JSA Tour : Highlights
JSA is the only portion of the DMZ, where South and North Korean soldiers stand face-to-face. You can feel the heightened tension of the most hostile area in the world.
Technically speaking, two Koreas are still at the state of war. JSA, or Panmunjeom in Korean, is the official conference area between the two parties. It has been renowned since an armistice agreement was signed there in 1953.
More than sixty years ago, the armistice was signed after the three year Korean War. It was intended to serve as a temporary ceasefire agreement, soon to be replaced by a permanent peace treaty, which has not been realized yet.
Can you imagine how long time the armistice was negotiated in the middle of the three year war? It took two years with 765 meetings. However, the signing of the armistice took only twelve minutes with no handshake, no saluting, and no ceremony. The representatives of the North Korea and the UNC (United Nations Command) were stone-faced and indignant with each other. They walked into the room from the opposite doors and withdrew using the same door respectively as soon as they signed the paperwork.
The resentfulness was just a prelude of all the shouting matches and countless fistfights at an official conference room between the representatives of two sides. Don’t you want to visit the conference row and enter the central room of the seven conference buildings? You can even step over the division line which is marked in the middle of the room.
At the UNC Guard Post Three outside of the conference room, you would find yourself surrounded by North Korea at your three sides. There you can take photos of the north mountains and villages at the nearest distance.
You will eventually pass by the focal point of the most brutal incident of JSA, which is called the “Axe Murder Incident” of 1976. Two officers of US army were axed to death under a huge popular tree. The tree had to be pruned because it was in between two UNC guard posts, blocking the line of view between the two points. The officers were carrying shot guns on their waist belts, but they did not use them to be brutally murdered with the axes for the tree trimming job. This is only one episode of the sixty year old tragedy of JSA.
Visit JSA and face in person the longest and bitter confrontation of the world history, still going on in the conference theater.
JSA Tour: Itinerary
How do you go to JSA? Only by joining a tour package run by a few tour agencies registered to UNC!
Since JSA is so hostile and closely controlled by the belligerents, it is not ready at everyone’s convenience. Some nationalities are restricted by UNC regulations. The information of all visitors including their nationalities and passport numbers must be gathered and checked at least three days before the actual tour date. Only after the roster of visitors is approved by UNC, you can get on the bus starting from Seoul.
Please be advised that the tour package is likely to sell out if you postpone your booking until the three days before the tour. There are many travelers coming to Seoul hopeful of visiting JSA, only to find they are too late to join a tour group. So, if you are going to see JSA, the first thing to do is to contact Cosmojin Tour.
Cosmojin has operated for more than fifteen years the JSA tour service most professionally to provide you with everything you need:
• The best storytelling tour guide for JSA
• The most convenient transportation to and from the JSA (including a morning pick-up service at your hotel in Seoul)
• The perfect assistance of your preparation, not to be rejected at the gate of JSA (including your dress code defined by UNC)
• Conference Room of MAC (Military Armistice Commission)
• UN Guard Post Three (GP 3)
• Focal Point of Axe Murder Incident
• Bridge of No Return
• Unification Bridge
• Camp Bonifas
• Freedom House
• The best quality Jinseng Center or Amethyst Factory Outlet
• Hotel pick-up and transportation by air-conditioned vehicles
If it is not in Korea! If it is not today!
An unforgettable JSA tour, you would not be able to experience on your own, the military area on the ceasefire zone.
Here the South and North Korean army soldiers are standing face to face opposite of each other on a ceasefire line located at the same place.
A visit to a thrilling JSA Tour !!!
Heightened tension around the area, JSA Tour
(A Heavily secured area where no one can visit without a special permit, even Koreans cannot easily go)
It is one hour away from Seoul!
During your tight Korea tour schedules, you can make a half-a-day tour visit comfortably!
Let’s enjoy a historic tour taking you back into the mist of a fascinating history of Korea.
JSA Tour Schedule:
The time of departure may vary depending on the Panmoonjeom situation (a round trip, 7 hour course)
Hotel at Seoul -> Tongil Bridge -> Identification Check -> Panmoonjeom -> House of Freedom -> The Military Armistice Conference Room -> The 3rd Observatory -> The Bridge of No Return -> Lunch -> Amethyst Center -> Sending to the hotel or Itaewon
JSA is the only area where the South and North can meet together without a wall or a barbed-wire fence at disarmed/unarmed state. It is also a special district without an administrative jurisdiction for the South and North parties.
JSA is the only area that is under the jurisdiction of the U.N. Emergency Force by ROK army (around 350 personnel) and the U.S. Military (around 250 personnel) out of 155 miles within the ceasefire line.
Within the JSA; the North of the Military Demarcation Line, 20 centimeters in width, Panmoonjeom is located where the summit of South and North Korea and the military armistice conference took place.
You will feel the tense atmosphere as a cold feeling between the guarding solders.
In this, JSA is near the North, though it is in South Korea, foreign tourists need to submit their passport before the tour to book the tour unlike any other tour spots.
This is such an intricate tour location, in the case of Korean, we provide group tours that consist of over 30 slots allowing visits to take place after security clearance.
Let us take a special tour to the unusual location, JSA.
JSA Tour Points!
+ A place of education where you can see the sorrow of the people they went through from the tragedy of the territorial division and the fratricidal war
+ The only tour that you can visit within this divided country, Korea, the ‘JSA’ zone.
+ You can see the North Korean army right in front of your eyes, such an exciting opportunity
+ A thrilling visit to the ‘Bridge of No return’ within JSA, you cannot return if you cross over it.
+ Visiting the actual scene of the ‘ax murder case’ inside of JSA, where this terrible and cruel brutality happened by the North Korean army.
+ An interesting expedition to the third guard-post in JSA, which is near the civilian housing of North Korea.
JSA Tour Course
[Tong-il (Unification) Bridge]
The North side of Tongil Bridge is a Civilian Control Zone, it is the first gateway to DMZ.
Regardless of age, gender, or ethnicity, when people cross over the Tong-il Bridge, they need to obtain permission.
In case of foreigners, they need to show their passports, and Korean should show their ID cards, then they can cross over the bridge.
And this bridge is also renowned because of Jung Joo Young, the founder of Hyundai Group. They visited North Korea through this bridge with 500 cattle in 1998.
[Panmoonjeom – Camp Bonifas]
Camp Bonifas is the command post of the United Nions Forces inside of Panmoonjeom.
At this location, solders who are in charge, boards the bus and examines your attire and identification once more.
At the JSA national security center inside of the Camp Bonifas, they give a briefing about the Panmoonjeom visitation.
There is a golf course called Par 3 One Hall Gold Course made of artificial turf inside of the Camp Bonifas. It is called ‘the most dangerous golf course’ because surrounded around the three sides of the club are minefields.
[House of Freedom]
There are the ‘House of Freedom’ and the ‘ouse of Peace,’ at the Southside of the Panmoonjum area, and ‘Panmoongak Pavilion’ and ‘Tongilgak Pavilion’ is located on the Northside.The Red Cross of both the South and North Korea established a regular liaison office and two direct phone line for the South and North liaison business in the ‘House of Freedom’ and ‘Panmoongak Pavilion'.This is a joint security area by the United Nation Force and ROK army, foreign tourist whom have their passport can visit this place. Others like Korean citizen and foreigners need to go through other prescribed procedure.
[The Military Armistice Conference Room]
This location is where the military armistice conference took place after the agreement of ceasefire of the South and North in 1953.
In the conference room, the UN flag lays on the long table, the Military Demarcation Line passes through under the table. Because of the face expression and appearance of soldiers who guard the place, the indoor of the conference room is the most silence and tight area.
[The 3rd Observatory]
This place is where the two U.S. Military generals were murdered by 50~60 North Korean soldiers while they were making an ordering to have the branches of the willow tree trimed.
Near the 3rd observatory of the UN Forces, the Southside of the Bridge of No Return, they were leading and guarding while 5 Korean workers where trimming the branches. Then the two North Korean Army generals and a group of privates appeared and asked ‘not to cut off branches.’When guards of our side ignored and kept working, suddenly dozens of North Korean soldiers ran into the south with a truck, and swung axes, iron sticks, and other paddles and assaulted people. They murdered the two U.S. army generals and there were 9 major and minor casualties.
After the incident, the USFK and ROK army prepared for a combat; however, Kim Il-Sung, the head of the North Korea at that time apologized, so the case was concluded.
[Bridge of No Return]
This bridge is where the North and South refugees’ goes through repatriation, when they cross over the bridge once, they are never able to return, which is why this is named as ‘Bridge of No Return.’
The Military Demarcation Line of the North and South passes through the middle part of this bridge, and at each end of the bridge, guards are posted at each side of the bridge.
JSA Tour is consisted a historical site where you can see the sorrow history of the division between the North and South.
Let us visit the historical place of sorrow, which is the opposite of the fabulous and developed area of South Korea. JSA Panmoonjeom tour is only available through the approved tour company by the government. JSA Panmoonjeom tour specialized company that is approved by the government, is Cosmojin!
Cosmojin Tour, an efficient and effective tour that starts from the hotel where you are staying at in Seoul with an English speaking guide