November 27, 2014

Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), South Korea

Our second day in Seoul started with a tour to the demilitarized zone (DMZ), that lies between North Korea and South Korea. Our first stop was Imjingak, the town furthest north that is freely accessible to South Koreans.  

The ribbons were in remembrance of lost family members and also for the hope of reunification of the country. (There is even more barbed wire in this country than there is living on a military base!)

This train once traveled the entire country, before the Korean war. Now, mostly destroyed, it is known as "the train that wishes to travel," in hopes of a reunified Korea. 

Very close to the North Korean border. 

The red line on this map illustrates the demilitarized zone. It is a strip of land roughly 2.5 miles wide that separates North and South Korea.  

This is a photograph I saw of the actual area, a beautiful untouched wetland.

Keeping watch.

Many families were split after the war, some still trapped in North Korea to this day. 

After visiting the memorial park, we drove to through the secure checkpoint to the site of an underground tunnel. (Matt felt like he was in a scene of some type of apocalypse movie here. It was kind of eerie!)

Four different underground tunnels from North Korea to Seoul, have been uncovered since the war. We were able to walk down into the third tunnel, 240 feet underground! There are believed to be up to twenty more tunnels that have yet to be discovered. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take pictures.

Our next stop was a lookout point. The hill in the distance is North Korea. We were not able to go to the actual joint security area (JSA), because the girls are under 11. This area is an actual town where North and South Koreans can work together. I hear it is awesome to tour, so maybe someday! 

Eva spying on north Korea. 

There were quite a few young cops there, sightseeing. Our tour guide said that in South Korea, two years of military or police work is mandatory for young men.

Such an interesting tour! We changed hotels that afternoon and had a fabulous view of the city and Han River. 

The girls felt very cosmopolitan! 

In the evening we wandered the Yeouido Park, adjacent to the hotel.



Sisters in Seoul!

A picture perfect fall day.


Across the street from the park was a great observation point for the river and skyline. 

A great end to a wonderful day! 

Now, on to our last day....




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