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Hohhot
Kökeqota.svg
呼和浩特

Kökeqota
—  Prefecture-level city  —
City of Hohhot · 呼和浩特市
Hohhot Central Square
Hohhot (red) in Inner Mongolia (orange) and China
Coordinates: 40°49′N 111°39′E / 40.817°N 111.65°E / 40.817; 111.65
Country China
Region Inner Mongolia
County-level divisions 10
Township divisions 116
Established 1580
Government
 - CPC Committee Secretary Han Zhiran (韩志然)
 - Mayor Tang Aijun (汤爱军)
Area
 - Prefecture-level city 17,000 km2 (6,563.7 sq mi)
 - Urban 149 km2 (57.5 sq mi)
Elevation 1,065 m (3,494 ft)
Population (2004)
 - Prefecture-level city 2,580,000
 Density 151.8/km2 (393.1/sq mi)
 Urban 1,520,000
 - Urban Density 10,201.3/km2 (26,421.4/sq mi)
Time zone China Standard Time (UTC+8)
Postal code 010000
Area code(s) 471
License plate prefixes 蒙A
GDP (2008) CNY 131.6 billion
 - per capita CNY 51,016
Local Dialect Jin: Hohhot dialect
Website http://www.huhhot.gov.cn
The sculpture of "Milk Capital" symbol

Hohhot (Mongolian: Kökeqota.svg, Chinese: 呼和浩特pinyin: Hūhéhàotè, abbreviated Hū Shì (Chinese: 呼市); also romanized as Huhehot or Huhhot), is a city in north-central China and the capital of the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region, serving as the region's administrative, economic, and cultural centre.

The city was founded by Mongol ruler Altan Khan in the late 16th century. It was chosen as the region's administrative centre in 1952, replacing Ulanhot. A city with a rich cultural background, Hohhot is known for its historical sites and temples and is one of the major tourist destinations of Inner Mongolia. It is also nationally known as the home of China's dairy giants Mengniu and Yili, and was declared "Dairy Capital of China" by the national government in 2006.

The name of the city in Mongolian means "Blue City." The color blue in Mongolian culture is associated with the sky, eternity and purity; in Chinese, the name can be translated as Qīng Chéng (Chinese: 青城), literally, "Blue/Green City."[1]

Contents

History

Hohhot was founded by Altan Khan around 1580. Altan Khan and his successors constructed temples and fortress in 1579, 1602 and 1727. The Tumed Mongols had long been semiagricultural there. Hui merchants gathered north of the gate of the city's fortress, building a mosque in 1693. Their descendants forms the nucleus of the modern Hui people's district.

The Qing Dynasty built strong garrison town near Hohhot, supervising southwestern Inner Mongolia in 1735-39. In 1913, the government of the new Republic of China united the garrison town and Hohhot as Guisi. With the occupation of the Japanese Empire in 1937, the city was renamed Hohhot. After the World War II, Prince Demchugdongrub's autonomous government in Hohhot surrendered to the Republic of China.

Until 1954, Hohhot was referred to in Chinese as Guisui (歸綏 pinying: Guīsuī, Wade-Giles: Kweisui), which is the abbreviation of the two districts of the city:

  • Guihua (歸化, arch. Kwei-hwa): Southeastern old section, business district, established by Altan Khan around 1580.
  • Suiyuan (綏遠): Northeastern "New Town", government district. Established in the 17th century by the Manchus.

The two sections later became Guihua District (歸化縣) of the Qing Empire, renamed to Guisui County (歸綏縣) in 1913, and upgraded to a city in 1950. It was the capital of the now-defunct Suiyuan Province. In 1952, under Inner Mongolian chairman Ulanhu, the city became the capital of Inner Mongolia. Suiyuan was annexed to the Inner Mongolian autonomous region two years later.

The city has seen significant development since China's reform and opening began. The city's far east side began development around 2000 and is now home to an artificial lake called Ruyi He, a large number of condominiums, the municipal government, and most of the Autonomous Region's government buildings. The Hohhot City Stadium was built on the city's north side.

Geography and climate

Located in the south central part of Inner Mongolia, Hohhot is encircled by the Daqing Shan (大青山, lit. Great blue Mountains) to the north and the Hetao Plateau to the south. Hohhot features a cold semi-arid climate. The climate is semi-arid, with a cold winter, a hot summer, and strong winds, especially in spring. Winter temperatures generally go as low as -20 Celsius while summer temperatures can sometimes rise above 30 degrees Celsius in July and August. Hohhot is a popular destination for tourists during the summer months because of the nearby Zhaohe grasslands. More recently, due to desertification, the city sees sandstorms on almost an annual basis.

Culture and demographics

As of 2005, 87.3% is Han Chinese, 9.6% of the city's registered population is of ethnic Mongol origin, 1.6% is Hui, 1.2% is Manchu, and the rest belong to smaller minorities, including Korean and Uyghur.[2] Most Han in Hohhot are descendants of people from Shanxi who have settled in the area over the past several decades, or those who have migrated from Northeastern China and Hebei province after the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, supported by government initiatives at the time to promote the development of border regions. Having been integrated into mainstream urban society, most Mongolians in the city speak fluent standard Mandarin in addition to Mongolian. However, younger speakers are moving towards speaking Mandarin amongst themselves as well. A significant portion of the population is of mixed ethnic origin.[3]

The majority of Hohhot residents can converse fluently in Mandarin, but there exists a linguistic divide between "old-town" folk (comprising today's Huimin District), with a large Muslim Hui minority, who tend to converse in raw Hohhot dialect, a branch of the Jin language from neighboring Shanxi province. This spoken form can be difficult to understand for a standard Mandarin speaker or even Mandarin speakers from the other side of the city. The newer residents, mostly concentrated in Xincheng and Saihan Districts, speak Hohhot-based Mandarin Chinese, the majority also with a noticeable accent and some unique vocabulary. (See Hohhot dialect for further details)

Due to its relatively diverse cultural make-up, and despite its characteristics as a mid-sized Chinese industrial city, the Hohhot street scene has no shortage of ethnic minority elements. Tongdao Road, a major street in the old town area, is decorated with Islamic and Mongol exterior designs on all its buildings. A series of government initiatives in recent years have emphasized Hohhot's identity with ethnic minority groups, especially in increasing Mongolian-themed architecture around the city. All street signs as well as public transportation announcements are regulated to be in both Chinese and Mongolian.

Food specialty in the area is mostly focused on Mongolian cuisine and dairy products. Commercially, Hohhot is known for being the base of nationally renowned dairy giants Yili and Mengniu. The Mongolian drink suutei tsai ("naicha" 奶茶 in Chinese, "milk tea" in English), which has become a typical breakfast selection for anyone living or visiting the city. The city also has rich traditions in the making of hot pot and shaomai. There is also a large selection of Korean and Muslim restaurants, in addition to cuisine from other regions of China.

Subdivisions

Subdivisions of Hohhot

The city is administratively at the prefecture-level, meaning that it administers both its urban area and the rural regions in its vicinity. The administrative area includes 4 counties, 4 districts, and a county-level banner; they are further divided into 20 urban sub-districts, and 96 townships.

Districts include:

Counties include:

Transportation

Genghis Khan Drive, on the North side of the city
The old town, now converted into an artifact shopping street

Hohhot lies on the Jingbao Railway from Beijing to Baotou. Trains to Beijing link to destinations to the south and the northeast. The most prominent rail link with Beijing is the overnight K90 train, which has served the Hohhot-Beijing line since the 1980s and is referred to colloquially as the "9-0" by locals. Westbound trains go through Baotou and Lanzhou. There are also rail links to most major Inner Mongolian cities and to Ulaanbaatar.

Hohhot's Baita International Airport (IATA:HET) is about half an hour from the city centre by car. It has direct flights to Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Wuhan, Hong Kong etc., and to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Long distance buses connect Hohhot to Baotou (via the Hubao Expressway) and to other areas in Inner Mongolia.

The city's public transit system is composed of nearly one hundred bus routes and a large fleet of taxicabs, which are normally green. The bus fare is 1-1.5 yuan. The taxi fare begins at 6 yuan.

Muslim-themed Street in Hohhot

Hohhot's major north-south thoroughfares are called "Lu" and its east-west thoroughfares are called "Jie". This is roughly equivalent to dividing roads into "street" and "avenue" designation according to direction. The largest interchange is near the site of the city's Drum Tower, after which it is named. Several major streets are named after Inner Mongolian leagues; among these, Hulun Buir, Xilin Gol and Xing'an run north-south, while Ulan Chaab runs east-west.

An expressway built in 1997 links Hohhot with Baotou, then known as the Hubao Expressway. Recently this expressway has been expanded eastwards to Zhangjiakou, and onto Beijing as the Jingbao Expressway, which is part of a larger project to connect Beijing to Urumqi.[4] The city is en route of China National Highway 110, which runs from Yinchuan to Beijing. China National Highway 209 begins in Hohhot and is southbound towards southern China, with its southern terminus in Guangxi. Hohhot is connected to its northern counties through the Huwu Highway, which was completed in 2006. Previously travel to the northern counties consisted of lengthy navigation through mountainous terrain.

Education

The Hohhot Railway Station

Universities located in Hohhot include:

High Schools located in Hohhot include:

Artifacts

There are over 50 sets of murals in southeastern Hohhot, including a "Horse-tending Image" (牧馬圖). Over 50 pre-modern Buddhist temples and towers.

Landmarks

Temple of the Five Pagodas in Hohhot
  • Tomb of Wang Zhaojun: Located to about nine kilometers to the south of the center of Hohhot. It is said to be the resting place of Wang Zhaojun, a commoner woman from the Chinese Han Empire who married a Xiongnu king, Chanyu. .
  • Temple of the Five Pagodas: Constructed in 1732[citation needed] with architecture very similar to that of Indian temples. In its walls there are more than 1,500 figures of Buddha.
  • Da Zhao Temple: A Buddhist monastery constructed in 1579, the oldest in the city[5].
  • Inner Mongolia Museum: Main exhibits include dinosaur fossils, historical artifacts of nomadic peoples, and the cultural life of modern nomadic peoples.

Notes

  1. ^ Chinese "qing" has traditionally been a color between "blue" and "green" in English, leading some modern sources to translate Qing Cheng into English as "Green City" instead of "Blue City," including, for example, the official website of Hohhot.
  2. ^ Local customs of Hohhot «呼和浩特风情百话», Wei Duo 魏铎, Inner Mongolia People's Press, 2006. In Chinese. ISBN 7-204-07483-1/I 1586
  3. ^ Official population data classifies mixed individuals as belonging to a single ethnicity. People with mixed Han and minority origin usually identify themselves legally as belonging to the minority. As a result, minorities may be overrepresented in the statistics.
  4. ^ Qianlong
  5. ^ 大召寺(Chinese)

External links

Coordinates: 40°49′N 111°39′E / 40.817°N 111.65°E / 40.817; 111.65

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Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Hohhot (呼和浩特; Hūhéhàotè) is the capital of Inner Mongolia, and part of a metropolitan area with a population of around 2.5 million.

Understand

Although Hohhot has only been the capital of Inner Mongolia since 1947, it has taken on the role with ease and with a rapidly growing population (currently at around 1.6 million) it has begun to challenge Baotou as the region's industrial and economic powerhouse. Despite the fact that only around 11% of the city's population are indigenous Mongols, Mongolian Buddhism (an offshoot of Tibetan Buddhism) continues to thrive and Mongolian culture is actively preserved. As a new capital, the city lacks an abundance of historical and tourist sites. However, it is still definitely worth visiting if in the area. The city is at its greenest and most pleasant in Spring and early Summer.

Because of the large Hui Muslim population, restaurants with a green or yellow sign are generally Halal and will not serve pork. Mentioning pork to the owner is considered a grave insult and should be avoided. Take the opportunity to sample the mutton dishes instead.

Get in

By plane

Hohhot Baita International Airport (IATA: HET) is Inner Mongolia's main airport. Located one hour outside of Hohhot, regular flights are available to Beijing, Chifeng, Guangzhou, Hailar, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Shijiazhuang, Wuhan, Xian, and Xilinhot.

International flight are available to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

By train

Hohhot is connected to the following cities by rail: Baotou (2 hrs), Beijing (11 hrs), Datong (5 hrs), Erenhot (11 hrs), Yinchuan (10 hrs), Moscow and Ulaanbaatar.

The Beijing to Hohhot overnight train is K89. K89 departs at 21:00 and arrives at 07:20. The K90 from Hohhot to Beijing departs at 21:23 and arrives at 07:20 (cost is ~$24USD for a hard sleeper).

Trains 4652 and 4653 run between Hohhot and Erlian. The train leaving from Hohhot departs at 22:00 and arrives at 06:08 (cost is between ~$11USD for a hard sleeper).

By bus

The long distance bus station is located next to main train station.

There are regular bus services to the following cities: Baotou (2 hrs), Beijing (8-11 hrs), Datong (4 hrs), and Dongsheng (3 hours).

Get around

By taxi

Taxis start at ¥6 during the day (¥7.50 at night?) and are highly available throughout the day. Taxis become more difficult to flag 2-3PM as people go back to work as well as during early evening, or with foul weather.

By bus

Busses run until 8:30PM during the winter. English schedules are difficult to find.

By bicycle

Bicycles are by far the most convenient and common in the city. Be careful with the new/foreign traffic patterns. Left turns occur after straight traffic, typically bicycles turn left from the bicycle lane with auto traffic through intersections. Following local traffic is often the safest way to ride and will orient you to traffic patterns, customs, and flow. During peak hours, traffic police will dictate crossing times. Parking your bicycle is easy and convenient in the 'corral' spaces. Attendants will issue you and your bicycle matching 'sticks' and your bicycle will be generally safe while you shop or go to work. Rates are ¥0.5-2/day. Hours may vary.

By foot

Depending on construction levels, walking the city is very easy and common and is perhaps the best way to interact with locals. During peak hours, traffic police will dictate crossing times. Theft and molestation is generally not high in the city, however prudence should always be practiced. As a city spectacle, a smile will often turn obvious bewilderment of the passing people into delight. Try it out! ¥0.5-1 is a reasonable amount to offer beggars and the homeless, as well as empty plastic bottles.

  • Dazhao Temple (大召寺; Dàzhāosì). The oldest Buddhist monastery in the city constructed in 1579. A 2.5 meter silver statue of Sakyamuni Buddha is among the temples most precious treasures.  edit
  • Inner Mongolia Museum (内蒙古博物馆; Nèiměnggǔ Bówùguǎn). Exhibitions of the flora and fauna and history of Inner Mongolian, including minerals and mining, space exploration, and dinosaurs. Free.  edit
  • Temple of the Five Pagodas (五榕寺; Wǔróngsì). An Indian style temple constructed in 1732. Famous for its frescos of 1,500 carved figures of Buddha.  edit
  • The Great Mosque. The oldest and largest mosque in the city built in 1693.  edit
  • Tomb of Princess Zhaojun (昭君墓; Zhāojūnmù), (Take bus No. 6 from the muslim quarter and switch to bus No. 44 that will take you there). The resting place of Han princess who voluntarily married a nomad chief to secure peace. She is attributed with the ability to perform miracles. ¥1.  edit
  • Xilitu Zhao (席力图召; Xílìtúzhào), 112 Danan Street, Yuquan District. The largest Buddhist temple in the city and main seat of Buddhism in Inner Mongolia.  edit
  • Dazhao Temple Festivals. Songjing Da Fahui (8th-15th of the 1st and 6th lunar months), Songbalin (14th day of the 1st and 6th lunar months), Liang Dafo (15th day of the 1st and 6th lunar months), and Mani Hui (14th-17th day of eighth lunar month).  edit
  • Get to the mountains, (Take bus 54 north until it ends at the edge of town. This bus can be easily caught along the north side of Xinhua Square heading west).  edit
  • Great Wall.  edit
  • Wind Turbines.  edit
  • Bei Guo Zhi Chun (The Garden Restaurant). A greenhouse/warehouse turned into a massive eatery where plants are abundant as well as water features, indoor yurts, and private space. Great for parties or intimate dinners. The menu is very comprehensive. Tea is not free but is delicious. Wait staff is friendly and places orders via wireless PDAs so it may seem they are pushy. High.  edit
  • Zang Can Bar (Tibet Food Bar), (In the heart of the city, east side of Xinhua Square, look down the alley way south of the hotel, it is on the north side). A small Tibetan restaurant. Great food, atmosphere & jewelry. Private room can sit a dozen people. High.  edit
  • Xi Bei, (At the new stadium to the north of the city). The menu is very comprehensive. Tea is not free. The menu is in Chinese and English and meals are delivered via roller skate. Maybe some day they'll re-label the noodle appetizer currently called "Panda-crusted noodles." Plenty of private rooms available. Wait staff is friendly and places orders via wireless PDAs so it may seem they are pushy. High.  edit
  • Mongolian Food @ the Race Track. Meals served in traditional Mongolian style in your own private yurt. High.  edit
  • Fengwei Huoguo, (Just southwest of Xinhua Square, facing north with a large green sign). Seafood hotpot. Busy every night, for good reason. Medium.  edit
  • Shiao Hotel, (A large hotel along Zhongshan road, west of Victory shopping plaza, with a multi-colored deck at 22 stories with a large Eiffel Tower like radio tower atop it. Hard to miss.). Buffet closes at 9PM doors close at 9:30PM. Buffet overlooking all of Hohhot that rotates so you get the whole 360. Come early. The buffet is ¥50/person.  edit
  • Anda Guesthouse, Qiaokao West Street, Saihan District (赛罕区桥靠西街; Sàihǎnqū Qiáokàoxījiē) (From the train station, take bus 2, 37 or 61, get off at Inner Mongolia Hospital (内蒙古医院)), +86 471 6918039 (), [1]. Self catering kitchens, tea & coffee, light breakfast, train station pick-up, DVDs, internet and hot showers available without surcharge. Dorms ¥60; doubles ¥160.  edit
  • Pinnacle Hotel, Zhao Wu Da Road, +86 471 4316688.  edit
  • Yunzhong Hotel Hohhot, 27 West Zhongshan Road, +86 471 6968822 (fax: +86 471 6962236).  edit
  • Binyue Hotel, 52 Zhaowuda Road, Saihan district, +86 471 6605588 (fax: +86 471 4310808), [2].  edit
  • Inner Mongolia Hotel, West Wulanchabu Road, +86 471 6964233 (fax: +86 471 6961479).  edit
  • Inner Mongolia Jin Jiang International Hotel, 119 Hulun South Road, Saihan District, +86 21 61226688 Ext. 7800, [3]. This five-star hotel in Hohhot brings guests to a new level of luxury, offering almost 1000 rooms with relaxing amenities, event venues and catering services, and recreational facilities. Official website accepts online reservations.   edit
  • The Grasslands. Mongolia's history is linked to its grasslands. Recommended places near Hohhot are: Xilamuren (80 km north), Huitengxile (120 km west) and Gegentela (150 km north).
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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

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Wikipedia

Noun

Singular
Hohhot

Plural
-

Hohhot

  1. A city in North-Central China, capital of Inner Mongolia (Nei Mongol)

Synonyms

Translations

See also


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