North Korean high school students play on a beach at Wonsan, on September 11, 2017.
Bartender at the Rainbow floating restaurant in Pyongyang on September 10.
Sunday afternoon row boats on the Taedong River, Pyongyang, beside Juche Tower. Taken on September 10.
Participation in mass celebrations is mandatory for those privileged citizens allowed to live in the capital, Pyongyang. Taken on September 9.
Pyongyang residents walk past a poster marking the 69th DPRK Foundation Day on September 9. It reads "Let the entire world look up to the great Kim Il Sung nation and Kim Jong Il Korea."
This statue in Samjiyon depicts North Korea's founding President Kim Il Sung when he was a guerrilla fighter against the Japanese. Taken on September 6.
The lobby of the CNN team's hotel in Samjiyon on September 5.
A bus driver who drives a Japanese vehicle over some of the bumpiest roads in North Korea. Taken on September 5.
Propaganda banners line the streets of Samjiyon on September 4.
Public transportation in rural North Korea, near the Chinese border, taken on September 4.
A young North Korean musician in the border town of Kaesong, taken on September 4. Music is a huge part of life in North Korea.
North Korean tour guide at Mt Paektu outside the alleged birth place of Kim Jong Il, on September 3. Kim is widely considered to have been born in Russia.
Housing units deep in rural North Korea, near the border with China, taken on September 3.
A boy living in the mountainous northeastern border region on September 3, not far from North Korea's sixth nuclear test.
The view from the top of Mt Paektu on September 3, a sacred site to North Koreans close to the border with China. First time CNN has ever been allowed here.
The Mausoleum of Tangun is said to hold the remains of the ancient King Tangun -- widely considered a mythical figure.
North Korea built the pyramid in 1994 and has not allowed outside experts to verify the remains inside.
Sunset from inside Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, on August 31.
The crowd applauds as North Korean TV airs footage of their latest missile launch outside Pyongyang Station on August 30, 2017.
May Day celebrations are held on May 1 in Pyongyang.
A North Korean boy sits in his family's living room on April 30 in Pyongyang.
A North Korea veteran stands against the backdrop of the USS Pueblo, a US Navy ship that North Korea captured in 1968. CNN's Will Ripley asked this veteran about his thoughts on the USS Carl Vinson, an American aircraft carrier conducting joint drills with two Japanese destroyers in the western Pacific Ocean. The veteran told Ripley, "We can sink that aircraft carrier."
Ripley noted that in Pyongyang, children are often seen dressed in bright, colorful clothing, contrasting with the more conservative and darker outfits worn by many adults.
North Koreans celebrate the birthday of Kim Il Sung. He would have been 105.
Tanks roll through Kim Il Sung Square on April 15.
North Korean air force jets fly over the Pyongyang celebration.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un appears at a ceremony to formally open a housing development in Pyongyang on April 13. The project was rushed to completion in under a year, North Korean officials say.
North Koreans gather to witness the opening of the Ryomyong Street housing development.
Foreign journalists are filmed by North Korean media during the Ryomyong Street event.
Soldiers leave the opening ceremony of the Ryomyong Street development.
North Koreans observe a statue of their founder, Kim Il Sung, at the Museum of the Korean Revolution on April 10. CNN's Will Ripley said it was the first time CNN cameras had been allowed into the Pyongyang museum.
North Koreans pose on April 9, for a photo at Mangyongdae, the birthplace of Kim Il Sung.
Boys in Pyongyang pose for a photo at a secondary school for orphans on February 19.
North Korean soldiers ride on February 17, in a black Mercedes-Benz on the streets of Pyongyang.
A 70-story apartment building undergoes construction on February 17.
The floating Rainbow Restaurant is seen in Pyongyang on February 17.
North Korean soldiers watch fireworks on February 16, in Pyongyang.
People use smartphones on on February 16, to take photos of an ice sculpture in Pyongyang.
A soldier stands guard in North Korea on February 16. While military service for women has long been voluntary, it reportedly was made mandatory recently in a bid to bolster the armed forces.
A boy visits the Kimjongilia flower show on February 16. The red flowers are named after the late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.
University students dance in front of the Pyongyang indoor stadium on February 16.
Book titles are listed in English at a bookshop for tourists in the Yanggakdo Hotel in Pyongyang.
Ice flows down the Taedong River in Pyongyang on February 16.
Soldiers pay respects to former North Korean leaders on February 15. The site is considered one of the most sacred in Pyongyang.
Vendors sell flowers February 15 to mourners paying their respects to deceased leaders of North Korea.
The view over the frozen Taedong River shows residential areas of Pyongyang on February 15.
The symbol of North Korea's sole political party, the Korean Workers' Party, can be seen atop a government building in Pyongyang.
Taxis are becoming more prevalent on the streets of Pyongyang. Most commuters still ride buses.
The Man Gyong Dae School Children's Palace, shown in May 2016, is an after-school activity complex in Pyongyang.
Young singers practice their performance at a "children's palace" in Pyongyang.
Children play volleyball at an after-school center in Pyongyang.
An Olympic-sized swimming pool is a focal point of a "children's palace" after-school center in Pyongyang.
A train can be seen from the window of the Koryo Hotel in Pyongyang.
Visitors to North Korea's Science and Technology Center use the tightly regulated North Korean intranet.
A guide shows visitors a display in the North Korean Science and Technology Center.
Exhibits at the North Korean Science and Technology Center include this fighter jet.
Young members of North Korea's military ride artillery through Pyongyang.
North Korean soldiers march below statues of North Korea's founding president Kim Il Sung and his son, Kim Jong Il.
Weapons are paraded through Pyongyang as a clear signal to the rest of the world that North Korea has military might.
Farm manager Kim Myong Jon is something of a celebrity in North Korea. During the past 40 years, she's met with all three North Korean leaders.
The farm where Kim Myong Jon works is home to one of North Korea's first greenhouses. It was first visited by Kim Il Sung more than three decades ago, and more recently by his grandson, current leader Kim Jong Un.
Chili peppers lie in the sun at the Jang Chon farm. Peppers are used for making kimchi, the fermented cabbage dish that is a staple of the North Korean diet.
The futuristic space center is in a residential area not far from the center of Pyongyang.
Two officials walk in the grounds of the space facility. NADA officials told CNN that they had prepared multiple satellites and were in the "final stages of perfecting all operations."
In May 2015, CNN was given rare access to a faculty apartment in an upscale area of Pyongyang, near Kim Il Sung University. The lounge was neat, if a little dated.
This is the master bedroom of the three-bedroom apartment. A university professor lives in the home with his adult children. It's 200 square meters (about 2,150 square feet). That's large for an apartment in Pyongyang.
A flat-screen television sits prominently in the lounge.
Books are neatly lined up above a desk in the study. There's a lamp for reading and a large padded chair.
Every home in North Korea displays portraits of late leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Housing is assigned by the government and is free. Those who want to move have to sign up to exchange places with other citizens.
The kitchen features a double sink and brushed metal counter tops.
The kitchen is fitted with a Haier two-burner gas hob. Haier, based in Qingdao, China, is one of the world's biggest home appliance companies.
First-graders in a Pyongyang classroom are orderly yet energetic, often standing and giving spirited answers to their teacher's questions.
North Korean students watch riding lessons at a new equestrian center designed by Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un. The facility was formerly used for military training.
Outdoor exercise accompanied by upbeat music is a daily routine for these North Korean middle school students. Classes are critiqued on their coordination.
Young children in a newly constructed Pyongyang orphanage practice a musical performance.
The orphanage features a pool area for the children, who live and study in the complex.
Young boys practice a drum routine that they will perform during International Children's Day.
Toy rocket launchers sit ready for children to play with.
Soldiers stand guard on the North Korean side of the DMZ.
North Korea displays the armistice agreement that brought the brutal fighting of the Korean War to an end in 1953.
Junior Lt. Col. Nam Dong Ho is part of North Korea's standing army of more than a million.
Pyongyang women wear their Sunday best -- and carry ornate umbrellas to shield themselves from the sun.
Twin statues honor the late leaders of North Korea, Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. Visitors to Pyongyang are routinely taken to pay their respects and lay flowers at the monument.
Kim Jong Un personally inspected the plans for this new water park and had his top officials test the water slides for safety.
Visitors to a Pyongyang water park play table tennis.
The Pyongyang Gold Lane, a bowling alley in the North Korean capital, is popular among young people.
Pyongyang Airport is the first stop on tours of North Korea. Air Koryo is the national airline. It operates direct flights from Beijing and Shenyang in China, and Vladivostok in Russia. Air Koryo has an aging fleet, although it has purchased some newer aircraft in recent years.
The inflight magazine features multiple pages on Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un.
The inflight meal consists of a burger and a glass of North Korean beer.