The Tangwanghe River runs through the forests of the Tangwanghe National Park like a silver stream. [Photo:trends.com.cn]
Tangwanghe River is the mother river of Yichun city in Heilongjiang. Follow this river against its current and when you come to the river's source you will be situated firmly within the Tangwanghe National Park.
Tangwanghe National Park, established in 2008, was China's first national park. Under the guidance of the country's Ministry of Environmental Protection and National Tourism Administration, the main function of the park is to act as a nature reserve. Only a small section of the park has been developed for tourism.
The diversity and rarity of the park's eco system speaks for itself. It is home to a Korean pine tree forest encompassing over 2000 square kilometers. The number of this pine tree species has declined severely around the world due to massive logging as the trees serve as a high quality building material. Roaming about the Korean pine tree forest are wild animals, such as elk and sable, rarely seen in other areas of the country.
In addition to the extravagance of natural wild life, the park also boasts unique landscapes. The most spectacular sight is the granite stone forest, a geographic relic composed of clusters of bizarrely shaped rocks. Other natural attractions include wetlands, waterfalls and last but not least, the Tangwanghe River. 468 meters in length, the river is the life line of the national park.
In order to maintain the park's natural appearance, sightseeing trams are nowhere to be seen and the scenic section of the park does not have tour guides. Tourists are advised to follow a set route marked out by a number of direction signs. And even with so few service facilities, the park remains popular with tourists. It is the venue for an annual camping festival.
The park is accessible by railway and it takes less than an hour's drive from Yichun city to arrive in the area. The city is connected with major Chinese cities by air. The entrance ticket to the park is priced at 70 yuan per person.