Xinjiang receives first batch of non-local tourists as COVID-19 restrictions ease

Tourist attractions across northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region received their first batch of non-local tourists on September 5, after the region eased its COVID-19 restrictions on tourism due to improvements in pandemic containment.

All scenic areas and tour agencies are still required to strictly follow the official guidelines on epidemic prevention and control in order to ensure orderly operation and a safe environment for tourists, according to Xinjiang Culture and Tourism Department.

The Tianchi Lake of the Tianchi scenic area welcomed more than 600 tourists coming from outside the region on Saturday alone. 

"Tourists can book tickets online at staggered times in a contact-less way, to make reservations for visiting the scenic spots here. So far, all the sightseeing spots have been opened to tourists," said Cheng Xiaofeng, secretary of the Communist Party Committee of the Tianchi scenic area. 

The Kum Tag Desert in Shanshan County of the region also received more than 100 non-local tourists, who said they were excited about being able to tour Xinjiang's unique desert landscape.

"The sand here is fine and we have more fun than in our hometown. I am so excited, and it is so much fun," said Qi Jieli, a tourist from south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. 

At present, tourists traveling in and out of Xinjiang are not required to undergo nucleic acid testing or isolation. They only need to show their health codes and comply with local epidemic prevention requirements while traveling.