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Pyongyang is the capital of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, commonly known as North Korea
North Korea
The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea , , is a country in East Asia, occupying the northern half of the Korean Peninsula. Its capital and largest city is Pyongyang. The Korean Demilitarized Zone serves as the buffer zone between North Korea and South Korea...

, and the largest city in the country. Pyongyang is located on the Taedong River
Taedong River
The Taedong River is a large river in North Korea. It rises in the Rangrim Mountains of the country's north. It then flows southwest into Korea Bay at Namp'o. In between, it runs through the country's capital, Pyongyang. Along the river are landmarks such as the Juche Tower and Kim Il-sung...

 and, according to preliminary results from the 2008 population census, has a population of 3,255,388. The city was split from the South P'yŏngan province in 1946. It is administered as a directly governed city
Special cities of Korea
In both North and South Korea, a special city, a metropolitan city, or a directly governed city is a city that has a status equivalent to that of a province...

 (chikhalsi), on the same level as provincial governments, not a special city (teukbyeolsi) as Seoul
Seoul
Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

 is in South Korea
South Korea
The Republic of Korea , , is a sovereign state in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, North Korea to the north, and the East China Sea and Republic of China to the south...

.

Historic names


One of Pyongyang's many historic names is Ryugyŏng (류경; 柳京), or "capital of willows", as willow trees
Willow
Willows, sallows, and osiers form the genus Salix, around 400 species of deciduous trees and shrubs, found primarily on moist soils in cold and temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere...

 have always been numerous throughout the city's history, and many poems have been written about these willows. Even today, the city has numerous willow trees, with many buildings and places having "Ryugyŏng" in their names. The most notable of these is the uncompleted Ryugyŏng Hotel
Ryugyong Hotel
The Ryugyong Hotel is a 105-story skyscraper under construction in Pyongyang, North Korea. Its name is also one of the historic names for Pyongyang. The building is also known as the 105 Building, a reference to its number of floors...

. The city's other historic names include Kisŏng, Hwangsŏng, Rakrang, Sŏgyŏng, Sŏdo, Hogyŏng, and Changan.
During the colonial period (1910–1945), Pyongyang was named Heijo.

Prehistory


In 1955, archaeologists excavated evidence of prehistoric occupation in a large ancient village called Kŭmtan-ni, in the Pyongyang area, from the Chŭlmun
Jeulmun pottery period
The Jeulmun Pottery Period is an archaeological era in Korean prehistory that dates to approximately 8000-1500 BC.. It is named after the decorated pottery vessels that form a large part of the pottery assemblage consistently over the above period, especially 4000-2000 BC. Jeulmun means...

 and Mumun pottery period
Mumun pottery period
The Mumun pottery period is an archaeological era in Korean prehistory that dates to approximately 1500-300 BC This period is named after the Korean name for undecorated or plain cooking and storage vessels that form a large part of the pottery assemblage over the entire length of the period, but...

s. North Koreans associate Pyongyang with "Asadal
Asadal
In Korean mythology and history, Asadal was the capital city of Gojoseon. It is thought that Asadal was located in Manchuria, Hwanghae, or Pyongyang. The first Korean historical work to mention it is the Samguk Yusa, which cites the Chinese Book of Wei. The Samguk Yusa also cites the Go Gi to the...

" (아사달; 신시), or Wanggŏmsŏng
Wanggeom-seong
Wanggeom-seong was the capital city of Gojoseon from 194 to 108 BC, North Korean sources claim it was located somewhere around Pyongyang, the capital of modern North Korea whilst other Korean histories report it being more in the location of the Liao River in modern China. It is also known as...

(왕검성; 王儉城), the first capital (second millennium BCE) of the Gojoseon
Gojoseon
Gojoseon was an ancient Korean kingdom. Go , meaning "ancient," distinguishes it from the later Joseon Dynasty; Joseon, as it is called in contemporaneous writings, is also romanized as Chosŏn....

 kingdom according to Korean history books, notably Samguk Yusa
Samguk Yusa
Samguk Yusa, or Memorabilia of the Three Kingdoms, is a collection of legends, folktales, and historical accounts relating to the Three Kingdoms of Korea , as well as to other periods and states before, during, and after the Three Kingdoms period.The text was written in Classical Chinese, which was...

. Many South Korean historians dispute this association, because other Korean history books place Asadal around the Liao River
Liao River
The Liao River is the principal river in northeast China . The province of Liaoning and the Liaodong Peninsula derive their names from the river....

 located in western Manchuria
Manchuria
Manchuria is a historical name given to a large geographic region in northeast Asia. Depending on the definition of its extent, Manchuria usually falls entirely within the People's Republic of China, or is sometimes divided between China and Russia. The region is commonly referred to as Northeast...

. Nevertheless, Pyongyang became a major city under Gojoseon.

History


No traces of the era of the Western Han dynasty have been found around Pyongyang. It is likely that the area of Pyongyang seceded from the disintegrating kingdom of Gojoseon and belonged to another Korean kingdom by the time of the fall of Wiman Joseon
Wiman Joseon
Wiman Joseon was part of the Gojoseon period of Korean history. It began with Wiman's seizure of the throne from Gojoseon's King Jun and ended with the death of King Ugeo who was a grandson of Wiman.-Founding:...

, the longest-lasting part of Gojoseon, after the Gojoseon-Han war
Gojoseon-Han War
The Gojoseon–Han War was a campaign launched by the Han Dynasty of China against Wiman Joseon, the last remaining part of Gojoseon after many kingdoms in the Korean peninsula became independent countries, between 109 BC and 108 BC...

 in 108 BCE. Several archaeological findings from the Later Eastern Han (25-220) periods in the Pyongyang area seems to suggest that Han forces later launched brief incursions around the area of Pyongyang.

The area around Pyongyang was called Nanglang during the early Three Kingdoms period. As the capital of Nanglang kingdom (낙랑국; 낙랑), Pyongyang remained an important commercial and cultural outpost after Lelang
Lelang Commandery
Lelang was one of the Chinese commanderies which was established after the fall of Gojoseon in 108 BC until Goguryeo conquered it in 313. Lelang Commandery was located in the northern Korean peninsula with the administrative center near modern P'yongyang....

 was destroyed by an expanding Goguryeo
Goguryeo
Goguryeo or Koguryŏ was an ancient Korean kingdom located in present day northern and central parts of the Korean Peninsula, southern Manchuria, and southern Russian Maritime province....

 in 313 CE.

Goguryeo
Goguryeo
Goguryeo or Koguryŏ was an ancient Korean kingdom located in present day northern and central parts of the Korean Peninsula, southern Manchuria, and southern Russian Maritime province....

 moved its capital here in 427. According to Christopher Beckwith, Pyongyang is the Sino-Korean reading of the name they gave it in their language, Piarna, or "level land".

In 676, Pyongyang was taken by Silla but left on the border between Silla and Balhae
Balhae
Balhae was a Manchurian kingdom established after the fall of Goguryeo. After Goguryeo's capital and southern territories fell to Unified Silla, Dae Jo-yeong, a Mohe general, whose father was Dae Jung-sang, established Jin , later called Balhae.Balhae occupied southern parts of Manchuria and...

 until the time of the Goryeo
Goryeo
The Goryeo Dynasty or Koryŏ was a Korean dynasty established in 918 by Emperor Taejo. Korea gets its name from this kingdom which came to be pronounced Korea. It united the Later Three Kingdoms in 936 and ruled most of the Korean peninsula until it was removed by the Joseon dynasty in 1392...

 dynasty, when the city was revived as Sŏgyŏng (서경; 西京; "Western Capital"), although it was never actually a capital of Goryeo. It was the provincial capital of the Pyeongan Province
Pyongan
P'yŏngan was one of the Eight Provinces of Korea during the Joseon Dynasty. P'yŏngan was located in the northwest of Korea. The provincial capital was P'yŏngyang.-History:P'yŏngan Province was formed in 1413...

 during the Joseon dynasty
Joseon Dynasty
Joseon , was a Korean state founded by Taejo Yi Seong-gye that lasted for approximately five centuries. It was founded in the aftermath of the overthrow of the Goryeo at what is today the city of Kaesong. Early on, Korea was retitled and the capital was relocated to modern-day Seoul...

. In 1890, the city had 40,000 inhabitants. It was the site of an important battle during the First Sino-Japanese War
First Sino-Japanese War
The First Sino-Japanese War was fought between Qing Dynasty China and Meiji Japan, primarily over control of Korea...

, which led to the destruction and depopulation of much of the city. However, it was the provincial capital of South Pyeongan Province from 1896. Under colonial rule
Korea under Japanese rule
Korea was under Japanese rule as part of Japan's 35-year imperialist expansion . Japanese rule ended in 1945 shortly after the Japanese defeat in World War II....

, the city became an industrial center, known in Japanese as Heijō. By 1938, Pyongyang had a population of 235,000.

In 1945, Pyongyang became the temporary capital of Provisional People's Committee for North Korea
Provisional People's Committee for North Korea
The Provisional People’s Committee for North Korea was the official name of the provisional government governing the northern portion of the Korean Peninsula following its post-World War II partition by the United States and the Soviet Union after the defeat of the Empire of Japan in 1945...

. It became the de facto capital of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea at its establishment in 1948. At that time, the Pyongyang government aimed to recapture Korea's official capital at that time, Seoul
Seoul
Seoul , officially the Seoul Special City, is the capital and largest metropolis of South Korea. A megacity with a population of over 10 million, it is the largest city proper in the OECD developed world...

. Pyongyang was again severely damaged in the Korean War
Korean War
The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

, during which it was briefly occupied by South Korean forces. In 1952, it was the target of the largest aerial raid of the entire war, involving 1,400 UN aircraft. After the war, the city was quickly rebuilt with Soviet aid, with many buildings built in Socialist Classicism. The rebuilt city featured extensive parks, broad boulevards, and high-rise apartments. Pyongyang became the political, economic, and transportation center of North Korea. In 1962, the city had a population of 653,000. The population grew to 1.3 million in 1978 and to more than 3 million by 2007.

Geography and climate


Pyongyang is located in west-central North Korea; the city lies on a flat plain about 50 km (30 mi) east of the Korea Bay
Korea Bay
The Korea Bay is a northern extension of the Yellow Sea, between Liaoning Province of China and North P'yŏngan Province of North Korea.It is separated from the Bohai Sea by the Liaodong Peninsula, with Dalian at its southernmost point...

, an arm of the Yellow Sea
Yellow Sea
The Yellow Sea is the name given to the northern part of the East China Sea, which is a marginal sea of the Pacific Ocean. It is located between mainland China and the Korean Peninsula. Its name comes from the sand particles from Gobi Desert sand storms that turn the surface of the water golden...

. The Taedong River
Taedong River
The Taedong River is a large river in North Korea. It rises in the Rangrim Mountains of the country's north. It then flows southwest into Korea Bay at Namp'o. In between, it runs through the country's capital, Pyongyang. Along the river are landmarks such as the Juche Tower and Kim Il-sung...

 flows southwestward through the city toward the Korea Bay.

The climate of Pyongyang is a humid continental climate
Humid continental climate
A humid continental climate is a climatic region typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot summers and cold winters....

 (Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...

 Dwa). In winter, cold, dry winds can blow from Siberia
Siberia
Siberia is an extensive region constituting almost all of Northern Asia. Comprising the central and eastern portion of the Russian Federation, it was part of the Soviet Union from its beginning, as its predecessor states, the Tsardom of Russia and the Russian Empire, conquered it during the 16th...

, making conditions in winter very cold; the temperature is usually below freezing between November and early March, though the average daytime high is a few degrees above freezing in every month except January. The winter is generally much drier than summer, with snow falling thirty-seven days on average. The most unpleasant feature of the weather and climate is undoubtedly the extreme cold and frequent wind chill
Wind chill
Wind chill is the felt air temperature on exposed skin due to wind. The wind chill temperature is always lower than the air temperature, and the windchill is undefined at the higher temps...

 in winter; warm clothing is necessary at this time.

The transition from the cold, dry winter to the warm, wet summer occurs rather quickly between April and early May, and there is a similar rather abrupt return to winter conditions in late October and November. Summers are generally hot and humid, with the East Asian monsoon
East Asian monsoon
The East Asian monsoon is a monsoonal flow that carries moist air from the Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean to East Asia. It affects approximately one-third of the global population, influencing the climate of Japan , the Koreas, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and much of mainland China...

 taking place from June until August; these are also the hottest months, with average temperatures of 21 °C (70 °F) to 25 °C (77 °F), and daytime highs often above 30 °C (86 °F).


Administrative divisions



P'yŏngyang is divided into 18 wards (ku- or guyŏk) (the city proper) and 1 counties (kun or gun).
  • Chung-guyok
    Chung-guyok
    Chung-guyŏk is one of the 19 guyok which constitutes the city of Pyongyang, North Korea. The district is located in the center of the city, between the Potong and Taedong Rivers, and is bordered to the north by Moranbong-guyok, to the northwest by Potonggang-guyok, and to the south by...

     
  • Pyongchon-guyok 
  • Potonggang-guyok 
  • Moranbong-guyok
    Moranbong-guyok
    Moranbong-guyŏk, or the Moranbong District, is one of the 19 guyŏk which constitute the city of Pyongyang, North Korea. It is located north of Chung-guyok, the city's central district, and is bordered to the north by Sosong and Taesong-guyoks, to the east by the Taedong River, and the west by the...

     
  • Sŏsŏng-guyŏk
    Sosong-guyok
    Sŏsŏng-guyŏk, or Sosong District, is one of the 19 guyŏk of Pyongyang, North Korea. It is located on the Pot'ong River, west of the Moranbong-guyŏk and south of Hyŏngjesan-guyŏk . It was established January 1958.-Administrative divisions:Sŏsŏng-guyŏk is divided into thirteen administrative...

     
  • Songyo-guyok 
  • Tongdaewŏn-guyŏk
    Tongdaewon-guyok
    Tongdaewŏn-guyŏk or Tongdaewon District is one of the 19 guyŏk, and one of the six that constitute East Pyongyang, North Korea. It sits on the eastern bank of the Taedong River. It is north of Sŏn'gyo-guyŏk , south of Taedonggang-guyŏk and west of Sadong-guyŏk and Ryŏkp'o-guyŏk...

     
  • Taedonggang-guyŏk
    Taedonggang-guyok
    Taedonggang-guyŏk, or Taedong River District, is one of the 19 guyŏk, and one of the six that constitute East Pyongyang, North Korea. Taedonggang-guyŏk is on the eastern bank of the Taedong River, north of Tongdaewŏn-guyŏk and west of Sadong-guyŏk...

     
  • Sadong-guyŏk
    Sadong-guyok
    Sadong-guyŏk, or Sadong District, is one of the 19 guyŏk, and one of the six, that constitute East Pyongyang, North Korea. It is on the eastern bank of the Taedong River, and the mouth of the Nam River. It is north of Ryŏkp'o-guyŏk , east of Taedonggang-guyŏk and north east of Tongdaewon-guyŏk....

     
  • Taesong-guyok
    Taesong-guyok
    Taesŏng-guyŏk, or Taesŏng District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Mangyongdae-guyok
    Mangyongdae-guyok
    Man'gyŏngdae-guyŏk, or Man'gyŏngdae District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Hyongjesan-guyok
    Hyongjesan-guyok
    Hyŏngjesan-guyŏk, or Hyŏngjesan District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Ryongsong-guyok
    Ryongsong-guyok
    Ryongsŏng-guyŏk , or Ryongsŏng District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Samsok-guyok
    Samsok-guyok
    Samsŏk-guyŏk, or Samsŏk District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Ryokpo-guyok
    Ryokpo-guyok
    Ryŏkp'o-guyŏk, or Ryŏkp'o District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea. This is where part of the Complex of Goguryeo Tombs of Pyongyang can be found....

     
  • Nakrang-guyok 
  • Sunan-guyŏk
    Sunan-guyok
    Sunan-guyŏk, or Sunan District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea.Sunan International Airport is in the district.Air Koryo is headquartered in Sunan District.-References:...

     
  • Unjong-guyok
    Unjong-guyok
    Ŭnjŏng-guyŏk, or Ŭnjŏng District is one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea....

     
  • Kangdong-gun
    Kangdong-gun
    Kangdong-gun, or Kangdong County, is one of Pyongyang's four suburban counties. In 1983 it was separated from South P'yongan Province and assumed direct governance by the Pyongyang City People's Committee. It is bordered by Sŏngch'ŏn-gun , South P'yongan in the north and east, Sŭngho-guyŏk from...

     


  • Foreign media reports in 2010 stated that Kangnam-gun
    Kangnam-gun
    Kangnam-gun is a county of North Hwanghae province, formerly one of the four suburban counties of Pyongyang, North Korea. It is north-west of Songrim, north-east of Hwangju County, west of Chunghwa County, and south of Nakrang-guyok, Pyongyang. It is the location of cooperative farms and smaller...

    , Chunghwa-gun
    Chunghwa-gun
    Chunghwa-gun is a county of North Hwanghae, formerly one of the four suburban counties of East Pyongyang, North Korea. It sits north of Hwangju-gun, North Hwanghae, east of Kangnam-gun, North Hwanghae, west of Sangwŏn-gun, North Hwanghae, and south of Ryŏkp'o-guyŏk , Pyongyang. It became part of...

    , Sangwŏn-gun, and Sŭngho-guyŏk
    Sungho-guyok
    Sŭngho-guyŏk or Sŭngho District is a district of North Hwanghae. It was formerly one of the 19 guyŏk that constitute Pyongyang, North Korea, but in 2010, it was administratively reassigned from Pyongyang to North Hwanghae; foreign media attributed the change as an attempt to relieve shortages in...

     had been transferred to the administration of neighboring North Hwanghae province.

    Landmarks


    The capital has been completely redesigned since the Korean War
    Korean War
    The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

     (1950–1953). It is designed with wide avenues, imposing monuments, and monolithic buildings. The tallest structure in the city is the uncompleted 330 metres (1,083 ft) Ryugyŏng Hotel
    Ryugyong Hotel
    The Ryugyong Hotel is a 105-story skyscraper under construction in Pyongyang, North Korea. Its name is also one of the historic names for Pyongyang. The building is also known as the 105 Building, a reference to its number of floors...

    . This hotel has 105 floors, encloses 361000 square metres (3,885,772 sq ft) of floor space, and was planned to be topped by seven revolving restaurant
    Revolving restaurant
    A revolving restaurant is a usually tower restaurant eating space designed to rest atop a broad circular revolving platform that operates as a large turntable. The building remains stationary and the diners are carried on the revolving floor. The revolving rate varies between one and three times...

    s.

    Some notable landmarks in the city include the Kumsusan Memorial Palace
    Kumsusan Memorial Palace
    The Kumsusan Memorial Palace, sometimes referred to as the Kim Il-sung Mausoleum, is a building located northeast of downtown Pyongyang, the capital city of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea . The palace is the former official residence and office of North Korea's president and founder,...

    , the Arch of Triumph
    Arch of Triumph (Pyongyang)
    The Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang was built to commemorate the Korean resistance to Japan from 1925 to 1945.Built in 1982 on the Triumph Return Square at the foot of Moran Hill in the North Korean capital city of Pyongyang, the monument was built to honour and glorify President Kim Il-sung's role...

     (heavily inspired by Paris
    Paris
    Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

    's Arc de Triomphe
    Arc de Triomphe
    -The design:The astylar design is by Jean Chalgrin , in the Neoclassical version of ancient Roman architecture . Major academic sculptors of France are represented in the sculpture of the Arc de Triomphe: Jean-Pierre Cortot; François Rude; Antoine Étex; James Pradier and Philippe Joseph Henri Lemaire...

     but of a larger size, a design itself inspired by the Welthauptstadt Germania
    Welthauptstadt Germania
    Welthauptstadt Germania refers to the projected renewal of the German capital Berlin during the Nazi period, part of Adolf Hitler's vision for the future of Germany after the planned victory in World War II...

     project by Nazi Germany
    Nazi Germany
    Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

    ), the reputed birthplace of Kim Il-sung
    Kim Il-sung
    Kim Il-sung was a Korean communist politician who led the Democratic People's Republic of Korea from its founding in 1948 until his death in 1994. He held the posts of Prime Minister from 1948 to 1972 and President from 1972 to his death...

     at Mangyongdae Hill, Juche Tower
    Juche Tower
    The Juche Tower is a monument in Pyongyang, North Korea. The tower is named after the principle of Juche, developed by Kim Il Sung as a blend of autarky, self-reliance, nationalism, isolationism, Korean traditionalism, and Marxism-Leninism.Completed in 1982, it is sited on the eastern bank of the...

    , and two large stadiums (Kim Il Sung Stadium and Rungrado May Day Stadium
    Rungrado May Day Stadium
    The Rŭngrado May First Stadium, or May Day Stadium, is a multi-purpose stadium in Pyongyang, North Korea, completed on May 1, 1989.-Overview:The stadium was constructed as a main stadium for the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students in 1989....

    ). Pyongyang TV Tower
    Pyongyang TV Tower
    Pyongyang TV Tower is a free-standing concrete TV tower with an observation deck and a panorama restaurant at a height of 150 metres in Pyongyang, North Korea. It was built in April 1967 for having the widest transmission area and for preparing color TV transmissions. Currently it's mostly used for...

     is a minor landmark. Other visitor attractions include the Korea Central Zoo
    Korea Central Zoo
    The Korea Central Zoo, also referred to as the Pyongyang Central Zoo, is the national zoo of North Korea. It is located near Mt. Taesong in downtown Pyongyang. The zoo has over 5,000 wild animals, comprising a total of 650 species, and covers an area of roughly one square kilometre...

     and the large golden statues of North Korea's two leaders. The Arch of Reunification
    Arch of Reunification
    The Arch of Reunification is a sculptural arch located in Pyongyang, the capital of North Korea. It was constructed in 2001 to commemorate Korean reunification proposals put forward by Kim Il-sung....

     has a map of a united Korea supported by two concrete Korean women dressed in traditional dress straddling the multi-laned Reunification Highway, which stretches from Pyongyang to the Korean Demilitarized Zone
    Korean Demilitarized Zone
    The Korean Demilitarized Zone is a strip of land running across the Korean Peninsula that serves as a buffer zone between North and South Korea. The DMZ cuts the Korean Peninsula roughly in half, crossing the 38th parallel on an angle, with the west end of the DMZ lying south of the parallel and...

     (DMZ).

    Current construction includes 100,000 new homes along Changjeon Street. This is the top construction priority and is using soldiers and university students as labor. Construction plans began after Kim Jong Il described the area as "pitiful".

    Cuisine



    Pyongyang was the provincial capital of Pyeongan
    Pyongan
    P'yŏngan was one of the Eight Provinces of Korea during the Joseon Dynasty. P'yŏngan was located in the northwest of Korea. The provincial capital was P'yŏngyang.-History:P'yŏngan Province was formed in 1413...

     province until 1946. Therefore, Pyongyang cuisine shares with the general culinary tradition of Pyeongan province. The most famous local food is Pyongyang naengmyeon, or also called mul naengmyeon or just simply naengmyeon. Naengmyeon literally means "cold noodles", while the affix, mul, refers to "water" because the dish is served in a cold broth. Naengmyeon consists of thin and chewy buckwheat noodles in a cold meat broth, and dongchimi
    Dongchimi
    Dongchimi is a variety of kimchi consisting of daikon, baechu , spring onions, fermented green chili, ginger, bae and watery brine in Korean cuisine...

    (watery kimchi) and topped with a slice of sweet Korean pear. Pyongyang naengmyeon was originally eaten in homes built with ondol
    Ondol
    An ondol, also called gudeul, in Korean traditional architecture, is underfloor heating which uses direct heat transfer from wood smoke to the underside of a thick masonry floor...

    (traditional underfloor heating
    Underfloor heating
    Underfloor heating and cooling is a form of central heating and cooling which achieves indoor climate control for thermal comfort using conduction, radiation and convection...

    ) during the cold winter, so it is also humorously called "Pyongyang deoldeori" (shivering in Pyongyang). Pyongyang locals sometimes enjoyed it as a haejangguk
    Haejangguk
    Haejangguk refers to all kinds of guk eaten as a hangover cure in Korean cuisine. It means "soup to chase a hangover" and also called sulguk in pure Korean...

    , which is any type of food eaten as a hangover cure, usually a warm soup.

    Another representative Pyongyang dish is Taedonggang sungeoguk, meaning "trout soup from the Taedong River
    Taedong River
    The Taedong River is a large river in North Korea. It rises in the Rangrim Mountains of the country's north. It then flows southwest into Korea Bay at Namp'o. In between, it runs through the country's capital, Pyongyang. Along the river are landmarks such as the Juche Tower and Kim Il-sung...

    ". The soup is made with trout
    Trout
    Trout is the name for a number of species of freshwater and saltwater fish belonging to the Salmoninae subfamily of the family Salmonidae. Salmon belong to the same family as trout. Most salmon species spend almost all their lives in salt water...

    , which are abundant in the Taedong River, along with black peppercorns and salt. It is served as a courtesy to important guests visiting Pyongyang. Therefore, the question, "How good was the trout soup?" is commonly used to greet people returning from Pyongyang. Another local specialty is Pyongyang onban (literally "warm rice of Pyongyang"). It is a dish made with freshly cooked rice topped with sliced mushrooms, chicken, and a couple of bindaetteok
    Bindaetteok
    Bindaetteok is a variety of jeon, a Korean style pancake...

    (pancakes made from ground mung beans and vegetables).

    Famous restaurants in the city include Okryugwan
    Okryugwan
    Okryugwan or Okryu Restaurant is a restaurant in Pyongyang, North Korea, founded in 1960. North Korea analyst Andrei Lankov describes it as one of two restaurants—the other being Ch'ongryugwan—which have "defined the culinary life of Pyongyang" since the 1980s, and a "living museum of...

     and Ch'ongryugwan.

    Sports


    There are some sports club like Pyongyang City Sports Club base on Pyonyang. The most popular sport in Pyongyang is Association football.

    Transportation



    Domestic trains


    Pyongyang Station
    Pyongyang Station
    Pyongyang Station is the central railway station of Pyongyang, North Korea. It is the start of the Pyongbu and Pyongui Line, which were adjusted from the Kyongbu and Kyongui Lines used before the division of Korea to accommodate the shift of the capital from Seoul to Pyongyang...

     serves the main railway lines, including the Pyongui Line
    Pyongui Line
    The P'yŏngŭi Line is a rail line in North Korea connecting the capital city, Pyongyang, with Sinuiju at the northwestern corner of the country. It is the main corridor for overland traffic between North Korea and China, and is one of the country's most important rail lines...

     and the Pyongbu Line
    Pyongbu Line
    The Pyongbu Line is the southern part of the Kyongui Line railway in North Korea, running from Pyongyang to Kaesong, near the border with South Korea. This line theoretically connects Pyongyang to Busan in South Korea but, in reality, it ends at Kaesong because of the Korean Demilitarized Zone...

    .

    International trains


    The city also has regular international rail services to Beijing
    Beijing
    Beijing , also known as Peking , is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of 19,612,368 as of 2010. The city is the country's political, cultural, and educational center, and home to the headquarters for most of China's...

     and Moscow
    Moscow
    Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

    . A journey to Beijing takes about 25 hours and 25 minutes (K27 from Beijing/K28 from Pyongyang, on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays); a journey to Moscow takes 6 days. The city also connects to the Eurasian Land Bridge
    Eurasian Land Bridge
    The Eurasian Land Bridge, sometimes called the New Silk Road, is a term used to describe the rail transport route for moving freight and passengers overland from Pacific seaports in Siberia and China to seaports in Europe...

     via the Trans-Siberian Railway
    Trans-Siberian Railway
    The Trans-Siberian Railway is a network of railways connecting Moscow with the Russian Far East and the Sea of Japan. It is the longest railway in the world...

    .

    Metro and bus


    The Pyongyang Metro
    Pyongyang Metro
    The Pyongyang Metro is the metro system in the North Korean capital Pyongyang. It consists of two lines: the Chŏllima line runs from Kwangbok station in the southwest to Ragwŏn station in the northeast, and the Hyŏksin line runs north, from Puhŭng station on the banks of the Taedong to...

     is a two-line underground metro system which has a length of 22.5 km (14 mi). The Hyoksin line serves Kwangbok, Konguk, Hwanggumbol, Konsol, Hyoksin, Jonu, Jonsung, Samhung and Rakwon stations. The Chollima line serves Puhung, Yonggwang, Ponghwa, Sungni, Tongil, Kaeson, Jonu and Pulgunbyol stations.

    There is also a 53 km (32.9 mi) long Pyongyang tram system and a 150 km (93.2 mi) Pyongyang trolleybus system
    Trolleybuses in Pyongyang
    The Pyongyang trolleybus system forms part of the public transport network of Pyongyang, the capital city of North Korea, and extends to some of its suburbs.In operation since 30 April 1962, the system is presently about long and comprises 10 routes....

    . The trolley bus-stops are fairly busy. It is difficult to gauge how widely the metro is used, as tourists are permitted to travel only between designated stops with a guide.

    Automobiles



    There are not as many private automobile
    Automobile
    An automobile, autocar, motor car or car is a wheeled motor vehicle used for transporting passengers, which also carries its own engine or motor...

    s as in Western cities, although the state government operates a sizable fleet of Mercedes-Benz
    Mercedes-Benz
    Mercedes-Benz is a German manufacturer of automobiles, buses, coaches, and trucks. Mercedes-Benz is a division of its parent company, Daimler AG...

     limousine
    Limousine
    A limousine is a luxury sedan or saloon car, especially one with a lengthened wheelbase or driven by a chauffeur. The chassis of a limousine may have been extended by the manufacturer or by an independent coachbuilder. These are called "stretch" limousines and are traditionally black or white....

    s for Party bureaucrats.

    Air


    State-owned Air Koryo
    Air Koryo
    Air Koryo ) is the state-owned national flag carrier airline of North Korea, headquartered in Sunan-guyŏk, Pyongyang. Based at Sunan International Airport , it operates international scheduled and charter services to points in Asia and Europe....

     has scheduled flights from Sunan Capital International Airport
    Sunan International Airport
    -Cargo destinations:-Facilities:The airport contains a car park, a business centre, disabled facilities, a duty free shop, Business Class lounge, a taxi stand, a Korea Trade Bank, and several souvenir shops. The airport also has a baggage storage facility; service hours are from 08:00 to 21:00 and...

     to Beijing
    Beijing
    Beijing , also known as Peking , is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of 19,612,368 as of 2010. The city is the country's political, cultural, and educational center, and home to the headquarters for most of China's...

     (PEK
    Beijing Capital International Airport
    Beijing Capital International Airport, is the main international airport serving Beijing, China. It is located northeast of Beijing's city center in an enclave of Chaoyang District that is surrounded by rural Shunyi District. The airport is owned and operated by the Beijing Capital...

    ), Shenyang
    Shenyang
    Shenyang , or Mukden , is the capital and largest city of Liaoning Province in Northeast China. Currently holding sub-provincial administrative status, the city was once known as Shengjing or Fengtianfu...

     (SHE
    Shenyang Taoxian International Airport
    Shenyang Taoxian International Airport is an airport in Shenyang, Liaoning, China. It is located about 20 km south of the city center.As for 2010, Shenyang Taoxian International Airport was the 21th busiest airport in the People's Republic of China with 8,619,897 passengers.-Airlines and...

    ), Vladivostok
    Vladivostok
    The city is located in the southern extremity of Muravyov-Amursky Peninsula, which is about 30 km long and approximately 12 km wide.The highest point is Mount Kholodilnik, the height of which is 257 m...

     (VVO), Moscow
    Moscow
    Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

     (SVO
    Sheremetyevo International Airport
    Sheremetyevo International Airport , is an international airport located in the Moscow Oblast, Russia, north-west of central Moscow. It is a hub for the passenger operations of the Russian international airline Aeroflot, and one of the three major airports serving Moscow along with Domodedovo...

    ), Bangkok
    Bangkok
    Bangkok is the capital and largest urban area city in Thailand. It is known in Thai as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon or simply Krung Thep , meaning "city of angels." The full name of Bangkok is Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom...

     (BKK
    Suvarnabhumi Airport
    Suvarnabhumi Airport , also known as Bangkok International Airport, is an international airport serving Bangkok, Thailand. It was officially opened for limited domestic flight service on 15 September 2006, and opened for most domestic and all international commercial flights on 28 September...

    ), Khabarovsk
    Khabarovsk
    Khabarovsk is the largest city and the administrative center of Khabarovsk Krai, Russia. It is located some from the Chinese border. It is the second largest city in the Russian Far East, after Vladivostok. The city became the administrative center of the Far Eastern Federal District of Russia...

     (KHV
    Khabarovsk Novy Airport
    Khabarovsk Novy Airport is located at the eastern part of Khabarovsk, Khabarovsk Krai, Russia. Khabarovsk Novy Airport was the main hub for the Russian airline Dalavia, which was shut down by the government due to large debts...

    ), Kuala Lumpur
    Kuala Lumpur
    Kuala Lumpur is the capital and the second largest city in Malaysia by population. The city proper, making up an area of , has a population of 1.4 million as of 2010. Greater Kuala Lumpur, also known as the Klang Valley, is an urban agglomeration of 7.2 million...

     (KUL
    Kuala Lumpur International Airport
    Kuala Lumpur International Airport , or KLIA serves the capital city of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, and is one of Southeast Asia's largest airports. It is also Malaysia's main international airport. It is situated in the Sepang district, in the south of the state of Selangor, about from Kuala Lumpur...

    ), Shanghai
    Shanghai
    Shanghai is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper in the world. It is one of the four province-level municipalities in the People's Republic of China, with a total population of over 23 million as of 2010...

     (PVG) and Kuwait City
    Kuwait City
    -Suburbs:Although the districts below are not usually recognized as suburbs, the following is a list of a few areas surrounding Kuwait city:Al-Salam ""السلام"" -Economy:...

     (KWI
    Kuwait International Airport
    Kuwait International Airport is located in Farwaniyah, Kuwait, south of Kuwait City. It serves as hub for Jazeera Airways and Kuwait Airways. A portion of the airport complex is designated as Al Mubarak Air Base, which contains the headquarters of the Kuwait Air Force, as well as the Kuwait Air...

    )

    Air Koryo also operates limited scheduled service to a few domestic destinations. The only domestic destinations are Hamhung
    Hamhung
    Hamhŭng is North Korea's second largest city, and the capital of South Hamgyŏng Province. In late 2005, nearby Hŭngnam was made a ward within Hamhŭng-si. It has a population of 768,551 as of 2008.-Geography:...

    , Wonsan
    Wonsan
    Wŏnsan is a port city and naval base in southeastern North Korea. It is the capital of Kangwŏn Province. The population of the city is estimated to have been 331,000 in 2000. Notable people from Wŏnsan include Kim Ki Nam, diplomat and Secretary of the Workers' Party.- History :The original name of...

    , Chongjin
    Chongjin
    Ch'ŏngjin is the capital of North Korea's North Hamgyŏng Province and the country's third largest city. From 1960 to 1967 and again from 1977 to 1985, Ch'ŏngjin was administered separately from North Hamgyŏng as a Directly Governed City...

    , Hyesan
    Hyesan
    Hyesan is a city in the northern part of the northern Ryanggang province of North Korea. It is a hub of river transportation as well as a product distribution centre. It is also the administrative centre of Ryanggang Province...

     and Samjiyon
    Samjiyon
    Samjiyŏn, or Samjiyŏn-kun, is a district in Ryanggang province, North Korea. It has its own airport. It takes its name from three lakes in the county, which are known as the Samjiyŏn...

    . In April 2008, Air China
    Air China
    Air China is the flag carrier and one of the major airlines of the People's Republic of China. Based in Beijing Capital International Airport, Air China is the world's 10th largest airline by fleet size. The airline ranked behind its main competitors China Southern Airlines and China Eastern...

     launched a regular service between Beijing and Pyongyang.

    Sister cities

    Kathmandu, Nepal
    Nepal
    Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

     Jakarta
    Jakarta
    Jakarta is the capital and largest city of Indonesia. Officially known as the Special Capital Territory of Jakarta, it is located on the northwest coast of Java, has an area of , and a population of 9,580,000. Jakarta is the country's economic, cultural and political centre...

    , Indonesia
    Indonesia
    Indonesia , officially the Republic of Indonesia , is a country in Southeast Asia and Oceania. Indonesia is an archipelago comprising approximately 13,000 islands. It has 33 provinces with over 238 million people, and is the world's fourth most populous country. Indonesia is a republic, with an...

     Moscow
    Moscow
    Moscow is the capital, the most populous city, and the most populous federal subject of Russia. The city is a major political, economic, cultural, scientific, religious, financial, educational, and transportation centre of Russia and the continent...

    , Russia
    Russia
    Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

     Chiang Mai Province
    Chiang Mai Province
    Chiang Mai is the second-largest province of Thailand, located in the north of the country. Neighboring provinces are Chiang Rai, Lampang, Lamphun, Tak, and Mae Hong Son. In the north it borders Shan State of Burma...

    , Thailand
    Thailand
    Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

     Dubai
    Dubai
    Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates . The emirate is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula and has the largest population with the second-largest land territory by area of all the emirates, after Abu Dhabi...

    , United Arab Emirates
    United Arab Emirates
    The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

     Tianjin
    Tianjin
    ' is a metropolis in northern China and one of the five national central cities of the People's Republic of China. It is governed as a direct-controlled municipality, one of four such designations, and is, thus, under direct administration of the central government...

    , People's Republic of China
    People's Republic of China
    China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

     Baghdad
    Baghdad
    Baghdad is the capital of Iraq, as well as the coterminous Baghdad Governorate. The population of Baghdad in 2011 is approximately 7,216,040...

    , Iraq
    Iraq
    Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....


    Further reading

    • Kracht, Christian
      Christian Kracht
      Christian Kracht is a Swiss novelist and journalist.-Early life:Kracht was born in Saanen. His father, Christian Kracht Sr., was chief representative for the Axel Springer publishing company in the 1960s. Kracht attended Schule Schloss Salem in Baden and Lakefield College School in Ontario, Canada...

      , Eva Munz & Lukas Nikol. The Ministry Of Truth. Kim Jong Ils North Korea. Feral House, Oct 2007 ISBN 978-932595-27-7
    • Springer, Chris. Pyongyang: The Hidden History of the North Korean Capital. Saranda Books, 2003. ISBN 963-00-8104-0.
    • Willoughby, Robert. North Korea: The Bradt Travel Guide. Globe Pequot, 2003. ISBN 1-84162-074-2.

    External links



    • North Korea Uncovered, (North Korea Google Earth), a comprehensive mapping of North Korea, including all of the locations mentioned above, on Google Earth
      Google Earth
      Google Earth is a virtual globe, map and geographical information program that was originally called EarthViewer 3D, and was created by Keyhole, Inc, a Central Intelligence Agency funded company acquired by Google in 2004 . It maps the Earth by the superimposition of images obtained from satellite...

    • Holidays in Pyongyang
    • Pyongyang travel guide at Wikitravel
      Wikitravel
      -External links:* *...