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China’s Winter Wonderlands

The most beautiful places for snowy winter travel

11·04·2014

China’s Winter Wonderlands

The most beautiful places for snowy winter travel

11·04·2014

Temperatures are dropping, sweet potatoes are steaming outside of the subway stations, and we’re enjoying our final blue-sky days before snow and smog takes over the weather. It’s November, and for those brave adventurers who don’t fear the cold, these next two months are great chance to take advantage of the pre-Spring Festival off-season. Of course, you could head south to Hainan and Yunnan to soak up their mild/warm winters, but the stunning winter scenes of snowy China make wearing the stylish qiuku worth it. So bundle up and check out China’s most beautiful places to visit in the winter:

1) Beijing

Though the smog levels strike fear into the hearts of many an adventurer, looking at the Temple of Heaven and the Forbidden City covered in a light dusting of snow is surreal. If you’re willing to brave the Great Wall, there’s  a few slips here and there are justified by the lack of crowds and stunning scenery.

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You could be as cool as this kid
Photo Courtesy of Flickr

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The Forbidden City
Photo Courtesy of Flickr

2) Harbin

Gigantic ice sculptures of Disney characters, lights sparkling in trees, and -20 degrees, who could say no? Though it’s not for the faint of heart, those willing to trek up to the northernmost reaches of China will be treated with spectacular lights, a unique Russian influence, and of course, a chance to see the famous Harbin International Ice and Snow festival.

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Ice Buildings in the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival
Photo Courtesy of Flickr

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But it’s even prettier at night
Photo Courtesy of Flickr

3) Jilin

The rimmed trees of Jinlin are considered one of the four major natural wonders of China. Take a trip to the creatively named Changbaishan, or Tall White Mountain, where you can see some of the most spectacular mountain views and frozen lakes. Did we mention they have hot springs too?

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Changbaishan
Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

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Famous frozen Jilin trees
Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

4) Jiuzhai Valley, Sichuan

Already stunning in the fall, Jingzhaigou freezes into a sparkling wonderland in the winter. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site, and with nine traditional Tibetan villages and lakes so blue they look fake, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a combination of culture and the outdoors.

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Snowy Walkway
Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

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Aerial view of the valley’s mountains
Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

5) Emei Mountain, Sichuan

Though it’ll be bitterly cold, the frozen trees and giant Buddha statue on top of the stunning Emeishan make it worth the hike.

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A snowy hike up
Photo courtesy of TripAdvisor

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Though the view is definitely worth it
Photo Courtesy of Top China Travel

6) Beiji Villages, Mohe

Known as China’s Arctic village, the temperature stays around -35 degrees Celsius. About ten minutes from the highest latitude in China, this place isn’t just a box to tick off for the adventurous traveler. During the winter, the thick blanket of snow and picturesque village label it a winter wonderland, though a just few days may have you jumping onto a train to the “warmer” climates of Harbin.

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It’s definitely cold.
Photo Courtesy of Flickr

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But it can’t be too bad if you can cozy up in this cabin

Photo Courtesy of Flickr

Master Image Courtesy of Flickr