Located in the eastern part of Qinghai Province and lies on the Huangshui River, Xining is the capital of Qinghai province in western China. Xining has a history of over 2,100 years and was a chief commercial hub on the Hexi Corridor caravan route to Tibet, handling especially timber, wool and salt in ancient times.
As the largest city on the Tibetan Plateau, Xining has 2.2 million inhabitants(2016). Although long a part of Gansu province, Xining was added to Qinghai in 1928. Xining holds sites of religious significance to Muslims and Buddhists, including the Dongguan Mosque and Ta'er Monastery (Kumbum Monastery in Tibetan) that are worth visiting.
Located on the eastern edge of the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau and the upper reaches of the Huangshui River, Xining is connected by rail to Lhasa, Tibet and connected by high-speed rail to Lanzhou, Gansu and Urumqi, Xinjiang.
As the political, economic, and cultural center of Qinghai Province with an average altitude of about 2,200 metres (7,200 ft), Xining is called Summer Capital due to its cool summer from its high altitude.