Intrigued by North Korea? Thinking about a visit? Or maybe you want to know more about life in one of the world’s most unique countries? Then the North Korea Travel app is for you. Combining the most comprehensive guide to North Korea ever written with a unique tour building and price comparison function, this app shows you just how much of North Korea is open to foreigners. (While also warning them of the dangers)
It’s one of the most secretive countries in the world and keeps close tabs on Western tourists, but North Korea has just got its very first travel app promising to let tourists “go behind the Iron Curtain”.
North Korea Travel features peculiar travel destinations such as the ‘World’s Worst Zoo’, Pyongyang Central, which in 2004 contained merely 3 ducks, 1 turkey, some foxes and a drawing of a monkey. Not only that but the travel app features the Ryongmum Caverns, with its genitalia-esque rock formations, and the 105 storey Ryugyong Hotel which began construction in 1987 and is still yet to be finished.
The “100% unofficial” app reflects the current media interest in the totalitarian state and the slightly warmer attitude to foreign tourists visiting the country. Only last month the dictator of the country, Kim Jong-un, announced plans to start work on a state of the art £130 million airport.
The app itself enables users to both plan and then book their own trip to the country, there is even an offline mode which allows for tourist information to be downloaded beforehand so that the lack of Wi-Fi available in North Korea won’t disrupt your visit.
What to See =
What they tell you to see!
What to Eat =
What they tell you to eat!
But is it morally correct to put money into the economy of North Korea, bearing in mind the state’s widespread and horrific human rights record. The same could be argued for many other apparently respectable countries around the world e.g. the United States of America. I believe that this app and increased tourism to the country means the North Korean state will have to open up, making it harder for them to sustain their abhorrent human rights regime and may eventually lead to improvements in the country. But then again maybe I’m just naive…
Let me know what you think in the comments section below. Would you use this app? Is North Korea your travel destination for this summer? Clever marketing ploy? Or is this just insensitive and step too far considering their human rights record?