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Harbin Ice Festival

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This article is an itinerary.

Harbin Ice Festival [1] is fully called the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival and well-known as one of the world's top four ice & snow festivals, together with Japan Sapporo Snow Festival, Canada Quebec Winter Carnival, and Norway Holmenkollen Ski Festival. The festival makes Harbin be the most coolest ice city of China and attracts a growing number of visitors from the globe in winter.


Harbin International Snow and Ice Festival

Harbin International Ice & Snow Festival annually opens on January 5. Activities of the festival usually start from December 1, lasting nearly three months until very late February, including ice lantern Show, ice sculpture competition, alpine skiing, ice hotel relax, dog sledding, siberian tiger watching, winter swimming game, ice & snow carnival and firework display...

Shortly, Harbin Ice Festival was called and originated from local Haerbiner traditional ice lantern show garden party in winter. The Harbin city governors got a festival sponsor idea when they led Hong Kong officals to the ice lantern show and earned a praise in 1983. Then the first Harbin Ice Festival held with grand ceremony at Zhaolin Park on January 5 in 1985 and was announced as an annual event lasting a month.

In 2001, Harbin Ice Festival was merged with Heilongjiang International Ski Festival and got its new formal name China Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival.

Main venues & events of Harbin Ice Festival:

  • Annual opening ceremony at Exhibition and Sports Center OF Harbin
  • International Snow Sculpture Art Fair on Sun Island
  • International Ice Sculpture Exhibition at Ice and Snow World
  • Ice Lantern Garden Party at Zhaolin Park
  • Winter swiming games amd more around the Songhua River


Ice city Harbin has bitterly cold winter with average temperature of 20-30 degree below zero. All the houses in Harbin are equiped with heater system. Please just follow some tips to keep yourself from freezing outdoor.

What to wear for Harbin winter sightseeing: Upper dressing is Cold-proof underclothes, woolen sweater and down coat or ski wear; Under dressing is woolen underpants and ski pants; Waterproof cotton high boots or comfortable shoes and socks for foot can be bought in Harbin less than $20;

Get in[edit]

  • By Air:

Harbin Taiping International Airport has 75 air routes & flights to over thirty large cities including Beijing, Tianjing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Qingdao, Wenzhou, Xiamen, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Shenyang, Dalian, Xi'an and Hong Kong. In addition there are also scheduled international flights between Harbin and USA, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia, and South Korea.

  • By Train:

Harbin is the second largest railway terminal hub in Northeast China, only after Shenyang. Harbin Railway-Bureau is the first one of highest railway density in China. Five conventional rail lines radiate from Harbin to: Beijing (Jingha Line), Suifenhe (Binsui Line), Manzhouli (Binzhou Line), Beian (Binbei Line) and Lalin (Labin Line). In addition, Harbin has a high-speed rail line linking Dalian.

Classic Itinerary[edit]

  • Arrival in Harbin and the fisrt stop:

Upon arrive in the exquisite and historic Harbin city, visitors stay the hotel for a short rest. Then you will transfer to the Zhaolin Park to view the Ice Lantern Show. Ice Lantern Fair, also named the Ice Lantern Show, it is hold every year from 5th January to the end of February in Zhaolin Park. The park located in the downtown, it is a small and peaceful place.

  • The second stop:

After breakfast, you will visit the Sun Island Scenic Area (Tai Yang Dao) for a world-famous snow sculpture show: International Snow Sculpture Art Expo. There are various of massive, huge snow sculptures which is so impressive and amazing.

  • The third stop:

Then you will make an safari-style adventure in the world largest Siberian Tiger Park located on the north bank of the Songhua River. Here you can see wild tigers closely and take some fantastic photos.

  • The fourth stop:

Harbin St Sophia Cathedral church, with Byzantine style and meaning of 'God's wisdom' for name, look so beautiful as if it had been made by God's hands. The church's original shape and Latin cross footprint was preserved during reconstruction. Built in 1907 and rebuilt into brick and wood structure in 1912, it is the largest Orthodox Church in the Far East.

  • The fifth stop:

The Central Street, also known the Zhongyang Street, which was originally built in 1898 when there were abundant of Russian business man in Harbin, China. The Central Street is considered as the architectural art galley: Baroque and byzantine lining both sides, including Russian bakeries, French fashion houses and Japanese restaurants and so on. It's a good place to see architectural styles as well as for shopping and tasty cuisine.

  • The sixth stop:

In the evening you will go to visit the Ice and Snow World. Located on the north bank of the Songhua River, the Ice and Snow Amusement World is a major attraction of Harbin Interactional Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival dunging the winter.

Routes Beyond Festival[edit]

  • Besides the abovedmentioned top six tourist sites, your trip can be entend for skiing at Yabuli Ski Resort or Jihua Ski Resort.
  • Another choice is to add 1.5-2 days for a forest park winter adventure tour to China's Snow Town, a dreamlike winter paradise with high mountains, local traditional wooden houses, villages, animals, trees and the sunrise are all greatly different from those in the other world's snowy areas.

Travel Tips[edit]

Somthing is neccessary for travel packing:

  • Passport, visa, birth certificate, ID card;
  • Belt, pants, socks, underwear and more dresses prepare for changes;
  • Pouch for flights, entrance tickets, insurance, and more travel documents;
  • Aspirin, pain relievers, patulin and more for medical health;
  • Thermos & hot water container;
  • Camera, manual, charger, extra chip, film;

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