Sunday, 8 February 2015

Mongolia: Land of the Horse

If you are a horse lover do visit Mongolia.

Mongolia is a landlocked country in east-central Asia. It is bordered by Russia to the north and China to the south, east and west. Ulaanbaatar, the capital and also the largest city.
In 1206, Genghis Khan founded the Mongol Empire, and his grandson Kublai Khan conquered China to establish the Yuan Dynasty. After the collapse of the Yuan, the Mongols retreated to Mongolia and resumed their earlier pattern of factional conflict and occasional raids on the Chinese borderlands. In the 16th centuries, Tibetan Buddhism began to spread in Mongolia and it has been accelerated by the unwavering support of Qing government after Mongolia had been incorporated by the Qing dynasty. In 1900s, almost half of the adult male population were Buddhist monks. The currency is Tögrög (MNT).

Some interesting facts about Mongolia are:

1) Mongolia stands an average of 5,800 feet above sea level.

2) Despite its landlocked status, Mongolia has many salt lakes. Mongolian lakes and rivers contain more than fifty unique fish species.

3) Mongolia has the oldest National Park in the world. Lying just South of Ulaanbaatar the Bogd Khan National Park dates its origin to 1778 — it predates Yellowstone by over 100 years. Established by the Mongolian government in 1778, it was originally chartered by Ming Dynasty officials in the 1500s as an area to be kept off limits to extractive uses, protected for its beauty and sacred nature.

4) The Gobi Desert, the largest in Asia and the fifth largest in the world, is in Mongolia. The Gobi was once a sea and now filled with marine fossils. Roy Chapman Andrews made the first discovery of dinosaur eggs in the Gobi. His exploits inspired the creation of Indiana Jones. Many dinosaur fossils still lie exposed.

5) The three most popular sports are horse racing, archery, and Mongolian wrestling.

6) Animals native to Mongolia include:

a) Snow leopards: quarter of the world’s population of snow leopards live in Mongolia.

b) The two-humped camel: survives temperatures from minus to plus fifty degrees Celsius!

c) The Mongolian Takhi horse is the last wild horse in the world. Mongolians do not name their horses; they refer to them by color.

d) Eagles which are kept as pets by nomads. The Kazakh minority hunt with them.

7) When walking down a street in a Mongolian town or city if you accidentally bump into a person or brush past them, don’t be surprised if the other person reaches for your hand. Go ahead and shake their hand or even just touch it to apologize and express that it was indeed an accident and not intentional. The same gesture applies if your leg accidentally hits someone else’s under the table.

8)  In a country where distances are far and communication can be difficult, it is important to maintain a sense of community. People living in the Mongolian countryside will always have a bowl of warm, salty milk tea ready for visitors.

9) A 131-foot statue of Genghis Khan sits just outside Ulan Bator and is the world’s tallest statue of a horse.

10) In the 1920s, fossilised dinosaur remains were found in the Gobi Desert, along with the first dinosaur eggs. Many dinosaur fossils still lie exposed today, so keep an eye on the ground as well as the stunning landscape!

Some beautiful places are:

For more tourism detail visit:

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