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The DPRK Weekender - Shanghai Departure

3 nights, 3 full days in DPRK

The DPRK Weekender - Shanghai Departure

Shanghai → Pyongyang → Kaesong/DMZ → Shanghai



It’s time to take a long weekend and join us in Pyongyang for this classic 3-night Thursday to Sunday tour. Depart Shanghai on late Thursday evening on Air Koryo, an experience in itself, and head to the historic Koryo Hotel to check in. The following day, visit all of the iconic DPRK monuments like the Tower of Juche Idea, a massive 150-meter concrete structure, take a ride on the Pyongyang metro, the deepest in the world, and see the newly renovated Fatherland Liberation War Museum alongside the USS Pueblo. On our last day in the DPRK, we’ll visit the DMZ and see the living division between North and South Korea. Return to Shanghai on Sunday evening, just in time to make it to work on Monday!

*NOW running every Friday to Sunday from April to the end of October at group rates. Click “Choose your own dates” at checkout and let us know which Friday to Sunday you want in the notes section.

Early booking highly recommended as seats on flight are limited and not guaranteed.


THURSDAY NIGHT: Depart for Pyongyang

Meet us at 10:00pm: Head to the Air Koryo counter at the Pudong International Airport to check in for 12:30am Friday departure to Pyongyang. Approximate arrival into Pyongyang is at 3:00am. Our local tour guides greet you at the airport. We’ll check in at the Koryo Hotel (where you’ll be staying during the trip).
(Meals: Dinner on flight)

Day 1: Kaesong / DMZ

DMZ from North Korea sideAM: Start the day with a drive through the countryside to the city of Kaesong. Then we start our adventure to the De-Militarized Zone of Korea where we’ll hear from our guides a perspective of the Korean War that often gets discredited or unheard. At the DMZ, we will explore Panmunjom, shake hands at the exact place that the Armistice Agreement was signed between UN forces and the DPRK, and wave hello to the South at the blue houses.

PM: Enjoy Pansanggi, the traditional Kaesong cuisine for lunch. Learn about the Koryo Dynasty (where the name Korea originates) at the Koryo History Museum. Pick up some of the best postcards in the country at the Koryo Stamp Shop. We’ll stop at the Sonjuk Bridge, the original site where an important Koryo Dynasty figure was assassinated (now an UNESCO site) and the Tomb of King Wanggon, the mausoleum of the founder of the Koryo Dynasty. Then head back to Pyongyang, where we will stop at the Arch of Reunification. After dinner, enjoy some DPRK craft beer at the Taedonggang Microbrewery. Overnight is at the Koryo Hotel.
(Meals: B, L, D)

Day 2: Pyongyang City Tour

Grand People's Study House North Korea DPRKAM: Start the morning with a walk in the Kim Il Sung Square, the 3rd largest public square in the world and home to many of the North Korean military parades broadcasted internationally during large holiday events. Stop in at the Foreign Languages Bookshop to pick up your favorite DPRK trinkets and publications. Afterwards, check out the water features in the serene Mansudae Fountain Park, a popular backdrop for locals to have their wedding photos. Get a dose of history (from a different perspective) at the newly renovated Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum and the USS Pueblo in its new spot (the “American Spy Ship” captured in 1968). Stop at the Mansudae Art Studio, the most prestigious fine arts studio in the country (we recommend the ink block paintings here).

PM: After lunch, you’ll then have a chance to pick up further souvenirs at the Korea Stamp Museum. Discover the DPRK’s latest technological advances at the newly developed atom-shaped Sci-Tech Complex. Afterwards, visit the Jangchon Cooperative Farm, a newly upgraded collective farming complex providing Pyongyang with fresh vegetable produce. Catch the Pyongyang Metro during rush hour to get a glimpse of daily life in Pyongyang. We’ll stop for some pictures at the Arch of Triumph. Then, join the locals for some thrilling rides at the Kaeson Amusement Park and then show off your skills at Golden Lanes Bowling Alley. After dinner, we will take an evening walk down the brand new Ryomyong Street that was opened to international media attention in April 2017. Overnight at the Koryo Hotel.
(Meals: B, L, D)

Pyongyang North Korea traffic police lady

Day 3: Pyongyang Life

AM: We will begin the day at the Party Foundation Monument, an iconic monument commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Worker’s Party of Korea. Afterwards, we will visit the Tower of Juche Idea to learn about the Juche philosophy that serves as the national ideology. For those who wish to take the lift up 150-meters to the top, you’ll have an opportunity to take in a panorama view of the entire Pyongyang city. After lunch, visit the Mangyongdae Native House, the birthplace of President Kim Il Sung. We will then get to see a performance of either the Pyongyang Circus or Theatre. Go shopping, North Korean style, in the Kwangbok Supermarket, a five-story department store and the only place tourists are permitted to exchange and use local currency. Afterwards, test your accuracy at the Meari Shooting Range. We will then enjoy a delicious Korean Duck BBQ dinner.

Grab your luggage and head to the airport for an evening flight back to Shanghai. Approximate time of departure is 10:30pm from Pyongyang with arrival at Pudong at 11:30pm.
(Meals: B, L, D)


This itinerary is subject to change at any time.


  • DPRK visa fees and handling
  • Round trip ticket from Shanghai (Pudong Airport) to Pyongyang on Air Koryo
  • 3 nights’ DPRK hotel accommodations
  • Meals as indicated
  • Coach transportation in DPRK
  • Local DPRK guides
  • One local driver
  • Admission fees

Not included

  • Round-trip airfare to China from home country
  • Shanghai hotel accommodations
  • Chinese visa fees and processing, if applicable
  • Travel insurance and medical evacuation insurance (required)
  • Personal expenses (laundry, telephone, etc.)
  • Souvenirs
  • Extra drinks during meals (one complimentary beer included)
  • Tips for guides and drivers (please budget $10 per day per traveler)

Entrance Fees for Optional Events

Priced in Euros but USD and RMB accepted

  • Meari Shooting Range: rifle and per bullet fees apply
  • Amusement park entrance and rides, approximately 1-3 Euros each
  • Elevator to the top of the Juche Tower, 5 euros

For more information on the booking process, see How to Travel To North Korea
See Terms and Conditions.