Sports enthusiasts take to slopes for Lunar New Year

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, January 29, 2023
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To celebrate Lunar New Year, the Badaling Great Wall in Beijing was illumined as the night fell during the Spring Festival holiday, which echoed the busy skiing and skating venues near the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

About 2 kilometers from the Great Wall, the Badaling ski resort attracted tourists with fun winter activities.

"Under the guidance of instructors, skiers are allowed to enter the track after passing the corresponding level of tests to ensure their safety as much as possible," said Yao Yu, general manager of the Badaling ski resort.

"Now, Badaling is not only known for the Great Wall, but also for winter sports," said a skier Wang Da. "It feels good to practice during the Spring Festival holiday. As an increasing number of ski resorts in Beijing have been upgraded in recent years, more people will get involved in skiing."

On the last day of 2022, Yanqing district in the northwest of Beijing launched four tour lines, starting from the city's downtown and heading for the Yanqing Olympic Zone, Badaling Great Wall, Badaling ski resort, and Vanke Shijinglong Ski Resort respectively, which provided greater convenience for tourists.

The National Alpine Skiing Center, a venue for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics, was open to the public in early December. The impressive mountain scenery along the different levels of tracks provided skiers with a hugely enjoyable experience. They shared their skiing videos, which became popular on social media.

At Vanke Shijinglong Ski Resort, children wearing colorful ski suits and cartoon cushion pads were learning skiing skills from the instructors. The resort also arranged entertainment activities for families.

"Since Beijing won the bid for the Winter Olympics in 2015, the number of tourists at the ski resort has increased year by year. With the COVID-19 response measures optimized in China, the winter sports-related consumption was further spurred, particularly during holidays," said Chen Xiaowei, CEO assistant of Vanke Shijinglong Ski Resort.

Earlier this month, people at Nanshan ski resort in suburban Beijing saw Olympic champion Su Yiming win the Nanshan Open with brilliant tricks, which brought back their memories of Beijing 2022.

"It's been nearly a year since the Winter Olympics, but many Chinese people's passion for winter sports is not only remaining, but rising," said Hu Wei, general manager of Nanshan ski resort.

At a skating venue in Yanqing district called Mengqiyuan, which means "start of a dream", the teenager training system of practicing roller skating before turning to ice skating was further improved in 2022.

"In the past month, teenager short-track skating clubs resumed their regular training. Skating can become a child's hobby, profession, and even career in the future," said Yu Yongjun, a coach at Mengqiyuan.

According to the Beijing Bureau of Sports, there are more than 80 skating and over 30 skiing venues in the city, laying a solid foundation for cultivating winter sports talents.

During the current Spring Festival travel rush, the Beijing-Zhangjiakou high-speed railway, which served the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics last year, saw rising passenger flow during the ski season.

"Winter sports enthusiasts from different cities, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Harbin went skiing via the Beijing-Zhangjiakou high-speed railway," said Wang Xiaoyong, head of Qinghe Railway Station in Beijing.

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