Jilin City Tourist Attractions
The city of Jilin lies on the Di'er Songhuajiang in the center of the province of Jilin.It is situated about 100km/62mi from the provincial capital Changchun and can be reached from there in about 2 hours by train or bus.Jilin is over 300 years old, the city's beginnings dating back to 1673 when a wooden defensive ring was built. This was replaced by clay ramparts in 1727. Today Jilin is an important provincial center for trade and industry (foodstuffs, chemical and electrical goods).
Beishan Park, situated in the southwest of the city, consists mainly of hills rising to a height of some 200m/650ft. In the eastern part are the Temple of the War God (Guandi Miao; 1692) and the Pavilion of the Jade Emperor (Yuhuang Ge; 1725). These temples and a viewing pavilion provide a fine panorama of the city.
There are some interesting natural and historical sights in the area surrounding Jilin.
Changbaishan Nature Reserve
The Changbaishan Nature Reserve is the largest such area in China, covering 220,000ha/850 sq.mi. It begins 250km/155mi southeast of Jilin and extends to the Korean border.It formed part of UNESCO's international nature protection scheme. The rocks of Changbaishan have a white shimmer, hence the area's name (changbai ''always white'').In the park there are over 1500 plants and about 300 types of animal, including martens, tigers, leopards and deer. To reach the nature reserve travel from Jilin to Erdobaihe and then by bus.
White Head Mountain and Heaven Lake
One of the most beautiful peaks in Changbaishan is White Head Mountain (Baitoushan), an extinct volcano.On the summit of White Head Mountain lies the famous 9.2sq.km/3.6sq.mi Heaven Lake (Tian Chi), a crater over 300m (1000ft) deep, which formed during a volcanic eruption in 1702 and then filled with water. The lake, which has an average depth of 204m/669ft and is surrounded by steep rocks, is frozen over for half the year. A monster called Jili ("bringer of luck") is supposed to live here.An opening on the north bank of the lake releases large amounts of water which, at an altitude of 1250m/4100ft, plunge 68m/223ft into an abyss, thereby forming the famous waterfall known as the Changbai Pubu. This water supplies the Erdao Baihe, one of the two source rivers of the Songhuajiang.On the north side of Baitoushan there is an extensive area of thermal springs, about 900m (half a mile) away from the waterfall, which reach temperatures as high as 82°C (180°F).
Lake Songhua Hu
24km/15mi southeast of Jilin lies the reservoir, Lake Songhua Hu. It is situated next to the hydro-electric power station of Fengman, which receives its water from the Songhuajiang. The picturesque and peaceful lake with its clear water extending over an area of 550sq.km/210sq.mi is a popular place with visitors. Five Tiger Island (Wuhu Dao) is a favorite spot for bathing, boating and fishing.
The ruins of the Bohai Kingdom, which was founded in 698, are to be found in the southeast of Dunhua, about 150km/93mi southeast of Jilin. They comprise the remains of the walls surrounding the capital Aodong and about eighty tombs in which members of the royal family are buried.