I was most surprised to see that the ROK (Republic of Korea, aka South Korea) soldiers were a lot more intense than the KPA (Korean People’s Army, aka North Korea) soldiers. The ROK soldiers stand half hidden behind a wall (to give their enemy less of a target), making fists (and looking angry like they’re ready to kill someone) and staring north, while the KPA soldiers were walking around taking pictures of each other with us as the background. Maybe it was just a coincidence and we happened to visit on 'KPA Picture Day', but it was definitely not how I had envisioned things to be.
Michelle and I with a ROK soldier, technically standing in North Korea. Notice the clenched fist and the angry demeanour. You don't wanna mess with these guys.
ROK soldier guarding the border. The pebbles in the foreground is South Korea and the dirt in the background is North Korea.
The white posts behind me mark the border.
The Bridge of No Return. This bridge crosses the actual border and was used for prisoner exchanges during the Korean War. The prisoners were given the choice to either stay in the country in which they were captured or cross to their home country. If they decided to cross, they were never allowed to return. Hence the name of the bridge.
The tallest flagpole in the world (160 metres), holding the largest flag in the world (600 lbs) in Kijong-dong, North Korea. South Koreans know this place as Propaganda Village because nobody actually lives there, just some maintenance workers turning on the lights at night.