However, real life does go on, and if, on New Year’s Eve, you happen to find yourself in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea without access to the reliable internet needed for an immersive VR journey, don’t worry!
If you haven’t yet been sent to a secret prison, there are things you can do to make the New Year’s evening fun.
After all, North Korea is not all firing squads and starvation. Indeed, as you might already know if you are a fan of Netflix’s Crash Landing on You, for a certain strata of society, North Korea rocks.
If you are staying in Pyongyang, or in the nearby satellite city of Pyongsong, known as North Korea’s Silicon Valley, then on New Year’s Eve itself, you have a number of choices.
Head over to Kim Il Sung Square to watch the evening festivities among the populace, which will include a light show, a “synchronized drone display,” and fireworks over the Taedong River.
You might also see a musical performance of the Moranbong Band, North Korea’s most popular girl-power pop group, who have performed in past years, although their availability was unconfirmed at press-time. Maybe they’ve been arrested. (They were rumored purged in 2014 after they unexpectedly disappeared from public view for an uncomfortable length of time.)
If you want to avoid the crowds, watch the fireworks from the river, and enjoy a Taedonggang Beer aboard the Mujigae Ship, a truly beautiful floating restaurant with four decks, which can accommodate 1200 diners at a time.
Or catch everything from above, sitting in the Yanggakdo Hotel Revolving Restaurant, blackouts permitting.
Taedonggang beer, incidentally, is the best microbrewery beer in a nation known for great microbrewery beer.
North Korea is better known for torture and for the Hamhung reeducation camp, but it is also known for its really good microbrewery beer.
And even Hamhung has a beautiful beach resort.
If you are not in Pyongyang on December 31, you might be able to catch the festivities on livestream. If so, you will see it here.
Image: North Korean crowds watch fireworks in Pyongyang on December 31, 2020.