There are many reasons to dislike winter weather: sub-zero temperatures, predictably miserable weather and dark nights contribute to gloomy faces around the world.
But there are also reasons to smile, as demonstrated by this wonderful theme park in northeast China created entirely from ice and snow.
The 28th Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival, which opened on Christmas Day, features work by some of the country’s best ice sculptors and attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.
Have a nice day! A horse and carriage navigates the snow-covered streets of the stunning Harbin Ice and Snow Festival city.
Sky High: Some of the event’s sculptures tower over visitors, reaching up to 50 meters in height.
In these stunning photographs, the festival’s stunning sculptures are seen illuminated from the inside after nightfall, with visitors wandering among the impressive works.
Those attending the event will be able to tour the ice cities on foot or via the festival’s horse carriage rides. In addition to walking around and marveling at the colorful creations, you can also slide down snowy slides or climb the stairs of ice castles and investigate what’s inside.
The Harbin Ice and Snow Festival is one of the largest ice festivals in the world.
Ice to see you, ice to see you! The sculptures are illuminated from the inside with complex computer-controlled LED systems.
Watch your step: Visitors can navigate the stairs that have been carved into the numerous creations.
It now stands shoulder to shoulder with famous ice-based events such as the Sapporo Snow Festival in Japan and the Quebec Winter Carnival (Carnival de Québec) in Canada.
Harbin is known as the Ice City, as the winters there are extremely cold (the temperature can drop to -30°C), but the conditions are perfect for the ice festival, which has its origins in the ice lanterns that They were sculpted. by local fishermen.
The first festival is said to have been held in Zhaolin Park in the former district of Harbin in 1963.
What goes up, must come down: an ice lover slides down one of the event’s slides
Rapid growth: Harbin Ice and Snow Festival has grown in magnitude in recent years thanks to China’s growing economy
It was suspended for some time during the Cultural Revolution, then resumed and finally, in 1999, the city government started the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival.
At first its clientele was mainly Chinese, but in recent years it has become an international festival and competition that attracts people from all over the world.
The growth of the festival has been in step with the continued growth of China’s economy, which in turn has contributed to the magnitude of snow sculptures and ice architecture.
Colorful ice creations: the spectacular views of the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival in China
Last year, tens of thousands of people worked on the exhibits, which include world-record-sized snow sculptures: some longer than two football fields, while other monuments measure up to 50 meters high.
They all use technologically sophisticated equipment with computer-controlled LEDs and regular lighting that create the stunning displays of color seen in all of these photographs.
Of course, with such rapid growth, this year’s event is considered one of the largest yet.
How did they do that? This impressive skyline was made from blocks of ice measuring up to a meter wide.
Winter Fun: In addition to sculptures, the festival also features a variety of ice attractions.
Slippery slope: Visitors are dwarfed by gigantic ice architecture
Spread over three zones, the theme park features a variety of snow attractions, ice mountains and reproductions of some of the world’s most iconic buildings, all carved from giant blocks of ice and snow.
The city, located near the Russian border, experiences dry but freezing winters and has abundant ice from the nearby Songhau River.
The festival’s winter activities include downhill skiing in Yabuli, winter swimming, and ice lantern exhibition in Zhaolin Garden.
Taking the scenic route: Rows of ice pagodas line one of the park’s central roads.
Great reception: artisans have reproduced some of the most recognizable buildings in the world
Grand Entrance – This giant ice arch is an impressive entrance to the city.