Qinghai Province lies on the Northeast of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau and borders upon Gansu and Xinjiang. A branch of the Silk Road goes off westward from Lanzhou. Capital of Gansu Province, to Xining and Golmud in Qinghai Province, and then turns Northward to Dunhuang to join the main Silk Road. The scenic spots and historical sites along this part of the Silk Road in Qinghai include Qinghai Lake, the Bird Island, the Salt Lake and Ta'er Lamasery, etc.
Qinghai Lake, 3,196 metres above sea level, covers 4,635 square metres. It is the largest inland saline lake in China and home of fish and birds of different species. The main attraction, the Bird Island, is located in the Northeast of the Lake. During April-July each year, over a hundred thousand birds such as wild geese, cormorants, swans and ducks, migrate over from South China and southeastern Asia onto this small island with less than one square kilometre.
The Salt Lake includes more than 30 lakes, which scatter over the around 200,000-square-kilometre Qaidam Basin and forms a unique natural beauty, some of them lies by the snow-clad mountains and others in the desert. Tourists may see the buses and trains traveling on the dry surfaces of some of these lakes.
Lamaism is popular in Qinghai. TaĄŻer Lamasery, built in 1560, is one of the six great lamaseries of the Yellow Sect and the birthplace of the founder of the Yellow sect.
Ximing City is the capital and a hub of communications of Qinghai Province. It has regular flights to Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, XiĄŻan Urumqi, Chengdu and Golmud and bus and train connections with other cities in Qinghai or in the other provinces in China.