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Central Mongolia is the closest region to the capital Ulaanbaatar and thus the most easily visited part of the country. The topography consists of flat expanses of prairie, rolling hills, wide river valleys and the occasional knot of mountains that support stands of pine forests. Nomadic herders pasture their animals on the grassy plains but modern developments are afoot, thanks mainly to a newly paved road that cuts straight across the region in an east-west direction. Most travelers start their explorations of the region at Hustain Nuruu, 100 km west of the capital, a newly developed rehabilitation area for the legendary Przewalski horse. ...

Central Mongolia is the closest region to the capital Ulaanbaatar and thus the most easily visited part of the country. The topography consists of flat expanses of prairie, rolling hills, wide river valleys and the occasional knot of mountains that support stands of pine forests. Nomadic herders pasture their animals on the grassy plains but modern developments are afoot, thanks mainly to a newly paved road that cuts straight across the region in an east-west direction. Most travelers start their explorations of the region at Hustain Nuruu, 100 km west of the capital, a newly developed rehabilitation area for the legendary Przewalski horse. The main road continues to ancient Karakorum, the capital established by Ghengis Khan. While the capital is little more than dust and scattered bricks, the great Erdene Zuu monastery now stands nearby, Mongolia’s oldest Buddhist monastery. The mountains near Erdene Zuu harbor another relic of Mongolia’s Buddhist past, Tovkhon Monastery, once the workshop of the 17th-century sculptor Zanabazar. The natural highlight of central Mongolia, the Great White Lake, lies another day’s drive to the west. With a tent and a fishing line its possible to camp a few days by the lake and hook your dinner.

Michael Kohn
About the Expert

Michael Kohn is the author of Lonely Planet guides to Israel & the Palestinian Territories, South Africa, Tibet, Central Asia, Mongolia, and Sri Lanka.

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Michael Kohn for Triporati

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Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    June to August