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We had an absolutely perfect day with our tour guide - Rogin Luo - who took us for a hike along The Great Wall! Didn't know what to expect and were thrilled to have him as our guide. Very imformative, knowledgable and fun! We go to experience a part of The Great Wall that was unrestored and see all its natural beauty. Got a long history lesson along the way!

After the hike, we all went to lunch at a small place at the bottom of the hill. Located in a house, we ate lunch in the proprietors bedroom! What a hoot! Rogin is the Best of the Best! This tour company delivered for us and we are extremely grateful.

Westborough, Massachusetts
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West Inner Mongolia Tours
The West Inner Mongolia, or Alashan (Alxa) League specifically, is a mysterious place admired by all travelers. With its capital at Bayanhot(Bayanhaote), Alashan (Alxa) League is the largest league prefecture -level region in Inner Mongolia with an area of 270,000 Square km. It comprises three counties - Alashan Zuoqi (Alxa Left Banner), Alashan Youqi (Alxa Right Banner) and Ejina Qi (Ejina Banner), which are also the largest oasises in Alashan. Numerous striking sights are dotted around these three green lands.

Alashan is a world of massive deserts, diversifolius poplar forest, lonely gobi, sapphire lakes, Helanshan virgin forest, rock carving, ancient city relics and lama temples and the list could be much longer. But the long list could be condensed into two words - Deserts and Monasteries that are epitomized by Badain Jara Deserts - the highest and most beautiful desert in the world and the Guangzong Monastery featuring the cultural value and natural beauty in West Inner Mongolia.

Escape the hustle and bustle world and get lost in Alashan!

West Inner Mongolia
Inner Mongolia Map
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Top West Inner Mongolia Tour

» Beijing Yinchuan Alxa Highlight 7 Day Tour
Beijing Yinchuan Alxa Highlight 7 Day Tour Attractions: Ningxia Museum, Nanguan Mosque, Western Xia Tombs, Moon Lake Scenic Area, Guangzong Temple, Black City Ruins, Guaishulin, Ejina Diversifolius Poplar Forest, Alashan Museum and The Palace of Alxa. 
Tour Type: A private tour
Service: Personal Guide + Private vehicle + entrance fees + meals as listed + Beijing Yinchuan round trip flights
Accommodation: Yes
Travel Time: May - October
Duration: Approx. 7 Day
Tour Code: WSIM-01

West Inner Mongolia Travel Information
Most-read Travel Articles on West Inner Mongolia

When to Visit
Alashan League (Alxa) belongs to the typical temperate continental climate with frequent sandstorms, drought, extremely cold wind, freezing frost, hailstones, and frozen rain. It has the average temperature of 6-9 ℃, precipitation of 40-200mm and non-frost 160 days. But Alashan has abundant sunshine, only inferior to Tibetan-Qinghai Plateau and the SouthWest of Xinjiang.

The Alashan's travel time lasts from May to October. The best time to view Diversifolius Poplar Forest falls on October.

Get There and Around
Travel By Flight
Alashan League has no airports. For flight travelers, you may choose first fly for Yinchuan, the capital city of Ningxia, then drive to Bayanhot, the capital of Alashan, about 114km to the northwest of Yinchuan. Or you may fly for Jiuquan or Jiayuguan, where you drive up to Ejina Banner.

Travel By Train
Ejina Banner is linked to Hohhot by an overnight train 15 hours. If you'd like to travel to Alxa Left Banner, you may choose first to take your train to Yinchuan, the capital city of Ningxia, then drive 114km up to Bayanhot, the capital of Alashan.

Travel By Road
Overland travel is the most popular mode of traveling around Alashan. The three banners (Left, Right and Ejina) are connected by the regional roads. Also the three banners are linked to outside cities or provinces through a few destinations.

To get to Bayanhot, you may drive from Wuhai City or Yinchuan City; for Ejina, you may choose to drive from Jiuquan or Jiayuguan; for Alxa Right Banner, you may choose to drive from Zhangye in Gansu Province.

In Bayanhot, there are two long-distance bus stations - old city bus station and new city bus station. Generally, people use the old city bus station and the new city bus station is just a passing-by station. The buses from Bayanhot runs to Ejina, Bayanuur, Wuhai, Yinchuan and Jiuquan.

Top 10 Attractions in West Inner Mongolia
1.Attractions in Alxa Left Banner (Alxa Zuoqi)

Aolunbulage Grand Canyon: The canyon belongs to Yardang landform formed by wind erosion on the basis of Danxia geomorphology eroded by fluviation at the early stage. The fairytale Canyon is winding against the blue sky and white clouds for about 5km with the cliffs standing lofty, imposing and magnificent. Different sections of the canyon have different views. It is located in Aolunbulage Town, 300km northWest of Bayanhot, the capital of Alxa League.

Tenggeli Desert: Tenggeli literally means "stretching into distance like the sky" in Mongolian. Running west to south from Alxa League to Gansu Province, the Tenggeli Desert is connected to the Helan Mountains on the West, goes over the Great Wall in the south and linked to the Yabulai Mountain in the west. The desert has an area of 367,000 sq km that sand dunes, lakes, hilly land flat ground. The desert has over 400 lakes.

Ulan Buh Desert: Also known Wulanbuhe Desert in Chinese, the desert is the smallest of the three deserts in Alashan. It extends over Alashan League, to Wuhai City and Bayannur with an area of about 14,000 sq km along the Yellow River. Now, there is a complete forest belt at the edge of the Ulan Buh Desert along the Yellow River that helps stop sand and also bring economic benefits to local farmers.

Jilantai Salt Lake: Jilantai Salt Lake is one of the large inland saline lakes in China. It is on the southwest edge of Wulanbuhe Desert within Alxa Left Banner. It is surrounded by gobi, grassland and sand dunes. It is also a treasure trove of dinosaur fossils, a place sought after by sino-foreign paleontologists.

Guangzong Temple: Also called South Temple, Guangzong Monastery is one of the most important lama shrines in Inner Mongolia, a place where the legendary Sixth Dalai Lama died. Guangzong Monastery is 30 kilometers southWest of Bayanhaote Town, and 70 kilometers from Yinchuan.

Helanshan Mountain: Helanshan Mountain runs over 180 km from north to south, from 15 to 50 km wide with average about 2000 meters in altitude. The mountain range runs north-south parallel to Yellow River and the semi-arid Ordos Plateau. To its west are the desert regions of the Alxa Plateau. The Helan Range has evergreen conifer forests that supports endemic communities of plants and animals.

Alashan Museum: Alashan Museum is located in the West district of Bayanhot, the capital of Alashan League. The musuem has a display area of 4,000 sq meters that is sectioned into several display halls including History Hall, Nature Hall, Minority Hall, League 30 Years'Achievement Hall, and Carving Art Hall. The museum has over 10,000 pictures, models, samples and historical relics on display.

The Palace of Alxa: Originally built in 1731 in Qing Dynadty, it used to the mansion for the successive kings of Alxa. It is located in the north of Bayanhot ( formerly Dingyuanying Town). The old Dingyuanying Town was constructed according to the building styles of Beijing - Hutongs and Siheyuan (quadrangle courtyard). So Bayanhot is nicknamed "Little Beijing".

2.Attractions in Ejina Banner (Ejina Qi)

Juyanhai Lake (Juyan Lake): Historically Juyanhai Lake was divided into West Juyan Lake and West Juyan Lake. The ancient Juyanhai Lake was fed by Ejina River. The grassland around the lake used to be lush wtih fertile land, one of the earliest cultivated area in China. In 1960s, the lake was dried up and the dried river beds posed s great threat to Beijing and other cities by creating sandstorms. Great efforts have been made to save and protect the eco enviroment of Juyan Lake. The waters of Heihe River has been diverted to Juyan Lake. Now Juyan Lake has returned to its former charming. It is located 40km to the northWest of Dalaihubu Town, the capital of Ejina Banner.

Black City Ruins: The Black City Ruins is famous all over the world for the significant military passing along Silk Road in Han, Tang, Xixia and Yuan Dynasties. The city was founded in 1032. In 1372 the Ming soldiers took the city and he city was abandoned and left in ruins also due to water shortage.

Ejina Diversifolius Poplar Forest National Nature Reserve: It is one of the three largest poplar forests in the world with mesmerizing autumn scenes sought after by numerous tourists and photographers.

Guaishulin: "Guaishulin" literally means "weird Poplar Forest", which is formed by numerous dead poplar trees. In recent years, the environment of poplar has been destroyed, due to the drought of Ejina River and other reasons, a great number of poplar trees both sides of river died of a lack of water. But Poplar has strong vitality with special corrosion resistance, a lot of dead poplar trees still stand on end, or lie down without being rotten, forming sad landscape.

Ceke Port: It is the third largest overland ports in Inner Mongolia as the outside door with rich mineral resources in Mongolia State.

Paleo-Fossils in Mazong Mountain: Mazong Mountain is also known as Beishan (North Mountain) since it is mainly located on the north of Hexi Corridor with its Western tip at the west bank of Juyanhai River in Alxa. Paleo-Fossils have been discovered in this area. The Paleo-Fossils includes the dinosaur skeletons, dinosaur eggs, turtles, corocdiles and vertebrate paleontology fossils.

3.Attractions in Alxa Right Banner (Alxa Youqi)

Mandela Cliff Painting: Mandela cliff paintings along with Helanshan Mountain rock painting vividly show the ancient culture of ethnic minority in north china. It is located in the Mandala Mountains on the Western edge of Badain Jaran Desert, 14km to the southwest of Mandela Town. Within an area of 18 square km, there are 4234 ancient cliff carvings scattered around, one of the treasure trove of the world most ancient art.

Badain Jaran Desert: Badain Jara covers an area of 49,000 sq. kilometers. It is the highest and most beautiful desert in the world spanning the provinces of Inner Mongolia, Gansu and Ningxia. The desert is also home to over 100 spring-fed lakes that lie between the dunes, some of which are fresh while others are salty.

Hongdunzi Canyon: Hongdunzi Canyon is also called Eribugai Grand Canyon that is in the Hongdunzi Mountain about 10km southwest of Eribugai Sum, 20km away from Ekenhuduge Town, the capital of Alashan Youqi (Alxa Right Banner). Hongdunzi Canyon has thelength about 10 km with the main canyon about 4km from south to north. Eroded by wind and rain for hundreds of thousands of years, Eribugai Grand Canyon has formed unique sheer cliffs with the height of 10m and even over 70m.

Haisenchulu Wind-Eroded Landscape: Haisenchulu Wind-Eroded Landscape is also known as Haisenchulu Wind-erosion Geomorphology Scenic Area. It is located about 200 kilometers to the northwest of Ekenhuduge Town, the capital of Alxa Right Banner. Haisenchulu used to be a sea. Later the sea bed rised and was turned into land. The original rocks on the sea bed were eroded by the wind and rain for centuries have become the present shapes, dubbed as "the kingdom of Miraculous Stones".

Where to Stay
Hotels in Bayanhot(Bayanhaote) Alxa Zuoqi
Sunshine Ecological Park Hotel:No.17 Yabulai Road, Bayanhaote Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Alashan Hotel: No.1 Dongguan Street, Bayanhaote Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Longxin Hotel:No.4 West Huayuan Street, Bayan Hot, Alxa Zuoqi
Kaiyuan Hotel:No.144 Heshuote South Road, Bayanhot Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Tenggeli International Hotel: Huayuan Street, Bayanhaote Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Pujing Hotel: Yabulai Road, Bayan Haote Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Xinxin Emperor Business Hotel: Tuerhute South Road, Bayan Hot Town, Alxa Zuoqi
Alxa League Hotel: No.8 Heshuote Road, BaBayehot Town, Alxa Zuoqi

Aolunbulage Hotel: Aolunbulage Town, Alxa Zuoqi

Yueliang Lake Desert Holiday Hotel: Yueliang Lake Scenic Zone (Moon Lake), Tenggelilaida, Alxa Zuoqi

Hotels in Ejina Banner (Ejina Qi)
Jinyang Hotel: Opposite to the Bus Station of Dalaihubu Town, Ejina Qi
Jinfengyuan Business Hotel: Dalaihubu Town, Ejina Qi

Hotels in Alxa Right Banner (Alxa Youqi)
Jinsha Holiday Hotel: Ekenhuduge Town, Alashan Youqi 0483 - 6026666
Shuili Hotel: Ekenhuduge Town, Alashan Youqi 0483 - 6026888
Sunlight Hotel: Ekenhuduge Town, Alashan Youqi 0483 - 6022086
Dongshan Hotel: Ekenhuduge Town, Alashan Youqi 0483 - 6025518

West Inner Mongolia Food
Like Inner Mongolians elsewhere, people in Alashan mainly have the traditional Mongolian food - the meat, grains and milk products that feture fried rice, noodles, milk tea and hand-served mutton. The local milk products are daily necessities with unique way of making.

Besides the traditional Mongolian food, especially in Alashan, you have the chance to have a bite of the food made from camel meat - camel meat buns, camel meat dumplings and more.

What to Buy
The unique desert climate and geographical environment in Alashan give birth to many special products including natural crystal products, gobi queer stones, stone wine vases, Helan inkstone, camel down sweater, camel down trousers, carpet, pendants, Mongolian bowls, deer horns, Musk.

Broomrape is the by-product living on the red willows in the desert. It has the fuction as ginseng featuring the effects of invigorating Yang - aphrodisiac.

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