North Korea to Host ’Large Scale’ Ski Tours

David Lee, Nov. 17, 2015, 9:25 a.m.

North Korea will launch "large-scale" ski tourism packages for foreigners from late this month, according to a North Korean state media outlet on Tuesday, in the latest sign that the reclusive state has approved more cross-border tours.

Foreign tourists have been applying for the tour packages at the Masik ski resort near North Korea's eastern coastal city of Wonsan, which opened earlier last year as a pet project of the North's young leader Kim Jong-un, the English-language Pyongyang Times newspaper reported.

Citing the North's Korea International Youth and Children's Travel Company, the report said the North Korean travel company "is going to conduct large-scale ski tourism in the Masik Pass area from late November."

"Many people have already applied for it until March next year," it said. The North Korean travel firm has "more than 200 foreign counterparts," it said. The North Korean leader Kim is believed to have enjoyed skiing in the Alps while studying in Switzerland in the 1990s. Under international sanctions over nuclear and missile ambitions, North Korea has promoted tourism as a source of earning much-needed hard currency since Kim took power in late 2011.

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