It all began with 6 days on a train through Russia, before arriving in Ulaanbaatar. The temperature was -36 degrees so to say I was cold was an understatement. Luckily I arrived wearing two thermal layers, three layers of clothing, two coats and gumboots.
The first two days were spent touring the coldest city in the world. Later that week my tour group and I headed to Gorkhi Terelj National Park where we spent two nights sleeping in a ger (a tent style dwelling).
We were greeted by a traditional Mongolian family who looked after us for the duration of our stay. We began our adventure with a tour around the National Park, most of which we seen from inside a bus as most of us we too cold to get off. That evening we visited another Mongolian family, were we drank freshly squeezed milk from their cow and ate curd. By this time, we were complaining less about the cold; were we starting to adjust to the negative temperature?
The next day we played archery in the snow and dressed up as Mongolian kings and queens. For dinner, we received a Mongolian cooking class from the family who taught us how to make Mongolian dumpling; these were delicious.
That night, there was heavy snow and by the next morning, there was snow up to our knees. And when you see that amount of snow, there’s only one thing that comes to mind…. SLEDGING!!!!
We grabbed the sledges and ran to the top of the mountain. We spent the entire day discovering bigger hills to slide down, racing each other, jumping into the snow, playing snowball fights and of course, making snow angels. It was the most fun we had the entire trip and we had even forgotten about the cold at this point. By the time we arrive back at our ger, our Mongolian family had the log fire burning so it didn’t take us long to warm up again.
If you’re thinking about doing a trip to this side of the world, I would definitely recommend a visit to
Gorkhi Terelj National Park. I hope you enjoyed my travel tale.