South of Zhōngwèi, the Han Chinese–dominated cities of northern Níngxià give way to the Hui heartland. Journeying here takes you deep into rural Níngxià, through villages of mud-brick houses where the minarets of the numerous mosques tower over the endless cornfields.
Tóngxīn (同心) has a very strong Muslim feel. There are always students in residence at the mosque training to be imams and they will greet you with a salaam alaikum and show you around. Tóngxīn is also one of the few places in China outside of southern Xīnjiāng where you’ll see women in veils and covered from head to toe in black.