Top things to do

Top Choice Ice Sculpture in Harbin

Harbin Ice & Snow Festival

Every winter from early December to late February (officially the festival opens 5 January), Harbin dons a fur-lined, technicolour dreamcoat of ice, snow and neon and gets down, Narnia style – no matter that it's mi…
Top Choice Volcano in Wǔdàlián Chí

Lǎohēi Shān

This huge area is a fascinating mix of hardened lava fields, a crater, a lake and austere white trees. It's mostly easy walking with the exception of the mainly uphill 1km stair climb to the summit of Lǎohēi Shān it…
Top Choice Amusement Park in Harbin

Harbin Ice & Snow World

The main venue of the Harbin Ice and Snow Festival, this theme-park sized attraction is a dizzying spectacle of ice architecture, and a fun night out provided you wrap up warm. There's also a performance stage, ice …
Top Choice Concert Venue in Harbin

Main Synagogue Concert Hall

Harbin's Main Synagogue, dating back to 1909, has reopened as a delightfully intimate, well-priced concert venue for classical music performances, with four shows per week (7.30pm, ¥20 to ¥100, one hour). The ticket…
Top Choice Bar in Harbin

Carl Damo Bar

This alcohol-fuelled Aladdin's cave, crammed with curios, fairy-lights and arty nude photographs taken by eccentric Chinese owner 'Carl', is probably north China's, or at least Harbin's, quirkiest bar. With hidden n…
Top Choice Church in Harbin

Church of St Sophia

The red-brick Russian Orthodox Church of St Sophia, with its distinctive green onion dome and roosting pigeons, is Harbin’s most famous landmark. Built in 1907 and expanded in 1932, it was the largest Orthodox churc…
Top Choice Chinese in Wǔdàlián Chí

Wángmáolǘ Dòufu Měishí Diàn

The locally made tofu is some of the best you'll taste in China. It's soft and delicate, and served in a variety of ways: with fish, vegies and such. If you can't decide, take your pick from the picture menu on the …
Top Choice Architecture in Harbin

Zhongyang Dajie

The cobblestone avenue of Zhongyang Dajie is the most obvious legacy of Russia's involvement with Harbin. Now a pedestrian-only zone running from Jingwei Jie up to the Sōnghuā River, the street, and those nearby, ar…
Top Choice American in Harbin

Burger Spice

The dining room may be a little gloomy but the super-sized selection of burgers, salads and messy fries (including one stacked sandwich simply called OMG) is anything but. Perfect if you're craving a non-Chinese fix…
Top Choice Dumplings in Harbin

Orient King of Eastern Dumplings

It’s not just the freshly made jiǎozi (饺子; stuffed dumplings) that are good at this always busy and ever-expanding Harbin chain: there are also plenty of tasty vegie dishes and draught beer on tap. There's another l…