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Zhalong Wetlands - The Hidden Spots

Zhalong Wetlands - The Hidden Spots
By Nikita Jaeger

TP 201906 China 02鎵庨緳婀垮湴 鈥 闅愯棌鐨勬櫙鐐


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TP 201906 China 07Zhalong National nature reserve covers around 2100 square kilometres, with tons of tourism options available, even during the cold winter seasons. Located in Northeastern China, this wetland is a haven for different endangered animals to breed. With such a vast increase in terms of biodiversity value, bird watching is the most auspicious tourism option one can enjoy at Zhalong Wetlands. There are many different hidden tourist spots, festivals and things to do around the Zhalong Wetlands; the following are very few of them.

TP 201906 China 01Crane watching festival

One of the relatively low profile celebratory events that happen every year in Zhalong National reserve is the crane watching festival. With snowy weather on board, the local people never hesitated to take part in this particular festival. The annual crane festival is known to be the largest of all the public activities that happen in and around Qihiharer in Northeast China. It starts precisely before the New Year's Eve and lasts till the end of the winter season.

TP 201906 China 03The crane release show

The most highlighted part of this festival is the crane release show, which conducts during the morning session of every day. The reserve is well known for breeding and domesticating. Nearly three hundred cranes will be there for the crane release show. The cranes are entirely set free during the festival days, and they shall eventually return towards their nests in the upcoming days.

 

The weather stays stable around minus twenty degrees Celsius, and the release show happens in the icy lake area. The staff members are only allowed to open up the bird cages. Red-crowned cranes shall come out of these cages at the same time, and take off slowly. These and a half meter tall birds shall fly above, while the spectators cheer them up. Witnessing the birds flying out for the very first time shall be a memorable event to watch.

 

Cranes do come under a wary bird section, and watching them under the wild shall indeed be a fleeting moment. Only during these festive days, the visitors shall get a chance to have a closer look at the bird and their caretaking.

 

As these red-crowned cranes are known to be a symbol of positivity, luck, and fidelity to the local people, you being one, must never miss taking part in the festival.

TP 201906 China 04Ice and snow festival

After seeing the gorgeous cranes flying around, you can stay nearby and get ready to witness yet another exciting festival, known as the Ice And Snow Festival. As the name says, the festival conducts during the winter season of every year. What makes this particular snow festival a unique one is the ice show that features more than hundreds of snow sculptures participation. These snow works are handmade, and it shall definitely amaze you. Also, never miss having fun at the castles and snow houses that are solely built for the spectators to enjoy their time around.

TP 201906 China 05Worth visiting lakes

Zhalong Nature Reserve has many lakes one can explore around. These lakes are mostly shallow, and you can watch large numbers of swans, storks, grebes, herons and other kinds of rare species. The lakes have been maintained properly, and only a few visitors used to visit these lakes. Being a local, one must definitely explore the lake and observe the idle wandering of birds around the area. These lakes can further be explored extensively by taking a boat to ride.

 

How to reach

The Zhalong Nature Reserve is just a drive away from Qiqihar city. It's located thirty kilometres from Qiqihar city and has excellent road connectivities.

 

By private bus:
Regular bus services are available to Zhalong Nature Reserve from Qiqihar city. The buses usually depart from Zhanqian Dajie and Longsha Lu. They do wait around the parking lot in these two places, and it costs about 楼20 for a single person, and it takes nearly forty minutes to reach Zhalong Nature Reserve.

 

By public bus:
Taking the public bus is yet another way to reach the reserve. Bus number 306 starts its way towards Zhalong once in a while, and anyone can make a ride through them from RT Mart. After reaching Zhalong, you need to hire a local taxi to enter the reserve area. If you are on a tight budget, then taking the public bus and then the local taxi shall be the best option.

TP 201906 China 06Red-Crowned Crane chicks, a threatened species at the Zhalong Wetlands, Heilongjiang Province

 

Conclusion

With much being said, being a local, you must definitely spend some quality time to explore in and around the Zhalong Wetlands, as there are infinite options that you can opt to discover, any part of the year.

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