Are you planning to take a vacation? Maybe you’re looking to travel to somewhere open and adventurous? Somewhere unusual where you can take in sites you normally don’t see photographed on your friend’s Instagrams or Facebooks? If this is the case, you need to look no further than the vast landscapes and unique cultural experiences that would be abundant upon visiting Mongolia.
Mongolia, its people, and its history
Mongolia is a nation bordered by Russia and China. A long-existing country known for its vast expanses and beautiful culture, it’s home to the Mongol Empire’s original founder and one of the greatest conquerors in human history, Genghis Khan. Much of his efforts went towards shifting the fractured cultures into a unified force and the culture towards what it looks like today. His leadership and tactics lead to a reign and military campaign are still studied to this day.
While their history extends back BC times, it was Genghis Khan that united the various tribes and peoples. The combined efforts of him and successors saw nearly all of Asia and European Russia captured, with armies sent as far as Southeast Asia and Europe. While the Empire no longer holds the world captive, and the country itself is rapidly modernizing, the nomadic traditions can still be seen in much of the country outside of its capital of Ulaanbaatar.
As mentioned above, life in the capital is much like any other expanding city with offices, entertainment, hotels, and nightlife. Ulaanbaatar is, of course, no exception to the influence of its home country, but if you truly want to see Mongolia, outside the cities, in the steppes. There you’ll find the nomads and their unique traditions. While many western visitors may never come to fully understand the way of the roughly 900,000 nomads, most come to appreciate and respect the beauty, ingenuity, and self-sufficiency of the lifestyle.
The beauty in store for travelers
Lake Khovsgol National Park host one of the seventeen ancient lakes. This body of water is over 2 million years, old is potable without treatment and is a major source of water for the country. It is also surrounded by mountain ranges and is near the Russian-Mongolian border. If you’re looking for an amazing site, be sure to put this on your list.
The Gobi desert is an arid expanse that you can ride through. While we’d suggest 4 x 4, more traditional methods are optional. The Galba Gobi is the largest and most deserted, so if you’re looking for the undisturbed natural beauty of historical relevance (it was once part of the caravaners journey on the ancient Silk Road), you should add this to your list.
For the truly adventurous there is Western Mongolia’s Altai mountain range. The Altai mountain range is the largest and highest making is excellent for those that love to trek or mountaineer. While you’re there, stop at Altai Tavan Bogd National Park. A trip to Altai is a rare oppurtunity to see history, meet the local people and get a peek into traditions like eagle hunting. Surely the fresh air and scenic views won’t easily be forgotten.
Before you go
The easiest way to ensure you’ll have a great trip is by booking through a proper tourism agency. If you’re from France, DMD has everything needed for your voyage and they also understand the long and positive history before France and Mongolia. For the rest of the world, everything needed for a quick trip one of Earth’s more beautiful places is a short click away.
So, you’re sold on the beauty and wonder of a trip to Mongolia? Before you go I have some easy tips to make your trip much more smoothly. Pack properly: The crazy thing about being out in nature is that the conveniences you’re used to aren’t there. A proper jacket, hat, scarf and wet wipes (nature will call) will go a long way towards being comfortable. See the people: I can’t stress how kind and welcoming the nomadic people are. Do bring a gift though as it’s customary for visitors. Manners: A short Google search can save you from being rude.