Sonchon is a kun, or
county, on the coast of the Yellow Sea in west-central North
Pyongan province, North
To the north it borders Chonma
, to the east Kusong
, and to the west Tongrim
; to the south, it borders nothing but the
sea. Sonchon was reorganized in 1952, with two myŏn
, or townships, being split off to form
the new county of Tongrim.
The terrain varies between hills and plains; numerous islands are
also found along the indented coastline. The highest point is
Kainbong (가인봉, 535 m), which is the source of the Tongrae River
. The year-round average
temperature is 8.5 °C, with a January average of -9.2 °C and an
August average of 23.6 °C. The average annual rainfall is 1192 mm.
The island of Sinmido
hosts a peak of 532 m,
, and is also home to a variety
of plants normally found only in warm areas. Some 45% of the
county's area is forestland.
The local economy relies on agriculture, including
livestock-raising and sericulture, as well as fishing and
manufacturing. Local crops include rice, maize, soybeans, tobacco,
and soybeans. Factories in Sonchon manufacture ironware, ceramics,
and tobacco products.
served by the Pyongui Line railroad,
which runs between Pyongyang and Sinuiju.
addition, passenger ferry operates between Sinmido and the
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the area was a hotbed of
activity, with more than 50 churches. There were also 13 Buddhist
temples. These were all converted or destroyed following the
establishment of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.