As a cultural crossroads and a key trading post along the famed Silk Road, Urumqi, a frontier city with hospitable residents, acrid weather, dramatic landscape and enduring cultural legacy, evokes a sense of timeless charm. The vestiges of its glorious past are still evident everywhere and Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Museum serves as the most convincing testament to its irrefutable cultural and historical significance.
Every city has one or two must-see iconic sights, and Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Museum fits the bill for Urumqi. It offers a dazzling visual introduction to the 12 ethnicities calling Xinjiang home though artifacts, models and replicas bringing their attires, folk buildings, festivals, wedding ceremony, funerals, cuisine and religions into life. It also contains a mind-blowing 32,000 pieces of artifacts spanning several thousands of years and covers almost every aspect of civilization along the Silk Road, both the extant and the vanished. On display are stone tools, potteries, silk products, brocades, embroidery pieces, bronze ware, jadeware, silverware, gold ware, sculptures, cave paintings, frescoes, currency, iron wares, carpentries, tomb figures, coins, weapons and scripts. For the majority, a visit to this museum will turn out to be a most exhilarating and rewarding experience.
Sculptures: This museum houses a treasure trove of Terracotta and bronze ware sculptures. Among them, there are single-humped Central Asian camels, stout Yuan-dynasty horses, graceful female figurines in all postures and impressively fierce soldiers. Representing the highest achievement of their eras, these masterpieces are priceless. Featuring big eyes, high nose and a well-built body, a 40-cm tall warrior exhibited here is eye-catching. According to archaeologists, he could be an ancient soldier hailing from Yili area, Xinjiang during the 5th century.
Silk Products：Silk Road traversed across Xinjiang and left behind an array of silk handicrafts. This museum features a potpourri of silk products of great variants. With unparalleled craftsmanship, rainbow-hued colors, exquisite patterns as well as exotic flavor, silk products here are simply breathtaking.
Ancient Scripts: Scripts, letters, documents and sutras of various ethnicities and nationalities, both the extant and the extinct, offer a fantastic glimpse into the past glamour dominating this area. These remnants beloved and studied by the archeologists zealously, are of universal value to the world and offer visual and spiritual shock to visitors.
Its eclectic collection of well-preserved mummies, one of the largest numbers of mummies in the world, is a draw card. This can be attributed to its acrid climate and favorable geological location. As the heartland of Asia, it was awash with lasting and global-scale waves of immigration. So, to some extent, this museum is like God’s mini exhibition hall of human races and ethnicities. Mummies of various skin colors, genders and ages can be found here. Silent and mysterious, they guide the secrets of their eras for eternity. A treasure trove of artifacts unearthed from their tombs is displayed here also. Among all the mummies, the most striking one is Loulan Beauty, a 155cm-tall corpse of indo-European origin, which dates back to 4,000 years ago. When found, she was still clutching a small purse and wore leather and fur sandals. It ranks as the earliest and best-preserved mummified body in China
. The level of detail preserved is incredible, you can see her eyelashes, toenails and face paint, which are still fresh and lifelike.
Add: No. 132, Xi Bei Lu, Shayibake District, Urumqi,Xinjiang 新疆乌鲁木齐市沙依巴克区西北路
Admission Fee: 25RMB (100RMB deposit fee for free robot guide)
Winter (16th, Oct–14th, Apr)10:30-18:00 (Ticket selling stops at 17:00), closed at the holidays
Summer (15th, Apr–15th, Oct)9:30-19:00 (Stop Booking at 18:00) 10:00–18:00 (Ticket selling stops at 17:00) at holidays
Transportation: Buses: 7, 51, 52, 12, 28,7, 59,68,66,532,305,311, 913, 912, 910
Posted by Sophia on Sep 3, 2013