(Video: People's Daily online)
The Echoing-Sand Mountain, known as Mingsha Shan, is about five kilometers outside the city of Dunhuang. It spans over 800 square kilometers and is now a key national scenic spot, with more tourists arriving every year. The area gets its name from the sane dunes, which whistle with the changing wind.
For hundreds of years, this area has been important to China, being established as a major hub of the old Silk Road. The crescent oasis of Yueyaquan was, until the 1990s, a natural oasis spanning back centuries. After a long camel ride in the desert, this is exactly what weary travelers and traders would want to see.
Today, the area isn’t as well known for trade as it is for tourism. Visitors are taken back in time, with the ability to ride a camel over the sandy dunes and hear the silence of the desert, only pierced by the whistling of the sandy mountains or a helicopter taking in the view from above.
Locals have taken advantage of rising tourism in Dunhuang, getting involved directly or in associated industries such as in restaurants, hotels and as taxi drivers.