Travel to North Korea – or the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) as the government laughably calls itself – is very heavily restricted. You can’t travel on passports from the US, South Korea or Israel and you can’t travel on a tourist visa if you’re a journalist. Most painfully of all, you cannot travel freely within North Korea, but must at all times be accompanied by two North Korean government officials (the second one, presumably, to keep an eye on the first).

So when Melbourne student and blogger Ari Sharp – www.ariontheweb.blogspot.com – went in search of a North Korean sense of humour, he instead found some disconcertingly obedient children and a people inexplicably besotted with their dear leader, Kim Jong Il.

Read his lively observations as a tourist in Pyongyang on the site here.