This day trip from Seoul takes you by comfortable coach to the Joint Security Area (JSA), located near the infamous border that divides the Korean peninsula into North and South. Known in Korea as Panmunjom, this negotiating site holds historical significance as it represents the political tension existing between the two countries since the Korean War. With an expert guide you'll visit Unification Park before lunch, followed by a comprehensive tour of the JSA, including the Freedom House and the Bridge of No Return.
Meet your guide at a central location in the'President'Hotel and hop on your comfortable coach for the journey to the JSA.
When your coach reaches the entrance to Munsan City, take a 30-minute tour of Unification Park. The park showcases numerous historical monuments commemorating the war heroes of the Korean War, including the War Correspondents Monument and the Human Bomb Heroes Monument in honor of a heroic act made by 10 South Korean soldiers.
Continue on to the Panmunjom portion of your tour. Centered in the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), this former 'truce village' was the site of the 1953 Korean Armistice Agreement, which split the peninsula in two at the end of the Korean War. First established as the site of military negotiations between North Korea and the United Nations Command (UNC), the JSA is now the only place where it is possible for the two Koreas to engage in diplomatic dialogue face to face.
Depart for the UN camp, passing the Unification Bridge and a series of checkpoints en route. When you arrive at the Joint Security Area, disembark and follow your guide to the briefing room for an orientation ' including a slideshow and more historical facts on the JSA's significance ' before touring the site.
Visit the Freedom House, a four-story facility where South and the North liaisons meet, and head to the MAC conference room to learn about various forms of inter-Korean dialogue, contracts and exchanges.
Located at the west end of the JSA is the Bridge of No Return. First used for POW exchanges in 1953, it's named for the irreversible decision of whether to remain in the country of captivity or return to one's place of origin. The bridge was the only pathway connecting North and South before the tragic Ax Murder Incident of 1976. Photograph the bridge as you hear stories from your guide about the infamous killing of two US Army officers by North Korean soldiers.
Afterward, join your guide at a Korean restaurant in Limjin Gan Park for a bulgogi (beef) lunch before making the trip back to Seoul. (A vegetarian option is also available for lunch.) Enjoy convenient drop-off back at the President'Hotel in the evening (arrival time subject to traffic conditions).
Please note: Visit the Important Information tab to read about dress code, passport requirements and other pertinent guidelines.