On Dangerous Ground
DMZ is one of the scariest places on earth. South & North Korea designated this Demilitarized Zone 2 kms. away from the truce line on each side of the border right after the Korean war. This 4 km wide and 240 km long DMZ is one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world. There are thousands of landmines, electric fences and tank traps on both opposing sides within the DMZ area.
There are DMZ guided tours that can bring the tourists safely around the interesting historical sights inside DMZ like the 3rd tunnel, Dorasan Observatory, Mt. Dorasan, and Unification Park by shuttle bus.
It’s a unique experience to walk inside a 265m of the 73m-deep 3rd Tunnel of Aggression which runs through a bedrock. A North Korean defector provided South Korea an information in October 1978 that there were 4 infiltration tunnels under the DMZ area which were made by North Koreans. Kim Il-sung believed that a tunnel was more effective than 10 atomic bombs. These tunnels, which could accommodate tanks and more than 32,000 troops, could move a full division through the South Korean border in an hour.
The axe murder incident in 1976 happened close by this bridge, where the two American soldiers were axed to death by North Korean soldiers while chopping some branches of the Poplar tree that were blocking the checkpoint sight between a UN Command checkpoint #3 and an observation post #5.
This railway station is very unique – there are no passengers that get on and off the trains, there is a strange hush instead of the noise and vibrations , it has a bulletproof glass facade, the chairs are empty, but most importantly, it signifies hope for reuniting a divided country.
It is the north-most station of the Gyeonggi railway in the south located 56 km from Seoul and 205 km from Pyeongyang. In 2000, with an aspiration for reunification, both sides agreed to link both Koreas through this Gyeongui Railroad Line. A few years after, it started taking back and forth North Korean workers from the Kaesong Industrial Region, who are allowed to work for South Korean companies. However, this ultimately stopped due to the continuing tensions.