Uncouth Chinese Tourists in North Korea

Since Beijing’s approval of North Korea as a travel destination in 2008, the bad behavior of some Chinese tourists has unsettled their hosts. From Kristine Servando at South China Morning Post:

Simon Cockerell, of Koryo Tours, which specialises in travel to the reclusive socialist state, cites as an example mainland tourists throwing sweets at North Korean children “like they’re feeding ducks”. “The North Koreans think that’s undignified and offensive,” he says.

[…] North Korean’s disdain for some of the behaviour of their northern visitors might be part of an underlying resentment, according to Barbara Demick, Beijing bureau chief of The Los Angeles Times and author of the seminal book on North Korean life Nothing to Envy.

“[North Koreans] always thought of themselves as richer than the Chinese or having a purer brand of socialism, and they are now very jealous of China’s wealth,” she says. [Source]

Some Chinese hold similar views of North Korean socialism, and travel to North Korea in search of “political purity”. The behavior of Chinese tourists abroad become a hot topic earlier this year when it emerged that a Nanjing teenager had scrawled his name on the wall of an ancient Egyptian temple.

Open popup

Welcome back!

CDT is a non-profit media site, and we need your support. Your contribution will help us provide more translations, breaking news, and other content you love.