Kicker: Roaming the world with just a backpack is not for the faint of heart. This blogger ticks off Mongolia from her bucket list, but not without a scratch such as losing her Ipad in the hustle. Still, she brings home in photos, the smell and taste of her latest discovery.
The stories about Genghis Khan, leader of the great Empire of the Mongols which is the largest conterminous in the history occupying some parts of China and Central Asia,ignited my dream of visiting Mongolia.
The dehydrating overnight trip from Beijing to Hohhot will give you the time to really absorb the signature hospitality of the Mongolians inside the train, and in the morning,the mountainous terrain will greet you with its disarming views of beautiful landscapes where the grassland seems to kiss the sky.
Upon arrival in Hohhot, another 3-hour exhausting bus ride took us to the grasslands. Hohhot is developing rapidly; the mushrooming establishments and top of the line cars on the streets are living proof to that.
Spending a day with a nomadic family in a single room yurt or “ger”, with neither a bathroom nor running water,was memorable. We watched theirsheep and horses appear like migrants from the horizon and we ate the Mongolian staple food from the fermented milk. Horses are a big help to their daily livelihood and are known as a cheap thrill for frugal travelers.
Even with the language barrier, the Mongols’ universal gestures, especially theirgenuine smiles hit me in rigid points I never knew existed. I sought a profound love for animals, living outside of my comfort zone and serenity. I strongly admire the visibility of their allegiance to their spiritual creed both the Shamanistic and Buddhism elements even in the prairies, which is not so often visible in this modern world.
I ate the legendary Mongolian Barbecue before catching my flight back to Beijing. The barbecue was extremely good and tasty, and the sumptuous flavorful meat was perfect to cap off this trip. I was smiling throughout the long trip back home.