The creation of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) in 1948 made the 38th parallel the de facto international border and one of the most tense fronts in the Cold War. The DMZ, which is a de facto barrier border running in the vicinity of the 38th parallel, divides the Korean Peninsula roughly in half — the South and North Korea. The DMZ is a land strip running across the Korean Peninsula that serves as a buffer zone between South and North Korea.

The only place where it is possible to take a few steps into an opposite side of the conference rooms T1-T3, also known as blue tent-like one-story buildings, is at the demarcation line. For example, if one needs to transfer from Russia or China to a third country, they have to travel between the two Koreas. However, there is no direct way to travel from South Korea to North Korea or vice versa. This means that nobody can cross the border between South and North Korea, indicating that the border is closed.

The land strip separating the two heavily armed Koreas is the most heavily armed in the world, with troops stationed on both sides of the 4-kilometer strip (except in the Joint Security Area). Although there are no troops in the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) itself, the two sides have never officially agreed to peace, but rather signed a truce in 1953 that ended hostilities but not the war, which has lasted for over sixty years. The DMZ is approximately 250 kilometers (160 miles) long and 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) wide.

How to reach the Demilitarized Zone

After the Cheonan incident, there are times when access to the DMZ is restricted without much warning due to increased tensions, with the most recent occurrence being in May 2010. Nearly all group tours include the DMZ as a half-day excursion. Take a break at the Sohung Tea House, which is located halfway to the DMZ and offers tea, ginseng, beer, and local snacks. It takes approximately three hours to drive from Pyongyang to reach the DMZ, which is situated 160km southeast of Pyongyang along the Pyongyang-Kaesong Motorway, near the border with South Korea.

Borderline of Military Demarcation (BMD)

The actual border between South Korea and North Korea is the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), which extends into a buffer zone of km 2.


The Peace Museum is the location where the Armstice Agreement was signed and the meeting hall where Armstice Talks took place. The Armstice Talks between the DPR Korea and the USA occurred in 1953 at Panmunjom, an abandoned village situated on the de facto border separating North and South Korea. This village, originally positioned between Kaesong and Seoul, is situated 53 kilometers north-northwest of Seoul and 8 kilometers east of Kaesong.

Since its establishment, all encounters between North Korea and the United Nations Command or South Korea have occurred at this location. The building process commenced in September 1953, and the Panmunjom (JSA). was built on a fresh site situated roughly one kilometer to the east of the village subsequent to the signing of the Armistice Agreement.

Presently, there is no proof of it. Ultimately, the deserted town of Panmunjom vanished from the scenery following the conflict, when all non-military individuals were evacuated from the DMZ (except for two settlements adjacent to the JSA on opposing ends of the Military Demarcation Line).

Panmunjom (JSA).

South usually only visited from the north. Instead, a new bridge is used to cross to the north, and the bridge is now closed. In August 1976, an attempt to cut down a poplar tree led to a battle with North Korean forces, which resulted in the death of Lt. Mark Barrett and Capt. Arthur Bonifas. On each side of the demarcation, soldiers are not allowed to cross into each other’s territory, and most of the time, they glare at each other across the border. This incident later became known as the Murder Axe Incident. The Joint Security Area (JSA) is an almost circular patch of land with a diameter of 800 meters, where the two sides occasionally meet for discussions and is jointly policed by North Korea.

The ROK’s 98m tall flagpole, situated in Taesong-dong village, was constructed by North Korea to outshine its own mast. The DPRK’s flagpole, located in Kijong-dong village, stands at a height of 160m and showcases a 270kg flag measuring 30m x 60m, making it the third tallest flagpole globally. It was previously the tallest, but it has been surpassed by two former Soviet republics – Tajikistan with a height of 165m and Azerbaijan with a height of 162m. As you travel along the road to the Joint Security Area (JSA), you will come across two massive flag towers – one in the DPRK and the other in the ROK.

Main Meeting Room T1 – T3 / Azure Residences

Please refrain from attempting to depart through the alternative exit. I strongly advise against any such attempts. Feel free to explore the conference room and move freely between the South and North sections if you desire. Soldiers are positioned at both ends of the structure to ensure the safety of visitors when they are escorted into the building. The microphone cable that runs along the center of the table is officially recognized as the international boundary, and the conference table, adorned with green velvet, is positioned directly over this dividing line. A trip to the blue, one-story tent-like structure, where officials from both Koreas occasionally convene, is one of the main highlights in Panmunjom.

Concrete Wall.

It was built by US forces from 1976 to 1979 along the entire DMZ. The establishments consist of various military structures such as lookouts, gun emplacements, and wire entanglements. The upper part is 10-23 ft wide and the bottom part is 10-23 ft thick.

To the east of Nam Gate in Kaesong, there is a great vantage point to admire this impressive wall.

Key Points of Interest

  • The Armstice Talks, which took place in 1953, are widely known as the location where the Korean War was held – the village of Panmunjom, between the USA and North Korea.
  • Panmungak – palace situated in front of the demarcation line.
  • The Autograph Monument is a monument dedicated to President Sung Il Kim, who examined the document related to national reunification and signed it prior to his passing.
  • Concrete Wall.– 8m high concrete wall, the Wall of Division, built from 1976 to 1979 by US forces along neary all the DMZ
  • Do not attempt to depart through the alternate exit! Simply jump from the Southern side to the Northern side if you desire and circumnavigate the conference room. Deliberately menacing stances serve as protection within and surrounding the chambers, consisting of soldiers from both South and North Korea. The precise location of the demarcation line is indicated by the low concrete barrier and, outside, the orderly array of microphones. These are the meeting rooms that span across the border: T1 through T3 blue dwellings.
  • Typically, it is only visited by people from the southern region.
  • The hatchet, known for its association with the Axe Murder Incident, is also housed in this location. The authentic records are stored here. The Peace Museum is situated in the building where the armistice agreement was signed.
  • Kijong-dong, a former village adorned with luxurious apartment buildings and a 160-meter flagpole recognized in the Guinness Book of World Records as the tallest in the world, can be easily spotted from the JSA; however, access to the village is strictly prohibited.
  • Operations gradually resume and issues are resolved on both sides through small yet positive steps since October 2013. South Korea withdrew its citizens working in Kaesong, threatening to shut down the venture. In April 2013, North Korea effectively suspended all of its operations in the complex, recalling all 53,000 North Korean workers. This special administrative industrial region, which was operated by over 100 different South Korean companies, had over 50,000 North Korean workers typically working in dozens of newly established factories, earning approximately 20% of the South Korean minimum wage. The Industrial Kaesong Complex, increasingly known as a special economic zone, was developed by Hyundai in collaboration with North Korea’s Asan.
  • Near the Demilitarized Zone

  • The renowned Ryongthong Temple is situated at Mt. Ogwan in the Valley of Ryongthong, serving as a sacred site for the Korean Chonthae Sect of Buddhism.
  • Kaesong, a small city located only 8 km from the DMZ, was the former capital of the Koryo Dynasty (918-1392 CE), and it was the only major city that changed hands as a result of the Korean War between South and North Korea.
  • Sariwon is one of the most densely populated cities in DPR Korea, with a population well above 300,000. It serves as the southern gateway to Pyongyang and is the capital of Hwanghae North Province. Sariwon is situated halfway between Motorway-Kaesong and Pyongyang-way, making it an ideal resort city.
  • The information from wikipedia.Org and visitkorea.Or.Kr were utilized on this webpage.