The best time to visit is between May and October, as Mongolia’s severe winters can make it impossible to venture outside of the capital at other times.
Currency Mongolian tughrik
Language Mongolian is the official language, while Kazakh and Tuvan are also spoken in the west of the country. Russian and English are the most commonly spoken second languages.
Weather The majority of the country is hot in summer and extremely cold in winter. In January, the average temperature has been known to drop to -30°C! June and July are warm and mostly dry, while August is a bit colder and features more rain. In the shoulder months, May and September, the weather is more changeable and some traditional yurt camps may be closed. The rest of the year (October to April) is the low season, due to very low temperatures, but activities like dog sledding, skiing and ice skating become available.
Social customs and quirks If you are visiting temples, monasteries, or other religious sites, it’s good to remember some of the local etiquette – walk clockwise around stupas or prayer wheels, dress modestly with long sleeved clothing, remove hats, sunglasses and shoes before entering religious buildings, and don’t touch prayer flags or other items of religious significance. If you aren’t sure if photography is allowed then it’s best to ask, and if there are signs requesting no photography, respect them. It’s customary to receive gifts/objects with your right hand. Haggling isn’t a big part of life in Mongolia, however some is acceptable at markets. While ATMs and credit cards are becoming more accepted in Ulaanbaatar, most of the country is largely cash-based, so bring some local currency with you.
Festivals and events Naadam festival is celebrated each summer in most towns and villages across the country, the biggest being in Ulaanbaatar. People wear traditional dress and watch others compete in archery, wrestling and horse racing. According to tradition, only men can wrestle, both men and women participate in archery, and children are jockeys for the horse races. The two annual Eagle festivals allow people to learn more about the ancient art of falconry, practiced for millennia by the Kazakhs in the west. Mongolian New Year (Tsagaan Sar) is celebrated between late January and late February with a feast of traditional dairy products, rice with curds, Mongolian dumplings (buuz), and cookies stacked high.
Health* There are currently no health requirements entering Mongolia however some vaccinations may be recommended by your doctor.
Notes *Please be aware that Health information is subject to change at any time and you should always double check these requirements at the time of booking and before travel.