Why you should visit Hovsgol
- Explore the hills and extinct volcanoes on foot, horseback or bicycle
- Canoe or kayak on Lake Hovsgol
- En route to the region visit Amarbayasgalant Monastery, one of the largest and most important centres of Buddhism in the country
- Visit the city of Erdenet, home to one of the largest copper mines in the world
- Wrap up warm for a winter adventure when the lake is frozen for ice fishing or sledging
A little more about Lake Hovsgol
Mongolia's northernmost province, Hovsgol is also, without doubt, one of its most beautiful. Wooded hills give way to valleys covered with wildflowers which in turn lead to the clearest crystal rivers and freshwater lakes, filled with fish such as taimen and lenok as well as being home to an abundance of birdlife. Located in the far north of the country close to the border with Siberian Russia and surrounded by mountains, the terrain is home to a variety of wildlife including ibex, wolf, argali sheep and moose.
At its centre lies Lake Hovsgol. Over two million years old it is known to the nomads who live near her shores as mother and sometimes referred to as the sea. The lake is the largest freshwater lake in the country and the primary source of drinking water. Sitting at an altitude of 1,645 metres above sea level the surface of the lake freezes over completely in winter with the beautiful clear blue ice reaching over one metre in thickness. Hovsgol is also home, not only to Mongolian nomads but to the reindeer herders of the Darkhat Valley who live in yurts, which are similar in design to the American Indian tepee. Central to this group is the Shaman Lady, a tribal elder who dispenses wisdom and medicine to her clan.