In 2002, the Urumqi city government renovated Erdaoqiao and opened a 1.2 kilometer shopping street to house Erdaoqiao Market, a Xinjiang International Bazaar, and a Xinjiang Ethnic Products Street.
Erdaoqiao has become a "golden shopping district" with ethnic minority goods and handicrafts from China, Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Pakistan and other neighboring countries, attracting thousands of sightseers and shoppers every day.
The famous "three treasures of Hotan" ?jade, carpets and silk ?are on offer, as are copperware, exquisite Yengisar daggers, traditional clothing, Uygur embroidered hats, musical instruments, handmade carpets, and cashmere scarves, not to mention all kinds of dried fruit and herbs. Bargaining is a must as all prices are negotiable.
When you are tired of shopping, you can replenish your energy at one of Erdaoqiao抯 dozens of restaurants and food stalls. As daylight recedes, stall holders light hurricane lamps and Erdaoqiao turns into a bustling night market and entertainment street with food, handicrafts and dancing.
The best time to go is Sunday, when the market is at its busiest.
Next to Erdaoqiao market is the Erdaoqiao mosque, another popular tourist location.
The journey from Beijing to Urumqi takes 44 hours by express train or 3 hours 45 minutes by air.