You will discover the world's remotest cities in Mongolia.
About half of Mongolia's cities cluster around the Trans-Mongolian line. Others started as Silk Road stop-off points or as secret Soviet bases.
The following cities (Mongolia has about thirty) make excellent bases for exploration of Mongolia's remote areas. Read the list and visit some of the hidden gems these cities and their surroundings contain.
Map Of Cities In Mongolia
Arvaikheer is an equestrian and crafts center and the capital of the Uvurhangai province.
If you love horses, visit at the time of the large regional horse fair. Make sure you have some local money to take advantage of the local handicraft industry.
Take one of the regular flights from Ulaan Baatar to Arvaikheer's single unpaved runway.
Bayankhongor is the capital of the Bayankhongor province. The city has two museums, which started life in a single ger. Both museums now have permanent accommodation.
The Ethnographic Museum covers life in Mongolia from nomadic times. Exhibits include a taste of life during Manchu rule and in the twentieth century under Socialism.
In the Natural History Museum, you can see precious stones; rare stuffed animals; and the complete skeleton of a local dinosaur.
Several small Buddhist monasteries may also interest you.
Bayankhongor is a convenient base for exploring the most diverse province in Mongolia. Forests and the Khangai Mountains take up most of the north. The famous Gobi desert takes up much of the south. The region hosts rarities such as an oasis, hot springs and the Gobi bear.
Bulgan is the capital of Bulgan province. It has the highest number of spacemen per head of population in the world.
Mongolians prize Bulgan's airag - fermented mares' milk.
Local ger camps run tours to sights of interest, as well as conducting horse treks and fishing trips.
Bulgan has one unpaved runway and receives regular flights from Ulaan Baatar.
Choir is the capital of the Gobisumber province and one of the more remote cities of Mongolia...
It has the longest runway in Mongolia, courtesy of Russia which once maintained a military base here.
A statue of Mongolia's only astronaut.
The Trans-Mongolian train stops at Choir. You can also get there by air or jeep.
Kharkhorin lies between the Khangai Mountains and rolling steppes, it is built from the ruins of ancient cities of Mongolia
The nearby ruins of three former capitals lie close by the modern city - including Genghis Khan's thirteenth Century capital.
The ruins lie in the Orkhon Valley - a World Heritage Site, regarded as the cradle of nomadic civilization.
If you like old buildings visit Erdene Zuu Monastery - built from the ruins of Genghis Khan's capital.
Regular flights arrive from UB to an unpaved runway. If you want to drive, you can find asphalt roads almost all the way!
Khovd sits at the foot of the Altai Mountains, next to the Buyant Gol River. The capital of Khovd aimag, it draws its population from at least eleven ancient Mongol tribes.
The city contains the ruins of a Chinese Fortress, destroyed during a rebellion against Chinese rule.
The location provides excellent hiking and fishing possibilities. Nature lovers shouldn't miss the Mankhan Nature Preserve some twenty-five kilometers away.
Special Tip: If you arrive in late summer make sure to stock up on locally harvested water melons and tomatoes.
Mandalgobi serves as the capital of the Dundgobi province.
Mandalgobi makes a terrific base for exploring the Gobi desert and its fringe areas.
Murun is the capital of Khuvsgul province in northern Mongolia. It follows the usual Soviet blueprint and has a hospital, museum, theater, post office and school.
The city existed to support a now destroyed monastery called Murungiin Khuree.
You can visit the ruins of Murungiin Khuree and a smaller working monastery on the edge of the city.
Take a trip to Lake Khuvsgul, which contains more than one percent of the world's fresh water.
Murun has one paved and one gravel runway served by daily flights from Ulaan Baatar.
One of the Gobi desert's cities (Mongolia)
Sainshand is another city which has a station on the Trans-Mongolian line. Its population of twenty-thousand lives in an eastern Gobi steppe zone.
A twentieth-century curator buried his museum's exhibits in the Gobi, saving them from socialist soldiers. Some exhibits remain buried.
Visit the museum dedicated to the nineteenth century monk Ranzan Davjaa. Or spend time looking for the remaining buried exhibits.
If you're feeling adventurous, you can hire a jeep and explore the Gobi. Or drive south for an hour and visit a modern Buddhist monastery.
Sukhbaatar - another city named after a revolutionary hero. The Trans-Mongolian makes its last call at Sukhbaatar before the Russian border.
Capital of the Arkhangai aimag, Tsetserleg, rests on the slopes of the Khangai Mountains.
The local monastery hosted past reincarnations of Zaya Pandita. The seventh reincarnation resides in Ulaan Baatar but rarely visits.
Ulaangom translates as 'Red Valley'. At 939 meters above sea level, it holds the record as the lowest point in the country. The city borders Russia and houses the Consulate of the Tuva Republic.
Lake Uvs - a salt lake and remnant of an ancient ocean. Many species of fish live there and thousands of migratory birds visit the lake each year.
Ulgii lies in the Mongolian 'Wild West' close to the Chinese - Kazakhstan border. The population is largely nomadic and Muslim.
Spend a day eagle hunting with the locals...
Take a flight from Ulaan Baatar to Ulgii's single unpaved runway.
Zamiin-Uud translates as 'Road's Gate') and borders China. If you want to enter China by rail or road, you must pass through Zamiin-Uud.
Zamiin-Uud's population numbers just twelve thousand, but over a million people pass through each year!
Visit the above linked page for information on how to fly to many of the above cities.
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