Among the various different ethnic groups that live in the province are first and foremost Hui. The Hui（回族) make up about 1/3 third of the Population inside the Autonomous Region, where the Han (漢族) are the majority Ethnic Group.
The Hui can be seen as the far descendants of Iranian, Persian and Arabian traders who traveled along the ancient Silk Road to eventually settle within China. Thus, the Hui are a very mixed group of both Chinese and Persian/Arabian 'blood'.
For the Complete explanation on the historic spread of Islam in China, read: "History of Islam in China", as well as our section on the Hui Ethnic Minority Group.
The Three Neighboring Provinces of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region are in clockwise direction; the very large Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region surrounding the territory on Ningxia in the North-West, North and North-East (and Gobi Desert), Shaanxi Province in the East, and to the South-East, South and South-West lies another large territory, that of Gansu Province.
The Topography of Ningxia Region can general be seen as follows: In the North and North-West beyond the Yellow River and Helan Shan and pass lies the arid and historically notorious Tengger Desert, a sandy section of the much larger Gobi Desert. Immediately North of Ningxia AR lies the Gobi Desert, which makes up almost half of Inner-Mongolia Autonomous Region.
In the North-East lies the Ordos Desert, the border of which used to be demarcated by the Great Wall of China,
NingXia (宁夏) Hui Autonomous Region (回族自治区) - Sources Index
Main Cities & Population Centres of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region :
Economy of Ningxia Autonomous Region :
Climate in Ningxia Autonomous Region :
The Ningxia Autonomous Region is known throughout China for its spectacular green valley's among the Deserts. The Regional Capital City Yinchuan is often cited as one of China’s Top Ten Cities of because of its Tranquility and good quality of Life.
Apart from this Ningxia possesses a great number of historic sites, among which the Tombs of the Kings Early Western Xia (Xixia or Tangut) Empire are found the most attractive. The most prominent of these famous Tombs are located at a site only some 30 kilometers west of Yinchuan, however in fact the remnants of nine Western Xia emperors' tombs and two hundred other tombs lie within a 50-km area around Yinchuan giving plenty of archeological sites to visit.
Ningxia Autonomous Region enjoys a temperate continental climate , The annual mean temperature is 5-10 C' and the yearly precipitation is 200-600 mm (8 to 24 inches) with most of the sparse rain falling in the south of the region.
As described Ningxia is a sparsely populated Region where most of the population can be found in the fertile Northern Plain of the Yellow River.
The region is predominantly rural and historically most of the population were farmers engaged in pasturing and farming the land.
The main life-stock animal were sheep, a special kind descended from the argali sheep of eastern Mongolia which produce especially high quality soft wool. Ningxia is famous throughout the Nation as the origin of most 'Halal' Meat (Meat prepared according to Islamic prescriptions), mostly mutton or lamb.
The Islamic Hui do not eat or raise pigs, however the local Manchu Minority traditionally specialize in breeding and raising pigs.
Traditionally incomes and education levels are low, and even today Ningxia is among the least developed provinces of the Nation. Modern Ningxia is rich with factories on the Yellow River, and, after the partial failure of hydro-electric power, is creating one of the worlds largest wind farms.
China Report - Map of the Great Wall during the Ming Dynasty
its pathway creating the Provincial Borders between Ningxia and adjacent regions.
Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (宁夏回族自治区) is a unique region in China situated in the middle reaches of the Huang He or the Yellow River. The Huang He is China's second largest River and is named after the yellow color of its sediment, an abundance of yellow dust that is deposited throughout the Yellow River Basin as loess lands.
The region extends across the Loess Plateau and Inner Mongolia Plateau, with an average height of over 1000 meters above sea level. Mountainous areas occupy 15.8% of its total land area.
Ningxia itself lies in the wider Region known as the Yellow River Basin, a region shaped by the yellow river and its loess lands, deposited over many 1000's of Years. The Basin is essentially formed by a curve of the Yellow River which has its up-sweep through Ningxia after which the River is curved westwards deflected by the Sands and Hills of the Gobi Desert in Inner-Mongolia. Ningxia thus forms the Western section of the Basin.
The Yellow River runs across Ningxia from the west to the northeast for 397 kilometers and its basin, with its major tributary in the region, covers nearly 75 per cent of Ningxia's total land area.
The Main yellow River Port in Ningxia is located at Hengcheng, about 15 km to the east of Yinchuan. It serves the entire city of Yinchuan and surrounding industrial area's. The Yellow River is (in principle) navigable downstream as far as Baotou in Inner-Mongolia AR and upstream to Zhongwei and Zhongning. However, periods of drought and excess deposits of silt have limited traffic in recent years.
Parts of Ningxia Autonomous Region have been inhabited for many 1000's of years however the first recorded settlement in this area date from the Han Dynasty Era (206 BC - 221 AD). During the first Century BC the first irrigation networks were built along the length of the yellow river sustaining the first settled Han population in this region.
The parts of Ningxia south of the Yellow River (Huang He) were incorporated into Han Chinese Territory and its cultural sphere by the Qin empire in the 3rd century BC, at which time a first version of The Great Wall of China was built in the Ningxia Region.
Schematic Map of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region with the locations of Main Cities + Towns and sites of Interest.
Satellite image of China and North-East Asia, with a super-imposed schematic Map of the location and Path of the Great Wall as constructed during the Reign of the Ming Dynasty. Included for reference are City names, geographical features of landscape, Names and locations of Passes on the Great Wall of China.
Main Road connections within Ningxia correspond with local natural boundaries and ancient travel directions and trading paths. The largest Bridge on the Yellow River in Ningxia is the Taole Yellow River Expressway Bridge (陶乐黄河大桥).
The Most important Highway are the Jingzhang Expressway, a modern highway which recently replaced the historic G110 Road in function. Basically the Jingzhang Expressway follows the pathway of Baotou-Lanzhou Railway and the path of the Yellow River.