Red Corner: North Korea Travel Opens Up

We’ve lamented a couple of times on previous posts about the near impossibility of getting into North Korea. Well, it looks like the regime is finally cracking open the door a little bit. The government has announced that they are allowing a small number of Americans to travel to the Hermit Kingdom in celebration of the country’s Mass Games – a wild celebration of all things communist that features 100,000 performers genuflecting in an enormous stadium.

The tour will be tightly chaperoned. Visitors can expect their activities to be monitored and their every step accompanied by tour guides. They will not have the opportunity to wander off and hang with the locals or venture out on their own. Even cell phones might be confiscated. Oh, and they can expect to present flowers and perhaps even bow in front of Pyongyang’s massive Kim Il Sung statue.

Prices are not cheap. If you’re lucky enough to get one of the few hundred visas available, expect to pay more than $3,400 for the privilege, airfare not included. There are only a couple of American travel agencies who have access to the visas, such as Universal Travel System and Geographic Expeditions.

According to Geographic Expeditions, this is only the second time in 50 years Americans have been allowed into the country (and before that, we had to invade). So, if you’re interested, act now; you may never have the chance again.