On January 5, a most spectacular month-long event began in Harbin, which is located in northeastern China’s Heilongjiang Province.
Although this happening features skiing, winter swimming, a reindeer parade and an exhibition of ice lanterns, to mention just a few of the 30 listed events, the festival’s most spectacular hold on the million visitors is the array of incredible ice sculptures that adorn the 150 acres of festival grounds.
Thousands of workers participate in this spectacular display of carving artistry.
Some of the world’s most iconic buildings have been artfully reproduced using the temporal medium of giant blocks of ice and snow.
The first ice and snow show was organized in Harbin’s Zhaolin Park back in 1963, but was discontinued from 1966 to 1976 and restarted in 1985.
This year’s theme is “Russia,” and to mark it properly, 45 colored ice sculptures and large-scale landscapes created by both local and foreign ice sculptors will be on breathtaking display.
Despite the Russian focus, one of the ice sculptures certain to draw much attention this year is the recreation of Marilyn Monroe’s famous pose from the film The Seven Year Itch, in which she stood on a subway grate while her white dress was blown above her knees by a passing train.
The city of Harbin is known as the “ice city” and is one of the coldest locations in China. Temperatures in this region have been known to plummet to -38C.
Visitors can stroll the grounds on foot or on horseback.
China’s Harbin Ice and Snow Festival can hold its own among others of its ilk. Some of these include the Sapporo Snow Festival in Japan, the Winter Carnival in Quebec City in Canada, and Norway’s Ski Festival.
Come and behold this spectacular world of ice and snow before it all melts away!