The temperature in Harbin reaches forty below zero, and stays below freezing nearly half the year. The city is actually further north than notoriously cold Vladivostok , Russia , just 300 miles away. So what does one do here every winter? Hold an outdoor festival, of course! Rather than suffer the cold, the residents of Harbin celebrate it, with an annual festival of snow and ice sculptures and competitions.
The ice festival, a few miles away from the snow festival, is anything but dull and colorless. Crowds flocking to the entrance are greeted by dance music booming in the distance, as if at an outdoor pop concert. And bright neon colors shine everywhere, buried within huge blocks of ice forming structures as high as thirty meters, such as this huge structure beyond the entryway. You can just make out people standing atop its blue and red stairway.