I am trying to do a cultural project on the city of Harbin. However, I'm not sure if it is correct to say this. I found out that Harbin was the capital of the province of Heilongjiang. If I said, 哈尔滨是黑龙江的首都, would it make sense since 首都 means capital.

  • 2
    北京是中国的首都: Beijing is the capital of China. 拉萨是西藏的首府: Lhasa is the capital of Tibet. 西安是陕西的首府/省会: Xi'an is the capital of Shaanxi. 我今天要去省城: I need to go to the provincial capital (city) today.
    – xenophōn
    Commented Jul 6, 2017 at 5:11

2 Answers 2


No, you should use 省会 (provincial capital) instead, i.e. 哈尔滨是黑龙江的省会. You could also use 省城 (in a little old-style), or 首府 (especially for 自治区(autonomous region)).

首都 is only used for the capital of a country, e.g.北京是中国的首都.

  • Also, 省城 - baike.baidu.com/item/%E7%9C%81%E5%9F%8E 省城,是汉语词汇,解释为省政府驻地,省会,首府。
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Jun 24, 2017 at 9:54
  • 自治縣的行政駐地通常被稱為「首府」,如呼和浩特、烏魯木齊、銀川、南寧、拉薩。
    – Tang Ho
    Commented Jun 24, 2017 at 9:58
  • actually, 首府 is not so widely used in daily languages
    – ospider
    Commented Jun 27, 2017 at 6:07

I am afraid it is not very suitable, 首都 is capital,Beijing is the capital of china, the capital of province is 省会,guangzhou is the 省会 of guangdong province.

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