Population: Approximately 3 million
Time zone: GMT +8 hours
Int. dialling code: +976<
Religion: Predominantly Tibetan Buddhism or no religion
Editor, Food and Travel Magazine
"My favourite destination? Having recently returned from Mongolia I would have to make this it. The landscape is truly epic; from the sand dunes of the Gobi Desert to the scenic mountains above which clouds hover motionless, the country is an unspoilt mecca for travellers.
"Nomadic herdsmen appear from nowhere, eagles glide in the bright blue skies, wild horses and two-humped camels wander around the rugged steppe, and the people are some of the most welcoming you will ever meet."
Mongolia is inextricably linked to the era of rule under Genghis Khan. And, such is the everlasting influence of the 13th-century leader, many traditions from this period remain and are apparent on a visit to Mongolia today. Nomadic tribesmen continue to roam the vast open plains that comprise much of the landlocked nation.
The boundless sands of the Gobi Desert and beautiful verdant mountains ensure that Mongolia is a largely untouched wilderness. A visit to Mongolia will prove an eye-opening experience to travellers; the sheer scale of the hauntingly sparse landscapes ensure it preserves its reputation for being truly enigmatic.
Ulaanbaatar: Located at the heart of the country, Mongolia's capital retains an appearance that recalls the era of communist control, yet its fascinating history and culture can still be discovered with a little investigation. The warm and friendly people will ensure visitors feel welcome, while the Natural History Museum displays a number of fascinating dinosaur skeletons from the Gobi Desert that should not be missed.
Altai Tavan Bogd National Park: To experience the natural delights of Mongolia, a visit to Altai Tavan Bogd National Park is a must. Covering an area of 6,000km2, the park is home to three spectacular lakes and a mighty glacier, as well as wildlife such as moose, red deer and argali sheep. For the more adventurous, the snow-topped mountains and plains make the perfect setting for skiing and climbing.
Hovd: A relatively modern town in terms of foundation, Hovd is a fascinating destination where diverse ethnic groups combine to create a cosmopolitan atmosphere. As the former seat of the Manchu viceroys, the ruined fort at the centre of town is worth exploring, while the cave paintings of Tsenkheriin Agui, believed to be 15,000 years old, offer a view to civilisations long-since lost.
Did you eat at a fantastic restaurant or stay in a wonderful hotel in Mongolia? Maybe you discovered a hidden sight or you have a Mongolia travel tip that you want to share with other visitors?