The Rugged Beauty of Mongolia

It was when I visited China in 2014 and saw the Great Wall  that I heard the stories of the warrior, founder and father of the Mongol dynasty, Genghis Khan or Chinggis Khan. I heard stories of his barbarism and military smarts.
The nomad king was no doubt a great military general but the barbaric mass murders he was responsible for continue to taint his legacy. The stories however made me curious about the country he belonged to and in July this year, I undertook a 10 day tour of Mongolia. As the plane landed at the Chinggis Khaan International Airport, Ulaanbaatar, I peeped through the window and was stunned to see the beautiful vast landscape with rugged  mountains reflecting rainbow colours.
The Mongolians are a friendly, warm people and their country is one of the least populous nations with only three million people inhabiting it.
 The traditional Mongolian way of life depends on livestock through the harsh seasons.
Mongolian families warmly invite tourists to their homes to taste Airag, also spelled ayrag, which is fermented horse milk.  Ulaanbataar is a beautiful place with boulevards and housing estates. A Buddhist monastery, a national history museum are some of the attractions here.Visit Mongolia to experience the warm hospitality of the locals and to take in the sights and sounds that will remind of you of the diverse natural and cultural beauty of India.

By Dr. Shreelatha Banger


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