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North Korean Street Food – The Ultimate Guide

north korean street food
north korean street food

Can you get North Korean Street Food? North Korea as a socialist country is hard a street food heaven, the dynamics of the economy mean it does not generally fit into the street food niche. Generally speaking street food tends to be run by small businesses and sole-traders.

You can read a definition of Street Food here .

Things though are changing in the DPRK and as the economy has adapted more of a North Korea street food scene has sprung up.

To read what a Socialist country is then click here .

What are the street food specialties in North Korea?

Generally North and South Korean food is very same same, but different. When it comes to street food though they are worlds apart. Do not go to North Korea expecting southern favorites like the savory rice-cake in spicy sauce.

You can read about the differences between North and South Korean food here .

Will I eat street food in Pyongyang?

north korean street food
north korean street food

All tours, even independent tours to North Korea are guided with restaurants arranged in advance – this means they want to take you to the best restaurants. You will generally not get to try North Korean street food, but it is possible.

To read a list of Young Pioneer Tours to North Korea click here.

You can though try it at certain places YPT visit, join a culinary tour, or simply ask your guide.

To see the YPT culinary tour click here .

Best street food in Pyongyang

Kwangbok Supermarket – which you can read about here is the best place to try North Korea street food in a tour. Basically it is a foreign currency supermarket, but they have street food vendors outside, good North Korean craft beer for 40 cents, as well as a whole heap of other goodies.

I personally love the North Korean burgers you get here, slightly higher a standard than the Air Koryo burger .

Street Food in the rest of North Korea

Everywhere has street food, but some are much better/easier than others to try it. Wonsan and Chongjin as seaside towns have great seafood that can be tried – as you would expect, as does Rason, which we will give its own little entry in a moment.

You can read our guide to Wonsan here .

Where is the best street food in North Korea?

north korean street food
North Koream street food

The best North Korean street food can be found in Rason. Rason is perhaps also my favorite place in the country. Basically t is a special economic zone (SEZ), so private enterprise is somewhat allowed. Around the central square and Rajin Hotel you can get great BBQ of the Chinese Kao Rou variety, but the true joy is the private market.

Basically get the best seafood and the cheapest price probably anywhere I have found in the world, you take it to a restaurant and then pay them to cook it for you. Nice and simple and a true treat.

You can read our Rason Guide here .

Street Food Sinuiju

I had previously written a blog about this, but somehow my site lost it. Sinuiju is the one place you can visit on a day, or overnight trip. There are lots of vendors selling BBQ meat Chinese style when you go into the countryside, as well as a full Sinuiju street food setup outside of the Dongrim Hotel

You can read my guide to Sinuiju I wrote for NKNews here .

Sinuiju is therefore a great place to sample North Korean street eats as well as being the cheapest way to technically visit North Korea. I Personally though prefer the overnight to the day trip, but again nothing truly beats going to Pyongyang.

To read about Sinuiju Day Trips click here .

And that is the North Korean street food guide, from the Street Food Guy, who has eaten street food in the DPRK!

See you in Sinuiju…….

Written by Gareth

Gareth Johnson is the founder of Young Pioneer Tours, a published writer, and all round entrepreneur. He enjoys street food, and encourage others to get paid to travel the world.

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