North Korea has been thrust into the spotlight as tensions escalate between the isolated Asian nation and America.
Earlier this year, the country’s leaders have threatened “all out war” on the US if Donald Trump and his government were “reckless enough to use military means”.
The President had tough words of “fire and fury” for the country.
The nation is extremely isolated but one tourist has shared his holiday photos from North Korea under Kim Jong-un’s rule – and they’ve promptly gone viral.
Imgur user CaptainBaps uploaded the incredible images from his travels to heavily restricted region.
He shared photos from the plane, Pyongyang, his accommodation, festive celebrations, schools and local people.
CaptainBaps wrote: “The first thing to clarify is that you can’t just go backpacking in North Korea. You have to go on an organised tour group.”
One of the images taken from inside the plane showed rows of uniform grey houses in the mountainous countryside of Pyongyang.
Alongside the picture, he added: “You aren’t really allowed to take pictures from the plane so this was the last one I took seconds before we landed.”
The tourist also shared a snap of the towering, grey Yanggakdo Hotel where he was staying. He said: “If you go to DPRK [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea] you will most likely stay here. It looks a little past its prime on the outside and inside but it does the job! There’s a bowling alley, a bar, a casino, and some other stuff inside.”
A striking image of the Pyongyang skyline highlighted the Ryugyong Hotel, a giant pyramid-shaped building which began construction 30 years ago but still has never been opened.
More photos of the river, bridges and buildings showed a complete absence of advertising across the city.
CaptainBaps said: “The whole time you are in DPRK you are constantly wondering, ‘Is this real?’ ‘Is this normally like this or just a show for tourists?’”
The traveller was in the country for Victory Day, which marks the ‘victory’ of the Korean War.
Men dressed in white shirts and black pants danced with women sporting colourful dresses in the streets.
The celebration was finished with a large display of fireworks over the city.
One of CaptainBap’s images showed a tour guide who followed the group around with a camera the whole trip. The company offers the footage in a DVD to travellers at the end of the holiday, but this tourist questioned the motive.
He said: “A great ruse to make sure the secret police have someone there at all times keeping an eye on things? Paranoia? Again, I don’t know. This is what DPRK does to your brain.”
North Korea is well known for keeping a close eye on visitors. In November two Australian man blagged their way into a golf tournament in Pyongyang.
They were followed the whole trip but incredibly made it out of the country without being caught.