Harbin, the capital of Heilongjiang Province is located in Northeast China. It is also nicknamed “Ice City”, due to the cold winter wind from nearby Siberia as the city becomes a snow-covered wonderland during the winter months.
The city is host to the world’s famous and largest Ice and Snow Festival, where these sculptures are made from around 220,00 cubic meters of ice and snow from the frozen Songhua River. The river is also a favorite place for skaters.
Not to be missed is a visit to the largest natural park for wild Siberian tigers and the Saint Sophia Cathedral, hailed as a monumental work of art and also the largest Orthodox Church building in the Far East.
This private 2-day tour focuses on the Ice Festival and city highlights of Harbin. You can extend your trip one or two days to enjoy the ski slopes at a nearby ski resort. Lunch is also included in your tour.
On arrival at the airport or train station, you will be met by your local guide and head to the St. Sophia Orthodox Church. It was first built in 1907 and rebuilt with bricks and a wooden structure in 1912. It is the largest Orthodox Church in the Far East. Afterward, you will go to Zhongyang Pedestrian Street, also known the Zhongyang Street, which was originally built in 1898. The street is also known as “a gallery of European architectural art”, for the feature of many western architectures, including Russian, Baroque, and Renaissance. Harbin is hence known as “Eastern Moscow” or “Eastern Paris”. As you walk along the street, you will find Russian bakeries, French fashion houses, and Japanese restaurants. A good place to explore the different architectural styles, shopping and embark on a culinary journey.
After lunch, you will 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 the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival during winter. These awe-inspiring ice and snow sculptures are created by artists from around the world. During the evening these sculptures will be lit up making the place a magical winter wonderland.
Please note that your guide will not accompany you into the park if there are fewer than 5 people in the group
After breakfast, you will be taken to Sun Island Park, situated downtown of Harbin and on the northern bank of the Songhua River. Sun Island is the pride of the locals. The island is the only floodplain wetland ecology in the city’s center. During winter the island is blanketed with snow and is home to the Sun Island International Snow Sculpture Art Expo. You will enjoy seeing these massive sculptures that will make great photo opportunities.
From there, you will head to the Siberian Tiger Park, located on the north bank of the Songhua River. It is the largest natural park for wild Siberian tigers in the world. There are over 500 Siberian tigers in this park. This is where your tour will end for the day, and your guide and driver take you to the airport or train station.
Harbin is a city that explodes with life and light during the winter. Come and embrace the local life with a Harbin beer, the late-night of kebabs, and of course, the not to be missed, enchanting, and illuminating ice sculptures, as well as the Siberian tigers. Contact us to help plan your winter travel experience for you, your friends, or your family.