We have in cooperation with Eastern Vision, worked out a list with 5 good advices when you shall visit one of the worlds most isolated countries. Follow our advices and you will get the best possible experience from your tour.
1) Tell the North Koreans about your day
On our tours to North Korea you will be given many possibilities to talk with the local North Koreans.
The best way to get them to talk to you about there everyday life is by telling them about your own. You can tell them everything! What you study, your favourite sport, talk about politics or about your boy/girlfriend. First and foremost it will encourage them to also talk about them self and they will get confident with you, but further more, these conversations will help the North Koreans better understand the outside world, and it will help us better understand North Korea.
When the North Koreans feel that you are friendly towards them, they will also be friendly toward you and tell you about their personal experiences, about everything from their military services to their first time crossing the border to China.
2) Smile and say hello more than you usually do
As the North Koreans often are very paranoid about foreigner, they would almost always avoid direct eye contact, and will instead look away when they discover you are not local. This doesn't mean they are not friendly - they are just really shy by nature. When you say hello or smile, will you see an both surprised and smiling Korean. So be proactive and friendly.
3) Do not take pictures all the time
We know it is an rare opportunity when you visit North Korea. You will especially have this feeling when you finally stand in the North Korean country. The feelings keeps growing and you want to immortalise every single moment of your trip. But - if you uses to much time adjusting the camera settings and focus through your lens, you will loose the golden moments for actually observing every single corner and detail of the country. Details as the soviet-inspired buildings and the energized North Koran children running on the streets. Those are details, which you can not capture on a picture but also details which you can not miss.
4) Learn basic korean words
It is very simple: There is no better way to brake the ice with North Koreans than actually being able to talk with them. Simple Korean sentences as "Ann yong ha sim ni kga [hello!]" and "Gam sa ham nida [Thank you]” is simple to learn, but incredible effective and helpful. But be prepared: If you have an South Korean accents the locals will not hesitate to first tease and then correct you.
5) Act like you never heard about North Korea before
Many of our participants which visit North Korea has been prejudiced. Everything they saw was "a lie" or "fake". The food in the supermarket? Fake! The sun panels on the streets? Fake! Children playing in the streets? Fake!
Admitted, there are certain rumors that North Korea should have prepared show and fake news, but that doesn't necessarily mean that every little single detail of the country is a lie. A big part of the city picture is just regular everyday scenes for the regular korean. So, throw away your prejudices and be prepared on new impression and improved insight - maybe this will help you understand the country from a whole new angle.
That was our 5 good advices when traveling to North Korea. If you have your own advice when traveling, we would be glad to hear from if you feel ready to travel to North Korea then register for on of our coming tours.