Urumqi Travel Guide

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Urumqi Travel Guide
Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in northwest China, is just like a piece of emerald embedded at the foot of the Tianshan Mountains. As an inhabitant of 49 minority ethnic groups, this graceful prairie city is an important stop along the ancient Silk Road, leading to the Central Asia and even as far as Europe.

The city lies in the lofty ice-capped Bogda Peak with vast Salt Lake to the east, the rolling pine-covered Southern Hill to the south, and the alternating fields and sand dunes of Zunggar Basin to the northwest. With shorter spring and autumn but longer winter and summer, May to October is the golden season to visit it, when flowers are in full bloom and the fruits, like melons and grape, are ripe with fragrance. The two hours’ time difference between Xinjiang and Beijing lead to local working time starting from 09:30 or 10:00. The temperature widely ranges between day and night. Considering this, you’d better start your traveling around noon time.
Urban Transport
It is a junction between China and East Asia and even Europe. Urumqi Airport plays a significant role for traveling among cities in China, East Asia, European countries and other regions in Xinjiang. Long-distance buses to most attractions are available from the city. The Lanzhou-Urumqi high-speed train makes train trip to Xinjiang fast, convenient and comfortable.

72-Hour Weather Forecast

Nang, local food in Xinjiang
Almost all cuisines of China can be found here, so it is not need to worry about eating. Eating food from different local ethnic groups is a must-do activity. Kebabs, Nang and Xinjiang Noodles of Uyghur, cheese and Boiled Lamb from Mongolia, bread and dairy-product from Russian make you could not help having a try. Various local fruits and nuts will leave you a sweet memory.

Local Market
Coming here will not let you return to your country empty-handed. Shopping in the International Grand Bazaar is a pleasant experience. Bargain hunting for handicraft souvenirs such as rugs, carpets, Uygur-style hats, knitted sweaters, ethnic costumes, hand-made embroideries and jade carvings, will definitely draw your intense interest.

Uygur Performance
Nightlife here provides multiple-range of choices such as watching the ethnic sing-and-dance show, tasting native delicacies in the night market, or simply hanging out in bars. Shopping along Zhongshan Road or at Er Dao Qiao Market is sure to make your night interesting. Or one can climb the Red Hill to appreciate the beautiful night piece of the whole city.

Local Performance
The most important local festivals are the annual Corban Festival and Lesser Bairam. Corban Festival, also known as “Sacrifice Festival”, falls on December 10th on the Islamic calendar and lasts three days. During that time, ethnic activities, thumping singing and dancing parties will be held in both urban and rural areas. All homes serve the visitors delicious mutton. Lesser Bairam, also called “Fast Breaking Festival”, is the New Year’s Day of the Hui nationality as well as some other ethnic groups. It is the holiday at the end of Ramadan. The annual Silk Road Snow Folk Festival, from December to the next March, allows visitors to enjoy the fun of skiing.

Although it is remote, its history can be traced back to the Neolithic Age. It used to be a residence of some northern nomadic people. Till 1755, fast development started in this area and the city got the name “Urumqi”. In 1884, it changed its name to “Dihua” and regarded as a politic center. From 1954, it used the original name and has been the capital city of Xinjiang.

Some fast facts and practical information provided below will facilitate your life and trip in the city.
  • Area Code & Zip Code
  • Useful Phone Numbers
  • Post Office
  • Money Exchange
  • Hospital
  • Famous University
  • Special Notes