​Jilin gives full play to ice and snow resources to develop winter tourism

China.org.cn, 01 12, 2022
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Located in the world's golden latitude zone for ice and snow resources (between 41 and 43 degrees north latitude), Jilin boasts powder snow as good as that on the Alps and the Rocky Mountains.


To give full play to this endowment, particularly with the upcoming Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, Jilin has launched a slogan "Experience the Sports of Beijing 2022 in Jilin." By integrating the ecological value of the ice and snow resources with their value as a winter lifestyle, the province has not only frequently rolled out tourism products, but also unveiled ice and snow educational programs for children as well as colorful activities to engage young people.


Playing with snow, ice fishing, hotpot – three delights in the winter


At the Yuanxiang Lake Ice and Snow Playground of the Changbai Mountain Luneng Resort, its three winter delights have attracted a big crowd of tourists, namely playing with snow, ice fishing and hotpot.


On the frozen Yuanxiang Lake, a lot of tents have been erected for ice fishermen, which are equipped with heating equipment, outdoor desks and chairs, hot water, bait and fishing gear. In addition to ice fishing, tourists can also entertain theirselves by letting off fireworks on the lake.    


A UTV ride in the snow-covered mountain forests is another attraction of the playground, which many tourists find very exciting.  


"The interesting ice fishing, thrilling UTV ride, and a yummy hotpot in a snowhouse made a perfect day for me. This Changbai Mountain trip is really worth it," a tourist surnamed Xu from Jilin city said.


"Skiing, which requires basic skills, is just one of the activities on offer for winter tourists. Winter tourism can be a lot more diverse and fun," an official with the Changbai Mountain Luneng Resort said.


The official's remarks are in line with the development model Jilin is promoting for ice and snow tourism, the "ice and snow plus" model. The model features a shift from simply ice and snow sightseeing to more ice and snow-based cultural and tourist experiences such as hot spring bath and folk culture to further drive tourism consumption.

Winter sports education for children


In recent years, many scenic areas in Jilin have launched ice and snow activities for children in response to the national call of engaging 300 million Chinese people in winter sports.


The Vanke Songhua Lake Resort is a major winter sports teaching ground for the primary and secondary students of Jilin city.


Zhang Pengfei, head of camping education programs with the resort, said, "The resort offers different programs for skiers of different groups. For children training, which is the biggest feature, the coaches have received training in children psychology so they know how to communicate with children."


Jilin, which attaches great importance to winter sports education, is a cradle of winter sports champions, with a number of world champions having been trained here like Li Jianrou, Wu Dajing and Han Yutong.


Jilin city has set the first week of the winter vacation as a "snow holiday," during which primary and secondary schools organize winter sports camps, winter sports study and ice and snow cultural activities to teach students winter sports skills and ignite their interest in winter sports.


Official statistics show that during the 2020-2021 snow season, the number of primary and secondary students attending skiing classes, winter sports thematic days and winter sports camps exceeded 400,000 person times.


The children program, which not only teaches skiing, but also explains how snowmakers and pressure snowmobiles work, is well received by both children and their parents.


"Winter sports have become more and more popular in recent years," said Li Bin, a Jilin city resident, whose child attended the program. "From the classroom to the ski resort, students not only learned a new skill but also had their willpower hardened."


More winter tourism activities on offer


This snow season, A Yu, a photography lover in his twenties, had a drifting tour at the Magic World scenic area of the Changbai Mountain with his friend.


He described the experience as very magical, floating down a misty hot spring river among the rime-decorated forest.


A Yu suggested that Jilin develop more forest tours as it boasts a vast area of forests. He also noted Jilin's starry sky, saying it would be a wonderful experience to daze at the starry sky at the natural setting.


In addition to photography, A Yu also loves skiing. In his opinions, a ski resort should have multiple functions in addition to skiing, such as performances, literary activities, movie screening, and art exhibitions, all of which will help leave an unforgettable winter memory for tourists and create a closer bond with them.


A Yu's remarks addressed one of the questions many scenic areas in Jilin have been thinking about - how to engage more young people in winter sports in Jilin.


The Changbai Mountain International Resort recently hosted a snow mountain digital music festival, inviting the world's top-notch DJ to perform at the event. This, plus a spectacular fireworks show, has attracted a big crowd of young tourists.


The Vanke Songhua Lake Resort is vigorously developing night economy with many fashionable, lively night activities having been launched, which are enjoyed very much by skiers there.  


A marketing staff member of the resort said that to enrich tourist experiences, the resort has set different themes for different months, organizing activities every week under a set theme, such as cross-country rides and carnivals.