A Brief Introduction to Xunhua
Xunhua is the only Salar autonomous county in all of China. It is located in the southeastern part of Qinghai province. The Salar pioneers resided and multiplied in this valley of the Yellow River with its good weather, nice temperature, and green forests. Over a long period of time, Salar people have preserved their unique ethnic customs and way of life in harmony with the Han Chinese, Tibetans, and Hui people. This historic culture and their traditions have developed amidst differing ethnic characteristics, but that has resulted in a happy rhythm for the united development of all nationalities. In the time of the Yuan dynasty the Salar pioneers came to Xunhua after a long trip through Xinjiang to settle together with the Tibetan, Hui, Chinese, and Mongolian peoples. This occurred in harmony over a long period of time, and they gradually grew into the unique Salar ethnic group. Salar has its own language, and this language belongs to the Turkic language family. Because of regular communication with the Han, Hui, and Tibetans peoples, the Salar language has absorbed much vocabulary from the Chinese and Tibetan languages. The Salar language has no written script, but the people all know Chinese. Salar people believe in Islam and their life customs are similar to Hui people. Salar men have beards, and wear black or white round hats with white shirts and blue coats. Salar women cover their heads with black scarves, and wear earrings and bracelets. Salar people are good at business, gardening, logging, leather work, and water rafting.
Xunhua’s tourism resources are very plentiful. It has beautiful natural scenery and rich cultural sites including, the MengDa national level Nature Reserve, known as the “XiShuangBanNa” of the Qinghai Tibetan plateau, the JiShi Valley, known to be one of the most beautiful stretches of the whole Yellow River, the Jiezi Camel Spring known as origin of the Salar people, the Jiezi Mosque which is the 2nd largest mosque in Qinghai, the precious Koran Manuscript of the Salar pioneers, the grave of the Salar fathers Galarmang and Akhermang, the former residence of the 10th Panchan Llama including his memorial hall, the Wendu Temple, the Amdo Natural Buddhist Tower, and the memorial hall of the Tibetan Buddhist missionary great master, XiShaoJiaCuo. The infrastructure and service sector of Xunhua has greatly improved.
All ethnic people in Xunhua warmly welcome tourists to travel, adventure, investigate, and seek business opportunities and investment interests in Xunhua. The Xunhua County government party committee has made good use of the opportunity of the western development policy. They proposed a strategy of “Make the County Wealthy Through Tourism”. This year on September 20th will be held the first Salar Tourism/Cultural Festival. This will provide a rich and unique ethnic cultural experience with colorful dancing performances, a Yellow River rafting program, Salar folk singing, horse riding, etc.
Xunhua is the only Salar autonomous county in China. It is classified as a National level poor county. It is also one of Qinghai’s preferred tourist counties. It is located in the eastern part of Qinghai province in the Yellow River valley at longitude east 112 degrees 10 minutes to 102 degrees 49 minutes and latitude north 35 degrees 25 minutes to 35 degrees 56 minutes. The eastern side borders LingXia of Gansu province, the northern side borders HuaLong and Minhe counties, the western boundary is shared with Jianza and TongRen counties, and in the south it borders XiaHe of Gansu province. Xunhua is an important portal for economic development and business connection in inland China.
Xunhua town is located along the upper reaches of the Yellow River. It is a transitional geographical area from Chinese Loess Highland to the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. It is surrounded by mountains, with the southern mountains higher than those in the north. The elevation ranges from 1,780 meters to 4,635 meters. 79 kilometers of the Yellow River flow through the entire county. The temperature here is warm and comfortable. In the summer it is not too hot and the winter is not too cold. The day length is long and the sun has a strong radiation. Precipitation is low. The weather is a typical continental climate, but compared to the entire province this is one of the best places for agriculture. Forest coverage is 20%. All of these changeable geological landforms, comparatively warm weather, continuous mountains, verdant forest, rich and plentiful natural scenery, make Xunhua a unique and wonderful place.