According to a legend, nine dragons once lived at the foot of Kumgang Mountain – they came here to protect this mountain. Hence the beautiful Kuryong Falls – Nine Dragons Waterfall – got their name.


This 74 m tall waterfall is located in one of most beautiful places in North Korea. Kumgang Mountains – Diamond Mountains have the second tallest peak in North Korea – 1,638 m tall.

Kuryong Falls, North Korea
Kuryong Falls / David Stanley, / CC BY 2.0

Waterfall has formed on a steep (but not vertical) granite slope and ends in a 13 m deep pool. Waterfall becomes especially impressive in winter, when it is adorned with ice. Site is open to tourists, there are built pathways and special platform to enjoy the view.

Fairy pools

Kuryong Falls, North Korea
Kuryong Falls / のりまき, / GNU FDL

Above the falls in a sharp and very steep bend of river have formed nine pools with waterfalls between them.

According to a legend eight fairies came to bathe in these pools. Young man saw them and fell in love.

Upon the advice of monk in nearby monastery he once hid gown of his beloved fairy. She could not return to heaven without this flying gown – and finally she married the young man.

Fairy pools above Kuryong Falls, North Korea
Fairy pools above Kuryong Falls / David Stanley, / CC BY 2.0

They had three children – but fairy longed to get back her gown. Finally the kind man gave it to her – and she left her family and returned to heaven.

As the time passed, she felt, that that she can not live without her children and the beautiful scenery of Kumgang – and returned back.

Kuryong Falls on the map
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Location, GPS coordinates: 38.6653 N 128.1343 E
Categories: Waterfalls, Sites of legends
Values: Geology, Visual
Rating: 3 out of 10 stars
Where is located? Asia, North Korea, Kangwon, near Mount Kumgang
Name in Korean: 구룡폭포
Height: 74 m
Width: ˜ 4 m

Wonders of North Korea

Lake Tianchi from the Chinese side
Lake Tianchi from the Chinese side / drnan tu, Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Devastating wars have not erased fully the unique heritage of Ancient and Medieval Korea, nature in North Korea is gorgeous and Koreans are deservedly proud of their heritage. Highlights of North Korea are ancient royal mausoleums, fortresses and walls.

Waterfalls and rapids

Virginia Falls, Canada
Virginia Falls / Paul Gierszewski, Wikimedia Commons / public domain
Some of the most fascinating and awe inspiring natural monuments are waterfalls, or locations where a river abruptly changes its elevation.

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