Ürümqi (Chinese: 乌鲁木齐; pinyin: Wūlǔmùqí, Uyghur: ئۈرۈمچى, ULY: Ürümchi, UYY: Ürümqi; from Oirat “beautiful pasture”) is the capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China in Northwest China. Ürümqi was a major hub on the Silk Road during China’s Tang dynasty, and developed its reputation as a leading cultural and commercial center during Qing dynasty in 19th Century.
Weather: 13°C, Wind NW at 3 km/h, 51% Humidity
Postal code: 830000
Although Ürümqi is situated near the northern route of the Silk Road, the present city is a relatively young city. It was not called Urumqi until the time of the Dzungar Khanate. An older settlement named Luntai was located nearby, around 10 kilometres (6 miles) from the southern suburb of present-day Ürümqi. Luntai was set up by the Tang government during the 22nd year of Emperor Taizong’s reign (648 AD) in the ancient town seat of Urabo as part of the Protectorate General to Pacify the West that controlled Xinjiang. It was a seat of local government, and collected taxes from the caravans along the northern route of the Silk Road. After the Tang retreated from the Western Regions, the region came under the control of the Uyghurs of the Khaganate and Gaochang/Qocho. From Tang to Qing Dynasty, there was little information about the Ürümqi area, and there appeared to be no permanent settlement here for most of this period. The Mongols referred to the wider area as Bishbalik meaning five cities, referring to the five towns that surrounded the present-day Ürümqi area.
Ürümqi is a major industrial center within Xinjiang. Ürümqi, together with Karamay and Korla, account for 64.5 percent of the total industrial output of Xinjiang. Ürümqi is also the largest consumer center in the region, recording ¥41.9 billion retail sales of consumer goods in 2008, an increase of 26 percent from 2007. The GDP per capita reached US$6,222 in 2008. According to statistics, Urumqi ranked 7th in 2008 by the disposable income for urban residents among cities in Western China. Ürümqi has been a central developmental target for the China Western Development project that the Central Government is pursuing.
Urumqi Guide Map
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 home to 49 minority ethnic groups, this graceful prairie city is an important stop along the ancient Silk Road, leading to Central Asia and even as far as Europe.The city lies in the shadow of the lofty ice-capped Bogda Peak with vast Salt Lake to the east, rolling pine-covered Southern Hill to the south, and 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 for travel, when flowers are in full bloom.