Adventure-seekers will soon be able to take a trip from Wigan all the way to North Korea.
But organisers of the trip jokingly say people can miss out Wigan if they’re worried about security.
Lupine Travel, based in the town, specialise in organised trips to obscure destinations such as Iraq, Siberia and Chernobyl.
And their newest trip will see people go all the way from Greater Manchester to the capital of the secretive communist nation North Korea entirely by rail.
Taking exactly a month, the unique trip which departs from Wigan’s North Western station will see them enjoy a pie barm lunch on the train before arriving in London to continue the journey which will see travellers pass through over a dozen countries.
It will cover over 5,000 miles and will include stops in Brussels, Berlin, Warsaw, Moscow, Irkutsk in Siberia, Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, Beijing, Dandong also in China and then Pyongyang.
If done in full it will set you back £3,195.
People can book sections of the trip independently and the organisers jokingly say: “For example, if you wish to avoid Wigan for security reasons you can instead start in London.”
The trip will have a communist history theme, starting with a visit to Karl Marx’s grave in Highgate Cemetery in London and will also visit Lenin’s Mausoleum and Stalin’s grave in Moscow.
It will take in the Ural Mountains and the Great Wall of China whilst passing along the route of the Trans Siberian Railway.
Whilst in Beijing travellers will get a tour to the Great Wall and Forbidden City as well as a visit to Chairman Mao’s Mausoleum.
They will spend four nights in North Korea and will see the sights in Pyongyang, visiting the Demilitarised zone (DMZ) at the border with South Korea as well as travelling over to Mount Myohyang, before taking the overnight train back to Beijing from Chinese border city, Dandong.
The firm say they have already had several concrete bookings for the entire journey.
James Finnerty, 31, who is running the trip told the M.E.N: “We’ve run popular trips to North Korea for a while now, most going from Moscow, and we just wanted to promote them really.
Pictures from Lupine’s previous trips to North Korea, Iraq and Chernobyl
“So we thought about doing a special, one-off train service.
“We were thinking of starting in Poland, or Berlin or even London.
“But we thought why not go the whole hog and start it in Wigan.
“Our founder is from here and our offices are here. The Wigan to London bit is a bit of fun but we’ve done tours of the town before for some clients.
“And ultimately people want an adventure and saying you’re getting a train from Wigan to Pyongyang is a bit more exciting than saying you’re going from London or Moscow.”
North Korea does allow foreign visitors, albeit on tightly controlled trips accompanied by Korean guides and only 4,000-6,000 westerns make the trip.
James has been to the secretive state nine times now and says adventure tourists are attracted by how different it is to anywhere else in the world.
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“Obviously the fact it is closed society provides the intrigue and people are fascinated by it.
“People always assume you can’t go there but when they realise you can then makes some people really want to.
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“The Wigan leg is a little bit of fun but these trips aren’t a laugh or a joke. They are for people with a real history in world history and culture and going there brings that to life.
“It’s architecture, art and almost everything else are completely different to anywhere else in the world.