Located at the heart of the Urumqi city, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region Museum, showcases the history of the region as well as of entire China.
The building which houses the museum is also a marvel in terms of architectural beauty and is surrounded by many such mesmerising skyscrapers.
The museum officials said, it was completed in 2005 with classic Xinjiang architectural style and features.
This exhibition aims to spread Xinjiang’s splendid historic culture through abundant cultural relics and relevant materials.
It fully illustrates that culture of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang, which have always been rooted in the fertile soil of Chinese civilization is an inseparable part of Chinese culture.
Xinjang has always been a place where multiple ethnic groups live in a compact community.
Multiple religions coexisted here, and multiple culture gather together through the brilliant process of tuning turning China into a unified multi ethnic country.
Accepting to officials many ethnic groups work together to develop its vast territories and build the diverse Chinese nation.
The museum shows that Xinjang is a gateway for Chinese civilizsation to open to the west, making significant contribution to boosting the UN imposed SilkRoad civilisation.
China's millions of years of human history is displayed here with its 10,000 years of cultural history and more than 5000 years of civilisation history.
China is the hometown of oriental human beings. Peking man invented artificial fire about 500,000 years ago, which is one of the earliest in the world.
“As early as 10,000 years ago, our ancestors planted millet and rice and the gene of agriculture is tied with West Asia and North Africa for the first place. Our ancestors were at the forefront of the world, in the achievements of ancient civilisation in the Neolithic Age, Bronze Age Iron Age and other ages, such as crop cultivation, wild animals, domestication, seeking medical treatment, observing geography, tool making, characters creation, villages and cities construction” an official of the museum informed.
Archeological excavation and research showed that the history of human activities could be traced back to the middle and late period of Paleolithic age in Xinjiang.
China had entered into the Neolithic Age about 10,000 years ago and Xinjang Neolithic sites were mainly microlith sites, polished stone implements, which reflected that economic lifestyle of primitive hunting and agriculture.
Xinjang had entered into the Bronze Age about 4000 to 2800 years ago, forming an oasis civilization dominated by farming and a prairie civilization where nomadic and animal husbandry dominated.
Xinjang had entered into the early Iron Age in succession about 2800 to 2200 years ago, human migration activities and the communication and dissemination of materials and technologies have promoted the economic and cultural development in Xinjiang.
The museum exhibits that painted pottery culture had profound impact on Xinjiang.
Prior to the fourth century BC, primitive religion was widespread in Xinjiang by the middle and late warring states.
The western cities at the center of the Tarim region had begun to appear cultural relics and acted from here such as painted pottery, millet, wheat, shells, bronze mirrors, silk deeply indicated that Xinjang had maintained close ties with the Central Plains since the ancient times.
Meanwhile, from archaeological discoveries in Xinjiang it was especially evidenced that Chinese civilization took on a new look through widely absorbing and integrating the advantages of Western civilization, for example, cultivation techniques, animal breeding as well as bronze smelting techniques from Western Asia, Middle Asia and others.
It’s a provincial-level comprehensive museum and a national first-class museum with over 31,000 cultural collections and one can see rich ancient artifacts ranging from the silk, cotton, linen and woolen fabrics, ancient books, wooden sculptures, clay figurines, paintings, bronzes to different ethnic costumes and living items and some ancient corpses and fossils.
Having an area of 17,288 square meters it has 2 floors on the ground and one underground.
Invaluable treasures like Xinjiang mummies, the Tang Dynasty painted potteries, famous Fuxi and Nvwa are among the displays.
In the 1,500 square-meter large exhibition hall, more than 1,000 cultural relics are exhibited to bring visitors back to Xinjiang in different ancient stages, from the Stone Age, Han Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty.
Collections include old stone implements during the Stone Ages, painted pottery, jade articles, bronze ornaments, seashells, silk, wheat, millet in Xia, Shang and Zhou Dynasties, beacon towers of Han Dynasty Great Wall, ancient clothes, sculptures, paintings, rock paintings, golden and silver wares, coins, etc.
They not only present obvious regional features, but also show strong cultural elements of the Central Plains.
The Paintings of Fuxi and Nvwa, excavated from Turpan’s Astana-Karakhoja Ancient Tombs, is a treasure you should see. The paintings drew two ancestral figures of Chinese mythology, describing the ancient people’s understanding of human life and the universe.
Wooden Figures with Silk Garments and Polychrome Paintings from Astana-Karakhoja Ancient Tombs are also most precious treasures of Xinjiang Regional Museum.
They are burial objects of the Zhang Xiong couple, a notable family in ancient Gaochang Kingdom. With well-preserved shapes and bright colors, the figures are rare extant examples and helpful relics to study the Tang Dynasty costumes.
Another important treasure is the Brocade with Chinese Characters Wu Xing Chu Dong Fang Li Zhong Guo unearthed in Niya Ruins, Khotan, Southern Xinjiang.
It’s an elbow pad embroidered with delicate and complex astronomical patterns.
Officials said, it is a work from Han and Jin Dynasty with a long history of over 2,200 years.
The ancient mummy collections on the second floor are the most famous and interesting exhibition of Xinjiang Regional Museum.
Due to the dry weather and special ancient funeral system, Xinjiang has the largest number and most best-preserved mummies in the world.
The hall covers about 700 square meters and houses 6 ancient corpses and related relics excavated from Turpan’s Astana Cemetery, ancient tombs in Shanshan, Lop Nor.
The most famous and oldest one is the Loulan Beauty, who is said to be an Europeoid buried nearly 4,000 years before.
Also, visitors can see the corpse of Zhang Xiong - a Chinese famous general of Gaochang Kingdom, “Qiemo Men, Women, Infant” mummies with Eurasian features, special make up and clothes and a male mummy wearing a golden mask.
A few representative ancient tombs have been restored to help people know more about ancient burial culture together with relevant documents.
Xinjiang is a multi-ethnic border region where 47 ethnic groups jointly create a great history and splendid cultures.
This folk culture exhibition hall lies on the first floor, covers about 15,000 square meters and displays more 2,000 collections.
It mainly introduces the houses, furniture, costumes, daily necessities and folk customs of 12 main ethnic groups, including the Uygur, Kazak, Mongolian, Xibe and other Nationalities.
“It’s a fantastic folk museum to learn about the ethnic lifestyle, dining, wedding, religious and music and dance cultures. Inside the exhibition hall, many lifelike ethnic wax figures stand in real life scenes”.
Here visitors can see their exquisitely-made unique clothes and accessories and picture their daily life.
There are some other exhibitions in the museum which you can drop by to further know Xinjiang’s history and ancient wisdom of China.