As one of the popular travel destinations in Xinjiang, where you can visit the magnificent natural landscape and experience the ethnic culture.
Altay, located in the northern part of northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, In recent years, the government has tried to tap its rich winter tourist resources and become a hot tourist destination for snow sports and snow-related tourism market.
The Altay region boasts rich landscape forms, from glacial rivers, forests and grasslands to alpine valleys, lakes, wetlands and deserts.
The snow season and rock painting:
The snow season in Altay lasts for seven to eight months in its mountain areas. And the average snow thickness along the Altay Mountains is more than one meter. Also, the snow is the so-called "powder snow," which is believed to be the most suitable for snow sports.
The long snow season, large amount and excellent quality of snow won Altay the award title "Snow Capital of China" from the National Climate Center in August.
The special environment and climate conditions in Altay also make skiing an indispensable survival skill for people in the region, and it has been closely related to human life and economic development through history.
In 2005, an ancient rock painting depicting people hunting with skis, dating back more than 120,000 years, was found in the area. This discovery has provided solid evidence of the area's long tradition and culture in skiing.
Here are some well-known natural views that in quite worth to visit:
Kanas scenic area:
In winter, everything in Northern of Xinjiang has turned into a world of ice and snow, a magnificent snowfield, a glittering birch forest haze, a snow-covered ice lake, and you can also experience the wonderful snow bergs such as Tianshan Mountain and Kanas and so on.
Kanas Scenic Area is situated in the middle of Altai Mountains, near the northern tip of Xinjiang, and its borders on Kazakhstan, Russia and Mongolia.
In Mongolian, Kanas means gorgeous and mysterious. It is famous for the beautiful scenery of Kanas Lake and its surrounding snow mountains, grasslands and birch forests. It is known as "Eastern Switzerland, and a paradise for photographer".
Kanas lake, located in Altay, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, is such a spectacular place. Influenced by the westerlies, the rich rainfall makes the region shrouded by mist. The Taiga forest made up of Siberian larch and Siberian spruce in the Kanas valley is home to abundant wildlife.
As the deepest alpine lake in China, the depth of Kanas lake can reach up to 188.5 meters. Its water storage is amazingly 5.38 billion cubic meters, which has surpassed that of the famous Taihu Lake in east China's Jiangsu Province.
The Kanas Lake is said to be formed as a result of ancient glacier movements. The colour of the lake would change according to the season and weather. On sunny days, the lake turns crystal blue. When it is rainy, the lake will turn emerald green. Now, freshwater fish of the Arctic like taimen and Asiatic trout live in the lake.
Currently, three ski fields have been built in Altay, including China's only alpine ski resort in a city, and the only ski resort in the country where heli-skiing is offered, as well as a new ski field that has a second alpine downhill track in China that meets the requirements for the Olympic Winter Games.
Other special winter tourist experiences include winter fishing on the Ulungur Lake; festival experience with the local ethnic groups; a road trip through a snow mountain canyon and horse sledging and ice sculpturing.
Also, to boost winter tourism, several direct flight routes opened earlier this year connecting the area with such major Chinese cities as Shenzhen, Chongqing, Zhengzhou, Lanzhou, Nanjing and Xi'an.