The Norks next to Peaceland
The clash of civilisations was never better dramatised than at Peace Land, in Imjingak, on the 38th Parallel. Here, the starving people of the world's nastiest dictatorship can look across the border at capitalism quite literally putting on a funfair. For the Southerners, of course, the North Koreans are the principal attraction.You can bet there is no Peaceland north of the border.
Right alongside the Pirate Ship, the Wriggly Worm and all the other fantasy rides run the perfectly real electrified fences and watchtowers of the border. The organisers of the theme park provide special viewing platforms and free telescopes for visitors. A key attraction is a bombed-out steam locomotive, still standing on its original tracks in front of a blown-up railway bridge across the River Imjin marking the frontier.
Peace Land has remained open throughout the latest outbreak of hostilities – but on Sunday, with the peace between the two Koreas at its most fragile since the 1950s, the Sunday crowds were understandably thinner than normal.