Palace sights in North Korea
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Kim Il Sung's residence during his lifetime, Kumsusan remains so in death. The palace is eerie, with bricked in windows and a vast square cleared before it. The embalmed corpse of the Great Leader lies in state here on the top floor for the truly privileged to witness. Unlike Mao's and Lenin's mausoleums, access is not for the proles, but by invite only. Though tour groups are often able to go, it's always best to request this a long time before you travel.
The tone is unbearably sombre and anyone invited should be dressed smartly (shirts, ties and trousers for men, modest dress for women). The moving walkways that carry you into the palace seem somewhat incongruous with…