26 January 2015 09:06:04Z
As the capital and largest city of Heilongjiang Province, Harbin is the tenth most populated city in China.
Harbin also serves as a key political, economic, scientific, cultural and transportation hub in Northeast China.
Harbin which grew from a small rural settlement on the Songhua River has become one of the largest cities in Northeast China. Founded by Russia in 1898 with the coming of the Trans-Manchurian Railway, today known as the Chinese Eastern Railway, the city first prospered as a region inhabited by an overwhelming majority of the Jewish immigrants. It is known for its bitterly cold winters and is often called the "Ice City." Harbin is notable for its beautiful ice sculptures in winter and its Russian legacy, and it still plays an important part in Sino-Russian trade today. In the 1920s, the city was considered China's fashion capital since new designs from Paris and Moscow reached there first before arriving in Shanghai. In 2010, Harbin was declared a UNESCO "City of Music.