Xinjiang tourism industry gears up for travel boom




As winter sets in, snow-sport fans across China are flocking to the snow-clad mountains in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, where the local tourism industry has geared up for the travel boom.

In the capital Urumqi, ski resorts across the city have upgraded recreational facilities, skiing trails, and food courts.

Meanwhile, to the north of Urumqi, the Altay Prefecture has launched a series of sports events and products featuring local culture and handcraft.

"We have been actively promoting the construction of five major skiing resorts and organizing ceremony series featuring the 'origin of skiing'. We are transferring folklores including a horse-drawn plow and horse racing, and special products such as dairy and fur goods into souvenirs, and vigorously boosting the guesthouse industry," said Nie Ping, deputy director of Altay's tourism bureau.

As the skiing season begins, Altay's village guesthouse owner began to receive reservation requests from across the country. Yerlk Ziyaban, the owner, has renovated his place this year to prepare for the winter travel boom.

"In 2019, our house received over 1,500 guests, earning a net income of over 60,000 yuan (over 9,100 U.S. dollars). We'll continue to develop our guesthouse tourism business and better serve the visitors," he said.

This year, the Urumqi County's tourism bureau has been devoting effort to increasing tourist visits by connecting the skiing resorts, guesthouses, and agritainment facilities together, and resulted in an average daily visitor number of nearly 40,000.

"Our Urumqi County is placing focus on developing guesthouse business. We now have 125 guesthouses and have made an overall upgrade before the snow season this year," said Fu Lina, who heads the tourism office in Urumqi County.