The Peoples Republic of Podjistan is a tiny country, landlocked within Northern Ireland. My tour to this remote zone was an “access all areas” complete guide to this wacky country that is often forgotten and unknown in the tourism circles. In fact, I was the country’s first and last backpacker for the genuine purpose of travelling through the top sights of Podjistan. Check out this article if you want to get to know a few facts about Podjistan.
So I crossed the border from Northern Ireland into Podjistan and got my passport stamped in the country’s second largest village, Four Gables. I toured the capital city too – The Peoples Palace, but the Four Gables offers some highly interesting and creepy sights, so it’s worth a visit when you are in the country. These are my personal top 6 sights from Four Gables in Podjistan.
1.Four Gables Land Border with Northern Ireland
The Four Gables area of Podjistan has a land border with Northern Ireland, at the front, where Mill Road is separated from Podjistan by a low wall and a gate. Do the touristy thing and cross the border by foot, selfie-ing your feet as proof so you can Instagram it and boast to all yer mates.
2.Podjistan Passport Office and Immigration
The passport office is located in Four Gables and you must go here before you can access other parts of the country (including the capital city). The entrance to the Podjistan Passport Office is actually through a side door, if you’re looking into Podjistan from Mill Road.
It is here that the leader of the country will play the National Anthem on his Smart Phone, wear the General’s hat, inspect your passport and then give you the treasured possession – a dated entry stamp for the Peoples Republic of Podjistan.
3.The British Embassy
Podjistan has an Embassy abroad, which is rumoured to be in Newcastle in Northern Ireland. However, the country itself is small and houses zero embassies at present. It’s an interesting bit of history nonetheless to visit the front room of Four Gables as this was once where the British Embassy was due to be built.
Podjistan is a small country however, so eventually it was realised there was no need for a British Embassy in the nation and the Union Flag (fleg) being raised here could also be controversial, as bordering country Northern Ireland is obsessed with “fleg debates”. It was therefore deemed essential that the only fleg flown in Podjistan should be the Podjistan fleg.
The location of the British Embassy was to be in the front room of Four Gables village, which meant it would have the rare distinction of being an embassy abroad with a full window view of the nation (UK) it is representing. Yes, Northern Ireland and the United Kingdom can be viewed from what could have been the British Embassy. The purple flower pattern on the internal chimney wall remind us that this is a nation of colour and quirks.
4.The Haunted Hallway
This is where the story gets freaky. Four Gables is the most haunted building in Podjistan and one of the scariest places to stay overnight on the island of Ireland. I was there during renovation work so I didn’t sty over night and see the ghost of Podjistan.
However Head of State, Mr. Simon Stewart explained the situation to me. A man has been witnessed in ghostly form dandering down the hall from the hall’s entrance door to the room at the back. The thought of this chills you to the bone and gives Podjistan that clinical touch of classic darkness. I half expect Hercule Poirot to burst in and solve a murder or for Mulder and Skully to brandish their FBI badges and tell me to move over. The lampshade dangles nonchalantly from side to side as if to say “we’re watching you”.
5.The Haunted Room
I’ve travelled to some spooky places down the years, none moreso than the freaky Port Arthur (and the Isle of the Dead) in Tasmania. But here, at the end of the Haunted Hall is the Haunted Room. A man once died here and stories of ghosts have been around for generations. It’s a spooky feeling.
A diagonal cabinet sits in the haunted room at present, but the ghost stories linger. Mr. Stewart also tells me the tale of a fairy rat (in the Podjistan Egg Company) which was killed onsite before Mr. Stewart suffered a stroke. There’s also the tale of a mysterious two pence British coin which randomly arrived in the Republic one day, and nobody knows how.
6.Podjistani Administrative Office
Documentation, administration and paperwork are dealt with here in the Administrative Office of the country. However, Mr. Simon Stewart explains to me that the physical presence of the nation is coming to a close. Very soon, Podjistan will be sold back to neighbouring Northern Ireland, and the country of Podjistan will exist only in a spiritual and mental state. The paperwork in the administrative office has therefore been carefully locked away in a private location and the glory days of the admin office are behind us.
The room looks bare and grim, but there’s a sense of achievement and national pride in everything that Mr. Stewart tells me. He lives and breathes his nation and is a creditable leader to the Podjistani people. There are some other small rooms inside the Four Gables village, as well as a front garden. I tour them all but these were my top 6 sights in this region of the country.
Here are some other links for further reading and exploring on Podjistan:
Podjistan’s National Televison Channel
Follow Podjistan on Facebook
Podjistan National Photo Gallery
How to Cross from Northern Ireland into Podjistan
All You Need to Know about Podjistan
Top Sights in the Capital City – The Peoples Palace
Peoples Republic of Podjistan on Wiki
Thanks to my Mum, Muriel Blair for driving me to Podjistan, my sister Cathy for her role in this adventure and to Mr. Simon Stewart (Comrade General Papa Podjov) and the government of the People’s Republic of Podjistan for welcoming me to the country and giving me a guided tour in an “access all areas” tour of the country. The memories will linger forever.
Here are some videos from my time backpacking in Podjistan, safe travels!!