Ningxia is one of the five autonomous regions in China. It is the only provincial-level ethnic Hui region and the best place to experience the country's Muslim culture. The capital, Yinchuan, is not only the political, economic, and cultural center of the region, but also a famous historical and cultural city.
Ningxia is located on the northwest Loess highlands pierced by the Yellow River. The Great Wall runs along its northeastern boundary.
Ningxia borders Gansu Province to the south, Shaanxi to the east and the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region to the north.
It is a relatively arid region, including the Tengger desert in Shapotou, but the ancient Yellow River irrigational system ensures the northern part is well watered – earning it the nickname of the 'land of fish and rice' in the North.
- Administrative Divisions
Covering an area of 66,400 square kilometers, Ningxia is divided into five prefecture-level cities (Yinchuan, Shizuishan, Wuzhong, Guyuan, Zhongwei).
Ningxia has a temperate continental climate of long, cold winters and short, hot summers; temperature is lowest in January, averaging from -10 to -7 degrees Celsius and highest in July, averaging from 17 to 24 degrees Celsius. Annual rainfall averages from 190-700 millimeters.