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As the capital city of Xinjiang, Urumqi is the political, economic and cultural center of Xinjiang. Urumqi means "beautiful pasture" in Mongol, and it's the furthest city from ocean in the world, and it's also the geographic center in Asia.
Urumqi is surrounded by mountains in three directions with ancient Urumqi River passing the city center from south to north. With giant Bogda Peak in the east, magnificent Tianshan Mountains in the south and Xishan Mountain in its west, Urumqi has a vast and flat plain in north. Grassland, forest, waterfall, snow mountain... all these wild and stunning sceneries can be seen in Urumqi.
Home to 52 nationalities, including Han, Uyghur, Kazak, Mongol, Hui, etc. Urumqi is more "ethnic" than other place. Ethnic cultures, arts and customs of each nationality compose the most beautiful cultural landscapes in Urumqi.
Urumqi is normally the first top of your Xinjiang tour. There are many fascinating attractions in Urumqi, some are in the city center, like Red Hill Park and International Bazaar, and some are a little bit far from the city center, like Tianchi Lake and Nanshan Pasture.
See more information about attractions in Urumqi, please see Urumqi Attractions>>
Tianchi Lake is a crescent alpine lake north of Bogda Peak, surrounded by magnificent mountains, it's just like a pearl fall from sky, a must-go in Urumqi.
Nanshan Pasture is located in a large mountainous area, it's a great natural pasture, and also the summer resort in Urumqi, great place for hiking and riding horse.
Featured in temperate continental arid climate, the hottest time in Urumqi is July and August, with an average temperature of 25.7℃; the coldest time is January, with an average temperature of -15.2℃. Winter is the longest season, and other three seasons are short. Spring is from April to the June, summer is from July to August, while autumn is from September to the October.
The best time to visit is from May to October. The weather during this time is not cold nor too hot, it's comfortable and cozy. From August to September, the weather is cooling down, and most of the fruits reach maturity in this time. Especially the early September is the best time for photography, and many shutterbugs will rush into Xinjiang during this time. While winter is cold in Urumqi, however, from December to February, tourists can appreciate the stunning and magnificent snow mountains, and play skiing and other winter activities in Urumqi.
Learn more about Urumqi Weather>>
Urumqi is the traffic hub in China to Central Asia, West Asia and even Europe. It's very convenient to get there. Tourists can take flight, train or bus to there. Urumqi Diwobao International Airport has flights to big and middle-sized cities, like Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Islamabad, Tashkent, Novosibirsk, Moscow, Alma-Ata, Bishkek, etc. As for trains, there are two railway station in Urumqi, and at present, there are eight cities have direct trains to Urumqi, and even Alma-Ata has train to it. If you are in other places in Xinjiang, then long-distance bus is a good choice to get to Urumqi. Urumqi has many bus stations, and bus route from Urumqi almost covers all cities in Xinjiang.
To travel around, public bus is a good choice, cheap and convenient. Taking taxi is also convenient. If you take a cab to the airport, it will only spend about ¥30. There is a particular rule in Urumqi for taxi riding: if you are gentleman, then you can't sit in the co-driver seat at night.
For more information, please see Urumqi Transportation>>
In Urumqi, it's very easy to find a place to accommodate. You can find all kinds of hotels and hostels around the airport and railway stations. International chains like Sheraton and Hilton can also be found in here. Even in the Tianshan Tianchi Scenic Spot, there are accommodation with good service and full facility. While in Nanshan Pasture, tourists can choose to stay overnight in the Kazakh yurt to experience the ranch life of the locals. Budget travelers can also choose to stay in youth hostel, and the price is under ¥100.
For more information, please check Urumqi Accommodation>>
To help you have a better understanding of Urumqi, here we have collected some useful Urumqi maps for you. Please feel free to use them. For more Urumqi maps, please check Urumqi Maps>>
Urumqi is one of the cities in the ancient Silk Road, and there are more cities in the Silk Road, including Xian, Dunhuang, Turpan and Kashgar. Check these cities to know more about China Silk Road tour. Check all destinations in China>>
Chinese Name: 乌鲁木齐
Chinese Pinyin: wū lǔ mù qí
English IPA: [u'rumtʃi]
Population: 3.53 million
Language: Uygur Language & Kazakh
Tel Code: 0991
Zip Code: 830001
Time Zone: (UTC+6)
Most tourists will spend 1 ~ 2 days in Urumqi. Normally, for one day route, you can visit one scenic area only, like Tianshan Tianchi National Park or Nanshan Pasture, and some close attractions can also be visited together in one day, like Wulabo Ancient Town, Chaiwobao Salt Lake and Dabancheng Windmill Farm, or just spend one day in the city, visit Red Hill Park, Xinjiang Museum and International Bazaar. For two days route, tourists can choose one day for the attractions in the city center, and another day to visit Tianshan Tianchi National Park or Nanshan Pasture, and this route will combine the natural scenery and cultural scenery perfectly.
Besides Urumqi, Xinjiang has other attractive cities, like Turpan and Kashgar. Tourists can spend more days in Xinjiang to visit these beautiful places. Generally, it will take about 6 to 8 days to visit all of them.
Urumqi - Tianchi Lake
Urumqi - Southern Pasture
Urumqi - Turpan - Kashgar
Urumqi / Kashgar / Khotan / Ala'er / Kucha
[Important] Travel News for Expats: China travel is reopening now! Travel with China Discovery and learn about where to visit & requirements for each destination! Read Details >