I'm gradually uploading photos from this site into a photo set on Flickr. You can also access the Fickr set by clicking on any of the random thumbnails that now appear on the right-hand side of this page.
葫芦 (húlú) are dried gourds, which are then engraved, often in very minute detail. They range in price from a few kuai to hundreds and thousands. You can find them in the local specialities shops, if you walk west from the Lanzhou Hotel, along Dōnggăng Xī Lù (东岗西路), west of Tiānshuì Lù crossing (天水路口往西走). There is also a well-known shop at the top of the White Hill Pagoda. The photos below were taken at Huáng Miào.
I came across this Friendship Tree (友谊树 yǒuyī shù) in the Children's Park (儿童公园 értóng gōngyuán), on the south side of the
Chinese: 成语公园 Chéngyǔ Gōngyuán
Chéngyǔ (成语) are Chinese idioms, often made up of 4 characters, usually the moral of an old story. This park, on the north bank of the Yellow River, in Anning District, has a set of statues on display that depict these stories.
The bridges in Lanzhou have been undergoing inspections, and the Qīlǐhé Dàqiáo Bridge (七里河大桥) has been closed for repairs. Luckily there are two new bridges a few km upstream and downstream of the bridge, otherwise Anning District (on the north side of the Yellow River) would start to feel pretty cut off from the city (on the south side).
If Lanzhou is your start-end point for journeys along the Hexi Corridor stretch of the Silk Road (including Jiayuguan, Dunhuang and Turpan), you might find these train timetables useful:
Thanks to simatani for letting me use this photo of Lanzhou city centre, taken in 1994. I've tried to recreate it below.
All the pages listed above have been updated to some extent over the past week, especially 'Things to do'. I've also added a page for 'Parks'. If you have ideas for more additions to the listings, contact me.