North Korea Guide

North Korea Guide

North Korea – country information

Country name North Korea
Official name Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Capital Pyongyang
Continent Asia
Area 120,538 km2
Population 24,895,000 (2013)
Foundation of a state 8/15/1945
The highest mountains Pektusan 2744 m
Longest rivers Amnokgang (Jalu) 790 km
State system a republic with a one-party system of government
The biggest cities Pyongyang (capital) 3,250,000, Hamhung 950,000, Chongjin 875,000
Official language Korean
Ethnicity/National Composition Korean 99.8%, Chinese 0.2%
Religious affiliation atheists 70%, Chondogyo 15%, traditional faith 13%, Buddhists 1.5%, Christians 0.5%
Currency 1 won (W) = 100 won
Average life expectancy of the population 71.65 years (2006)
Structure of GDP agriculture and fishing 32%, mining and industry 30%, construction 8%, services 30%

North Korea – Neighboring States

State Capital Area Population
China Peking 9,640,820 km2 1,363,350,000
South Korea Seoul 99,538 km2 50,219,669
Russia Moscow 17,098,200 km2 143,700,000

Country overview

According to Abbreviationfinder, communist North Korea occupies the northern half of the Korean Peninsula in northeastern Asia. More than a third of the nation, which was divided after World War II, lives here.

Country data

Location: Osatasia

Time zone: CET + 7.5 (during summer time: CET + 6.5)

Total area: 120,538 km²

Land area: 120,408 km²

Water area: 130 km²

Length of the state border: 1,672 km

Bordering countries:
China: 1,416 km
Russian Federation: 18 km
South Korea: 238 km

Coastline: 2,495 km

Capital: Pyongyang

Provinces: 11
Chagang-do, Hamgyong-bukto, Hamgyong-namdo, Hwanghae-bukto, Hwanghae-namdo, Kangwon-do, Nason-si, P’yongan-bukto, P’yongan-namdo, P’yongyang-si, Yanggang -do

Electric current: 110, 220 V / 60 Hz

Telephone code: 00 850 (Source: Allcitycodes)

Highest point: Paektu 2,744 m


Population: approx. 25 million residents (Countryaah, 2021)

Population growth: 0.5% per year

Population density (residents per km²): 207

Life expectancy: 66 (male), 74 (female)

Official language: Korean

Religions: Buddhists, Christians, others


The climate in North Korea is almost the same as in Central Europe.

The summer months are warm and humid. Most of the rain falls at this time of year, with temperatures around 25 ° C.

North Korea

In winter it is dry and there is occasional snow at temperatures down to -10 ° C.

Currency / finance

Currency unit: Won (KPW)

Division: 1 won = 100 chon

ATMs: are not available.

International credit cards: Very rarely accepted in some tourist hotels.

Regulations: Foreign currencies can be imported and exported in unlimited amounts. There is an obligation to declare.

The import and export of the local currency is prohibited.

All purchase receipts should be retained until departure.

Customs regulations

The following may be carried duty-free:

  • 200 cigarettes or 250 g tobacco
  • 1 liter of alcoholic beverages

(Information applies to people aged 18 and over)

Tourists and people in transit can bring items of personal use with them duty-free.

Since there are seldom goods to buy, you should bring all the items you need with you when you arrive.

Expensive electrical appliances (laptops, cameras, TV sets, etc.) must be declared upon entry.

Travel advice

All tourists are constantly accompanied by an interpreter or control person.

Spontaneous individual excursions are not possible.

The population is prohibited from uncontrolled contact with local residents under threat of punishment.

Power and water failures and deficiencies in the supply of goods must always be expected.


North Korea’s tightly centralized planned economy is geared towards self-sufficiency. All major major industries are in state hands and are controlled by the country’s leadership elite.

Although a large part of the population works in agriculture, the yields are not sufficient for self-sufficiency.

Due to the abundant natural resources, a strong industry in the mining and processing area could develop.

Industries: mining, chemistry, power generation, food production, mechanical engineering, metal processing, military industry, textiles

Natural resources: lead, iron ore, gold, graphite, coal, copper, magnesium, molybdenum, salt, hydropower, tungsten, zinc

Land use:

  • Land: 14%
  • Grain cultivation: 2%
  • Pasture area: 0%
  • Forests: 61%
  • other: 23%
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