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China’s kaleidoscopic Harbin Snow and Ice Festival 2021

In the Chinese city of Harbin in Heilongjiang province, the 37th annual Harbin Snow and Ice Festival are happening. This festival first took place in 1963 but due to the Cultural Revolution in China, the festival faced a hindrance for a few years.

The festival venue is spread on around 220,000 cubic meters of ice and snow. The Songhua River is used to build ice artworks each year which are carried through trucks to the venue.

The New Year’s Eve celebrations and a fireworks display were canceled after COVID-19 cases were recorded in the cities of Shenyang and Dalian.

The activities usually included in the festival are sledding, ice football, speed skating, ice hockey, and alpine skiing competitions. This year, there will be no events and performances due to COVID-19.

Normally, the festival includes a snow-themed group wedding ceremony where 40 couples are due to tie the knot.

This year, the creations for the festival include a towering frozen ice palace, a crystal palace, an ice bar, and a scale model of China’s first aircraft carrier. Owing to the low temperatures experienced in Harbin during winter, the ice sculptures maintain their form.

The visitors can attend the festival by buying the tickets on the condition of providing prerequisites of health codes, wearing masks, maintain social distance, and get their temperature measured.

The festival will continue to run until February 25 this year.

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