Changbaishan Nature Reserve
Mount Changbaishan is located in Jilin Province, on the border between China and North Korea. It' capped with snow all year round. The mountain covers a total area of 2000 square km, and has a height of 2,744 m at its highest peak.
Changbaishan Nature Reserve was listed by UNESCO as a nature reserve in 1979.
Heaven Lake is the most famous scenic spot on Changbaishan. It is a lake formed within the Caldera of an ancient volcano. In the shape of a lotus leaf, the lake is about 13 square kilometres in size and is crystal clear and mirror-smooth. The only opening of Heaven Lake lies on the northern side, allowing the water to flow from the lake all year round, and it is the source of many big rivers in northeast China. About 1,250 meters below Heaven Lake, a sudden fall in terrain creates a splendid waterfall, with a drop of 68 metres. The waterfall can be seen throughout the year. In mid-winter, the sprayed water drops turn instantly into icy pearls. They cluster together and form fantastic ice flowers spreading in all direction. There are many other lakes and waterfalls in Mt. Changbaishan. To the northeast of Heaven Lake stands the highest peak, called Tianwenfeng Peak. Tianwenfeng Peak has always been the optimum place to view Heaven Lake.
There are many varieties of plant species on the mountainside; different kinds of plants from the Temperate Zone and the Frigid Zone. At the foot of the mountain, there's a forest of broad-leaved trees. At 1000 metres, there is a mixed forest of broad-leaved trees and conifers. At 1800 meters, it is a solely coniferous forest where the trees are straight and strong. Above 2000-meters, only lichen can survive.
Thermal springs are another attraction for visitors. Not far from the Grand Changbai Waterfall, there is an area of about 1000 square metres with 13 thermal springs. The hot waters contain hydrogen sulphide and are claimed to have high medical value.
Mt. Changbiashan is the original home of the Manchu people, and today has a large population of ethnic Koreans. The locals are hospitable and warm-hearted and their native customs provide a charming source of entertainment for visitors.