The frozen festival returns!


Every year from January 5 until February 5, there’s an amazing ice sculpture festival located in the frozen chinese city of Harbin. Now Harbin isn’t cold all year round, but in the winter, due to its proximity to Siberia, temperatures can reach as low as -16 degrees!

We really wanted to get there to see the festival but unfortunately this didn’t happen due to our early departure.

Harbin in photographs is what you’d call a Chinese winter paradise. There’s just something magical about snow. It doesn’t matter what it falls on, the end result is always something beautiful. When we arrived in Wuxi, there had been abnormal massive snowfall – so much so that it created havoc over most of the country – stranding thousands. We missed seeing our part of China buried in snow by mere weeks. In Harbin it’s a regular cycle.

We really wanted to try and catch the gardens of Suzhou under snow, they would have looked simply amazing.

We met a french couple from Harbin while we were staying at Sim’s Cozy Garden Hostel in Chengdu. They said it was actually very difficult living there as they felt completely isolated. Unlike Wuxi, Harbin had very little in the way of ‘Western Comforts.” In Wuxi, you’ve practically got a KFC, Starbucks or McDonalds(sometimes all 3!) on every block, yet in Harbin, there is none of this.

China can be an extremely difficult country to adjust to at the best of times, and for westerners settling in for a temporary period of a year or so, we can really take comfort knowing that yeah, there IS familiar food just down the road if it’s really need(and man, sometimes it so was). I can fully understand how life for them would have been in Harbin. I had no desire to live there, but I really wish we could have made it to the ice festival. One year!


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One Response to “The frozen festival returns!”

  1. Simone Says:

    Courter & Marcus – Love it!!! So glad you have another blog going. A shame that you didn’t announce it via email and now l have a few posts to catch up on :o) My brother is in China at the moment, so l have told him about this ice festival and he is going to see if he can get there. Looks wicked. Catch you soon.

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