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Xinjiang is an Uygur Autonomous Region. It is the largest region in China, covering one sixth of China's total. A great deal of it is desert and mountain. But cities were founded on oasis growing vegetables and delicious fruits. Its attractions are its people and scenery. Nationalities living in Xinjiang love dancing, singing and playing their own unique musical instruments. They are hospitable people. Visitors will be invited to taste sweet grapes, melons and plums, drink tea, and join the lively dancing.

Capital city, Urumqi, is 4000 km away from Beijing. The Beijing-Urumqi express is China's longest train ride. Xinjiang Museum has a collection of historical relics of the various nationalities living in the region. Exhibits include Roman and Persian coins and other relics of the Silk Road. At Bazaar, visitors can buy handicrafts, taste pancakes and shish-kebabs.

Tianshan (Heaven Mountain) and Lake Tianchi (Heaven Lake) are 115 km from Urumqi. The southern slope of Tianshan has plenty of sunshine and water to make it a heaven with carpets of green grasses, bright wild flowers and lovely sunshine. Imagine riding a handsome horse through the knee-deep flowers and grasses! The Lake Tianchi is 5 square km and 100 meters deep. About 65 km south of Urumqi is the Nanshan Pasture. There are mountains, valleys, fountains, waterfalls, cypress and pine trees. It can be a new, exciting experience riding horses and climbing mountains in fresh air in daytime, and staying in a yurt while eating barbecued mutton in the evening.

The Silk Road extended 7000 km long from Xi'an to Iraq and Syria from 138 B. C. until the 14th century. It declined because sea-going ships were able to trade more efficiently. Along the routes, silk, and tea.

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Site Created: September 16, 1998; Updated: September 23, 2007.