The 12 best places to visit in Jilin Province

 

On the southern edge of the provincial capital, Changchun, is the little known location of Pumensi Temple. Difficult to get to and from, this tranquil site of temples, pagodas and large statues is said to be one of most picturesque locations in the city.

12. Pumensi

 

North west from the provincial capital, Changchun, close to the border with the Chinese province of Inner Mongolia is the Xianghai National Nature Reserve, an area of swamps, marshes and lakes that is considered to be one of the most important wet lands in the world. As a natural habitat for over 293 kinds of bird, including rare and protected bird species, it is one of the premier locations for bird watchers. Home to nearly half of the crane species on the planet, the reserve has earned the nickname, 'Hometown Of Cranes'.

11. Xianghai National Nature Reserve

 

Directly east from the provincial capital, Changchun, in the provinces second largest city, Jilin City, is the large quiet area of Baishan Park, established in 1927 it is a tranquil area of lakes, small mountains, pavilions, temples and bridges. Visitors to the park can enjoy lotus flowers in the summer and the well known Rime Trees in the depths of Jilin's freezing winters.

10. Baishan Park

 

Originally built in 1797 AD, located in the north of Changchun, the capital and largest city of Jilin Province is the Changchun Wanshou Temple, which after many wars found itself by the early 20th century in an extreme state of dilapidation. Restored and reconstructed in 2007 within picturesque wetland surroundings, the highlight of the most striking feature of the temple complex is the Yougua Pagoda, a seven storey hexagonal structure that stands 65 metres (213 ft) high.

 

Pictured is the Youguo Tower.

9. Changchun Wanshou Temple

 

Opened in 2003, located in the south of Changchun, the capital and largest city of Jilin Province is the Changchun World Sculpture Park, a collection of Eastern and Western inspired art and sculptures. Run as a theme park it holds an artificial lake and over 400 sculptures from artists around the world, making it a true international venue for world sculptures. Its centrepiece is the 29.5 metre (97 ft) pillar known as the Changchun World Sculpture Park Tower, said to embody the parks theme of friendship, peace and spring.

8. Changchun World Sculpture Park

 

South east from the city of Changchun, the capital and largest city of Jilin Province is the 200 square kilometre (77 square mile) Jingyuetan National Forest Park, the largest man made forest park in Asia. Located on the transition between the northern mountains and the western plains, the large forest within beautiful natural surroundings of lakes and hills is a major attraction for visitors passing through the city of Changchun. Major features of the park include the Jingyue Wetland, Siberian Tiger Garden, the 8.2 metre (27 ft) Jingyue Goddess Statue and the Bisong Jingyue Tower, designed to look like a pine tree, it is open from April to mid November and offers visitors fantastic views over the forested terrain.

 

Pictured is the Bisong Jingyue Tower.

7. Jingyuetan National Forest Park

 

In the south of the province, directly south from the city of Jilin is the 81 square kilometre (31 square mile) Longwanqun National Forest, a wonderful natural landscape that encompasses parts of the western Changbai Mountains. Made up of many scenic spots and peaks, there are also a group of volcanic crater lakes including Sanjiaolong Crater Lake and Triangle Dragon Crater Lake, the largest crater lake group in China. Notable locations within the forest include Sanjiaolongwan Scenic Spot, Dalongwan Scenic Spot and the Diaoshuihu Lake & Waterfall.

6. Longwanqun National Forest

 

In the extreme south east of the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture is the village of Fangchuan, located along the Tumen River where the borders of China, Russia and North Korea meet. Inside the Fangchuan National Scenic Area visitors are able to climb to the top of the Fangchuan Observation Tower for a unique view over Russia, China, North Korea and out to the Sea Of Japan.

Pictured is the Fangchuan Observation Tower.

5. Fangchuan National Scenic Area

 

Directly east from the provincial capital, Changchun, is the provinces second largest city and former capital, Jilin City, home to an annual event that is unpredictable everywhere else on the planet. Between December and early March when the temperature can drop to a heart stopping -30 °C, the warmer water fed from the Hydro-power station into the Songhua River allows warmer water vapour into the freezing air, condensing into fog as it cools. When these super cooled water liquid droplets hit objects they instantly freeze, creating a phenomena known as Rime Ice. As this happens, the willows along the river banks of the Songhua River are covered in glistening branches creating a true winder wonderland. The Rime Trees of Jilin are considered a natural wonder of China.

4. Rime Trees Of Jilin City

 

South east from Jilin City, in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture is Dunhua City, home to the Liu Ding Shan. The main feature of the temple complex is the 48 metre (157 ft) high Jinding Grand Buddha, an enormous bronze seated statue at the top of a white staircase atop a natural hill. Climbing to the foot of the Jinding Grand Buddha will give visitors an amazing view over Dunhua City as well as the surrounding hills and lakes.

3. Liu Ding Shan

 

In the extreme south west of Jilin Province, close to the border with the Chinese province of Liaoning and a rivers width from the People's Republic Of North Korea is the city if Ji'an, home to the Koguryo Cultural Relic Scenic Area. Dating from the 3rd century BC through to the 7th century AD, this ancient archaeological site consists of three fortress cities, Wunu Mountain City, Guonei Mountain City and Wandu Mountain City, all of which are from the Koguryo Kingdom, one of the strongest kingdoms to exist in northeastern China. Containing 30 tombs from the Goguryeo imperial and noble families, some of the highlights of the area are the 12 metre (39 ft) General's Tomb, the largest of the pyramid like structures, and entering Tomb No. 5, taking visitors underground to reveal stone chambers covered in paintings of dragons, white tigers, black tortoises and lotus flowers on the walls and ceiling. Such is the historical importance, the Koguryo Cultural Relic Scenic Area has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

Pictured is Wandu Mountain City.

2. Koguryo Cultural Relic Scenic Area

 

In the extreme south of the province, straddling the border with North Korea is the 2,100 square kilometre (810 square mile) Changbai Shan National Nature Reserve, encompassing an incredible landscape within the Changbai Mountain Range. Home to rare animals such as the Siberian tiger and Amur leopard, among the main attractions is the Changbai Waterfall, a powerful 68 metre (223 ft) single drop waterfall, the Deep Green Pool with its beautiful milky green water, and the parks centrepiece, Heaven Lake, also known as Tianchi. Located 2,189 metres (7,182 ft) above sea level within the caldera atop Changbai Mountain, the mystical mountain that the North Koreans named Mount Paektu, the huge azure pool of water happens to be the deepest crater lake in the world.

1. Changbaishan National Nature Reserve

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