This northeast province, which derived its name from the river (Black Dragon River) flowing along the border China has with Russia. A distinctive geological land form and peculiar climate combine to turn Heilongjiang into a fabulous tourist destination.
In ancient times Heilongjiang was far from any literate civilization, and information was sparse. Chinese and other sources state that Heilongjiang was inhabited by people such as the Xianbei, the Malgal, and the Khitan. The eastern portion of Heilongjiang was ruled by the kingdom of Balhae between the 7th century and 10th century. The Jurchen Jin Dynasty (1115-1234) that subsequently ruled much of north China arose within the borders of modern Heilongjiang.
Heilongjiang as an administrative entity was created in 1683, during the Kangxi era of the the Manchu Qing Dynasty, from the northwestern part of the Jilin province.This Heilongjiang Province only included the western part of today's Heilongjiang Province, and was under the supervision of the General of Heilongjiang (the title is also translated as the Military Governor of Heilongjiang), whose power extended, according to the Treaty of Nerchinsk, as far north as the Stanovoy Mountains. The eastern part of what's today Heilongjiang remained under the supervision of the General of Jilin, whose power reached the Sea of Japan. These areas deep in Manchuria were closed off to Han Chinese migration.
The original seat of the Military Governor of Heilongjiang, as established in 1683, was in Heilongjang City (also known as Aigun or Heihe, or, in Manchu, Saghalien Ula), located on the Amur River. However, already in 1690 the seat of the governor was tranferred to Nenjiang (Mergen) on the Nen River, and, in 1699, further south to Qiqihar. According to modern historians, the moves may have been driven by supply considerations: Nenjiang and Qiqihar are connected by a convenient waterway (Nen River) with southern Manchuria, meanwhile accessing Aigun (Heihe) would require either sailing all the way down the Sungari River until its fall into Amur and then up the Amur to Heihe, or using a portage over the Lesser Xing'an Mountains between the Nen River valley and the Amur valley. An additional advantage of Qiqihar may have been its location at the junction of a northbound road (to Nenjiang) and a westbound one (to Mongolia), enabling its garrison to serve for the defense both against the Russians and the Ölöt Mongols
In 1858 and 1860 the Qing government were forced to give up all land beyond the Amur and Ussuri Rivers to Russian Empire, cutting China off from the Sea of Japan and giving Heilongjiang its present northern borders. At the same time, Manchuria was opened to Han Chinese migration by the Qing government. By the early twentieth century, the Han Chinese had become the dominant ethnic group in the region.
After the Japanese defeat in 1945, Soviet forces entered Manchuria and gave the Chinese communists control over most of the area. Heilongjiang became the first province to be completely controlled by the Chinese communists and Harbin the first major city to be controlled by them. From Manchuria, the communists were able to conduct the initial phases of the Chinese Civil War.
At the beginning of communist rule, Heilongjiang province included only the western portion of the present-day province, and had its capital at Qiqihar. The remaining area was the province of Songjiang; its capital was Harbin. In 1954, these two provinces were merged into present-day Heilongjiang. During the Cultural Revolution Heilongjiang was also expanded to include Hulunbuir League and some other areas previously in Inner Mongolia; this has since mostly been reversed.
Heilongjiang is a land of varied topography. Much of the province is dominated by mountain ranges such as the Greater Khingan Range and Lesser Khingan Range, Zhangguangcai Mountains, Laoye Mountains, and Wanda Mountains. The highest peak is Mount Datudingzi at 1690 m (5545 ft), located on the border with Jilin province). The Greater Khingan Range contains China's largest remaining virgin forest and is an important area for China's forestry industry.
The interior of the province, which is relatively flat and low in altitude, contains the Muling River, the Naoli River, the Songhua River, the Nen River, and the Mudan River, all tributaries of the Amur's basin, while the northern border forms part of the Amur valley. Xingkai Lake (or Khanka Lake) is found on the border with Russia's Primorsky Krai.
Heilongjiang is subarctic in climate. Winters are long and frigid, with an average of −31 to −15°C in January, and summers are short and cool with an average of 18 to 23°C in July. The annual average rainfall is 500 to 600 mm, concentrated mostly in summer.
|• Daqing (大庆)||• Daxing'anling (大兴安岭)||• Harbin (哈尔滨)||• Hegang (鹤岗)|
|• Heihe (黑河)||• Jiamusi (佳木斯)||• Jixi (鸡西)||• Mudanjiang (牡丹江)|
|• Qiqihar (齐齐哈尔)||• Qitaihe (七台河)||• Shuangyashan (双鸭山)||• Suihua (绥化)|
|• Yichun (伊春)|
 Other Places
Get the Flash Player to see this player.
- Jingpohu National Forest Park - clear reflections of the tree-lined coast and small islands gives this lake the nickname of Mirror lake
- Wudalianchi National Forest Park - nature reserve and health spa destination
- Yabuli - one of the largest skiing areas in China and venue for the 1996 Asian Winter Games
- Zhalong National Nature Reserve - peaceful wetlands home to 260 species of birds
 Ethnic Groups
The majority of Heilongjiang's population is Han Chinese, while other ethnic minorities include the Manchus, Koreans, Mongols, Hui, Daur, Xibe, Oroqin, Hezhen and Russians.
 Colleges and Universities
- Heilongjiang University
- Harbin Institute of Technology
- Harbin University of Science and Technology
- Heilongjiang Institute of Technology
- Northeast Agricultural University
- Northeast Forest University
- Harbin University of Civil Engineering & Architecture
- Harbin Medical University
- Daqing Staff and Workers University
- Daging Petroleun Institute
- Heilongjiang University of Traditional Chinese Medicine
- Heilongjiang Commercial University
- Harbin Normal University
- Heilongjiang August First Land Reclamation University
- Qiqihar University
 Area and Postal Codes
|City||Area Code||Postal Code||City||Area Code||Postal Code|
|Daqing (大庆)||459||163000||Daxing'anling (大兴安岭)||457||165000|
|Harbin (哈尔滨)||451||150000||Hegang (鹤岗)||468||154100|
|Heihe (黑河)||456||164300||Jiamusi (佳木斯)||454||154000|
|Jixi (鸡西)||467||158100||Mudanjiang (牡丹江)||453||157000|
|Qiqihar (齐齐哈尔)||452||161000||Qitaihe (七台河)||464||154600|
|Shuangyashan (双鸭山)||469||155100||Suihua (绥化)||455||152000|