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Pyongyang Randonnee

North Korea

Serk Cycling Beijing

Dates

Tentative date
Aug 27 - Sept 7th 2021

distance

11 days
7 riding days
300km North Korea
697km Beijing
10000m+ climbing

price

EUR 5500

Dates

Tentative date
Aug 27 - Sept 7th 2021

distance

11 days
7 riding days
300km North Korea
697km Beijing
10000m+ climbing

price

EUR 5500

For the first time ever, Koryo Tours and Serk Cycling have negotiated access for a group of foreign cyclists to ride through North Korea.

For the inaugural Pyongyang Randonnée in 2021, we will ride south from Pyongyang to Kaesong (near the border with South Korea), cycle around the iconic May Day stadium in the heart of the city, test our legs on Dragon Mountain outside the capital, and then charter a plane to fly to the remote mountain roads of the fabled Mt Paektu in the far north - the sacred birthplace of the Korean people.

To enter North Korea it is necessary to fly through our home city of Beijing. Beijing is home to some some of Asia's best unfound cycling so we've curated a special 4 day Beijing experience to blow your socks off and boost the total km for the ride.

For the first time ever, Koryo Tours and Serk Cycling have negotiated access for a group of foreign cyclists to ride through North Korea.

For the inaugural Pyongyang Randonnée in 2021, we will ride south from Pyongyang to Kaesong (near the border with South Korea), cycle around the iconic May Day stadium in the heart of the city, test our legs on Dragon Mountain outside the capital, and then charter a plane to fly to the remote mountain roads of the fabled Mt Paektu in the far north - the sacred birthplace of the Korean people.

To enter North Korea it is necessary to fly through our home city of Beijing. Beijing is home to some some of Asia's best unfound cycling so we've curated a special 4 day Beijing experience to blow your socks off and boost the total km for the ride.

 

Be the first to ride this secluded nation on your road bike.

Be the first to ride this secluded nation on your road bike.

Day 1.

Beijing

Arrive in Beijing before 5pm for briefing and welcome dinner. The first few days of the trip will be spent exploring the wonderful mountains around Beijing before we hit the roads of North Korea. Beijing - amazing new roads, long climbs, the Great Wall and top class coffee. Welcome to one of the world's best unfound cycling destinations.

0km

0m

Day 2.

Baihe Valley

Today's route takes in some of the most beautiful geography Beijing has to offer. We'll ride up through the spectacular Baihe Valley, known among local Beijing riders as the "100km natural art gallery" for its incredible views. We'll follow a perfect, smooth and virtually car less road that snakes its way up the white cliffs lining the valley, before finishing off in Huairou for a well earned feast at one of Beijing's best loved eateries, specialising in Sichuan food.

120km

2580m

Explore 4 days of unexpected cycling in Beijing before landing in North Korea

Explore 4 days of unexpected cycling in Beijing before landing in North Korea

Day 3.

The Great Wall

Recognised as one of the most impressive architectural feats in history the Great Wall snakes its way up and down the steep mountain ridges outside Beijing. Our iconic route today takes in a few of the passes that were major gateways into Beijing during the heyday of the Great Wall. Some tough climbs and glorious descents on perfect tarmac. The highlight coming on the final 15km descent as we through an un-restored section of the Wall to conclude the ride. After a coffee break at the stylish bike hotel its time for a hike on the Wall to snap a few selfies.

190km

3200m

Day 4.

The Beijing Stelvio

107km of pure road cycling bliss. We guarantee you'll be hard pressed to find a better loop anywhere in the world. Perfectly banked descents, iconic switchbacks and picturesque views of the Great Wall will leave you impressed with the variety of cycling on offer in Beijing. Set in the Western hills this area has yielded many archaelogical discoveries including one of the first specimens of Home erectus, dubbed Peking Man who was thought to have lived 700,000 - 200,000 years ago.

Highlight of the day is multi-switchback Hongjin Lu which is nicknamed the Beijing Stelvio thanks to its impressive number of switchbacks which mimic the iconic climb in the Alps.

We'll have you back to downtown Beijing by late afternoon for a session of bar hopping between Beijing's best craft breweries. Cheers!

140km

2500m

The Beijing Stelvio

The Beijing Stelvio

Day 5.

Beijing - Pyongyang

Time for a quick early morning ride to check out the underbelly of the city before packing up and flying to Pyongyang in North Korea. Tonight we stay in the iconic Yanggakdo Hotel in central Pyongyang.

60km

0m

Day 6.

Pyongyang - Kaesong

Sightseeing around the capital in the morning.

In the afternoon we will ride South on the eerily deserted highway to Kaesong.

This section starts at Monument to the Three Charters for National Reunification on the edge of Pyongyang, and ends at the historic city of Kaesong, just 10km from the border with South Korea. It follows the Reunification Highway south, past the city of Sariwon and numerous smaller towns and villages which are completely closed to foreigners.  Closer to the border, there are check points and eventually arrives in Kaesong.

130-155km

850m

The DPRK is one of the few destinations left in the world that hasn't been visited by intrepid cyclists (or anyone by the look of this desolate highway)

The DPRK is one of the few destinations left in the world that hasn't been visited by intrepid cyclists (or anyone by the look of this desolate highway)

Day 7.

DMZ + Kaesong

Today we visit perhaps the most famous place in the entire country - the DMZ. It is the border to North and South Korea often referred to as ‘the world’s most dangerous border’ - but is today the centre of North-South reconciliation. A tour here starts with a briefing at the edge of the DMZ, a visit to the Armistice Negotiation Hall and Armistice Signing Hall, seen as symbols of victory over foreign aggression on this side of the line. Then to Panmunjom itself – cross the border inside one of the blue huts, experience the uncanny feeling of crossing the front line of a sad and needless division of one society, and then take a higher view from the Panmun Pavilion looking over the line from above. A Korean People’s Army officer will be there to explain their side of things and will willingly pose for some photos too. A completely and utterly unmissable place.

In the afternoon we will travel back to Pyongyang via a coach.

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0m

Day 8.

Pyongyang time trial + hill Climb

Today we offer a short time trial and hill climb within the Pyongyang city limits. Movement around the capital is restricted for foreign guests so we've designed these two fun challenges to best take advantage of the rideable areas and hopefully fill otherwise empty Strava KOM leaderboards.

Time Trial - 9km

This is an individual closed road time trial on Rungna Islet in the centre of Pyongyang.  The route loops around the iconic 150000 seater May Day Stadium, where the world-famous Mass Games are held each year.

Hill Climb - 3km

Ryonggak-san (Dragon Mountain) is a hill on the outskirts of Pyongyang, with several challenging sections.  Towards the top the switchbacks increase and the gradient kicks up, particularly on the bends.  This is a chance for the mountain goats to shine!

12km

240m

 

Queen stage -  climbing up to the slopes of the volcano Mount Paektu, the sacred birthplace of the Korean people and the highest point in Korea.

 

Queen stage -  climbing up to the slopes of the volcano Mount Paektu, the sacred birthplace of the Korean people and the highest point in Korea.

Day 9.

Mount Paektu

This, the Queen Stage, will make a glorious end to the trip in a place of enormous significance to all Koreans.  We will charter a plane to fly up to the remote north of the country from Pyongyang.

Starting from the secret guerrilla camp near Jong Il Peak, the group will travel through the woods to Samjiyon, then begin the climb up to the slopes of the volcano Mount Paektu, the sacred birthplace of the Korean people and the highest point in Korea (elevation 2750m) with views over the caldera lake to China.  These never-before-ridden roads will provide a fitting finale for our trip.

130 km

1400 m

Day 10.

Paektusan - Pyongyang

Today we visit tourist areas around the mountain before an afternoon charter flight back to Pyongyang for final night celebrations.

0 km

0 m

Time to say bye to North Korea and marvel again at the unrivalled experience you gain in exploring new frontiers by bicycle.

 

Time to say bye to North Korea and marvel again at the unrivalled experience you gain in exploring new frontiers by bicycle.

Day 11.

Return to Beijing

Time to say good-bye to North Korea and marvel again at the masterly ability of the bicycle to explore new frontiers.

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The final itinerary and exact details are still being worked upon with our partners and are subject to change.

Image Credits - Tom Skipp and Koryo Studio

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