Battlefield You Can See With a Half Dollar
Have you ever thought you may be able to experience the WAR, if you want? Not many people knows it is possible to do somewhere in the world, like KOREA, the country both South and North are still in the war circumstance.
Visitors in Korea can go to see Korean Demilitarized Zone aka DMZ, which is the safest war zone existing in the world. South and North Korea are technically still at war, having agreed on ceasefire since 1953. Therefore this area still has military facilities including 4 infiltration tunnels. Visitors can go inside the 3rd infiltration tunnel made by North Korea during the tour, Gaeseong industrial complex, the symbol of South and North Korea economic cooperation, and Dorasan train station linked to Gaeseong complex as well.
People definitely wonder if it can be safe to visit this area. They don’t need to worry about it at all, of course it is very safe. All you need to do there is to listen to your guide, be careful with a few simple rules, and enjoy your tour. Fresh icy-cold water in the tunnel is waiting for visitors all the time, and North Korean propaganda village in the DMZ can be viewed from Dora-observatory with only a half dollar coin in!
A, C) Hotel – Imjingak Park – Freedom Bridge – The 3rd infiltration Tunnel – DMZ Theater / Exhibition Hall – Dora observatory
– Dorasan Station – Unification Village Pass by – Ginseng Center or Duty Free Shop – Drop off at City Hall
B) A + Lunch
D) Hotel – Half day DMZ tour – Lunch – Insadong Antique Market – Hotel
These days, you can experience many more new things at the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) than before. One of interesting things to me was ‘The 3rd Infiltration Tunnel’. That was a scary thing because it was apparently designed for a surprise attack to Seoul from North Korea. It was just only 44 km from Seoul, when we found out this in 1978.
From the entrance of the tunnel, if you walk down to the tunnel about 10 min, you can see the real tunnel 1.1 miles long, 6.6ft high and 6.6ft wide. Black “coal” was painted all over the walls to claim that it’s part of a coal mine. It was the moment that we felt disappointed at North Koreans’ duplicity. While walking in the tunnel,you would feel nervous and interested at the same time because it is approaching to the MDL and North Korea.
The second interesting place that I experienced newly was ‘Dorasan Station’ that is connected with North Korea by the Gyeongui Line. The inside of the ‘Dorasan Station’ was really huge and neat. If you go straight to the inside, you can see the signboard ‘Tracks to Pyeongyang’. That shows our hope to go to Pyeongyang by rail someday. We call this station ‘not the last station from the South, but the first station toward the North’.
In addition, at the Dorasan observatory, you can see the ‘Gaeseong’ city of North Korea, using a telescope. It’s not far from the South Korea. But, you might feel totally different atmosphere against South Korea, even though we were the same race 60 years ago.
* All the tours Include the guide, transportation, admission fee.
* Child fares: 30% DC under 10 years of age.
* If you cancel or change the tour after 15:00PM the day before of the tour day, We will apply 100% cancellation fee to you.
* Some morning tours will be dropped off at city hall.
* We notice that We have no responsiblity for your personal incidents and losses during all the tours.
* We are stuck in a traffic jam the pick up service will be delayed.
* It is possible to pay all the tour fees by credit card.
* You must carry your passport on tour day.
DMZ Story, the safest battlefield in the world
Demilitarized Zone, only exist in Korea. The world 11th economy by GDP is still on ceasefire. It is not finished yet. They guard against each other on only 8 km distance. But it is the most wanted visit places of foreigners visiting Korea. How irony is that? You don’t have to worry about safety. More than one million people are visiting this place and even US president and Hollywood movie stars are visiting this place as well.
There is a tunnel to be used during the battle. Of the 4 tunnel, closest tunnel from Seoul is 3rd tunnel. It might be very thrilled experience for you. You may see the North Korea by telescope. It is about 40 minutes away from Seoul and you may reach it by public transportation (takes about 2 hours since it is isolated place). Easier way to visit this place is take daily tour to DMZ, organized by city tour agencies. You will have English tour guide explain about this place as well. They close on every Mondays. If you want to join DMZ tour, just search DMZ tour, DMZ Korea, DMZ South Korea or South Korea DMZ tour on Google. You will find travel agency where operates DMZ tour regularly.
Korea was almost destoyed by Korean War in 1950. Korea was the one of poorest countries in the world. However, it became the world 11th economy by GDP. Demilitarized zone was announced to prevent collision between South and North Korea. 8km DMZ area was strictly restricted for about 60 year. By this reason, ironically, it became the perfectly preserved natural site. It has high value in ecology.
Imjingak park located at 50km northwest of Seoul was built for 5million people who lost home. Major facilities include North Hall where you can get a view of lifestyle of North Korea.
Freedom Bridge is located at 2 kilometers north of Munsan, and it is the only path that connects between the south and north around Imjin river. It was originally the Kyung-eu railway bridge, and reconstructed to the road bridge later.
DMZ Exhibition Hall & Theater
The 3rd Infiltration Tunnel
The third tunnel was discovered in October of 1978. 1.95 meters high, 2.1 meters wide and 1,635 meters long, it penetrates 435 meters south of the military demarcation line and ends at the Truce Village of Panmunjeom.
From Dora Observatory, tourists can view the North Korean propaganda village in the DMZ and as far north as the city of Gaeseong.
52 years of anticipation, waiting for the day when the two countries will be united once again. Dorasan station, the northernmost station in South Korea, has planned to connect the Gyongueisun(Line) and it will be linked to the European continent via the Siberian Railway.
Meaning of a border
The border area between South and North Korea is called by DMZ(De-Militarized Zone), CCZ(Civilian Control Zone) or CCA (Civilian Control Area).
The military demarcation line was established according to the Armistice Agreement in 27 July 1953. DMZ is the place formed by the agreement that both parties should retreat 2km from the line.
Total 1,292 signboards of the Military Demarcation Line were established from Imjin riverside to the east coast. 696 signboards have been controlled by the U.N. Forces and the rest are under the control of North Korea and China. Contrary to the Armistice Agreement, both parties have not observed the principle that they should retreat 2km from the line.
Background of DMZ
Korea was liberated from the invasion in Aug.1945 as Japan surrendered and it resulted in the end of World War II. U.S. had started to confront with U.S.S.R about how to manage Japan and Korea after war.
The reason of opposition is that they have different opinion and hold each other in check; U.S dreamed about domination of the world and U.S.S.R had grown up to a powerful country. Also, trusteeship and divided occupying, which U.S planned as the way of resolution for the Korean Peninsula, was one of restraint. The 38th Parallel, which had decided by U.S one-sidely, was agreed by U.S.S.R on 16 Aug.1945. This is the beginning of direct opposition each other.
The Korean Peninsula was divided into two, South and North, which have its own government in 1948 and 6.25 War broke out in 1950. After that, the Armistice Agreement was put the seal in July 1953. The armistice line is the troop disposition line of truce that is installed by the mutual consents among a supreme commander of the U.N., a commander of people’s army of North Korea and a commander of people support army of China. In accordance with Clause 1, Art. 01 of the Korea Armistice Agreement, there should be one military demarcation line and both parties had to retreat 2km from the line. The armistice line is the same as the military demarcation line, which reaches 248km(155mile) to the land and around 200km to the west coast.
DMZ is the place where entrance and exit or development has restricted for the purpose of military for ages. In other words, DMZ is a neutral zone whose gross area is around 30~40km including 4km(2km X 2) of DMZ and the civilian control zone, (5~20km X 2).
DMZ TOUR 1 DMZ(The 3rd Infiltration Tunnel) Tour
Minimum Pax: A, B, D), 1 C) 3
* We pick you up from your hotel one by one.
Cautions during reservation
Please take caution to enter precise hotel(hotel name, phone number) and email information for efiicient pick ups
After having received a reservation, the pick up time will be noticed through e-mail
If you do not receive a reply mail within 3 days please send your brief information (name of travel product, address, phone number, information of companions, etc) to email@example.com
– All the tours Include the guide, transportation, admission fee.
– Child fares: 30% DC under 10years of age.
– If you cancel or change the tour after 15:00PM the day before of the tour day, We will apply 100% cancellation fee to you.
– Some morning tours will be dropped off at city hall.
– We notice that We have no responsiblity for your personal incidents and losses during all the tours.
– We are stuck in a traffic jam the pick up service will be delayed.
– It is possible to pay all the tour fees by credit card.