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China's minorities contribute to tourism industry

There are 55 minority "types" of people within China's population of 1.3 billion and these minorities add their slices of culture and drama into the tourism sector, here.

One of these minorities is the Tibetan population, which China absorbed into its one nation policy in 1959. Another is, the "Uighur people" who today, make up a population of eleven million, tour guide, Went Tong (or Wendy to foreigners) said.

Around 1,300 years ago, these Uighur people from Central Asia, made up a separate nation. They were Caucasian, spoke a different language and perhaps came in contact with Nomads, being the reason why they were converted to Islam. While being part of China's mainstream, they continue to follow Islam.

Now, through years of intermarriage, some look more Mongoloid than Caucasian. Their dress, dance and mannerism, betray no strict linkage to Islam, as it is followed in some Islamic states. Their mosques, on the outside, have mingled with the architecture of Chinese Buddhist temples. But the inside, is characteristic of Islamic mosques.

As part of China's market economy and persuasion of its people towards free enterprise, A Fun Ti Hometown Music Restaurant, stands, in a Beijing ally, under the care of the Uighur people. The Fun Ti Restaurant is part of A Fun Ti Investment Management Co Ltd, which run a series of entertainment theatres with live drama, for the entertainment of visitors.

A Fun Ti, claims that its entertainment has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, German Democratic News, Hong Kong Xing Dao News, USA Today, Spanish Avant-Courier News, Le Figaro News French, BBC, CNN (And now the Sunday Observer) Newspapers have called A Fun Ti "A paradise in the Beijing Ally and the UN in the Beijing Ally," it is claimed.

At the Fun Ti Hometown Music Restaurant, run by the Uighur people, you book early and have to be at your table by 8.00 p. m. Then, the show starts, with dinner and liquor of all types is served.

The compere says: "This is the place to be in for a symphony of good food, wines, entertainment and excitement with the tantalising flavour of the Xinjiang ethnicity. The restaurant prides itself in its nouveau cuisine based on impeccable fusion of traditional Zinjiang dishes and modern western cooking."

The stylish 700-square metres dining area has a collection of the Xinjiang culture and a seating capacity for 380.

There are also three VIP rooms tastefully adorned with the arts and crafts of the Xinjiang ethnic minorities for diners who prefer a little bit more privacy; all seats sold out.

These musical instruments, the drums, stringed and flute are loud and bizarre and never seen by visitors from the east or west. And, so is the type of music, drama and dancing, everything has meaning and the story is communicated to the visitor.

There are women and men be dancers, and they are so friendly, they invite anyone among the audience to join in; the variety of entertainment, is astounding.

There are kung fu shows, a little Buddhist monk (all Uighur performers) fights a gang and rescues his sister. A tourist was blindfolded, then, a snake is rapped around his neck.

There is table-top dancing and everyone is on the tables. There are prizes and surprises and when the show and dinner ends at 9.45 p. m., the visitors leave, carrying away prizes and a determination to come back again.


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