10 Everyday Things That Are Illegal In North Korea

We all enjoy freedom in pretty much everything ranging from our clothes to celebrating festivals. Unfortunately Kim Jong Un’s country North Korea does not enjoy that level of choice. Here’s a list of 10 things illegal in North Korea that you will no longer take for granted.

10. Sight-Seeing

Let’s say that for some reason, that we cannot think of, you decide to go on a vacation to North Korea. You find a beautiful place and you take a selfie there, to post it on social media. Surprise! You just got fined and now you’re being questioned. According to the tourism law in there, not only is it illegal to capture unsanctioned photos but you’re also not allowed to explore the place on your own. You’ll be with a government authorized guide all the time and can only venture on permitted roads.

9. Religion 

Most countries in the world are secular and do not enforce or ban any particular religions upon their citizens. And then there’s North Korea. Here, you can’t even talk about religion openly let alone practicing it. You can be arrested for possessing any religious texts like ‘The Quran’ or ‘The Bible.’ In fact, they’ve even arrested pastors for trying to control people’s lives by influencing them with their religions.

8. Celebrating Holidays

Putting up some Christmas lights outside your house in North Korea will have you locked up. When they thought no celebrations would be boring, they just came up with a new holiday. Christmas in North Korea is celebrated as the birthday of Jong Un’s grandmother, Kim Jong Suk. Could they be anymore self-obsessed than this?

7. Jeans

What’s the most comfortable and cost efficient piece of clothing that can be worn almost anywhere? That’s right! Jeans! Unfortunately, jeans are banned in North Korea. According to them, jeans are a symbol of America and all its evils. You are locked up if you’re seen wearing a pair of jeans. Not only that, your jeans will be confiscated and that might not be a pleasant experience in a country like that.

6. Television

There are thousands of channels we can watch on our TVs. Do you hate it when you’re not able to decide what to watch? Okay! Pack your bags and move to North Korea as they make it real easy for you to make the choice. You can watch news and documentaries on Kim’s life, his relatives’ lives and news and yup, again news. Want to run a F.R.I.E.N.D.S. marathon? That’ll probably get you locked up because being caught with any programs from outside the country, is also illegal.

5. Outside Communication

The country doesn’t even have real internet. Nobody can log on to the World Wide Web. They instead have a government created intra-web, where you can watch government controlled videos, read government controlled articles and know about government leaders. Receiving international calls will have you charged with spying. Well. they’re quite a paranoid country.

4. Mourning

They don’t usually care about it when it comes to normal people but when a political figure dies, you’ve to do it. A lot of it. And if you don’t like to show how upset you are in public, you’re going to prison. Apparently not looking upset enough when a leader dies, is illegal. You would probably end up in jail if you’re bad actors.

3. Adult Content

Obviously, you don’t brag about possessing any of it in public but erotic novels, porn movies, sex toys or adult magazines won’t get you arrested in normal countries. And then there’s North Korea. The police will take you away for possession of any adult content. They even made Kim’s ex ‘disappear’ for quite some time after she made a racy bedroom tape. North Korea definitely needs to chill.

2. Leaving the Country

Okay! North Korea is terrible and you wanna leave. You’ve packed your stuff, chosen a country you want to live in. But there just one single and massive problem. You cannot leave. It’s illegal for citizens who aren’t officials to leave the country because then the government cannot know their whereabouts and will have no control over what they see, read or do. So, apart from being terrible, they’re also control freaks.

1. Hair Styles 

The total legal hairstyles in North Korea are 18 and 10 for women and men respectively. For married ladies, the choices are even fewer because they’re supposed to have their hair short. Of course, single ladies can have fun with shoulder length hair. Longer than that? Chop Chop. Suspiciously though, Kim Jong’s hairstyle is nowhere to be seen on the legal hairstyle list. Double standards!