Lanzhou travel guide

Lanzhou Tourism | Lanzhou Guide

You're Going to Love Lanzhou

Lanzhou lies on the Yellow River and was known as the Golden City back when it was a major stop on the Silk Road. Today, it's an exciting vacation destination with unique attractions and great outdoor spaces.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Lanzhou

1. Gansu Provincial Museum

Learn all about the city's role in the silk trade at this popular museum. Exhibits include relics from the Silk Road and from the Great Wall of China.

2. Five Springs Mountain Park

See ancient Buddhist architecture or look for the five springs - Ganlu, Juyue, Mozi, Hui, and Meng - in this scenic mountain park.

3. It's a Smart Choice for Explorers

If you plan to explore the countryside, Lanzhou is a great base. You'll be within easy reach of lots of exciting places, including Tulugou National Forest Park in Yongdeng County and Labrang Monastery in Xiahe.

4. The Yellow River

See Zhongshan Bridge, the first bridge to span the Yellow River, or visit the Waterwheel Garden and the famous Yellow River Mother sculpture. Alternatively, take a trip across the river on a traditional sheepskin raft.

5. Traditional Markets

Discover the unique pleasure of shopping after dark at Hezheng Lu Night Market from mid-afternoon till late.

Where to Eat in Lanzhou

Noodle dishes are a local staple and you can try some of the best at Mo GouYan LaoZiHao Beef Noddle or JinQiang Beef Noddle. An inexpensive meal costs ¥52 and dinner for two at an upscale restaurant is ¥343.

When to visit Lanzhou

Lanzhou in April
Estimated hotel price
C$ 28
1 night at 3-star hotel
Lanzhou in April
Estimated hotel price
C$ 28
1 night at 3-star hotel

Summer is hot and humid while winters can be cold. Visit in spring from March to May, or plan a fall getaway from September to October.

Data provided by weatherbase
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Lanzhou


Lanzhou Zhongchuan Airport (LHW) is 43.5 miles from the city. Take the airport shuttle bus to your hotel for ¥30 or get a taxi for ¥140.


Take the train from major cities like Shanghai, Beijing, and Nanjing to Lanzhou Railway Station. The station is just south of the downtown district and taxis and buses are readily available.


Several major highways converge on the city. However, you'll need a current Chinese license if you wish to drive to Lanzhou.


Lanzhou is a transportation hub for Gansu Province and buses from over 450 destinations arrive and depart daily. The two main stations are East Bus Station and West Bus Station and both are well served by local buses.

Airports near Lanzhou

Airlines serving Lanzhou

United Airlines
Good (2,335 reviews)
Good (264 reviews)
Excellent (2,562 reviews)
Air New Zealand
Excellent (32 reviews)
China Eastern
Excellent (10 reviews)
China Southern
Excellent (7 reviews)
Air China
Okay (3 reviews)
Shanghai Airlines
Excellent (2 reviews)
Hainan Airlines
Excellent (3 reviews)
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Where to stay in Lanzhou

Mid-range hotels like the Crowne Plaza Lanzhou, the Grand Soluxe Hotel Gansu, and the Lanzhou Legend Hotel are ideal for couples or families. Inexpensive alternatives include Home Inn and Hotel Ibis Lanzhou.

Popular neighbourhoods in Lanzhou

Chengguan District - the downtown district and the city's commercial hub, it's noted for its good hotels and restaurants and Lanzhou Railway Station.

Anning District - this northwestern neighborhood has a high student population and is home to Lanzhou Jiaotong University and Northwest Normal University.

Qilihe District - lies on the southern bank of the Yellow River. Attractions include Xihu Park and the Yellow River Mother statue, which is the symbol of Lanzhou.

Where to stay in popular areas of Lanzhou

Most booked hotels in Lanzhou

Crowne Plaza Lanzhou
Excellent (8.7, Excellent reviews)
C$ 162+
ibis Lanzhou Zhangye Road
Excellent (9.6, Excellent reviews)
C$ 48+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Lanzhou

Public Transportation

Buses are frequent and convenient with over 110 routes covering the city. The standard fare is ¥2.


Over 8,000 taxis operate in the city and they charge a starting rate of ¥10 plus ¥1.40 for each additional 1.9 miles up to 10 miles. After 10 miles the rate is ¥2.10 per 1.9 miles.


Rent a car with a Chinese driver and explore the region at your leisure. Rates are from ¥200-400 per day, depending on the destination.

The Cost of Living in Lanzhou

Shopping Streets

Buy local arts and crafts like engraved pebbles, carved gourds, Tao River inkstone, or traditional clay terrines at Haifu Market or Hezheng Lu Night Market. Visit the Dongfang Underground Shopping Mall or Lanzhou Xidan Mall for clothes and accessories.

Groceries and Other

Try Beijing Hualian Supermarket or Dongfanghong Square Supermarket for food and basics. You'll pay ¥13 for a quart of milk or ¥50 for 16oz of local cheese.