Recently I visited the budding metropolis of Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, a place of snow, snow, and snow. I went there to visit some friends and have some adventures. Needless to say, I was not disappointed.
“But what is there to do in Mongolia?”, I hear you ask. Well, for one, there’s drinking. Lots and lots of drinking. Influenced by the Russian culture, Mongolians love drinking their vodka (as well as countless numbers of beers). And although I didn’t get raucously drunk during my time in Mongolia, I certainly felt the tingliness of being tipsy on more than one occasion.
There are of course other adventurous things to do in Mongolia that do not involve drinking, however. For one, you can visit the Zaisan Memorial dedicated to the Soviet Russians of WWII. Or you can visit the golden Buddha statue at the base of Zaisan Memorial Hill. For another, you can visit the Beatles Monument in front of The State Department Store.
You can also go out a bit further from Ulaanbaatar and visit the Chinggis Khan Equestrian Statue – the tallest equestrian statue in the world. The statue stands near the Tuul River where, according to legend, the great Chinggis found a golden whip. The structure also points east towards the Khan’s birthplace.
Or you can go horse riding. And don’t be put off by their tiny size, Mongolian horses are as sturdy as hell and outnumber the country’s human population. They say that the giant Chinggis Khan looked silly on a tiny horse until you had to face him in battle – so you should never underestimate a man on a small horse.
Another great activity is of course dog sledding (or just sledding in general). But what makes dog sledding so great is that fact that you are pulled along by dogs! It’s fantastic. Definitely my favourite activity. The way that these dogs can pull heavy people over a frozen river is a thrilling experience (except of course when the river is half melted slush that you rush over so quickly). But otherwise, it’s a great experience.
Overall, there are plenty of activities that one can get on with in Mongolia. With most of them including drinking. But if you were to ask me, I would suggest staying in an warmly heated traditional ger (portable tent), drinking a lot of Tigers (beer), and doing some good ol’ dog sledding.