North Korea, formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, is often referred to in the mass media as “The Hermit Kingdom.” There is much justification for that designation.
It came as a surprise to me that you can actually obtain a tourist visa for North Korea. I first read an article in 2007 about how there are a few Canadians who visit each year on a tourist visa.
That is unlike Saudi Arabia, for instance. From visahq.com, “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not issue tourist visas.” There is the irony that you can get a tourist visa to visit an “Axis of Evil” country, as branded by the George W. Bush administration, yet can’t get one to visit a designated ally.
The travel advisories issued by the Canadian government, which has among the best relations with most nations of the world, North Korea has the second-lowest travel risk, with 22 countries having a higher level of risk.
The countries with an “avoid all essential travel” advisory are: Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, East Timor, Eritrea, Iran, Lebanon, Liberia, Madagascar, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, and Pakistan.
The countries with an “avoid all travel” advisory are: Afghanistan, Chad, Guinea, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.