The 19 strangest places to ski

Hitting the slopes this winter and getting bored of mainstream ski resorts? From hermit kingdom to active volcano sites, here are the 19 strangest places to ski

Have you considered skiing in Algeria, Pakistan or Iran? Didn’t think so. But perhaps you should – some of the most interesting slopes on the planet reside on Pacific islands, hermit kingdoms and active volcanoes typically avoided by mainstream skiers. Fair warning: you will be skiing among machine guns in a few of them.

1. Masikryong, North Korea

North Korea’s only luxury ski resort is a project by its leader Kim Jong-un who hopes to use it to increase foreign tourist numbers. Brave visitors to Masikryong will enjoy the 110km (70 miles) of powdery snow and deserted piste. After a day of skiing, guests can relax at its onsite 120-room hotel which includes a sauna, massage room, beauty parlour and an ice-skating rink. Bliss.
19 strangest places ski 01

The North Korean resort is struggling to pull in the numbersCreative Commons/ Uri Tours

2. Mauna Kea, Hawaii

That’s right, you can ski in Hawaii. Mauna Kea – which translates as ‘white mountain’ – may not have lifts, trail maps or any ski resort facilities, but at nearly 4,270m (14,000ft) it does occasionally get sizeable snowfalls between December and February, making it ideal for hours of backcountry skiing. And where else can you have après -ski drinks on the beach? Life can’t get much better than this.
19 strangest places ski 02Après-ski drinks on the beach? Only in Hawaii
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