(ECNS) -- A series of floral activities are being held in northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region as spring arrives. The blooming flowers have attracted tourists from all over China, which plays an important role in promoting the local economy.
The annual Apricot Blossom Festival in Toksun County of Turpan has been held since 2013. Together with local folk customs and intangible cultural heritages, it has attracted millions of tourists each year.
The 2023 apricot blossom festival of Toksun kicked off on Saturday.
“I can make a living without leaving my hometown. This is a new way to make money,” said a local villager who sells Xinjiang hand-pulled noodles. “Tourists will come again if they are satisfied with our service,” he added.
In order to meet the needs of tourists to enjoy the flowers, the Xinjiang railway department runs a flower-viewing train route.
The first train for enjoying apricot flowers in Xinjiang departed Urumqi on Friday, carrying about 560 tourists. “Spring is a great season to see flowers. It takes an hour to get from Urumqi to Turpan, so I can return home on the same day,” said a citizen from Urumqi.
Data from the Department of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of Xinjiang shows that orchards in the autonomous region covered an area of 18.5 million mu (about 1.23 million hectares) in 2022 with an output of 8.7 million tons.
Xinjiang keeps improving the quality and efficiency of the fruit industry, while combining flower appreciation, rural tourism, and ecological tourism to boost local economy.