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Overview

The vast Changbaishan (Long White Mountain) Nature Preserve has long been the main attraction in Jilin Province, which borders Inner Mongolia and North Korea. Hikers are warned not to stray into North Korea during their forays into the region's highest mountain peaks, which top 2,700 meters (9,000 feet). The centerpiece is China's largest volcanic lake, Heaven Lake, eight miles 'round and home to China's own Loch Ness monster. On the way to Heaven Lake are two other spectacular sights, a towering waterfall feeding the Songhua River (the place to boat and raft in summer) and Cahngbai Hotsprings. In winter (October to May) China's newest and ...

The vast Changbaishan (Long White Mountain) Nature Preserve has long been the main attraction in Jilin Province, which borders Inner Mongolia and North Korea. Hikers are warned not to stray into North Korea during their forays into the region's highest mountain peaks, which top 2,700 meters (9,000 feet). The centerpiece is China's largest volcanic lake, Heaven Lake, eight miles 'round and home to China's own Loch Ness monster. On the way to Heaven Lake are two other spectacular sights, a towering waterfall feeding the Songhua River (the place to boat and raft in summer) and Cahngbai Hotsprings. In winter (October to May) China's newest and most upscale ski complex, with 20 miles of trails, holds sway over the Manchurian highlands, where the twin Westin and Sheraton Changbiashan Resorts (559 rooms combined) serve up to 8,000 skiers a day. Wilderness excursions can be strenuous, with 900 stairs to scale at Heaven Lake, and most visitors join tours. Until development of the new ski resort, Chinese and Korean visitors far outnumbered any other foreigners.

J.D. Brown
About the Expert

J.D. Brown is a contributor to Frommer's China and Frommer's Beijing, coauthor of Frommer's China: The 50 Most Memorable Trips, Berlitz Shanghai, Berlitz Singapore, and other books.

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J.D. Brown for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Changbaishan is an active volcanic mountain on the border between North Korea and China in the Jilin province of China. A large crater lake, called Heaven Lake, is in the caldera atop the mountain.
  • Language: Mandarin & Korean
  • Currency: Chinese Yuan
  • Research: Changbaishan National Nature Reserve | Wikipedia

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    September for hiking and boating, November to March for skiing and snow sports.