With a population of 191.624, the Tu people mostly live in the Huzhu Tu Autonomous County, Minle and Datong counties in the east of Qinghai Province. The rest live scattered in Tongren, Dule and Menyuan.
The typtcal dress at Tu woman.
The Tu area is located in the northeast of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The northern moun¬tainous area is covered with thick forests and stretches of pasturelands. With mild climate and meandering river, the southern shallow mountain area has fertile farmland and produces high quality fruits and vegetables.
Embroidering sleve decorations.
The name of the Tus varies from place to place. They were also called the Mongol, Qagan, Tukun or TUhujia people. The Tuyuhun people, active in the Northern and Southern dynasties, is said to be the progenitors of the Tus. In the Tang and Song periods, these people were known as the Tuhuns or Tuihuns, and the Tus in the Yuan Dynasty. After the founding of new China, they were generally called the Tu Nationality.
The ancient dress remains in Tu area.
The Tu language, containing the Huzhu, Minhe and Tongren dialects, belongs to the Mongo¬lian language group of the Altaic family. As the Tu language has no written form, some Tu people can speak both Chinese and Tibetan. Throughout their history, they wrote in Chinese and Tibetan.
The so called dustpan headdress is traditional among Tu women
Lamaist Buddhism is the principal religion among the Tus. In the early years, Tu ancestors herded a large amount of sheep. In the Ming Dynasty, they took up farming supplemented by raising cattle. Today, every Tu family keeps sheep, and they are still expert herdsmen.
The Tu people possess two epic songs The Ode to the Sheep and Lajenpu & Chiehmenso. They love singing very much. Their Hua'er songs are beautiful Nadun, the carnival of the Tus, perhaps lasts the longest time in the world.