The Ice and Snow World is illuminated during the 10th Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival in Harbin, Northeast China's Heilongjiang province Tuesday December 23, 2008.
China Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival, once named Harbin Ice Festival, gained its present name officially in 2001. It has been held since 1963. During the Cultural Revolution it had been interrupted for a number of years, but resumed since 1985. It is held annually from January 5 every year and lasts for over one month. It is one of the world's four grandest ice and snow festivals, together with Japan's Sapporo Snow Festival, Canada's Quebec City Winter Carnival, and Norway's Ski Festival. The activities of the festival are rich and colorful, including Harbin International Snow Sculpture Art Expo in Sun Island, Ice and Snow World (also located in Sun Island) and Ice-lantern Exhibition in Zhaolin Garden. There are many kinds of winter activity competitions, such as Yabuli alpine skiing, winter-swimming in Songhua River, speed skating, snow land football game and Ice Sculpture competition.
The 27th Harbin International Ice and Snow Festival is to be officially opened on January 5, 2011 and will last to February 28, 2011, consisting of 5 parts and over 100 activities, such as international ice-snow wedding, international ice-snow film festival, international winter-swimming invitational tournament, Asian Ice Hockey League ice-snow sports, ice-snow tourism, ice-snow art and many other exciting activities.