Jilin's winter wonderland heating up

Tourists flocking to northeast province in droves to enjoy snowy landscapes

By ZHU WENQIAN in Beijing and LIU MINGTAI in Changchun | China Daily | Updated: 2024-02-27 09:57
Share - WeChat
Visitors from Beijing enjoy ice and snow sports in Naitou village, Northeast China's Jilin province, during this year's Spring Festival holiday. CHINA DAILY

When it snows, Naitou, a village in Northeast China's Jilin province, becomes a fairy tale-like winter wonderland. Now the famous village near Changbai Mountain attracts travelers to enjoy snow tubing, hiking adventures and even hunting and fishing expeditions.

This winter, which marks the first complete season of ice and snow travel after China optimized its COVID-19 response measures, has seen strong growth in the number of travelers and related tourism revenue.

Like Naitou, located in the Yanbian Korean autonomous prefecture, a number of small villages in Jilin have become popular tourist destinations with their distinguished features, and have fueled incomes and business growth of villagers and retailers.

For instance, Naitou has actively developed rural experience tours that are integrated with Korean ethnic group folk culture, opened multiple restaurants that include performances of folk arts, and renovated village homes into bed-and-breakfast homestays with distinctive decor.

"Naitou has developed red tourism routes, built ice and snow parks and shaped a regional rural tourism chain with various projects," said Yang Lina, chairman of a homestay cooperative council in Jilin.

"The village has signed cooperation agreements with multiple travel agencies nationwide and cooperated with several online travel agencies to promote the area," Yang said.

Since December, the tourism sector in Northeast China, led by the "ice city" of Harbin — capital of Heilongjiang province — has achieved new records this winter. The travel appeal of Harbin has also driven the popularity of other cities in the region.

During the Chinese New Year break from Feb 10 to 17, booking volumes of hotels in Changchun, Jilin and Shenyang, Liaoning province, jumped over fourfold year-on-year, said Qunar, a Beijing-based online travel agency.

The frigid weather did little to curb tourists' enthusiasm for camping, which has become one of the most popular activities in Naitou. Visitors wear folk costumes and get to mingle with reindeer as they gather around hotpots and bonfires.

Last winter, Naitou served some 110,000 person visits. This winter, the local ice and snow parks expanded recreational areas and added more modes of entertainment, and the local government hopes visitors can experience different Korean ethnic cultural aspects and ice and snow events via new platforms and scenarios.

In addition to winter tourism, Naitou has developed itself into a place suitable for travel during all seasons, which includes flower appreciation in spring, and fall foliage excursions.

In 2023, Changchun Longjia International Airport handled some 114,000 flights, up 15.8 percent compared with pre-pandemic levels in 2019. Meanwhile, the airport handled 15.49 million passenger trips, growing 11.1 percent over 2019. The level of recovery ranked tops among 10-million-level airports nationwide, according to the local government.

1 2 Next   >>|
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349