In this Week in Photos, PM 2.5 levels skyrocket to begin the new year, people celebrate the Laba Festival at a temple in Yichang, Hubei province, and a winter swimming contest in Chishui, Guizhou province, opens with a performance commemorating the anniversary of the Red Army’s Long March.
People wearing face masks dance in heavy smog at a public square in Fuyang, Anhui province, Jan. 4, 2017. China Daily/via Reuters
A high-speed train is covered in dirt and grime after hurtling through heavy smog from Shanghai to Beijing, Beijing South Railway Station, Jan. 2, 2017. IC
A man and his daughter, both wearing face masks, ride the merry-go-round at a park in Chongqing, Jan. 4, 2017. Chongqing issued a yellow alert for air pollution at the beginning of 2017. Chen Chao/VCG
People at a temple crowd around a table serving free Laba porridge, a meal traditionally eaten during the Laba Festival, a holiday marking the Buddha’s enlightenment, Yichang, Hubei province, Jan. 5, 2017. IC
Men dressed in Red Army military uniforms participate in the opening ceremony of a winter swimming contest in Chishui, Guizhou province, Jan. 7, 2017. Pan Lingfeng/IC
Female audience members take photos of a male underwear model during a promotional event in Hefei, Anhui province, Jan. 7, 2017. Niu Zai/IC
A man uses a shovel to stoke the coals at a pork smokehouse in Guzhang County, Hunan province, Jan. 4, 2017. IC