keyboard_arrow_left

15 Top Cities of Mongolia - Best travel and holiday destinations

15 Top Cities of Mongolia - Best travel and holiday destinations

Updated 21 Feb, 2020
location_on Mongolia

Mongolia is a country with endless skies and landscapes. It is referred as the “Natural Museum.” It has everything from a desert to mountains, national parks, dense forests and beautiful untouched lakes and nature.

Most of the Mongolian people are nomads and are famous for rosy cheeks and great hospitality. It is advised that you should travel with guides in Mongolia because there are no roads and no signs of human being for very long.

The best time to visit Mongolia is during the Mongolian summer, from the mid of June till last week of August. This is the safest time of the year to travel to Mongolia in terms of weather, sunny days throughout Mongolia and sufficient rainfall to make the steppes lush and green.

Mongolia being one of the least visited countries on earth by tourists and one of the cheapest and safest countries to travel to, one should visit it to see how wonderfully rich their culture and history is.

Ulaanbaatar

location_on Ulaanbaatar
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

Ulaanbaatar is the most populated city of Mongolia and is the cultural and economic centre of the country. It is situated in the Tuul river valley and is not a part of any province.
The city is well connected by all the means of transportation like trains, flights. The city is full of soviet era buildings and surviving monasteries.

Things to do

  • Gandantegchinlen Monastery

It is an old Buddhist monastery which was restored in the year 1990. The meaning of Gandantegchinlen is "Great Place of Complete Joy" and one can really find joy in here.

  • Winter palace of Bogd Khan

The winter palace served as a second residency for the 8th Buddhist leader of Mongolia Bogd Khan. It was built between 1893 and 1903. The palace has several temples and pagodas built with a touch of Chinese and
European style.

  • Sükhbaatar Square

It is named after the “hero of the revolution” Damdin Sukhbaatar, after the independence of Mongolia from China. There are statues of Sukhbaatar riding his horse, a large statue of Genghis Khan which is famous amongst tourists and locals for a photoshoot.

  • Mongolian Theatre Museum

The theatre was built in 1931, it showcases the Mongolian and international art forms very often.

  • Naran Tuul market

Popularly known as the Black Market of Mongolia, it is famous for cheap cloths and many other things.

  • Kash: It is a mix of semolina cereal boiled with water and milk and topped butter and sugar. Taken as a breakfast.
  • Khuushuur: Fried dumplings made of meat, flour

Best month to visit

The weather is pleasant in the spring and summer, but in the winter it gets bitterly cold.

Tip

Do not go in winters because it gets very cold and records show that the temperature has been as low as -86 .8 Fahrenheit.

Fact

Ulaanbaatar is the most polluted city of Mongolia because of the mine extractions.

Uliastai

location_on Uliastai
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is located in the western Mongolia and has a history which dates back to 17th century. It is located in a river valley and surrounded by lush green mountains.

Things to do

  • Togs Boyant Javklhant Monastery

It is located on a hilltop near the city. From the monastery one can experience an amazing view of the Chigestai River. The temple features several stupas, Bodhisattva statue and Mongolian ger.

  • Ochirpurev Tsogt

It is a small temple which is located in the city and it is famous amongst the tourists.

  • Javkhlant Tolgoi

It’s a place where you can get a panorama of the city with a small adventurous hike to the hilltop. It’s a pavilion surrounded by status which makes it a perfect spot for a quick photoshoot.

  • Chigestai and Bogdiin Gol river

These two rivers meet near the city and form a very beautiful valley which is a must visit place in Uliastai.

  • Udwal Bakery and Coffee Shop
  • Zagasan Nud Restaurant
  • Uliastai Hotel Restaurant

Best time to visit

The city experiences long, dry, very cold winters and short, warm summers.

Transportation

  • A runway is located at a distance of 25km from the city which hosts flights from the capital city Ulaanbaatar daily.
  • Buses run from Ulaanbaatar to Uliastai.

Tip

It’s very hard to reach the city in the winters.

Fact

The city was originally built as a military base.

Olgii

location_on Ulgii
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

Popularly known as the city of Kazakhs, Olgii is located in the extreme west of Mongolia. The people here speak Kazakh as their first language.

Things to do

  • Golden Eagle Festival

The festival is organised every year in the month of October, during this festival one can experience and Mongolian falconers hunting with their golden eagles and there is a chance one can go on a hunting trip with the falconers.

  • Khurgan lake

The water in the lake is mainly from the glacial meltwater. The lake offers a spectacular view of the snow topped mountain and it freezes in the winter forming a thick layer of ice on it. It hosts a lot of species of birds around.

  • Altai Tavan Bogd National Park
    The national park is located 180km from the city and has wonderful sights of the Altai mountain range. It has a lot of glacial lakes and hosts many nomadic families who share their homes with the tourists visiting the park.
  • Ölgii Aimag Museum

The museum gives a brief overview of the Kazakh culture and the Bayan Olgii province.

• One should try the Kazakh dish sirne when in Olgii.

Best time to visit

First weekend of the month of October.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Tip

Visit the city in the October month to experience the golden eagle festival.

Fact

Olgii is the farthest city from any ocean in the world.

Khovd

location_on Khovd
1/3
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city was found in the 17th century by Khan Galdan Boshogtu from Dzungaria. The city is one of the most beautiful cities in Mongolia situated at the foot of Altay Mountains. It is centre of trade, business in the western Mongolia.

Things to do

  • Khar Us Nuur National Park

The park has many attractions listed as; Tsenkheriin agui, Dörgön Monastery, Khar Us Nuur Lake, Jargalant Khairkhan Uul, Chinggis Khaan's Wall, Watchtower.

  • Dara Nine Lakes

It is a collection of 9 lakes in the Dara mountain range.

  • Khovd Aimag Museum

The museum offers a very unique collection of cave stones, Kazakh art and culture.

  • Gandan Puntsag Choilon Khiid

It is one of the biggest monasteries in western Mongolia, which hosts 108 stupas in it. It was opened in 2010 for the general public.

  • Sangiin Kherem

This place has ruins of several buildings which were built in the 18th century in Qing Dynasty.

• Khuushuur (fried mutton pancakes) filled with potato and cabbage

Best time to visit

The Mongolian summers.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Tip

Do not visit the city in the winter season.

Fact

The city was founded in 17th century on the banks of the Khovd River and later moved to the banks of Buyant River.

Erdenet

location_on Erdenet
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is economically very important to the country. It is one of the youngest cities in Mongolia.

Things to do

  • Erdenet Cultural Centre

The perfect place to swing by if one wants to check out the traditional Mongolian art and culture.

  • Bayan Öndör

A hike on this mountain can give spectacular views of the city.

  • Erdenet carpet factory

One can go and take look into the carpet factory to see how the Mongolians make their carpets.

  • Buddha statue

A temple was built with a large Buddha statue, which has become a tourist attraction.

  • Amarbayasgalant Monastery

It is one of the oldest Buddhist Monastery founded in the 18th century. Its located 60km from the city.

• Traktir – this restaurant serves a special dish called borscht (beetroot soup).
• Modern Nomads restaurant

Best time to visit

There’s no best time to visit the city.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Rail transport

Fact

The city hosts the fourth largest copper mine in the world.

Dalanzadgad

location_on Dalanzadgad
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The Ömnögovi province is the largest province in Mongolia. Dinosaur fossils were found in this province and it has everything from mountains to sand dunes to valleys.

Things to do

  • South Gobi Museum

The museum is located in the city and doesn’t have much to offer. There are some parts of dinosaur and some historical things.

  • Flaming Cliffs

These are the cliffs where a dinosaur’s hatched egg and some fossils were found by an American palaeontologist. These cliffs are also known as Bayanzag red sand cliffs.

  • Gobi Gurvansaikhan National Park

It is the largest national park in Mongolia. The park is home to a lot of rare animal and plant species.

  • Khongoryn Els

Also known as the singing sand dunes, these are located in the southern part of the Gobi Gurvansaikhan National Park.

  • Yolyn Am

It is a deep narrow valley formed between mountains which have a thick layer of ice throughout the year.

• Marvel Pub
• Gobi Restaurant

Best time to visit

There is no best time to visit.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Tip

Do not try to extract fossils at the flaming cliffs as it is illegal.

Fact

Dalanzadgad is the warmest place in Mongolia.

Ulaangom

location_on Ulaangom
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is located in the north Mongolia and the electricity to the city is provided by the Russian federation. It is a city which is located on the slope of a mountain.

Things to do

  • Uvs Lake

The lake is one of the biggest water bodies of saline water in Mongolia. A part of this lake is in the Russian territory.

  • Uvs aimag museum

The museum has old collection of the Uvs aimag history.

  • Dechinravjaalin Khiid Monastery

The monastery was founded in the 18th century, it had a capacity of hosting 2000 monks, but, it was destroyed in the 20th century and never had a chance to recover.

  • Ulaan Uul

Literally translated as the “red mountain”, Ulaan Uul is a mountain cliff located near the city, it gives a spectacular view of the city, Uvs lake and other nearby towns.

  • Kharkhiraa mountain range

It is a mountain range in which the city is located. One can take a hike into these mountains to experience the nomadic life and lush valleys with 108 lakes and flora and fauna of the mountains.

• Han Hohii
• Tavan Od Restaurant
Best time to visit
The Mongolian summers.

Transportation

• Road transport from Russia and Mongolia both
• Air transport

Tip

Do not visit the city in winter.

Fact

Ulaangom is one of the coldest places in Mongolia

Darkhan

location_on Darkhan
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is situated on the border of Russia in the north of Mongolia. It is a stop for travellers going to Russia.

Things to do

  • Museum of Darkhan-Uul

The museum has a collection of traditional clothing, folk art and archaeological findings from the province.

  • Morin Khuur Monument and Seated Buddha.

The monument is located on a hill which separated the city into old and new darkhan. It makes it a great spot for a quick photoshoot.

  • Kharagiin monastery

The monastery was built in the 20th century, it has several temples and is situated near the city.

  • Darkhan City Theme Park

Theme parks made for the locals and tourists for spending some leisure time and meet some Mongolian people.

• The Empire Restaurant & Pub
• Texas restaurant and Bar - for some American, European, Mongolian food

Best time to visit

This area has extremely cold and dry winters and the summers are warm and humid.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Tip

Do not try any Chinese or Korean food in the restaurants as they use a very low quality material to make the dishes.

Fact

The city is divided between old and new darkhan.

Mörön

location_on Murun
1/3
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is located in the northern Mongolia in the Khovsgol province.

Things to do

  • Uushigiin ovor deer stones

These are the rocks located 20km far from the city. Deer and stars are carved on these rocks and they are said to be from Bronze Age.

  • Danzandarjaa Khiid

It is a Buddhist Monastery in Mörön which was originally built in the 19th century and rebuilt in the 20th century. The monastery has very attractive exteriors and grounds.

  • Khövsgöl Aimag Museum

It is a Museum in Mörön which has a collection of things which date back to 40,000 years.

  • Monument to Chingunjav

A Monument in Mörön dedicated to a freedom fighter named Chingunjav who fought against the Qing Dynasty in the Outer Mongolia.

• 50° 100° Hotel
• Jargalan Restaurant - Korean

Best time to visit

The city experiences long harsh and very dry winters, and short warm summers.

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Fact

Moron is a poorly developed town.

Choibalsan

location_on Choibalsan

The city was named after the communist leader Khorloogiin Choibalsan. It is the fourth largest city in Mongolia. It is situated 2,451 feet above sea level.

Things to do

Dornod Aimag Museum & Gallery The museum has an impressive collection of the history of the province. It hosts stone age, bronze age findings with some paintings from Chinese-era, Choibalsan (the dictator) memorabilia including his desk and shortwave radio, and some traditional costumes.

  • Danrig Danjaalin Khiid

It is a Buddhist monastery in the city. It is one of the biggest monasteries in the eastern Mongolia. Earlier it hosted about 800 monks but it was shut down in the year 1937 and reopened in the year 1990 and now it hosts around a 15 monks and has 2 temples dedicated for worshiping.

  • Mongolian Heroes’ Memorial

As the name suggests the memorial is a Monument in Choibalsan dedicated to the Heroes’ who fought against the enemies in order to save the country.

• Ikh Ursgal- Mongolian food
• Azure Restaurant- Chinese food

Best time to visit

Between the months of May to July

Transportation

• Air transport
• Road transport

Fact

The city is situated at the Kherlen River.

Arvaikheer

location_on Arvaikheer
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is located in the centre of the country. When compared to the other cities, Arvaikheer has a relatively mild climate. A very large regional horse festival is hosted in the city every year, it is a centre for traditional crafts, goat herding.

Things to do

  • Gandan Muntsaglan Khiid

It is a Buddhist monastery located in the city which hosts about a 60 monks. The monastery was destroyed in the early 19th century and rebuilt in the year 1991.

  • Övörkhangai Province Museum

The museum has leftover fossils from Karakorum, soviet era artifacts, arrows and animals of different kinds.

  • Museum of Zanabazar

The museum doesn’t have much to offer but there are sculptors made by Zanabazar the master sculptor. The admission fee for this museum is included in the Övörkhangai Province Museum ticket. Both the museums are located next to each other.

• Altan Holbo- Mongolian food
• The Nomadic Irish pub

Best time to visit

May to august is the best time to visit the city as the temperature is not too high neither too low.

Transportation

• Air transport
• Road transport

Tip

The city has some nice places for shopping.

Fact

The city is the mildest city in whole Mongolia.

Kharkhorin

location_on Kharkhorin
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is an ancient city which was the capital of Mongolia in the 13th century. The city is located in central Mongolia and has some historical significance to it.

Things to do

  • Tövkhön Monastery

The monastery is located 2,600 meters above sea-level. It is said to be one of the oldest monasteries in Mongolia which was built by Zanabazar the first Jebtsundamba Khutuktu and spiritual head of Tibetan Buddhism for the Khalkha in Outer Mongolia.

  • Erdene Zuu Monastery

The monastery has been under many empires who tried to destroy it but finally, after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1990, the monastery was recovered and made open to monks and tourists.

  • Karakorum Museum

The museum is one of the most spectacular museums in Mongolia. It is preserved well and very important artefacts of ancient Mongolia and its empires.

  • Orkhon-valley

The valley is listed in the Unesco world heritage site list.

  • King's Monument

It is a hilltop monument where one can have a view of the city and the ancient Kharkhorum. It gets crowded at the time of sunset.

• Ikh Khorum Hotel – Mongolian food

Transportation

• Air transport
• Road transport

Fact

Kharkhorin's principal sources of income are tourism and agriculture.

Bulgan

location_on Bulgan
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The city is located in the northern Mongolia and it is one of the least visited cities in the country.

Things to do

  • Dashchoinkhorlon Khiid

A Buddhist monastery which is hidden behind the hills. It was rebuilt in the 29th century. The old monastery had a capacity of hosting more than 1000 monks. Today it hosts around 20-30 monks.

  • Tsogt Taijiin Tsagaan Balga

These are the ruins of a fort which was formerly used as the residence for the mother of the king. Bulgan Aimag Museum
The museum features some old musical instruments, war photos and surgical instruments used in the ancient times.

  • Uran Togoo Tulga Nature Reserve

This reserve hosts an extinct volcano in it.

Best time to visit

Between June to August

Transportation

• Road transport
• Air transport

Fact

It used to be a former military point which was later transformed into a city in the year 1938.

Bayankhongor

location_on Bayankhongor

It is the most diverse province in Mongolia which has everything from mountains, desert, rivers and lakes. The province hosts some rare animals like wild camels and Gobi bear.

Things to do

  • Lamyn Gegeenii Gon Gandan Dedlin Khiid

One of the largest monasteries in Mongolia which was built in the 19th century. Now days, it is turned into a counselling centre for the locals. It is located around 20km from the city.

  • Museum of History and Ethnography

The museum is the aimag museum; it hosts some old Buddhist art, paintings.

  • Bayankhongor Stupa

The stupa gives a spectacular look to the skyline of the city. It is located at a place from where one can have a look at the city and the countryside.

  • Modern Center- local food

Best time to visit

In the month of July and August

Transportation

• Air transport
• Road transport

Fact

The city is at an elevation of 1859 m above sea level.

Sainshand

location_on Sainshand
1/2
fiber_manual_record fiber_manual_record

The province is located in the southeast of the country bordering China. The region has a very fluctuating temperature which varies from -40 °C to 60 °C.

Things to do

  • Museum of dornogobi province

The museum was established in the year 1945, and it is known for its cultural display of the province.

  • Museum of Danzan Ravjaa

The museum is dedicated to Danzan Ravjaa a famous Mongolian writer, composer, painter and medic. The museum contains his bones which are oreserved in a glass jar which date back to the 19th century.

  • Dashchoilon monastery

The monastery opened for tourists in the year 1991 and currently hosts 25 monks.

Bainshteshöl (dumpling soup)
Ikh Soyon Restaurant- Chinese

Best time to visit

The city experiences long, very dry, very cold winters and short, very hot summers.

Transportation

  • Rail transport
  • Road transport

Fact

The city has very harsh summers and very harsh winters too.