Quietly Summer---Part1 

Written by May 15, 2006 01:05
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Introduce of plan

I decided to go to Ningxia, and discussed it with my friend Tracey during the Spring Festival holiday when she was in Beijing, and finally, we started and finished our fantastic traveling in Ningxia.

Ningxia is really a strange and splendid place in China, not only for its minority, but also for its various scenery, including colorful mountains, yellow river, desert, gorge…… Buddha and Muslim……I can’t image that all the persons are muslim in a small town in there. So many unbelievable things want to share with you guys.

Our itinerary started from Beijing, took the train K43 to Yinchuan, the capital of Ningxia. The first day, we visited West Tower, North Tower, Nanguan Mosque, Drum Tower, “Tiananmen” in the downtown. Second day: We rent a car, and visited Xiaxia Royal Tomb, Helan Mt. And Zhenbeibao Film Base. For the third day, we took a bus to Xiaba, and then to Qingtongxia for visiting the Yellow River and 108 Towers, and we spent so much time on the bus, from Wuzhong to Zhongwei. Third day, we viewed Gaomiao in the morning, and took a mini bus to Shapotou and Tenggeri Desert, so fantastic day during our trip. We went three places in the fifth day, and took a poor train from Zhongwei to Zhongning, and then to Tongxin, but we stayed in Guyuan in the night, so amazing day. We have to leave Ningxia in the sixth day, and the heaviest impress of this day in Nanmen Coach Station in Yinchuan, we went to there many time only for my expensive water pot, LOL~~~~~~

My heart was still in Ningxia now, and I missed its delicious mutton and fresh beer, even they came out in my dream.

Children’s Train

I usually write my article from my train to the destination. We planned to leave for Yinchuan on 30th, and I had to buy our tickets on 26th, it was a terrible thing that you wanted to buy the train ticket before the May Holiday, that’s true. I waited in a long line about 2 hours, and then the teller told me there were no tickets. How sad it was! And I didn’t want to buy a standing ticket for the long trip more than 19 hours.

On the morning of 27th, I tried to call 962586 for booking ticket, I didn’t want to day how difficult it is, finally, I got our tickets in that day, No. K43(From Beijing to Jiaoyuguan) ,two hard sleeper tickets for Yinchuan, about 280 Yuan.

I didn’t go to work on 30th, and went to Beijing Railway Station in the morning. I would meet Tracey in there. Her train arrived Beijing at 8:30, and then we had a good breakfast in Tianyejia Fast Food. From 11:40, we started our wonderful trip.

Every train was different, and I changed my bed with a girl, her mother has problems of heart, and they didn’t get the bottom sleeper. I chatted with Tracey, and view the sides scenery. Tracey wrote her diary, and we passed many tunnels, about 60, so light and darkness changed so fast during the three hours at first.

There were three children around us, one is only 1 years old, one is a smart boy about 3 year old, the last one is a big-head boy, he loved running. The carriage was filled with laugh because of these children. Because of his big head, he was very easy to fall down when he ran. And his parents should take care of him all the time, and he didn’t know tired, but the adult felt too tired to run with him at last. The smallest one was cute, and she loved dancing with music, and eating many kinds of food. The most excellent and funny one is the smart boy, and I played and chatted with him all the time. He had many secrets, but he didn’t want to tell me. At last, I felt very tired, and he still wanted to chat with me, Oh! My god!!!

We had a good sleep in the train, and arrived Yinchuan in the morning on 1st May. I didn’t know what waiting for us……

Long and Old Yinchuan

It was sunny when we arrived Yinchuan, and about 30 degree in the daytime. It was too hot for us Dongbeiren. But at that time, we felt so warm.

We took a taxi near the station, and the driver was a woman, she was very kindly, and introduced Yinchuan for us, we also decided to rent her car for our second day. Yinchuang is a long city from west to the east, like a dumbbell. There was nothing in the middle, only few residential areas. The most flourishing area was the old one named Xingqing District. We found our hotel easily, and it was called Liyuan Hotel, in Nanxun Street, 3 stars for 160 Yuan. After a good rest and breakfast, we started our trip.

The old Yinchuan was too small to take a bus or taxi, you can walk around it on food. Our first destination is Ningxia Museum.

In fact, it was a temple with a tower named Xita or West Tower in English. There were very less tourists, and I can’t image that we were in the May Holiday. The yard was so quietly, only Tracey and me. You can climb the tower, about 11 floors. I was so weak, that I felt too tired when I arrived the top. The steps was so narrow and hilly.

In this museum, you can also see some rock pictures from Helan Mt. And knew some history of Xixia Dynasty. Yinchuan as the capital of Xixia for more than 190 years, and called Xingqingfu in that moment. Tough the city in the northwest, we usually think it was poor, and covered by yellow field, full of sandstorm in spring, no water……But NO!!! Yinchuan is a rich place in this area, and it was very very flat, because of the Yellow River through it, and Helan Mt protected it, there was no sandstorm, though the desert besides of the city.

The city was clearly in the sunny day, and the sky was so blue. It made me excited. You know, the blue sky in Beijing was very very less. We enjoyed the sun, the quietly street, the happy commons, the cute children……

In Yinchuan old district, you only need to remember Xinhua Street, Liqun Street, Wenhua Street and Nanxun Street, they were all from the west to east, for the street from north to south, Drum Tower Street and Yuhuangge Street were important. That’s ok! You can walk around the city now.

It was a happy time for everyone in the May Holiday. The business district of Yinchuan was around Drum Tower. In many Chinese cities, there were drum or bell towers. But Yinchuan’s was so different from each other. It was complex, and a few small lofts on the top. There was a garden name Ningyuan, and many pearsons were fishing. Actually, I don’t like fishing, it needs much time and patience. I can’t do that.

Many persons were relax in this area, the old, the youth, the children. They enjoyed the flowers, fountain, and the blue sky. The city was clean, I usually like the city that I have been to, and at last, I loved Beijing.

We walked on the crowded road, and Tracey has said many “hellos” to the citizens. Maybe the foreigners were very less in Ningxia. We visited Nanguan Mosque as our next destination. You know, Ningxia is Chinese muslem province, and more than 30% Hui lived in Yinchuan, there were many mosques in the city. It was nice that there was a guide in the mosque. I really had interests in religions. They played a vcd or dvd to us first, and introduced islam to us. You can know how to go to haj in Saudi Arabia. What are mosques in Mekka and Medina look like.

We can allow to see the pray hall in this mosque, and you can’t come into it. Because they pray five times in one day, and they have to bath or take a shower before pray every time. Do they work? It seemed that they prayed all the day. Actually, I really wanted to read Alcoran at that moment.

It was afternoon, and we felt hungry. The most famous restaurant was called Lao Mao Shou Zhua. It was famous for mutton. We really want to drink the cold beer in the hot day, and we asked the server if we can drink in this muslem restaurant. He told us we can drink in the third floor, LOL~~~~~~OK! We’d like to do that.

We ordered mutton, a kind of shallot which lived in desert, and three fresh vegetable, including cucumber, carrot and white gourd. Besides, we asked a tea named Babao Cha. Of course, we drank the local beer Xixia Beer. In fact, except the shallot, all the thing were nice and worth to taste. Especially Xixia Beer, it was so fresh and light, with some fruit taste. Really good. Babao Cha was a sweet one, but filled with many stuff. The mutton was smell good……

After the delicious lunch, and we took a taxi to North Tower or Beita. The basic price of the taxi is 5 Yuan, and you can go everywhere in the downtown in most time. But the north tower was for away from the downtown, we cost 8 Yuan.

Nearly, there was no tourist in north tower, and you can also climb the tower, the steps were not hilly, I loved it. I think the north was beautiful and splendid than the west one. And there were many pictures of various Buddha towers in China. We stood at the top, and looked forward to the city, so flat. I am sure that my legs were hurt or pained in the next day. We had a wonderful and quietly time in the temple, and everything was peaceful. We’d like to waste our time in there, and enjoy our holiday.

There was a fishing place near the temple, do they love fishing? We have seen a few fishing places in the city. We returned downtown by taxi, and arrived Nanmen. There was a building similar to Tian’anmen, but smaller. We asked a ticket office if they can sell train ticket back to Beijing on 6th, the seller said it will be sold tomorrow. We also checked the time of some buses in Nanmen Coach Station. Because we will leave for Qingtongxia in the third day.

We were really tired for walking the whole day, and climbing two towers. By our feet, we returned our hotel and had a rest.

We went out for our supper in the night, and nearly passed the places we have been to in the daytime. Xinhua Street is a good place for easting in the night, and there were some bars and restaurant. But the most excellent food is Yinchuan Roujiamo in there. It was so different from Xi’an. The stuff was beef, and it was too much to fill the cake. Of course we ate it with Xixia Beer and Dapan chicken. Really too full to move. The host of the restaurant said I was a Korean. Oh, My god! In Beijing, someone said I was Japanese, Oh, No!!! I am a real Chinese. But in fact, as so far, no one can know I am Manchurian from my appearance.

We walked very slow after our memorable supper, and sat near Drum Tower……

Mysterious Xixia

Xixia is a mysterious and powerful dynasty in Chinese history. It was established up by a small minority called Daxiang. You know, in that period, China was separated from many countries founded by different nationalities. But in the north of Xixia, there was strongest country called Liao was founded by Qidan, and Jin was in the northeast, Song in the south, and Tibet and Dali in the southwest. Song and Dali were both weak in the moment, and Xixia was also small, but it lasted for nearly 200 years. He had six wars with Mongolian, and the famous Genghis Khan was very angry with this, when he won the war at last, he killed the whole country and Daxing ethnic. So there was no this ethnic in China now.

We planed to visit Xixia Royal Tomb, Helan Mt and Zhenbeibao Film Studio today. Our taxi driver arrived at the hotel on time, and we went to the train station to buy our return tickets first. It was too terrible to buy the tickets when we arrived at the station. It was filled with different persons, I didn’t think we should waste our time in it, then I asked for help from my friend in Beijing who worked in a tour company, we only need to travel around happily.

Our car ran in the green and cloudy world, the road was wild and flat. The tomb wasn’t very far away from the train station. By the way, our driver is really a good and kindly guide, she told us so much of Xixia on our way.

The Xixia Royal Tomb Area including three parts: Xixia Museum, Xixia History Exhibition and Yuanhao’s Tomb. I think it was the only one museum just for one dynasty in China, and the introducer was free. I have interests in their words or language, every character looks same, but in fact, it was different from each other. Before I came here, I only knew the first emperor of Xixia who was called Li Yuanhao. He was a powerful man, and established up his own country in that period. He was also a clever man, created their own language. I think, usually, the first emperor of one dynasty was excellent. But it was still a miracle that a so small country or minority can be last for 190 year among the powerful Liao, Song, Jin and Mongolia. Yuanhao is a good and excellent emperor at first, but killed by his son. Because he accroached his daughter-in-low, Is every man concupiscent?

We view the museum first, and they had free tour guide, it was so nice. And we followed a group and as their rout for our visiting. Then we went to see the exhibition of the stories of Xixia, including Yuanhao, the war between Mongolian, the fourth emperor…….No Photos in there!!!

The last and the most important part of this place is the tomb of Yuanhao. It was called Eastern Pyramid. In fact, it looks like a huge rideau. Many birds made their houses on it. We only can see the site of the tomb garden. Where is the gate, where is the wall……It was destroyed by airslaking and human beings. But you can still image how powerful of the dynasty.

In the old China, the tomb areas were really nice and wonderful. Of course including this one, it backed to Helan Mountain, and lay down in the flat Yinchuan. So peaceful!

We spent two hours in there, and said goodbye to the pyramid. Maybe history was only in one’s mind.

Abstruse Helan Mt. With Elegy

It was really an advisable choice that we rent a car for the day trip. There was a long distance from the tomb to Helan Mt. We flied on the flat road, and our taxi driver told some stories to us. The weather was cool, and it has mizzle in sometimes. I really enjoyed this weather, and stopped sometimes to take photos. In fact, we were at the side of Helan Mt all the time, and the Mt. accompanied us all the time.

When we mentioned Helan Mt. it was a little sad. There were so many events happened around it. Because of it, the Mongolian can’t win the war between Xixia very easily, though they were very strong. And now, Helan Mt as a barrier, protect Yinchuan suffered by the sandstorm, though the city was very near Alashan desert. When Genghis Khan won the war at last, he was very angry, and burnt Helan Mt, the fire lasted for 7 days and 7 nights, everything was burnt. Even now, there was less trees or plants on the Mt. I don’t know why there were many stones at the foot of the Mt. We’d like to enjoy this area, and smell the fresh air.

We arrived our destination after more than one hour, and got the ticket form a poor office. We came here for the rock pictures. They found some pictures was drew on the rock, including human beings, animals, society action, gods……but we didn’t know the time when and who did it.

In fact, it was a valley of Helan Mt, and the river or spring besides of us, we found a few pictures during our road, many money, cute duck, terrible snake……And the most famous one is Apollo, it was also like a money, very clearly. All the persons took picture with it, so funny.

I think we also spent two hours in there, and it was afternoon, we have no free time to eat our lunch, only had water on the road.

Chinese Movies March Towards the World from Here!

We were so happy to enjoy the way to Zhenbeibao Film Studio. When we arrived there, it was two o’clock in the afternoon, so hot!!! We just found that the most tourists in here during our trip. It was famous for Chinese movies, most of Chinese famous movies march towards the world from here. Fox example, “Red Lanterns” acted by Gongli, directed by Zhang Yimou. But for Chinese youth, the most excellent and favorite one is “West trip” or “Da Hua Xi You” acted by Zhou Xingchi, very very very humourous……

It was built Zhang Xianliang, a writer. Including two old cities: Ming & Qing City. The interesting things for us is the stage properties. Most of them were unreal. Like the cabbage, pumpkin, clothes, chicken, beef, pork, dishes, knife, sword……we took many picture in there, like Lemoncactus as a restaurant boss, a cook, a banditi, Haha! I was in the prison, as an ironsmith, also as banditi……

Some Chinese took pictures with Lemoncactus, including some persons who came from Xinjiang, Weichu, but Lemoncactus thought they were foreigners, so funny! China was so large, and including many nationalities, Russian, Mongolian, Korean, Kazak……We are a huge family.

We were a little tired by the day trip, and return Yinchuan from four o’clock. Our train tickets for Beijing wasn’t got, and the taxi driver said she can ask it for us.

We had a rest in our hotel, and then went out for supper. Usually, we eat so much snacks. Today, we eat Liangpi and Mutton. In a small restaurant, we met a Russian girl who danced in a hotel, so flamboyant. I can’t image that she had a child.

We enjoyed our last day around drum tower in Yinchuan, and viewed the natives. The moon was in the sky, like a boat, and swallow flied lowly, it seemed rainy!

 More Ningxia Travel Reviews
Comments (3)


May 16, 2006 02:34 Reply

MAY001 said:

I'm also waiting for the coming stories!


May 16, 2006 01:27 Reply


100% agree with you Cali, indeed a strange and splendid place... a wonderful experience and I miss the beer too...... [sigh....] ;)


May 15, 2006 07:33 Reply


Waiting for your subsequent chapters.

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