Panmunjom, located in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, is a popular tourist destination in Korea. It is known as the site of the signing of the armistice agreement that ended the Korean War in 1953. 

A tour of Panmunjom
A tour of Panmunjom

Visitors can see the Joint Security Area (JSA) where North and South Korean soldiers stand face-to-face, and also visit the Freedom House and the Bridge of No Return. Panmunjom offers a unique opportunity to witness the tense and complex relationship between North and South Korea firsthand.

The painful history of Koreans, the Korean War.

The Korean War was a conflict that took place between 1950 and 1953 on the Korean peninsula. The war began on June 25, 1950, when North Korea invaded South Korea. The United States and other United Nations member countries sent troops to support South Korea, while China and the Soviet Union supported North Korea.

The war was fought both on land and at sea, and was characterized by intense fighting and high casualty rates. The war ended with the signing of an armistice agreement in July 1953, but a formal peace treaty was never signed, and technically, the two Koreas are still at war.

The Korean War had a significant impact on the Korean peninsula, and it remains a source of tension and division between North and South Korea. The conflict also had broader implications for the world, as it was seen as a key battle in the broader Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union.

A tour of Panmunjom
A tour of Panmunjom

Procedures for sightseeing at Panmunjom.

To visit Panmunjom in Korea, there are several procedures that need to be followed:

  1. Make a reservation: Visitors must make a reservation with a tour company authorized by the Korean government to visit Panmunjom. Reservations should be made in advance as there is a limit to the number of visitors allowed per day.

  2. Provide personal information: Visitors must provide their personal information including their full name, nationality, and passport number. This information is required for security purposes.

  3. Attend a briefing: Before entering the DMZ, visitors must attend a briefing given by the United Nations Command Security Battalion. During the briefing, visitors will be informed of the rules and regulations for visiting Panmunjom.

  4. Pass through security checkpoints: Visitors will need to pass through several security checkpoints before entering the DMZ. These checkpoints are in place to ensure the safety of visitors and to prevent any unauthorized items from entering the area.

  5. Follow the rules: Once inside the DMZ, visitors must follow strict rules such as not taking photos without permission, not pointing or gesturing towards North Korean soldiers, and not crossing the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) under any circumstances.

It is important to note that Panmunjom is a highly restricted area and visitors must strictly adhere to all the rules and regulations to ensure their safety and the safety of others.

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