Customer: Alan ( Australia ) Tour Dates: 2018-01-22
Tour Itinerary: 5-day Harbin Winter Adventure Tour
Dear Tango Tan,
Pauline and I just returned from our wonderful trip to China.
Our tour of Harbin ( tour code: TT170304001) was very interesting and enjoyable.
Our tour guide Julian was very helpful and informative. He was reliable and always punctual as was Mr Yung our driver.
The extreme cold made it a new and interesting experience for us. We had packed warm clothes as suggested which worked well.
Our trip to Snow Town was wonderful. We stopped at Yabli which is about halfway between Harbin and Snow Town for a delicious lunch.
We also took a horse drawn sled ride in Yabli. We enjoyed that and being approached by 'rebels', actors with fake guns and firecrackers in the forest. Great fun. We were told that the temperature had dropped to - 37 °C.
Snow Town itself was a great place . Our hotel ( Snow Charms? ) far exceeded our expectations, the room very comfortable and clean , the building beautiful.
We explored Snow Town in the evening, the lights and the snow made it a magical experience.
Julian kindly gave us an opportunity to ride on a snowmobile and take part in other exciting activities but as we are getting on in ye were very happy with our horse and dog sled rides.
Our hotel in Harbin was the 'Garden Plaza' (ex New Gloria?) . A wonderful location by the river and at one end of Central Street. Lots of shops and restaurants close by.
To walk down Central Street in the evening is wonderful, the snow sculptures and lights impressive.
The only draw back and maybe something that can be told to other western tourists is that we were unable to use our Visa or American Express cards to pay for things.
Our hotel in Harbin couldn't exchange my US or Australian dollars for Yuan although I had read that they could. I found a branch of the ICBC Bank not far the hotel. I waited a while for one of the 'cash exchange' windows before being taken by a helpful customer to the 'VIP' area. That worked well and its worth noting that passports are often needed at banks and for entry to some attractions.
The staff at the hotel were helpful, I had difficulty signing in to the free WI-fi, within minutes of asking for their help they came and installed a modem in my room!
The visit to the 'Siberian Tiger Park' in Harbin was wonderful. So many large healthy tigers and families in large areas. Very enjoyable.
All the ice sculpture places were amazing and well worth the visit. The compacted snow isn't usually too slippery but Mr. Yung kindly loaned me a pair of crampons to put on my shoes. I felt much safer walking on the snow and ice wearing them.
All together Pauline and I had a great trip many thanks