"Cold...very cold...but warm inside!" Top 5 Page for this destination Urumqi by mke1963

Urumqi Travel Guide: 151 reviews and 348 photos

Urumqi - or Wulumuqi as it said on the side of the train to Lanzhou - is very cold in winter. It is the furthest place (in Asia? the world?) from the sea, and the geographical centre of Asia is just 50 km to the south.
I arrived on the slightly down-at-heel China Xinjiang Airlines, now part of China Southern, and left on the fabulous T198 train to Lanzhou.

Many of China's ethnic minorities can be seen in Urumuqi, especially in the Erdaqiao market and the streets around it.
However, in ALL the Chinese guidebooks be prepared for constant and wearying messages about how long Xinjiang has been Chinese: to the casual observer it seems paranoid behaviour.
The hardy and frigid climate make the people - Han, Uighur, Kazakh, Tajik, whatever - very friendly and everyone was happy to chat to complete strangers in the frosty streets.

The best time to visit is said to be autumn, from September to late October. Winter too cold, spring too windy, summer too hot.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Friendly people; ethnic melting pot; frontier spirit
  • Cons:Climate is usually too hot or too cold
  • In a nutshell:As far as it gets from the beach
  • Last visit to Urumqi: Dec 2003
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (11)

Comments (5)

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo
    Mar 29, 2007 at 7:16 AM

    An interesting place and page. Very polar too, with that climate! You'd have to wonder though, why the Chinese, usually very commercial, aren't more attuned to tourism as an industry

  • saa73's Profile Photo
    Dec 6, 2004 at 11:42 PM

    mke1963 very interesting pages on China and particularly this one on Urumqi. Yes I went to the A Fun Ti restaurant in Beijing and had a minor glimpse into Uighur culture, which I never knew existed!

  • kevarms's Profile Photo
    Dec 5, 2004 at 6:05 AM

    ROFL! You seem just a little bit annoyed... but have my sympathies :)

  • iwys's Profile Photo
    Dec 5, 2004 at 5:34 AM

    Thats' one place I've always wanted to go to. Did it live up to your expectations?

  • Sharrie's Profile Photo
    Mar 22, 2004 at 8:08 PM

    Tell us more...


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