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Ice Festival Harbin-Day Tour
Review Highlights
Awesome - Ice and Snow Festival

Our family booked our tour through Cathy at Ice Festival Harbin. Communication was fantastic and... read more

Reviewed January 31, 2019
Melinda W
Excellent service and organisation

We booked our tour through Cathy at Ice Festival Harbin. The tour was very well organised- very... read more

Reviewed January 18, 2019
JamesA045
,
London, United Kingdom
via mobile
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Reviewed December 26, 2016

Harbin and the Ice Festival needs no additional promotion as the city and attractions in itself are magical and worth the trip, the sub zero temperatures and travel time. Overall tour planning expectations that planned and paid for were met, however the tourguide appointed was probably an apprentice at best. But its ok, as the attractions can carry themselves so well on its own without guide assistance.

Date of experience: December 2016
1  Thank KevinJ1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2016

I love to visit this place again. Its very easy to make all the important visits to sightseeing in just one day. I did it can you also make it if you dont want to stay for long.

Date of experience: February 2016
Thank abdulg79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2016 via mobile

Our guide referred to Harbin as "The Eye of the Chicken" as he pointed to an atlas. On a map China does indeed resemble a chicken! During the 1917 Russian Revolution many White Russians fled to Harbin settling in what is now referred to as The Old Quarter. Their cultural influence is readily evident in the architecture and cuisine. Most of the buildings in the old quarter are in a terrible state of decay from neglect and nonuse after the White Russians were forced to leave. Luckily, the Russian Orthodox church, St. Sophia has been restored and reopened to the public as a museum. Parts of the old quarter have been opened to foreigners recently.

White Russian cultural influence is apparent in local cuisine as well. Variations of hard cheese, dark bread, and Russian sausages are plentiful in Harbin shops and fine dining establishments. The menus are a treat for history buffs.

The Harbin Ice Festival held at Zhaolin Park has increased in size every January since it began in 1963. In additional to mega ice displays created by Chinese locals there is an international ice sculpture juried event that produces the finest ice sculptures I've seen. The smaller International sculptures line the bank of the partially frozen Songhua River. During the day these magnificent displays of carved ice attract large crowds inspite of the subzero temperatures. As night falls and the temperature drops, Harbin's city of sculpted ice and snow is lit up with dim colored lights, drawing even larger crowds enjoying ice cream and slipping down ice slides!

Many activities are held on the frozen surface of the Songhua River. We enjoyed a covered carriage ride drawn by magnificent black stallion. We watched reindeer racing and old Chinese men, wearing nothing more than a latex swim cap and swimming trunks, take a quick dip in a carved out hole into River. I'm told this annual ritual is believed to improve a man's constitution! Didn't see any ladies jumping in the drink!☺

I highly recommend you carry extra layers of warm clothing during your visit to Harbin. The temperature can quickly become a biting, bitter cold especially on the river. Carry a large backpack for a warm, insulated blanket, scarves, knitted cap, mittens, and a couple pairs of thermal socks in case you get wet. This precaution will keep your excursion enjoyable. Because the weather is often sub-zero temperatures this event may not be suitable for the young and elderly. There are no ADA accommodations anywhere in Harbin that I found. Our hotel's elevator was sporadically functional. Many times we had to climb 8 flights of stairs in a non-heated steel stairwell with the rails to cold to hang on to.

Date of experience: January 2016
5  Thank VintageExplorer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 5, 2016 via mobile

This was a highlight the art craft and presentation and colorful building is great. I had never seen like it before. It was great during the day and spectacular during the night. It is must see exhibit. I highly recommend it to you but be prepared wear ski clothes as it gets very cold. It was -15 c when we visited. It was one of the best shows on earth.

Date of experience: January 2016
Thank Hig11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 15, 2016

We booked a 5 day tour but due to airline problems we arrived a day late. Having paid in full for the entire tour we were then charged 600CYN because we did not arrive on the first day. Could not find out why. The whole trip was great but the guide was not very well informed about the sites. He read most of the information from his mobile phone. Fortunately he was able to get us to all the places on the itinerary in the 4 days which was great but when we left the tiger park and were heading to the snow sculptures he had a phone call to cancel the snow sculptures. The guide and the driver disagreed with this and we went anyway. Even though it is extremely cold the whole place is amazing. Frank and Lyndall Australia

Date of experience: January 2016
5  Thank Lyndall W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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