Changbaishan. It’s located north eastern tip of China, in the province of Jilin and border with North Korea. On top of the volcanic mountain is a crater lake - the heaven lake, which is one of the most gorgeous lakes I’ve ever seen in my life and, apparently has mysterious monsters living in it. (Google it)
The guide to Changbaishan
Changbaishan national park has 2 entrances - the west and north gate. I went for both to get a different view of the heaven lake. If you’re short on time, go to the west gate, otherwise go for both if weather permits, it’s totally worth it.
At the west gate, you’ll get into the national park bus upon entrance. Sit back and enjoy the view as you slowly ascent to the end point. All you need to do from there is to climb 1400 steps to get up to the top to see the heaven lake. The postcard worthy beautiful crater lake.
The heaven lake is only at 2189 metres so you don’t have to worry much about the altitude problem. If you are REALLY struggling, they have people who will carry you on a chair all the way to the top. But I mean… REALLY?
When should you go?
The best time to go is between June to September. You’re supposed to be able to see lavender blooming all over the mountain from end June to beginning of August, if that’s your thing. I went in the peak of summer - end of August, which was supposedly may rain a little but we’re incredibly lucky to get perfect sunny weather without fog.
Where could you stay?
Changbaishan area also have recently opened a ski resort complex that comprises a number of well renowned hotel chains. I stayed in Holiday Inn Resort at that time which was absolutely gorgeous. I would definitely go back in winter for snowboarding if time permits!
How do you get there?
You can fly to Changbaishan via Beijing with China Southern Airlines. Easiest and fastest option for sure!