places to visit in Mongolia

Mongolia, a land of vast open spaces, breathtaking landscapes, and rich cultural heritage, offers a myriad of places to explore. Did you know that Mongolia is home to the world’s largest equestrian statue, the imposing Genghis Khan Statue Complex? This awe-inspiring landmark stands at a height of 131 feet and overlooks the Mongolian steppe, a symbolic tribute to the nation’s revered historical figure. With a history deeply rooted in nomadic traditions and the iconic Mongol Empire, which once spanned across much of Asia and Europe, Mongolia boasts a fascinating tapestry of historical sites and natural wonders.

Nestled within the heartland of Mongolia lies the magnificent Orkhon Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This region holds tremendous historical significance as the center of the Mongol Empire, with remnants of ancient cities, monasteries, and burial sites scattered throughout. Beyond its historical allure, the Orkhon Valley offers visitors an opportunity to immerse themselves in the awe-inspiring beauty of grassy steppes, flowing rivers, and tranquil waterfalls. One cannot help but appreciate the sheer grandeur of this untouched paradise as they explore its vast expanse.

For adventure seekers, the Gobi Desert beckons with its mesmerizing landscapes and hidden treasures. Stretching across southern Mongolia, the Gobi is renowned for its sprawling sand dunes, towering cliffs, and fossil-rich canyons. Did you know that the Gobi Desert is home to the elusive Bactrian camel, one of the rarest and most resilient species on Earth? This captivating creature has adapted to extreme desert conditions, capturing the fascination of many who venture into this harsh yet captivating environment. Explorers can embark on camel-back expeditions, traverse the desert’s vastness, and discover hidden oases that punctuate this arid landscape.

Aspiring naturalists should not miss the opportunity to visit the Khustain Nuruu National Park, famous for its successful efforts in reintroducing the endangered Przewalski’s horse back into the wild. Once on the brink of extinction, these majestic horses now roam freely within the protected confines of the park. A visit to Khustain Nuruu offers a chance to witness the resilience of nature and the dedicated conservation efforts that have helped preserve Mongolia’s unique biodiversity. Exploring the park’s lush forests, alpine meadows, and pristine lakes is an experience that will leave a lasting impression.

To truly appreciate Mongolia’s cultural heritage, a visit to the capital city of Ulaanbaatar is essential. Home to numerous museums, monasteries, and bustling markets, Ulaanbaatar showcases the fusion of traditional Mongolian lifestyle with the modern world. Explore the National Museum of Mongolia to delve into the nation’s history or visit Gandan Monastery, the center of Mongolian Buddhism, to witness the vibrant spiritual practices that have shaped the country’s identity. The city’s vibrant atmosphere and warm hospitality make it an ideal starting point for any journey through Mongolia.

Mongolia’s wealth of natural wonders, historical sites, and unique cultural experiences make it an unmatched destination for those seeking adventure, tranquility, and an escape from the ordinary. Whether exploring the historical significance of the Orkhon Valley, immersing oneself in the captivating beauty of the Gobi Desert, connecting with nature at Khustain Nuruu National Park, or discovering the vibrant charm of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia offers a wealth of experiences that will leave visitors captivated and yearning for more.

What are the Top Places to Visit in Mongolia?

Discover the mesmerizing beauty of Mongolia by exploring its top tourist attractions. From breathtaking landscapes to rich cultural experiences, Mongolia offers a wide array of destinations that will leave you in awe. Whether you are seeking adventure in the vast steppes or looking to immerse yourself in the unique traditions of the nomadic people, this article will provide a comprehensive guide to the must-visit places in Mongolia. Keep reading to find detailed information about each destination and plan an unforgettable journey to the land of blue skies.

Ulaanbaatar: Exploring Mongolia’s Vibrant Capital

Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia, is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to the country. This bustling city offers a unique blend of modernity and tradition, making it a fascinating place to explore. Here are some of the top places to visit in Ulaanbaatar.

  1. Gandantegchinlen Monastery: This stunning Buddhist monastery is one of the largest and most important in Mongolia. Visitors can witness breathtaking religious ceremonies and admire the magnificent architecture.
  2. National Museum of Mongolia: Gain insight into the rich history and culture of Mongolia at this museum. It houses a vast collection of artifacts and exhibits that give a glimpse into the country’s past.
  3. Sukhbaatar Square: Located in the heart of the city, this central square is a hub of activity and an excellent spot for people-watching. Marvel at the grand statue of Genghis Khan and soak in the lively atmosphere.
  4. Natural History Museum: Discover the diverse flora and fauna of Mongolia at this fascinating museum. It showcases a wide range of exhibits, including dinosaur fossils, wildlife specimens, and geological formations.
  5. Zaisan Memorial: For panoramic views of Ulaanbaatar, head to the Zaisan Memorial. This hilltop monument commemorates fallen soldiers and offers stunning vistas of the city and its surroundings.

Gobi Desert: A Journey into Mongolia’s Vast Wilderness

The Gobi Desert, located in southern Mongolia, is a mesmerizing destination that should not be missed. This vast expanse of desert is home to unique landscapes and rare wildlife. Here are some places to explore in the Gobi Desert.

  1. Khongoryn Els: Often referred to as the “Singing Sands,” Khongoryn Els is a massive sand dune extending over 100 kilometers. Climb to the top and watch as the sand creates melodic sounds while shifting in the wind.
  2. Yolyn Am: Also known as the “Valley of the Eagles,” Yolyn Am is a picturesque gorge that offers a refreshing contrast to the desert surroundings. Hike through the narrow canyon and spot wildlife like ibex and vultures.
  3. Flaming Cliffs: These vibrant red sandstone cliffs get their name from the incredible hues they exhibit during sunset. The Flaming Cliffs are famous for their fossil discoveries, including the first dinosaur eggs.
  4. Bayanzag: Known as the “Cemetery of Dinosaurs,” Bayanzag is a fossil site that continues to yield important discoveries. Explore the area and marvel at the ancient remains of dinosaurs that once roamed the region.

Khuvsgul Lake: A Tranquil Oasis in Northern Mongolia

Khuvsgul Lake, often referred to as the “Blue Pearl of Mongolia,” is a pristine alpine lake that showcases the unparalleled natural beauty of the country. Here are some highlights of this stunning destination.

  1. Khoridol Saridag Mountains: Surrounding the lake, these majestic mountains offer breathtaking views and excellent hiking opportunities. Immerse yourself in the serene wilderness and enjoy the untouched beauty of the area.
  2. Reindeer Tribe: Visit the Tsaatan people, a nomadic tribe known for their unique way of life. Experience their rich culture, ride reindeer, and learn about their traditional practices.
  3. Murun: The capital of Khuvsgul Province, Murun serves as a gateway to the lake. Explore the local market, interact with friendly locals, and get a taste of Mongolian cuisine.


According to recent data, Mongolia received over 517,000 international tourists in 2019, showcasing the growing popularity of this captivating destination.

FAQs – Places to Visit in Mongolia

1. Where are the best places to visit in Mongolia?

The best places to visit in Mongolia include the Gobi Desert, Lake Khovsgol, Terelj National Park, Altai Tavan Bogd National Park, and the capital city Ulaanbaatar.

2. How do I get to Mongolia?

You can reach Mongolia by air through Chinggis Khaan International Airport in Ulaanbaatar. Additionally, there are international trains connecting Mongolia to neighboring countries like Russia and China.

3. Is it safe to travel to Mongolia?

Mongolia is generally a safe country to visit. However, like any other destination, it’s advisable to take normal precautions and be aware of your surroundings, especially in crowded areas and at night.

4. What is the best time to visit Mongolia?

The best time to visit Mongolia is during the summer months of June, July, and August when the weather is pleasant. The country experiences extreme cold during winter, so it may not be suitable for everyone.

5. What activities can I do in Mongolia?

In Mongolia, you can engage in activities like camel trekking in the Gobi Desert, horseback riding with nomadic families, hiking in national parks, and visiting historic monasteries.

6. Are there any cultural etiquettes I should be aware of?

It is recommended to respect Mongolian customs such as removing your shoes when entering someone’s ger (traditional dwelling), greeting others with a slight bow, and refraining from pointing with your index finger.

7. Do I need a visa to visit Mongolia?

Visa requirements vary based on your nationality. Some countries have visa-free arrangements, while others may need to apply for a tourist visa in advance. It is advisable to check with the Mongolian embassy or consulate in your country prior to traveling.

8. What is traditional Mongolian cuisine like?

Traditional Mongolian cuisine mainly consists of meat, particularly mutton and beef, and dairy products. Dishes like buuz (steamed dumplings), khuushuur (fried meat pastry), and tsuivan (stir-fried noodles) are popular among locals and tourists.

9. Can I go on a tour with a local guide?

Yes, there are various tour agencies and local guides available in Mongolia who can arrange guided tours, including transportation, accommodation, and activities based on your preferences.

10. Are there any health precautions I should take before visiting Mongolia?

Before visiting Mongolia, it is advisable to consult your doctor regarding necessary vaccinations, such as tetanus, hepatitis A and B, and typhoid. It’s also wise to carry a basic first aid kit and drink bottled water to prevent any health issues.

Conclusion which places to visit in Mongolia

In conclusion, Mongolia offers a plethora of breathtaking destinations for travelers seeking incredible natural landscapes and cultural experiences. The Gobi Desert is a must-visit for adventure enthusiasts, with its vast expanse of sand dunes, unique rock formations, and diverse wildlife. The ancient city of Karakorum, with its rich historical significance and stunning monasteries, provides an insight into Mongolia’s fascinating past.

Additionally, the Terelj National Park is a gem for nature lovers, with its majestic mountains, lush valleys, and crystal-clear lakes. This park offers opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, and camping amidst picturesque surroundings. The Khuvsgul Lake, often referred to as the “Blue Pearl of Mongolia,” enthralls visitors with its pristine beauty and tranquility, making it an ideal spot for fishing, boating, and relaxation.

Moreover, the capital city of Ulaanbaatar provides a blend of modernity and tradition. The National Museum of Mongolia showcases the country’s rich heritage, while the Gandan Monastery offers a glimpse into Mongolian Buddhism. Lastly, the nomadic lifestyle can be experienced by staying in traditional ger camps, where visitors can learn about Mongolian traditions, try authentic cuisine, and even participate in traditional activities such as horseback riding and eagle hunting.

Overall, Mongolia is a destination that promises unique and unforgettable experiences. From exploring the vastness of the Gobi Desert to immersing oneself in the cultural richness of Karakorum and enjoying the serenity of national parks and lakes, this country offers something for every traveler. A trip to Mongolia is sure to leave visitors with lasting memories of its awe-inspiring landscapes and warm hospitality.

More info about backpacking in ths country