Mongolia - Ulaan Baatar

Mongolia is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. The unspoilt nature, often untouched by human hand, wide open spaces, often difficult to reach. Through Mongolia runs a part of the Trans-Siberian Railway route, which stops in Ulaan Baatar - the capital of Mongolia, and then rides further on to China. Mongolia is the mother land of the great ruler - Genghis Khan, where you can meet wild horses, Buddhist monasteries and numerous museums. The 20th century has deeply experienced Mongolia by political turmoil and the influences of USSR.

Vast area of Mongolia is covered with the Gobi Desert, which is inhabited by snow leopards and Pzhevalski horses. Mongolia are beautiful great lakes such as : Great White Lake and Lake Chubsugulskie. In the south of the country there are extensive sands with many archaeological posts where dinosaur remains have been found.

Mongolia lies in Central Asia. The area of the country covers 1 564 000 square kilometres (5 times more than Poland). In the country there are high mountains, desert areas with sand dunes, wide valleys and plains. Main mountain chains are: the Mongolian Altai, the Altai Gobi, the Changai and the Chentei. In Mongolia there is continental climate, characterised by small amount of precipitation, slight cloud cover and very long winters. It is best to go sightseeing in Mongolia from June to September.

The Mongols are famous for their unique hospitality, interesting cuisine and friendly attitude towards foreigners, not many of whom reach these places. Genuine pearls of Mongolian landscape are:
Charchorin - the ancient capital of Mongolia, where there is one of the most famous monastery of Erdene Dzuu;
Lake Chubsugul - called Little Baikal, situated in extremely picturesque surroundings;
Dariganga - it is a place where you can see basalt fields, extinct volcanoes, dinosaur's bones and ancient stone statues;
Gobi National Park Gujban Sajchan - nature reserve which is situated on the famous desert, dinosaur fossils, wild nature, oases, magnificent mountains, salt lakes and the so-called “singing dunes”;
Gorchi Tereldzh National Park - park is especially famous for its interesting fauna, flora and rock formations and amazing landscapes;
Terchijn Caagan Nuur - Great White Lake, one of the world wonders of nature.

The capital Ulaan Baatar is situated in the central part of the country, in the valley of the River Tuul. The city lies among 4 mountain chains: the Bajandzurch, the Chigetej, the Songino Chairchan and the Boghd Khan - mountain, which are regarded by the Mongols as sacred. The centre of the city lies about at a height of 1350 meters above sea level. According to many travellers Ulaan Baatar is the ugliest capital city in the world. The prevailing disorder and the terrible condition of infrastructure can discourage many tourists from visiting this city.

Ulaan Baatar is one of the youngest capital cities in the world. The accepted date of establishing of the city is year 1639. Ulaan Baatar thanks to the connection with the Trans-Siberian Railway develops pretty dynamically, it is an important economic, scientific and cultural centre of the country. Ulaan Baatar is a combination of past and modernity. Visitors can be surprised by magnificent, modern hotels and buildings, a good access to Internet and a great pride of the citizens, who cherish their country, its tradition and nature.

Despite the first impression, which can surprise us negatively or positively, it is worth visiting Ulaan Baatar for such unusual places as:
Gandan Monastery - the most extraordinary place in the capital and the most important Buddhists centre in entire Mongolia. It is a complex of over a dozen temples, distinguished by rich architecture and enormous wall which protected this place in the past.
Suche Bator Square - the most important square in Ulaan Baatar, there is, among others, the monument of Suche Bator, the hero of Mongolian revolution, the Parliament, the Genghis Khan monument;
The National Museum of Mongolian History - previous Museum of Revolution, collection contains important exhibits connected with the history of Mongolia;
The Art Museum of Dzanabadzar - contains the most notable works of Buddhist art, what is more we can see contemporary works of Mongolian artists;
Mongolian State University = the biggest and the oldest university in the country;
The Palace of Culture - called also a spaceship, in which lies the Mongolian Gallery of Contemporary Art;
Lenin Monument;
Opera and Ballet Theatre;
The Museum of Natural History - you can see here rich exhibits of flora, fauna and minerals and skeletons of dinosaurs found in the Gobi Desert;
Former Ulaan Baatar, before Soviet revolution can be seen in the Museum of History and Reconstruction of the City of Ulaan Baatar;
Monastery complex Chojdzhin lama from the beginning of the 20th century. As one of the few it avoided destruction during the anti-Buddhist repressions. It was built in Chinese style - to decorate it were used 1821,2 kg of silver;
Najramdal Park - the so-called Mongolian Disneyland;
the Palace of Bogd Khan - it is a residence of bogd gegeen - Dzabzandamby, a religious and political leader of the Mongols. The palace complex was built at the turn of the 19th and the 20th century. The palace complex consists of: 7 temples, pavilions, winter palace founded by Russian tsar Nicholas II. The set of monumental gates in front of the Palace deserves our special attention, for example richly decorated gates Amgalan Ench, commemorating the liberation of Mongolia from Chinese rule;
Dzajsan Hill - the Soviet soldiers memorial
Dambadardzha Monastery - monastery is situated on the outskirts of the city and it is the oldest monastery in Ulaan Baatar, built in the years 1761-65 on the orders of the Manchu Emperor to commemorate II bogd gegeen. In the 30s of the 20th century monastery was closed and most of its temples destroyed. In 1990 monastery resumed its activity, temples were renovated, the construction of buildings was started and it was opened to tourists and pilgrims.