March 02, 2024


Gareth Johnson

Gareth Johnson

Gareth Johnson is the CEO of Young Pioneer Tours, a travel company that specializes in tourism to countries including North Korea, Cuba and Iran.


Why North Korea tourism and cultural exchanges are a force for good

Far from supporting the regime, tourism promotes understanding between peoples that view themselves as enemies

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonJune 25, 2021

The Rason Special Economic Zone: Like nowhere else in North Korea

The DPRK’s flirtation with capitalism has led to hotels, casinos, beaches and trade shows in one small area in the North

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonJune 18, 2021

What it’s like to be a foreign tour guide in North Korea

Guides occupy a strange middle ground when it comes to North Korea watchers due to all the time spent in the country

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonJune 11, 2021

What North Korea is really like when visiting as a tourist

The reality of sightseeing is much different than portrayed, despite some restrictions

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonJune 4, 2021

Why North Korea’s Wonsan Beach Resort could be a game changer for tourism

Tens of thousands could soon be enjoying a one-of-a-kind summer vacation in the DPRK

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonMay 27, 2021

Better airports would help tourists visit rarely-seen areas of North Korea

Large numbers of tourists may want to visit North Korea after international travel resumes

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonMay 12, 2021

Why North Korean tour operators are optimistic about growth

Chinese numbers to DPRK are dropping significantly, but Western operators remain optimistic

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonJuly 25, 2016

Without more flights, North Korea tourism industry will stagnate

Possible Shanghai-to-Pyongyang flights a godsend in face of potential stagnation

Gareth JohnsonGareth JohnsonDecember 2, 2015