Harbin, in Northeastern China, has a population of over 5 million people. While it is a popular tourist destination all year, things really heat up in the winter. This is the season for the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival, which draws millions of tourists each year.
Harbin is the capital of Heilongjiang, China’s northernmost province. The city grew in the late 19th century with the influx of Russian engineers constructing the eastern leg of the Trans-Siberian Railroad. The city’s Russian architecture includes its green-domed Saint Sophia Cathedral, an Eastern Orthodox church now a local history museum. Across the river, Sun Island Park is famed for year-round ice sculptures.
The annual Harbin Ice and Snow Festival opens in late December and lasts for around 2 months, till late February of the next year.