Tourist Site at Sayram Lake

The Relics of Empire: Resource Extraction and the Making of Modern Xinjiang

Tourist Site at Sayram Lake

Just a short drive from the tourist hub of Yining and the Ili River Valley, Sayram Lake is now a tourist destination for travelers visiting western Xinjiang. Yurts line the grassy hills on the south side of the lake, and local Mongol and Kazakh families eagerly sell pastoral experiences: sleeping in yurts, meals of mutton, and horseback-riding excursions for Han tourists. For those just passing through, there are numerous photo opportunities on the waterfront. One can pose with camels and horses, or just sit in a romantic swing overlooking the lake.