored recently. The theme of the Korean War is very important in DPRK.
  • USS Pueblo - US spyship captured in 1968 by the DPRK
  • Dinner: Local restaurant, Pyongyang

Overnight: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Day 4 - 18 February (Friday)

AM

  • Breakfast: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang
  • Depart to Kaesong (Panmunjom, the DMZ) - this city was not destroyed during the Korean War and we can therefore see some traditional Korean architecture. We will then visit the DMZ, the last area where the consequences of the Cold War are still very alive.
Banner to celebrate the birthday of Kim Jong Il in Kaesong, North Korea. The sides have the flag of the Workers' Party of Korea and of the DPRK. 2.16 is the date of Kim Jong Il's birthday, a major holiday in North Korea

Preparations in Kaesong for 16 February

  • 38th Parallel (DMZ) - chance to enter the famous blue negotiation rooms where talks between North & South Korea have taken place. If these are closed we will have a close-up look.

PM

  • Lunch at Tongil Restaurant (Kaesong) - dishes are served in small covered golden plated bowls, with no less than 12 small dishes per person. The number of dishes served symbolised the rank of the person eating and 12 is the highest ranking of all!
KTG traveller taking a picture of the old part of town of Kaesong, North Korea (DPRK)

KTG Traveller takes a picture of the Old Town of Kaesong

  • Koryo Museum (Kaesong) - the first university in the Korean Peninsula, it dates from the 900s and is located in extremely peaceful surroundings
wedding celebration in the Koryo Museum in Kaesong, North Korea. This museum is a UNESCO world heritage site. Kaesong is located near the border between South Korea and the DPRK

Wedding Celebration in the Koryo Museum, Kaesong

  • Stamp shop - just outside of the Koryo Museum, we usually make a quick stop here. A wide variety of stamps, postcards, artwork, etc can be purchased.
  • Drive to Sariwon City - capital of North Hwanghae Province, this lively city is one of the largest in North Korea.
  • Folk Street & Ancient Model Pavilions - we will see how Koreans lived in ancient times and see some model pavilions showing this. Walking around this street give us the chance to check a local Sul-Jib (alcohol house) and try some delicious Makoli (Korean rice wine with very low levels of alcohol) if available. The walk around here is always interesting. There are usually street games and activities too where we can of course join in!
Walk around the Folk Village in Sariwon, North Korea (DPRK)
  • Walk up Mt. Kyongnam - the walk itself is only 5 to 10 minutes but we will have views of the whole city and of the surrounding region.
  • Drive back to Pyongyang

Overnight: Yanggakdo Hotel, Pyongyang

Day 5 - 17 February (Saturday)

AM

  • Breakfast: Yanggakdo Hotel
  • 10.25 am train to Beijing - if interested in flying back please contact us

PM

  • Stopover at Sinuiju train station bordering China - customs procedures will be carried out on the train

Day 6 - 18 February (Sunday)

Arrive in Beijing at 08:40 am

End of Chairman Kim Jong Il Birthday Tour

Tour Map

You an see the places we are scheduled to visit in the map above. Hover over each place for more information.

Pyongyang is marked with the big red star.

Sinuiju and Dandong are are entry/departure points when taking the train. If you would like to have a tour in either of these cities do please let us know!

Tour Outline

This tour consists of 4 nights / 5 days in the DPRK plus one night on the train (plane exit option is also available). This tour covers highlights and celebrations in Pyongyang on 16 February which is one of the most important dates in the DPRk calendar, the Birthday of Chairman Kim Jong Il, the lively city of Sariwon, the beautiful region of Mt. Myohyang where we visit the famous International Friendship Exhibition Centre and a local temple, the ancient city Kaesong, home to 12 UNESCO World Heritage sites, DMZ which is where North and South Korean soldiers stand meters apart.

Highlights

Moran Park on Liberation Day in Pyongyang, capital city of North Korea (DPRK) with KTG Tours
  • Being in Pyongyang for any celebrations on 16 February, Birthday of Chairman Kim Jong Il!
  • Expected Mass Dances - thousands of students dancing in a synchronised way. Travellers are welcome to join in the fun!
  • The DMZ where the Korean War Armistice was signed and where soldiers from North and South Korea face each other.
  • The ancient city of Kaesong.
  • Mass Games in Pyongyang the capital city of North Korea (DPRK) with KTG Tours
  • Expected firework display on the 16th February
  • Heading to the northern interior of the DPRK and seeing the International Friendship Exhibition Centre where tens of thousands of gifts presented to the leaders of the DPRK are shown in two building built inside a mountain.

Accommodation

We will be staying at one of the best hotels of Pyongyang, the Yanggakdo Hotel. This is classified as a Deluxe Hotel in the DPRK, unlike hotels such as the Chongnyong and Ryanggang Hotels, which are budget hotels. As of 2019 we have been able to use the wifi service in the hotel's casino.

Yanggakdo Hotel lobby, Pyongyang, North Korea

Group Size

KTG Tours group on our National Day tour at the DMZ in North Korea (DPRK)

Based on what we have seen, our group sizes are usually much smaller that of other agencies specialising in DPRK tours. We usually have less than 10 people per group and travellers from all around the world. In the extremely unlikely case of having 19 travellers per group we will divide the group into two separate groups; each group will have their own guides, driver and private vehicle.

Our excellent relationship with our Korean partners and local guides together with the usually small sizes of our groups allow us to arrange on the spot visits to events and places not included in the official program.

Please go to our North Korea tourism page to see more information on other tours that we offer other than our Kim Jong Il Birthday Tour.

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Testimonials

"The whole experience was actually even better than I thought, especially the Mass Games which I can’t even find words to describe." P. Simon - attending the Ocotober 10th Military Parade rehearsal "We had a very enlightening trip and were most impressed with how well organised it all was...and would not have changed anything..."

P. Clarke

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