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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia

Jul 15, 2017 - 15th July - last day in Mongolia

We started the day by hiring the guesthouse driver to take us to the Museum for Intelligence. When we arrived, it was closed - 3000 tugriks for nothing! So we walked along Chinggis Avenue, and over Peace Bridge, to the Winter Palace. This was definitely a highlight of my time in Mongolia. It used to be a monastery, and now is a museum - very controversial for the locals. Fascinating buildings, intricate art works, a museum of weapons, one building (that was the home) set up with period furniture and thrones, carriages, and clothes. Also a...

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Jun 28, 2017 - Day One of the Trans-Mongolian Train Trip

We started the train trip fairly uneventfully (apart from Gordon having his pocket knife and travelling cutlery set confiscated as they were clearly way too dangerous to take on a slow moving train). The views and the landscape for the first hour out of Beijing were absolutely stunning. There were lots of bridges and lots of tunnels, which made it hard to take photos. For that first hour, I didn't sit down, but ran from one side of the train to the other just going "wow", "wow", "wow"!!!!!!!! After that the land flattened out, and the view...

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Jul 20, 2016 - Mongolia #2

There are few sealed roads in Mongolia. Half the time we would just turn off down a track and head cross country through the valleys and across river beds. There were wild flowers blooming all over the hillsides as there had been more rain this summer than usual. Our Intrepid Travel trip included two homestays. Because the people are nomads and you have no idea who is going to be in a certain valley at any time, the vans just turned up and Namuuna asked if we could stay the night! Apparently, Mongolian hospitality is such that they couldn't...

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Jul 22, 2015 - Mongolia, the final chapter

I’ve already done enough complaining about the negative aspects of Mongolia, so its time to focus on the better points and Ulaan Baatar is a great place to start. Of all the cities we came across, I was most impressed at the quantity and quality of offerings here. For starters, I finally found a spare battery for my camera with little problems, a nice selection of books in English and ground coffee, and we also were able to stock up on such missing toiletries as dental floss. We also got our huge amount of dust-laden laundry done cheaply...

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Jul 8, 2015 - Mongolia, the first chapter

We were in Mongolia for a month, which was about 3 weeks too long. Having been there, I can see how both the Chinese and the Russians decided to just leave that bit of land to the Mongolians. “That’s ok, you all can keep it!” Right after the Russian border the road stops and we were forced to make our way through rain and mud over 4-wheel drive tracks at best for most of the month, digging the truck out a total of six times. Most of our days were filled with the mind-numbing sameness of the scenery, green rolling hills and squalid little...

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Jun 28, 2015 - Brief History

Although Modern Mongolia is a small player on the world's stage, Mongol empires of the past were some of the mightiest in the history. In the fifth century Attila the Hun (the name "Hun" means "people of the sun") and his warriors reached modern-day Germany and even threatened Rome. In the 13th century Genghis Khaan created the mightiest Mongol Empire of all and, though ruthless to his enemies who fought, treated those who surrendered with compassion and fairness. This harsh ruler instituted religious freedom for the conquered peoples,...

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Trip Journal


Mongolia Discovered

Jun 28, 2015 - First Impressions

After a 27-hour journey involving 17-plus hours in the air my friend, Johanna, and I arrived in Ulan Bataar--the capital city of Mongolia. UB, as it is commonly referred to, has a population of 1.3 million and is called home by almost half of the people living in one of the least densely populated countries in the world. Mongolia measures the size of Western Europe and yet boasts a total population of only 2.9 million. In contrast, my home state of Wisconsin has 5 million residents. Sandwiched between China and Russia, Modern Mongolia has...

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Trip Journal


Mongolia Discovered

Nov 4, 2013 - Day 79 - Ulaan Baatar (Mongolia)

As the train approached Ulaan Baatar (UB) in the early morning of 4th November, we were awoken by the carriage attendant, who gave us 20 minutes warning of arrival. Unfortunately, the two Kiwis in our kupé were the most disorganised travellers I have seen as their belongings were everywhere and they had to rush to get sorted. However, despite their best endeavours, we all managed to leave the train before it set off for China! Waiting to meet us and take us to the hostel was a large Mongolian chappie, who turned out to be a nice old boy and...

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Nov 3, 2013 - Days 77 & 78 - Travel from Irkutsk (Russia) to Ulaan Baatar (Mongolia)

It was Saturday 2nd November and we (Chris, Rachel, Severi and I) were in Irkutsk train station, waiting for the 22.10 train to take us to Ulaan Baatar. If I hadn’t said before, Chris and Rachel had decided to miss Ulan Ude and continue onto Ulaan Baatar with Severi and I, which was great news; it’s good to know who I’ll be travelling with for the next few days. As we waited in the station, we were approached by a young gir, who asked where we were from and if her group have their photo taken with us! It turned out that they were a school...

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Sep 19, 2013 - Train Day 6 Part II - Ulaan Baatar to the Chinese Border

Day 6 Part 2 - Ulaan Baatar, Choyr, Saynshand Dzamyn Ude - Border with China Back onto the train to continue Day 6 - leaving Ulaan Bataar and crossing the Gobi desert en route to China. Not a sandy desert at this stage, more grassy as you can see from the photos. We were very lucky to have a beautiful sunset.....much hanging out of the train window taking pictures..... At the Chinese border the Russian wheels ("bogies") are removed and Chinese wheels attached. This is because the Chinese train track gauge is different to the...

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Trip Journal


Trans Siberia 2013

Sep 15, 2013 - Train Day 6 - Part 1 - Darhan to Ulaan Baatar - Mongolia

Train Day 6 - pulling into Ulaan Baatar. Not the most attractive city you'll ever visit....and some severe traffic issues. Lynda had us take a bus to a local market, but we soon found out that it was quicker to walk rather than sit in the traffic..... We stayed at the Ulaan Bataar Hotel - "UB Hotel" - which is a classic Soviet style building. Not bad though.... except the internet never worked. The market did not turn out to be exactly what we had envisaged, but we closed out the day with a brilliant meal at an Indian restaurant - Hazara

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Trip Journal


Trans Siberia 2013

Jun 10, 2013 - Karakorum and the Gobi Desert

Well. We survived our trip to the grasslands and the Gobi desert. We've just returned to UB from a four day three night trip to the Bayangobi, Karakorum and Hestai national park and it was the worst tour we have experienced, ever, anywhere. Don't get me wrong, the scenery was beautiful, the people were great, the experience was fantastic, it was just the organisation was hopeless. It was the least organised, most chaotic, shambolic tour I've ever been on. We got lost every day, the tour guide never seemed to know where we were and the...

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