CHINA - Tumen in Jilin province has simplified the procedures for tours to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, and applicants can get their passes ready in as little as a day.
With passports and ID cards, tourists can get a one-day pass to the country within 24 hours. For motorists, driver's licenses also are required. Currently, the service is only available via travel agencies for group tourists. Previously, the procedure for getting a pass from China's border cities in Jilin and Liaoning provinces to the DPRK usually took two days. Tourists had to apply for the pass through travel agencies one week in advance.
The first bicycle tour group from China to the DPRK visited on Friday. The three-hour tour went from Tumen to Nanyo in the DPRK.
The group of 35 Chinese travelers visited the railway station of Nanyo and a statue of Kim Il-sung during their bike trip. They tasted local snacks on the commercial street in Nanyo.
Tumen is an important arterial railway line for eastern Jilin province, with trains destined for Jilin city, Changchun, Shenyang and Beijing. Tumen is also the biggest border city in Jilin province. The Tumen River Bridge, administered by China and the DPRK, is at the border of the two countries.