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  1. “Blue Pearl” – the ice Festival in Khuvsgul

The lake Khuvsgul Ice Festival takes place every year in March, immediately following the “Tsagaan sar”, the Mongolian New Year Celebration. The provinces of Mongolia’s Northern West contain the natural forests and mountains where Lake Khuvsgul is situated. The festival, which was originally staged 20 years ago, is held where it may be as cold as minus 35 degrees of Celsius. A tug-of-war rope watch, horse sleigh races, sumo wrestling, fashion exhibitions, and, of course, ice sculpture are among the many events held on the meter thick ice. The festival’s mail objective is to bring visitors to the area during the off-peak season.

Nine different species of fish reside in the largest and deepest lake in Mongolia, Lake Khuvsgul. Many creatures, including ibex, bears, yaks, reindeer, and moose as well as more than 200 different bird species, call its shores home.

  1. The Mongolian traditional costume festival

The purpose of this festival is to promote the traditional culture of Mongolians, including ethnic clothing, goods, and the intangible heritage of folk arts abroad and domestically, to increase the participation of young people, and to develop tourism.

During the festival, which will be held for the 16th time this year, you can enjoy the collections of national costumes, dance around with the crowd, visit festivals in home towns showing national customs, traditions, and heritage, Mongolian naadgai, robe making, traditional art, music, and calligraphy houses.

Also, among the participants, there is a tradition of selecting the district with the best organization, the couple with the best coat, the foreign participant with the best national costume, the best male and female participant with national costume, and the best child.

  1. The “Naadam” festival

The most celebrated national holiday in Mongolia is Naadam festival, during wich people mark historical anniversaries, national independence, and the passing of the nomadic culture to new generation. The Naadam Festival is a manifestation  of a nation’s authenticity.

Wrestling. A total of 512 or 1024 wrestlers meet in a single-elimination tournament that lasts nine or ten rounds. Mongolian traditional wrestling is an untimed competition in which wrestlers lose if they touch the ground with any part of their body other than their feet or hands. When picking pairs, the wrestler with the greatest fame has the privilege to choose his opponent. Wrestlers wear two-piece costumes consisting of a tight shoulder vest (zodog) and shorts (shuudag). Only men are allowed to participate. Each wrestler has an "encourager" called a “zasuul”. The zasuul sings a song of praise for the winning wrestler after rounds 3, 5, and 7. Winners of the 7th or 8th stage (depending on whether the competition features 512 or 1024 wrestlers) earn the title of zaan, "elephant". The winner of the 9th or 10th stage is called arslan, "lion".[11] In the final competition, all the "zasuuls" drop in the wake of each wrestler as they take steps toward each other. Two-time arslans are called the champion or avraga.

Horse racing. Unlike Western horse racing, which consists of short sprints generally not much longer than 2 km, Mongolian horse racing as featured in Naadam is a cross-country event, with races 15–30 km long. The length of each race is determined by age class. For example, two-year-old horses race for 16 km and seven-year-olds for 27 km. Up to 1000 horses from any part of Mongolia can be chosen to participate.

Children from 5 to 13 are chosen as jockeys and train in the months preceding the races. While jockeys are an important component, the main purpose of the races is to test the skill of the horses.

Before the races begin, the audience sings traditional songs and the jockeys sing a song called Gingo. Prizes are awarded to horses and jockeys. The top five horses in each class earn the title of airgiyn tav and the top three are given gold, silver, and bronze medals. The winning jockey is praised with the title of tumny ekh or leader of ten thousand. The horse that finishes last in the Daaga race (two-year-old horses race) is called bayan khodood (meaning "full stomach"). A song is sung to the bayan khodood wishing him luck to be next year's winner.

Archery. In this competition both men and women may participate. It is played by teams of ten. Each archer is given four arrows; the team must hit 33 "surs". Men shoot their arrows from 75 meters away while women shoot theirs from 65 meters away. Traditionally the archers wear their national clothing (Deel) during the competition. All the archers wear leather bracers up to the elbow on their outstretched arm, so that the deel’s cuff does not interfere with shooting.

Mongolian archery is unique for having dozens of surs as targets. Each sur is a small woven or wooden cylinder. They are placed on top of each other forming a wall three-high, which is approximately 8 inches high by 5 feet wide. Knocking a sur out of the wall with an arrow counts as a hit, though knocking a sur out of the centre will bring a competitor more points. When the archer hits the target, the judge says uuhai which means "hooray". After each hit, an official repairs the damaged wall and makes it ready for the next attempt. The winners of the contest are granted the titles of "national marksman" and "national markswoman".

  1. Sarlag festival”

The Festival is held to promote the characteristics and wonders of Mongolian yak and to develop products based on yak farming into tourism products by locals. The program of event include: capturing yak with lasso, taming a yak causing to buck, playing polo, racing, choosing a couple with well yak, exhibiting and selling yak products, as well as an event to show the Mongolian tradition of using yaks for carrying their loading.

  1. “Golden eagle” festival

Western Mongolia along with the Altai Mountain ranges a homeland for the nomadic cultures of Eurasia including the Kazakhs. The purpose of this festival is to promote cultural heritage of the Kazakh minority, and their tradition and customs of hunting with eagles. The festival has been celebrated since 1999 and is very popular among the foreign tourists. The eagle hunting heritage was listed as an UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Not all of Mongolian Kazakhs in Bayan Ulgii Aimag are eagle hunters, there are approximately 300 are eagle hunters. It gives great opportunity not only to meet these eagle hunters and their unique way of living but also witness strikingly beautiful landscapes of Altai Mountains.


  1. Ulaanbaatar – the capital city
  2. Gorkhi-Terelj National Park
  3. Orkhon Valley
  4. Khuvsgul Lake
  5. Altai Tavan Bogd National Park
  6. Genghis Khaan Statue Complex
  7. Ulaagchnii Khar Lake
  8. Karakorum and Erdene zuu Monastery
  9. Terkhiin Tsagaan nuur
  10. Gobi Desert

For more information please visit: https://www.mongoliatravel.guide/en


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