Mingsha Mountain & Crescent Spring

Situated 5 km south of Dunhuang city, the Mingsha (Singing Sand Dunes) Mountain is celebrated for the sound of the moving sand. Named Sha Jiao Mountain in East Han Dynasty (24-220), it is 800 square kilometers in size, stretching 40 km from east to west and 20 km from south to the north. The main peak is 1,715 meters above sea level. Its ridges and peaks are known to be as sharp as a knife. Stepping on the sand may change its shape temporarily, but the sand always returns its original shape the next day. Walking on the sand, one can also hear a sound that could be as light as bamboo instrument or as heavy as thunderous drums.

Within the Mingsha Mountain lies the Crescent Spring (Yueyaquan). It is so named because of its shape as a crescent. At various times in history, it was once called Sha-Jing (Sand Well), Yao-Quan (Medicine Spring), or Wo Wa Pool. It received its current name in the Qing Dynasty (1644 –1911). The Crescent Spring has an average depth of 3.2 meters. The water is sweet and crystal clear. The sand never gets into spring, and the water is never muddy or dry up. There are three treasures in the Crescent Spring, the iron back fish, the seven-star grass and the five-color sand

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