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Xilingol (Xilinguole) Travel Guide

Full Name: Xilingol League (Xilinguole Meng)

Chinese Name: 锡林郭勒盟 (xī lín guō lè méng)

Population: 1,009,000 

Area: 202,580 square kilometers (78,217 square miles)

Nationalities: Mongol, Han

Administrative Division: 1 county: Duolun; 9 qis: Abag (Abaga) Qi, Sunite Zuo Qi, Sunite You Qi, Dong Ujimqin (Wuzhumuqin) Qi, Xi Ujimqin (Wuzhumuqin) Qi, Taibus (Taipusi) Qi, Xianghuang Qi, Zhengxiangbai Qi, Zhenglan Qi; 2 county-level cities: Xilinhot (Xilinhaote), Erenhot (Erlianhaote) 
Note: Qi (or Banner) is a county-level administrative organ in Inner Mongolia's political divisions. League or Meng is an administrative unit in Inner Mongolia consisting of several qis (or banners).

Seat of the League Government: 30, Nadamu Da Jie, Xilinhot City

Useful Telephone Numbers: Tourist Complaints: 0479-8237932
                                         Weather Forecast: 121
                                         Zip Code Inquiry: 184

Bank of China Xilinhot Branch: 6, Tuanjie Da Jie, Xilinhot City

China Post Xilingol Branch: Xilin Dajie, Xilinhot City

Location: Situated in the central region of Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Xilingol League is bounded on the north by Outer Mongolia in the neighborhood of Zhangjiakou and Chengde of Hebei Province in the south. Within Inner Mongolia, it borders Wulanchabu in the west, Chifeng, Xing'an and Tongliao in the east.

History: Early in the Shang Dynasty (16th -11th century BC), nomad tribes moved to this area. It was always inhabited by ethnic minorities from Northern China and was governed by regimes established by these minorities. The Qin Dynasty (221BC-206BC) founded shires to administer the region temporarily. As the secondary capital of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368), Xinlingol was an important central city at that time.

Physical Features: Its terrain slopes downward from the south to the north. Low mountains and hills in the southern and eastern regions of Xilingol are offshoots of the western extension of the Daxing'anling Mountains and the eastern extension of the Yishan Mountains. The land is flat in the northern and western regions with some hills and lava mesas scattered around.

Climate: Xilingol enjoys a typical temperate semi-arid continental climate featuring strong wind, aridity and chilliness. Spring and autumn are short, and winter is long. There is no summer heat, and annual average temperatures are around 0℃-3℃ (32℉-37.4℉).
When to Go: Recently, sandstorms have occurred more frequently in spring and autumn. Therefore, June to August is the best season to visit Xilingol.

Special Local Products: Mongolia mushroom, Russian olive, mutton, beef

Xilingol is the nearest pasturing area to the Beijing and Tianjin areas. Grand grasslands, relics of dinosaur and ancient residence of Kublai are main attractive scenic spots in Xilingol.

Xilingol Grassland is the most representative grassland in a temperate climatic zone in China. It is a national grassland nature reserve, being a fabulous destination to ride on horseback freely and experience the country life of a nomad.

Xilingol was a homeland for dinosaurs hundreds of millions of years ago. Dinosaur National Park in Erenhot City is a national 4A level scenic spot famous for its abundant and rare dinosaur fossils. Nowadays, this park establishes a special exhibition museum in order to display the relics of dinosaurs. Besides, the largest and most intact dinosaur fossil was discovered in Sunite You Qi. This well-known source of dinosaur fossils is the desolate area 9 kilometers (5.6 miles) northeast of Erenhot.

The Site of Xanadu was the capital of the Mongol Empire in the early Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). First established in 1256, the prominent position of Xanadu in history is as famous as the ancient city of Pompeii in Italy. In 2012, this place was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Travel Tips:
People living in the pasture area of Inner Mongolia like eating mutton and dairy. For drinks, they like Mongolian milk tea, yoghurt and koumiss (fermented milk).

Xilinhot Airport is situated in the western part of the city of Xilinhot, operating daily flights to Beijing, Hohhot and Halaer (center area of Hulunbeier City) as well as some provisional tourist flights to other big cities.

The four railways in Xilingol stretch to the capital city of Inner Mongolia and to almost all the vital towns inside the league, connecting the railway system in Outer Mongolia. There are also three national highways and eight provincial highways that make up the backbone of its road transportation.

Xilinhaote Bus Station is the transportation hub of Xilingol. It is located on Nadamu Da Jie. Near the railway station at the junction of provincial highways No.101 and 207, the western station mainly operates buses to places inside Inner Mongolia.