Archive for the ‘Hulunbuir Travel’ Category

Road Trip from Ergun to Linjiang Village

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016
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Ergun, or E’erguna (额尔古纳市) is part of the prefecture-level city of Hulunbuir. The 200-km road trip from Ergun City to the beguiling Linjiang (临江), a village bordering with Russia, is the highlight of our 8-day photography Hulunbuir Prairie tour.

It features cottony clouds hovering so low you could catch, cattle grazing; sheep roaming and horses running wild with their masters. We also have a short side trip to Shiwei on route, one of the smallest ethnic minority groups in China – the China’s Russian Ethnic Minority.  Finally we stay overnight at the quiet and serene bordering village – Linjiang.

One of the features of a photography tour is “off the cuff “,  stopping at the places where we see beautiful photogenic spots: rolling green hills, wild flowers, white clouds, grazing cattle and sheep. We don’t get off at those touristy and commercialized horse-riding and costume hiring camps and stations along the highways.

Not long after we leave Ergun City, we encounter the stupendous scenery of cottony clouds,  so low we are afraid they will hit our tour bus!

We are hit by cottony clouds.

We are hit by cottony clouds.

 

But what makes us stop and get off our bus is the undulating green hills that teems with grazing cattle on the right side of the highway! We lose no time, asking our bus driver to pull over and disembarking immediately.

Standing by the roadside, we zoom in and out for the stupendous view!

Standing by the roadside, we zoom in and out for the stupendous view!

 

Standing by the roadside, I use my long lens camera zooming in and out for the magnificent views of the harmonious beauty unfolded before our eyes, and exhilarated by the gift from the heaven.

Exhilarated by the gift from the heaven

Exhilarated by the gift from the heaven

 

The green hillslopes are dappled with changing sunlight and colors, mostly wanted by photography enthusiasts.

The green hill slopes are dappled with changing sunlight and colors

The green hillslopes are dappled with changing sunlight and colors.

 

Back to the bus, we continue to hit the road, busing on the highway to Shiwei Township, a bordering village only 11 km to the southwest of Linjiang Village – our destination.

Our choice of Linjiang Village for our overnight stay is mainly due to the fact that Linjiang Village has not succumbed to tourist mania that has affected the nearby Shiwei Village.

Ergun River cuts through the border area.

Ergun River cuts through the border area.

 

We are given only two hours sightseeing around Shiwei Township. Located on the east bank of Ergun River, Shiwei is now a lively border town abutting Russia inhabited mostly by the Chinese-Russian descendants. Shiwei was once  a cradle of multi-ethnic groups including Mongols.

Zoom in for a close look at the village on the Russian side.

Zoom in for a close look at the village on the Russian side.

 

About 10 years ago Shiwei was on the limelight for its natural and pristine beauty, and even elected as one of the 10 most beautiful villages in China at that time.

Even since, the village has been aways packed with tourists in high season.  Now Shiwe is no longer a laid-back village that has fallen to the victim of mass tourism.

The Russian-style wooden houses

The Russian-style wooden houses

 

But that doesn’t deter us from making use of the two hours snapping some pictures recording the best part of Shiwei. The town  features the Russian style in terms of architectures and living habits.

Stay overnight in a traditional Russian style wooden house is a top choice for many tourists.

Traditional Russian style wooden houses

Traditional Russian style wooden houses

 

Two hour later finds us heading to the bucolic hamlet – Linjiang, also a bordering village with Russia,  separated by Ergun River.

Before we reach the laid-back village, we are led to hike up a high viewing place for a soul-recharging glimpse of the big bend on Ergun River.

 Put up our tripods and set our cameras in right conditions

Put up our tripods and set our cameras in right conditions

 

We are also required by our instructor to put up our tripods and set our cameras in right conditions to catch the glowing sunset over the big curve of the sublime border river with the other side being Russia.

Catch the glowing sunset over the big curve

Catch the glowing sunset over the big curve

 

At the end of our road trip, we get to the anachronistic hamlet – Linjiang Village abutting Russia. This tiny hamlet is really a time wrap hemmed by rolling green hills without much modernity in sight. There is a quietness and serenity over the two-horse village.

We are arranged to stay overnight in a privately owned inn. After walking in the dimly lit village street and back to my room, I fall into sleep soon,  too tired to take a shower as usual after the exciting but exhausting day trip.

Next morning I wake up naturally, missing the sunrise over the charm village. But later I soon get to know that a thick fog has been hovering over the village and we don’t have sunrise on that morning.

One of my fellow travelers – Ms. Li Xin does get up that morning, climbing up on the hills over the village for a spirit-recharge view though she fails to catch the sunrise due to the heavy haze.  Below are the two pictures taken both by Ms Li Xin and the other fellow traveler on that foggy morning:

The fog-shrouded Linjiang Village in the early morning

The fog-shrouded Linjiang Village in the early morning

 

Ms Li Xin at work in the foggy morning

Ms Li Xin at work in the foggy morning

 

We are again only allowed a few hours walking around the serene village. The temptation to see the village is so great that I jump up from my warm bed,  putting on clothes, taking out my long lens camera and mobile phone, and darting to the streets to catch the beautiful morning of the bucolic village.

Linjiang Village

Linjiang Village

 

Linjiang Village

Linjiang Village

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Sunrise Glow over Hulunbuir Grasslands

Monday, August 29th, 2016
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Plan your Inner Mongolia tour? Located in northeastern Inner Mongolia, the Hulunbuir Grasslands are often billed as the “most unsullied grasslands” in China.  Named after the two lakes –  Hulun and Buir,  Hulunbuir Grasslands feature the expansive grasslands, forests, lakes and rivers.

40 km to the northeast of Hailar ( the city center of Hulunbuir ), the Golden Horde Tribes ( Jin Zhang Han) are located in the heartland of Hulunbuir Grasslands, the only place developed and open to tourists.

In the Golden Horde Tribes, there are plenty of yurts for you to choose, ranging from multi-people yurts to standard two-sharing yurts. They also offer basic food service and other recreational activities like horseback riding, horse racing and wrestling, and evening bon-fire party.

Among other  things to do in the Golden Horde Tribes, getting up early in the morning for the sunrise glow over the expansive grasslands is one of my favorites on my recent photography trip to Hulunbuir Grasslands.

Below are some of the pictures taken on the early morning July 29, 2016, of the sunrise glow over Hulunbuir Grasslands.

Sunrise over Golden Horde Tripes in Hulunbuir

Sunrise over Golden Horde Tribes in Hulunbuir

 

Sunrise Glow over Golden Horde Tripes in Hulunbuir

Sunrise Glow over Golden Horde Tribes in Hulunbuir

 

The Yurts under the Golden lights of the sunrise

The Yurts under the golden lights of the sunrise

 

Thick Fog over the Grassland under the sunrise glow.

Thick Fog over the Grassland in the sunrise glow.

 

Hulunbuir Grassland under the Sunrise Glow

Sunrise Glow over Hulunbuir Grassland

 

Grazing Sheep in the sunrise glow

Grazing Sheep in the sunrise glow

 

Grazing under the Sunrise Glow.

Grazing in the Sunrise Glow.

 

Early Birds in the sunrise glow

Early Birds in the sunrise glow

 

My Working - Taking Photos on Hulunbuir GRasslands

My Working – Taking Photos on Hulunbuir GRasslands

 

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Best Night Views of Manzhouli City

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016
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If you are a newbie in Manzhouli City, or a tourist passing through, I’m happy to recommend you to hang out one night to look at the splendid night views of the exotic and largest border city in China,  a  border crossing which connects China, Russia and Mongolia.

Beautifully Lit up Buildings
Manzhouli has the mixed folk custom of the three countries including China, Russia and Mongolia, a blend of Chinese and Western cultures. The city is crisscrossed with intriguing buildings of Russian, European, Mongolian and Chinese styles.

The Chessboard-like Layout of the Illuminated Manzhouli City

The Chessboard-like Layout of the Illuminated Manzhouli City

At nightfall,  all the 162 buildings of different styles lined on the 12 streets in the city center, are lit up brightly, turning the remote and far-flung border city into an otherworldly wonderland.

The European Style Buildings in Manzhouli

The European Style Buildings in Manzhouli

Beihu Park Skyline at Night
Beihu Park is a perfect place for an evening stroll while enjoying its brilliant night skyline. Beihu Park, literally “North Lake Park”, is located north of the Fifth Avenue in the city center of Manzhouli.

Beihu Park Skyline at Night

Beihu Park Skyline at Night

Its lake shoreline is set in brilliant lights with high-rises standing above, also brightly lightened, posing the magnificent night skyline in Manzhouli. The Beihu Park skyline is not to be dwarfed by  the world-famous Pudong Skyline.  It’s worth your visit on your night trip.

Beihu Park Skyline at Night

Beihu Park Skyline at Night

The Lively Pedestrian Street in the Evening
What makes Manzhouli unique is not only its exotic buildings, but also the mixed diversity of its people. Yes, the pedestrian street, officially known as “Sino-Russian Street”, is a bit touristy, but it is really a nice place, especially in summer. You sit down at a cafe and just enjoy people watch.

The Lit-up Sino-Russian Street

The Lit-up Sino-Russian Street

 

A Pretty Russian Girl

A Pretty Russian Girl

You will see beautiful Russian girls standing on the street for photo taking; Russian women sit on the street-side benches for relaxation; lovers, family members, friends or lonely travelers all come together, creating a peaceful night view.

The street makes a lovely walk in the evening.

The street makes a lovely walk in the evening.

The street makes a lovely walk in the evening and offers a great opportunity for Street photography.

A Panoramic View of Manzhouli at Night
Yingshan  Orthodox Church is a good spot for a bird’s-eye view of an overall view of Manzhouli City. The church is perched high on Yingshan Hill, about 5km southeast of the Sino-Russian Pedestrian Street.

The illuminated Yingshan Orthodox Church

The illuminated Yingshan Orthodox Church

Yingshan Orthodox Church is a newly built landmark, a replica of Russian-style orthodox church. It is mainly used for holding local wedding ceremonies and tourist sightseeing as well.

A Panoramic View of the Lightened Manzhouli City.

A Panoramic View of the Lightened Manzhouli City.

Standing on the high compound of Yinshan Church, people can have a clear and overall view of Hanzhouli City. The best time to view the whole city is in the evening when neon and lights are lit up on the streets and buildings.

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Beihu Park Skyline at Night in Manzhouli
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