As the capital city of Gansu Province and a central city in the northwest region, Lanzhou holds a crucial transportation position. It reaches northward to Dunhuang, southward to Ganzhou, westward to Xining, and eastward to Yinchuan, making it a must-pass destination for tourists traveling to the western part of China. The Yellow River flows uninterruptedly from west to east through Lanzhou, trapped between the north and south mountains, shaping the city into a long and narrow shape from east to west. In terms of tourist attractions, the most prominent feature is the "100-mile Yellow River Scenic Line" along the Yellow River. Scenic spots such as Zhongshan Bridge, Water Wheel Park, Yellow River Mother Statue, and the night view of Bai Taoshan are all must-visit attractions in Lanzhou. The non-stop flow of the Yellow River, which flows relentlessly to the east, has made Lanzhou a city with a personality. The rolling turbulence and sound of its rapids have nurtured the uninhibited and robust character of Lanzhou's people, and the city has become even more warm and rich due to the presence of the Yellow River. Xiguan Shizi: Xiguan Shizi is an important transportation hub in Lanzhou where you can take public transportation to various parts of the city. Zhangye Road: Zhangye Road is the busiest area in Lanzhou and also the oldest commercial street in Lanzhou, with shopping and food available. Zhengning Road: Zhengning Road night market is the most famous snack street in Lanzhou, known for its milk egg醪糟and various types of mutton snacks. Nanbinhe Road: "Yellow River Scenic Line" key section with attractions such as the Yellow River Mother Statue, Zhongshan Bridge, Water Wheel Park and other landmarks.
Lanzhou Eid al Fitr
The holy month of Ramadan culminates in Eid al-Fitr, one of the most important holidays for Muslims worldwide. In Lanzhou, large populations of Hui and Dongxiang ethnic minorities join together to celebrate the Breaking of the Fast festival. During Ramadan, observers abstain from food and drink from dawn to dusk. But on Eid, the community rejoices the completion of a month of fasting and devotion. At sunrise, Muslims young and old don their best new clothes and perfumes to attend morning Eid prayers. The day is spent visiting relatives and neighbors, exchanging well-wishes and gifts. The festival features vibrant street scenes, with stalls lined with traditional foods, sweets, handicrafts and more. Families host lavish feasts in the evening to make up for a month of fasting. For visitors and locals alike, Lanzhou's lively Eid celebrations offer a window into the customs and cultural heritage of the city's Hui and Dongxiang citizens.
China Silk Road Festival
Every mid-September, Lanzhou hosts the China Silk Road Festival to celebrate the city's history as a vital stop on the ancient Silk Road trading route. The festival features special tour groups departing from Lanzhou to travel the classic Silk Road, heading west past Wuwei, Zhangye, and Jiayuguan before culminating at the Mogao Caves outside Dunhuang. Back in Lanzhou, the festival spotlights the diverse merchandise that once passed through the city on caravans bound for Central Asia and Europe. Vendor markets showcase fine silks, spices, precious gems, handicrafts, and local gourmet specialties from regions along the legendary trade route. Cultural exhibits and performances provide a window into the many ethnic groups connected by the Silk Road throughout history. For both domestic and international visitors, Lanzhou's lively homage to its Silk Road past offers a taste of the goods, music, attire, customs and heritage from cultures linked by centuries of trade.
Taste the most authentic Lanzhou beef noodles
In Lanzhou, slurping down a steamy bowl of beef noodles is a daily ritual engraved in local culture. Street stalls and restaurants on every block dish out this signature snack - no wonder locals joke about getting antsy without their "niu da wan" fix every few days! Once you depart Lanzhou, the beef noodles never taste quite the same. Only in its home city can you savor the authentic flavors that draw noodle fanatics from across China. Like the locals, call out "More chili oil and garlic!" as the noodles are poured fresh to order. Pull up a stool at any bustling sidewalk noodle joint to watch cooks stretch dough and slice tender beef beside grizzled regulars. Within minutes, you'll have a hearty bowl of Lanzhou beef noodles, the beef meltingly tender and noodles perfectly chewy in an addictively spicy, aromatic broth. This fast, casual experience offers a tasty portal into local life. Let the savory steam transport you to the city that perfected this Chinese staple.
Tour Nanbinhe Road and experience the charm of the Yellow River
For an immersion into Lanzhou's history and culture, take a riverside stroll along Nanbinhe Road. Nicknamed Lanzhou's "Bund", this scenic waterfront promenade traces the city's lifeline - the mighty Yellow River. As you traverse from east to west, stop to admire the many sculptures depicting regional symbols like the Silk Road camel caravans. Highlights include glimpses of ancient engineering at Zhongshan Iron Bridge and White Pagoda Hill Park, as well as the exhibits of the Waterwheel Garden. Join locals practicing Tai Chi while children play in fountains spraying from the river. During peak travel seasons, you can even ride a traditional sheepskin raft for a flavor of history crossing the Yellow River. All along the route, gaze out at the river's soothing flow and timeless grandeur. Grab a street snack and catch golden hour sunsets over the water. With cultural sights, modern amenities, and natural splendor, Nanbinhe Road offers the perfect window into Lanzhou's riverfront charm.
Stroll through the night market on Zhengning Road and enjoy delicious food
When night falls in Lanzhou, make your way to the bustling Zhengning Road Night Market for a feast of flavors. Under the glowing lights, stalls dish out Lanzhou specialties into the wee hours, from famous niurou lamian noodles to skewers of lamb and offal. But the iconic snack is the creamy fermented milk drink from Old Ma's stall, a refreshing tangy cupful that locals line up for every evening. Beyond the must-try milk, lose yourself in the night market crowds sampling roasted squid, spicy dipping tofu, and an endless array of Gansu snacks. Grab one of the small plastic stools to join the hungry patrons chatting and snacking. With food stalls crammed side-by-side in laneways and alleys, every turn overwhelms the senses with mouthwatering aromas and tantalizing grilled meats. When you've had your fill, slip into the pulsing energy of central Lanzhou after dark. Let the night market transform you into a true local through the universal language of food.
Best Travel TimeLanzhou is a famous "hometown of melons and fruits". When traveling to Lanzhou, autumn is the best season, when there is a bountiful harvest of fruits, it is enough to make people feast their mouths. In addition, the Eid al Fitr festival in September is quite unique, and the annual "Lanzhou China Silk Road Festival" is also held in September, with many tourists gathering in Lanzhou, making it bustling and exciting.
Medical treatmentHere is some information on medical care in Lanzhou for an English travel website:Medical Care in LanzhouAs an important city in northwest China, Lanzhou has comprehensive medical facilities. Pharmacies can be found near most streets and tourist sites. A leading hospital is Lanzhou Qilihe District People's Hospital located at 385 Xijin East Road, Qilihe District. Call 0931-2656616 for emergency services.It's advisable for travelers to carry international medical insurance. Hotels and tour companies can help arrange transportation to clinics or hospitals if medical care is needed.Though quality healthcare is available, take precautions and see a doctor promptly if you have any concerning symptoms or health issues. The high altitude in Lanzhou can also cause altitude sickness for some. Stay hydrated and limit alcohol intake.Let us know if you need any other recommendations for hospitals, clinics, pharmacies or managing health conditions in Lanzhou. We hope you have a healthy trip!
When visiting Lanzhou's bus and train stations, be vigilant of your belongings as crowds and diversity invite petty crime. Lanzhou's South Bus Station lies in a Hui Muslim district - respect their customs, be open-minded, and avoid conflicts if buying fruit or dining there.
Lanzhou cuisine spotlights lamb which may cause stomach issues for some. Those with sensitivity should avoid risky foods to prevent illness.
If invited to drink, caution is advised. Know your limits - under half a jin of baijiu or 5 beers - and don't accept if low tolerance. Overdoing it could lead to robbery or worse.
Ultimately, Lanzhou is safe if you apply street smarts. Stay alert in transport stations, respect minorities, assess diet and alcohol risks, and avoid confrontation. With sound judgment, Lanzhou offers a warm welcome.