New tourist park to open at China's Chaka Salt Lake


Landscape of the Chaka Salt Lake, known as the "Mirror of the Sky," in Ulan county, Haixi Mongol and Tibetan autonomous prefecture, Northwest China's Qinghai province, Sept 16, 2018. (File photo: IC)

XINING - A new tourist park at Chaka Salt Lake in Northwest China will open on Thursday, local tourism authorities said.

The natural saline lake is located in Haixi Mongolian and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Qinghai Province. In 2018, the lake received 3 million visitors, setting a new record, said Tsaishantso, deputy director of the prefectural tourism bureau.

The new park, named Sky No 1, totals 14.19 square kilometers and cost 620 million yuan ($91 million) to build.

It focuses on experiential tourism through a wide range of activities such as boating, gliding, hot air balloon rides, camel and horse rides. Visitors can also try salt therapy, sculpture, sliding, salt flats golfing and salt-related DIY programs, the park manager said.

The park is a new addition to tourism infrastructure at the lake, an eastern gateway to Qaidam Basin, which reserves one of the largest salt mines in the world.

With its snow-white lake bed and crystal blue water, the lake has earned the moniker "the Mirror of the Sky."

Located at 3,100 meters above sea level in Ulan county, the oval-shaped lake is 15.8 km long and 9.2 km wide, covering a total area of 105 square kilometers. It is about four hours' drive from Xining, capital of Qinghai province.

Chaka Salt Lake, along with Taer (Gumbum) Monastery, Qinghai Lake and Mengda Lake, represents the most well-known tourist destinations in Qinghai.