Special winter enthusiasm in NE China

By Tian Yi (People's Daily Online) 11:13, February 02, 2024

(Video edited by Zhong Wenxing)

Renowned for offering a kaleidoscope of winter travel activities and the particular hospitality of the locals, northeast China has become a travel hub in winter. In addition, Harbin, the snowy capital of northeast China’s Heilongjiang Province, will host the 9th Asian Winter Games in 2025. In this article, People’s Daily Online will present some entertaining winter sports or activities offered in northeast China.

Pouring water into ice


A visitor plays a game with water spray in Beiji Village, Mohe City of northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, Jan. 24, 2019. With the lowest temperature approaching minus 30 degrees celsius, visitors in Mohe Village tried their hand at the game of "pouring water into ice" here. (Xinhua/Cai Yang)

With temperatures in Mohe city, northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, plummeting to below minus 40 degrees Celsius in recent days, the city has become a magnet for snow lovers eager to experience the charm of ice and snow. Tourists are flocking to Beiji village, also known as Arctic village, to take part in the unique phenomenon known as "splashing water into ice."

A spellbinding sight is created as pots of boiling water are splashed into the frigid air in a circular motion. When it meets the extremely low temperatures, the water vapour quickly condenses and freezes into tiny ice crystals, transforming into an awe-inspiring arc of ice that leaves onlookers enchanted.

Winter fishing


Tourists select fish during a winter fishing-themed festival on the Chagan Lake in Songyuan City, northeast China's Jilin Province, Dec. 28, 2023. (Xinhua/Zhang Nan)

In winter, the ice layer can reach a depth of 40 centimeters, prompting the locals in northeast China to invent a particular method of winter fishing. Fishermen drill holes across the thick ice layer, and spread 2,000-meter-long fishing nets through the holes, forming an enclosure beneath the ice.

Chagan Lake, located in Songyuan City of northeast China's Jilin Province, is one of China's largest freshwater lakes with abundant fishery resources. Locals living by Chagan Lake have kept alive the tradition of ice fishing by hand-drilling holes through the thick ice and casting nets into the icy waters to catch fish.

Winter fishing at Chagan Lake, included in the national intangible cultural heritage list, has become a famous tourist attraction in the city. The 22nd winter fishing-themed festival kicked off at Chagan Lake on December 28, 2023.

Ice dragon boat racing


Players compete during the 2nd Shenyang International Ice Dragon Boat Race, Jan. 11, 2020. (Xinhua/Pan Yulong)

An innovative version of the traditional dragon boat race, it retains the technical and competitive aspects of the original version while breaking through seasonal limitations, adding more excitement to the sport.

The winter dragon “boats” are equipped with ice-blade feet underneath their bodies, allowing players to row the boat forward with paddles. Players say rowing on ice is much more difficult and requires greater strength.

Top-spinning on ice


1,946 participants smashed a Guinness World Record on Jan.20, 2024 by simultaneously whipping tops in a massive ice arena in Jingyu county of Baishan city in Northeast China's Jilin province. (chinadaily.com.cn/Bai Shi)

Top-spinning is a common hobby in China and is thought to have been part of the culture for 4,000 years.

It sounds quite normal to spin tops with friends on dry land, but what about whipping it with a cord on an icy surface?

On January 20, 2024, 1,946 top-spinning players smashed a new Guinness World Record by simultaneously whipping tops in a massive ice arena in Jingyu county of Baishan city in Northeast China's Jilin province. According to Wu Xiaohong, a Guinness World Records certification officer, participants must use standard whipping tops and keep spinning them simultaneously for at least 5 minutes.


A representative from Jingyu county of Baishan city in northeast China's Jilin Province receives the Guinness World Record certificate for the most people playing whipping tops simultaneously on Saturday. (chinadaily.com.cn/Bai Shi)

Ice drifting

Taiwan students play ice drifting on Chagan Lake in Songyuan, northeast China's Jilin Province, on Jan. 24, 2024. (Xinhua/Chen Yehua)

(Web editor: Tian Yi, Wu Chengliang)


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