china edition
 

 

Heilongjiang

Harbin

Basic Information
Area: 460,000 sq. kilometer
Capital: Harbin
Population: 36.8 Million

Heilongjiang lies in the northeast of China and with Jilin and Liaoning makes up the area once known as Manchuria, now known as Dongbei. Heilongjiang is the northern most of all Chinese provinces sharing borders with Russia, Inner Mongolia and Jilin.

Part of the economic and agricultural backbone of China, Heilongjiang is the country's largest producer of timber, oil, soybeans, beets and linen, and its landscape is fairly bleak.

During the long cold northeast winters when temperatures plummet to -40° C the snow and ice add a certain stark beauty to the scenery. Harbin takes advantage of its chilly climate to host an annual ice fair; the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival, famous for its spectacular displays of ice sculptures and carving.

HeilongjiangThe province has vast expanses of flatland and wide areas of fertile black soil; one of China's major commodity grain growers. Named after its largest river, Heilongjiang has a total area of more than 460,000 square kilometer, of which, 60% are mountains, 10% rivers and 30% farmland. Its land area includes the country's largest oil reserve, 2,500 million tons. Of its population of 36.8 million, 31.5% live in the cities and 68.5% in the countryside.

There are 1.4 million people from minority nationalities including the Manchus, Koreans, Huis, Mongolians, Daurs, Hezhens, Oroqens and Ewenkis. The majority of Heilongjiang's population lives in the Songnen Plain and the mining and industrial cities.

There are a few remote areas of natural beauty in Heilongjiang. Jingbo Lake is a beautiful volcanic barrier lake surrounded by high mountains and is located in the east of the province. In the west, Zhalong Nature Reserve is an internationally important area of freshwater wetlands and the breeding grounds of the rare red crowned crane, which is the Chinese symbol of longevity.