Urumqi is situated at the northern foot of the Tianshan Mountain . It is the capital of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and one of the key national cities opened to the outside world. It is the region's political, economic, cultural, scientific, technological, and information center. It is also a communications hub - linking areas north and south of the Tianshan Mountains and connecting Xinjiang to the rest of the country.
Urumqi was a natural pasture during the ancient times. Today, it abounds in tourism resources, integrating its magnificent and enchanting scenery with bright and colorful social traditions. At Tianchi ( Heavenly Lake ), visitors will enjoy the tranquility of the mountains and the lake. In Nanshan, visitors will experience a Kazak herder's life on horseback.
Tourist accommodations have improved greatly in Urumqi through the years. There are now numerous hotels, and all modes of transportation extends in all directions.
Summers are brutally hot, and winters can be bitingly cold in Urumqi . The best period to visit this place is from May to October.
Tianchi ( Heavenly Lake ) - Tianchi, knwon in ancient times as the "Jade Pool", is a renowned scenic spot with historical legends. The towering snow-clad peaks are reflected in the placid lake; wild flowers abound amid green pines and cypresses. The area is also sprinkled with yurts, flocks of sheep and herds of cattle, which all create a cheerful and peaceful scene.
Hongshan (Red Hill) - Its top looks like a recumbent male lion and its ridge, like a curving dragon. At the top of the hill is a nine-storey gray brick pagoda, which stands across another brick pagoda on the top of Yamalik Hill; these are henceforth called "Subduing Dragon Pagodas". Superstitious people at that time thought that the frequent flooding at the foot of Hongshan was caused by an evil dragon, so they built these two pagodas to subdue the dragon. Many tourists facilities have now been set up on this hill, where visitors can have a panoramic view of the City of Urumqi .
White Poplar Valley - This remote mountain and secluded valley is filled with snow-capped peals and towering mountains, dense fir trees, and verdant grassland. It has white felt tents, superb villas, and a reception house for foreign guests. Tourists may visit Kazak herders' yurts, taste aromatic tea with milk, mare's milk, roast mutton, cheese and other traditional Kazak food. Tourists may also stroll in the shade, enjoying the picturesque scenery, or they can go horseback riding and gallop over the vast grassland.
People's Park - The park is green from spring to fall and water ripples in Jianhu Lake , encircled with lush green of ancient trees. It has pavilions and towers, a children's playground, and beautifully landscaped gardens.
Big Hall of Great Shaanxi Mosque - The hall strictly follows Islamic tradition in not having idols or human or animal figures in it. It is a traditional Chinese wooden structure that is under the protection of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region as a cultural relic.
Museum of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region - The museum houses a collection of cultural relics and is also a scientific research center in the region. Exhibits open to the public are: Xinjiang Historical & Cultural Relics Show - shows different stages of social development from primitive to slave and feudal societies; Xinjiang Nationality & Folklore - depicts the customs and traditions of the different nationalities in Xinjiang; Xinjiang Ancient Corpse Show - on display are a 3,800 year old female corpse unearthed in Loulan, a 3,200 year old female corpse from Hami, and a 3,000 year old male corpse from Chemerg. They are specimens of well-preserved ancient remains in China .
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