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The DMZ and JSA

Korea
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DMZ Hongcheon  South Korea
The DMZ and JSA Hongcheon  South Korea
DMZ Hongcheon  South Korea
The DMZ and JSA Hongcheon  South Korea

DMZ

Since 1953, the Korean peninsula has been split by a strip of land about four kilometers (2.5 miles) wide, stretching from sea to sea: the Demilitarized Zone, or DMZ, where North and South Korea stare at each other. Since no one ventures into the DMZ, it has become a home for endangered wildlife, a little spot of wilderness stuck between powers. The North has tried digging a few tunnels under it, but that hasn’t worked. Tours here take in one of the failed tunnels; some also go to the room where the cease-fire was signed, which means you can cross about three meters (10 feet) into North Korean territory.

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AFAR Local Expert
over 2 years ago

The DMZ and JSA

Since North and South Korea never signed a peace treaty, they’re technically still at war. The Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), a roughly 2.5-mile buffer between the two countries, lies just 35 miles north of Seoul and is a must-see for visitors. Opt for a tour that also goes to the Joint Security Area (JSA), located on the United Nations command post where North and South Korea signed their armistice agreement. From there, you can gaze across the border and witness the guards on both sides staring one another down, or take a step into North Korea from within the blue conference building that straddles the two countries. Cosmojin and Panmunjom tours include a fascinating Q&A session with a North Korean defector on the bus ride to the border. Note: For security reasons, U.S. citizens must book a minimum of four days in advance.