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Visiting the Tsaatan Reindeer Herders We were getting excited…we are getting closer and closer to the remoteness of the Mongolian taiga* to meet the last nomadic reindeer herders in the world. This was a special adventure for us; for a long time we have dreamt of visiting the Tsaatan community, a community that lives in complete harmony with their semi-domesticated reindeers. We have previously written a blog on Ulaanbaatar (the capital of Mongolia) and Erdenet (the second largest city). Now our journey continues from Erdenet to Murun and from there to Tsaaganuur, the last village before heading on a horse to the remote taiga to meet the reindeer herders! *taiga: a subarctic biome of the northern hemisphere consisting mostly of coniferous forests, reaching temperatures as low as -50 degrees Celsius during winter. The small town Murun We arrived in Murun and booked a hotel for the night. Murun is nothing special so to say, but at the black market you can find everything you need before heading to the taiga. Our hotel seemed to be a Soviet leftover, like most hotels outside the capital. It was Friday and the hall outside our room reeked with vodka. We took our last hot […]

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Asia, erdenet, Mongolia, reindeer herders, Travel, Travel advice -

Erdenet As we mentioned in our previous post we didn’t have a clear itinerary for our time in Mongolia. One thing was determined though; we had to meet the world’s last nomadic reindeer herders living in the taiga up north, close the Siberian border. It is as remote as it gets, meaning a lot of time goes into transport, but that also means an authentic experience with less tourists on your track. So we began our journey up north. Our first stop was in Erdenet, Mongolia’s second biggest city. There are few ways to reach Erdenet, but we decided to take the overnight train from Ulaanbaatar. After countless sleep deprived hours in busses we have become quite fond of travelling by train, especially the sleeper trains. Even though they are often terribly slow, time goes by unnoticed while asleep and it saves you the cost of accommodation. Importantly, they are the birthplace of most of our blog writings. Andri along with the grumpy train attendants! Beautiful sunrise as we woke up in Erdenet We arrived early morning in Erdenet, which is more of a town rather than a city by usual standards. The city center has a department store and a small park, which displays a musical fountain show […]

The post Erdenet – Mongolia’s second biggest city appeared first on From Ice To Spice.

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Asia, Mongolia, Travel, ulaanbaatar -

Our stop in Hong Kong was originally supposed to be used for arranging a visa to China. Our plan was to take the overland route to Mongolia, but we changed our plans last minute and decided to escape the Chinese visa trouble and fly directly to Mongolia. We couldn’t hold back on our excitement as we sat on the airport in Hong Kong waiting for our flight to Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia. After a few months in South East Asia we were ready for the coldest capital in the world! (average -1.3 celcius). Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong Ulaanbaatar – World’s Coldest Capital We landed shortly after midnight, feeling relaxed after a comfy flight, which unexpectedly included complimentary meals and drinks onboard..love that!  The airport is located 20 km outside the city center so as we walked out a few locals offered to drive us to our guesthouse. We had read about the taxi system in Mongolia, so we were prepared to bargain with the locals. Apparently in Mongolia there are not many legit taxis, it’s more just local people stopping to earn some extra money. It didn’t take us long to find a young man who was willing to drive us to our guesthouse for a […]

The post Our first impression of Mongolia and Ulaanbaatar appeared first on From Ice To Spice.

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