Situated near the common boundary of Gansu, Qinghai and Xinjiang, the historical city Dunhuang is a renowned tourist destination famous for the Mogao Caves. Dunhuang, long ago referred to as ‘Sha Zhou’ (beautiful desert oasis), was the hub of middle and eastern silk routes in ancient times. The city landmark is an attractive statue, the idea of which comes from the mural in Mogao Caves, a shrine to the culture and arts of Dunhuang. From Mt.Qilian in the south, Mt. Mazong in the north and desert from east to west, the landform of Dunhuang City is a declining basin-plain from west to northeast, high in the north and south, and low in the middle. The western cities of China, especially those in the desert, are known for their sandstorms, so tourists should protect themselves with glasses, hats and gauze kerchiefs, etc.
In ancient times, Dunhuang was the center of trade between China and its western neighbors. At that time, it was the most westerly frontier military garrison in China. With the flourishing of trade along the Silk Road, Dunhuang was prompted to become the most open area in international trade in Chinese history. It provided the only access westward for the Chinese Empire and eastward for western nationalities. Today, as a reminder of this historical area, we are left with the Mogao Caves, Yangguan Pass, Yumenguan Pass and many wonderful Chinese poems depicting the time. Although what remains of the two Passes are crumbling walls, one can still experience the atmosphere of that time while visiting in person.
Today, Dunhuang is a typical tourist city, clean and beautiful. Because of its splendid stone caves, tourism has become an indispensable industry to Dunhuang City. Surrounding establishments include various classes of hotels and restaurants for your choosing. As well, tourism personnel are knowledgeable and well trained these days. For a western city in China, it has become more accesible for people to come and go as they please. Transportation is much more efficient, ensuring that your wonderful trip runs smoothly. May to September is the best time to visit, so be sure to plan your trip during these months. Including Dunhuang City in your tour is a decision you won’t regret!
Dunhuang City, an obvious pearl on the Silk Road, opens her arms to welcome tourists from all over the world.