Gansu Province, 385km (239 miles) W of Xi'an, 294km (182 miles) SE of Lanzhou

Tianshui is divided into two parts -- the main town of Qin Cheng, and the smaller township of Beidao Qu, 15km (9 miles) down the Wei river valley to the west. Both townships are unexceptional; the main reason to visit is a clamber around the stunning Buddhist caves of Maiji Shan, a 1-hour bus ride from Beidao Qu.