Hohhot, the capital of the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region, lies1, 200 meters above sea level in the eastern part of the Tumochuan Plain at the southern foot of the Daqing Mountains on the northern bank of the Yellow River. Greater Hohhot covers an area of 17, 224 square kilometers, while the city proper is 77. 9 square kilometers. It is inhabited by peoples of the Han, Mongolian, Manchu, Hui, Daur,Ewenki, Oroqen, Korean and Tibetan ethnic groups. The best time to visit is June through August. The highest temperature in Hohhot then is 30 ℃, but the nights are cool. The winters are very cold and windy, with a-32 ℃ low, and you need long johns even in early May. There are sandstorms in spring, the annual precipitation is between a scant 50 and 450 millimeters, mostly in late summer and early autumn. It has from 90 to 160 frost-free days.
Hohhot is an ancient city outside the Great Wall. It was rebuilt in 1581 during the Ming Dynasty on the ruins of Khan Aletan's old castle by his third wife. During reconstruction, city walls were built with grey bricks which seemed to color the whole castle grey. Hence the name "Hohhot" which means "Grey City" in Mongol. However, it was called Guihua "Converted City" in the official and private documents of the Ming Dynasty. In the third year of the reign of Emperor Qian Long, another town called Suiyuan "Appeased City" was set up to the northeast of the "Converted City." In 1913, those two cities were merged and given the name Guisui or "Converted and AppeasedCity" which, though humiliating as it is, remained unchanged until November25, 1954 when the original name "Hohhot" was again adopted.
Inner Mongolia is of historical and religious importance. The Mongols, one of the ethnic groups living there, united under Genghis Khan in 1206, and their descendents went on to conquer the rest of China and then parts of Europe in the 13th and 14th centuries.
The tradition religion, as reflected now in its monasteries and temples, is a distinctive branch of Buddhism known as Lamaism, and is related to that of Tibet.
In summer, visitors can travel to rural areas, if they wish, and sleep in a yurt in the scarcely settled grasslands. They can drink tea laced with milk, butter and grain, said to be very filing and great for cold winter days. Visitors can go to one of several rural communities located 90-180 kilometers away, on roads cut through the rolling grasslands or prairies.