Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region
Ningxia, situated in the northwest of China, is one of the birthplaces of Chinese civilization. The ancient Silk Road passes through this region; a place filled with beautiful mountains and rivers. There are many places of interest such as the Western Xia Tombs, the scenic Liupan Mountain, Shapotou Sand Control Project Tourist Area (which has been chosen as one of "the Five Hundred Best Projects of the Global Ecology" by United Nations), and a variety of other sites. Today, Ningxia has rich varieties of culture including Islamic cultures and relics of the Western Xia culture.
Yinchuan, also called Phoenix City, is the capital of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. An ancient and well-known city in the west, it was once the capital of the Western Xia Dynasty. Today, Yinchuan is listed by the state as one of the 100 famous historical and cultural cities.
There are many historical and cultural sites in Yinchuan. It is the center of the Hui culture. The city also features a variety of unique Islamic architecture. Yinchuan's beautiful deserts, historical sites and local customs are the instrumental in making Yinchuan one of the most attractive places in China.
Mt. Sumeru Grottoes
Located on the eastern foot of Xumi Mountain, the grottoes were constructed over many dynasties, starting during the South and North Dynasties (420-589). There are 20 well-preserved grottoes, winding along 1.2 miles. Amongst these grottoes are a few examples of the important existing grotto art under the state protection.
The Western Xia Tombs
The Western Xia Tombs are located at the eastern foot of the Helan Mountain, 18.6 miles west of Yinchuan. The tombs extend 6.2 miles from north to south and 2.4 miles from east to west. There are nine tombs of kings and over 20 funerary tombs, which were built to fit in with the topography. Before the Ming Dynasty, the kings' tombs were robbed, but many cultural vestiges remain.
One Hundred and Eight Pagodas
The One Hundred and Eight Pagodas are located on the mountain slopes of the western bank of Qingtong Gorge in Qingtongxia City. The pagodas are arranged in an odd order, 12 rows from top to bottom in accordance with the topography, forming a huge equilateral triangle with 108 pagodas in all. Written articles were once unearthed from the foundations of the pagodas.
The Helan Mountain
Helan Mountain is in northwestern Yinchuan. The word "Helan" is Mongolian for "fine horses." Helan Mounain is over 6,561 feet above sea level with a peak 11,666 feet. It is an ideal summer resort for tourists.