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Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
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Cool Runnings Offline
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Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia July 2017


ABOUT ME

Korean-American. From California. Mid-to-late twenties. 5'11". 170 pounds. Athletic build.


DURATION OF STAY

2 Weeks


EXISTING INFORMATION

The hyperlinks below will be listed under chronological order, based on the OP's first post.

2009

https://www.rooshvforum.com/thread-702.h...t=mongolia:

2015

https://www.rooshvforum.com/thread-50552...t=mongolia:


ACCOMMODATION

Чагдаржавын гудамж (Chagdarjav Street): I don’t know the exact name of the apartment building I stayed in. This is the address that is provided in AirBnB. The location is great as it’s in the city center. It’s cozy, spacious and well decorated. The main issue I have is that it has the weakest cold-water pressure. The owners told me that the building is undergoing maintenance. As in, it barely has any cold or warm water pressure. If you move the nozzle to increase water pressure it becomes scorching hot. Essentially you only have super weak cold-water pressure or scalding hot water. Which makes taking a shower or using the sink very difficult. The Wi-Fi is slow most of the time and there’s no AC so you have to open the windows to cool the place down. During the summer months, the temperatures can become very hot.

Personally, I would choose to stay somewhere else. There’s many AirBnB options to choose from here. I would look for accommodation in the southern half of the city. Anywhere near Seoul Street, Shangri-La Mall or the National Sports Stadium is a good choice. As you will be near the clubs, bars and restaurants. Good news is that UB is not a big city. Everywhere you need to go is a 20-minute walk at most, or less than a 10-minute taxi ride.

[Image: db48c11f-d4a8-4b0d-970c-d7fc8eac14e3.jpg...cy=x_large]


TRANSPORTATION

UB Cab | Regular Taxi | Random Cars

UB Cab: Uber does not exist here yet. But this app is the closest thing. The concept works the same, but you can only enter your pick-up location. It does not allow you to enter the drop-off location. You must verbally tell the driver where you want to go or show them the address on your phone when he arrives to pick you up. Also, you cannot connect your credit card, so cash payments are the only way. The app does not display the cost of the ride before the trip like Uber. I will explain at the end of this segment on how to figure out the price. The drivers of UB Cab are essentially taxi drivers that answer the ride requests. You will see a marked taxi cab come pick you up. Most of the drivers will either have very limited English or no English at all. There is a 1,000 Mongolian Tughrik (.50 cents USD) charge that’s added onto the fare when calling a cab from the app.

Regular Taxi: You can hail them from the street but they do not have a meter inside the car. I will explain at the end of this segment on how to figure out the price.

Random Cars: I used this method the most. Basically, you just stick your hand out on the road and eventually a random car will stop and pick you up. Most of the time it’s a Toyota Prius. Almost everyone in this city drives a Toyota Prius. I’ve never seen one city with so many of them. The drivers are normal people who work normal office jobs at times and they just feel like being a taxi and earning a little side money. It’s almost like Uber where people just drive as a side job. But they answer to no one and keep all the money. I’ve seen more of these cars than marked taxi cabs. I’ve never had a problem using this method and never once felt I was in danger. On average, their English skills are better than the full-time taxi drivers who drive the marked taxi cabs. Sometimes I had a husband and wife drive together. The husband would be driving and the wife sits in the front seat to keep him company.

Now this is the most important part. How much do you pay? This applies to all 3 methods (UB Cab, Regular Taxi, Random Cars). It’s easy really. You have 2 options.

First, if you’re with a local they will know how much to pay for the ride. Or they can negotiate with the driver. If you yourself try to negotiate with the driver you will always end up paying more. Once the driver hears you speak English they will label you as a tourist. Also, most of the drivers’ English skills are very poor to non-existent (except with the random cars, sometimes they speak good English. Not all the time but sometimes). So even if you try to negotiate they won’t understand you.

Second, a local taught me this rule and it’s worked very well for me. It’s called the 1 Kilometer Rule. For every one 1 Kilometer you travel, you pay 1,000 Mongolian Tughriks. So just pull up google maps and it will tell you how many kilometers your destination will be. If you’re in between just round up or round down. For example. If your destination is 2.2 KM’s away. You stick your hand out and wait for a random car to pull up. You get inside the car say nothing and don’t negotiate. Just get in, show the driver your destination or verbally say it if you know how to say it in Mongolian. When you arrive at your destination, you give them 2,000 Tughriks and get out. Most of the time they won’t complain or say anything. But, if they do. Just ignore them and get out and start walking away. Most likely they won’t chase you down. It’s not worth it for that little money. Also, it’s good to have exact change. Carry a bunch of 1,000 Tughrik notes as most of these drivers won’t have change.

WORD OF CAUTION: Never sit in the front seat unless you have your friends in the back seat with you. And of course, never pull out your wallet in front of the driver. My second day here I made this stupid avoidable mistake. I sat in the front seat of a regular taxi alone. When we reached my destination, I took my wallet out to pay the guy. He saw the money in my wallet and the dude just snatched my money out of my wallet. Now the driver is a 6’3 240-pound Mongolian guy. I don’t speak the language and I’m inside his taxi. Looking outside the window, I can see other taxi drivers hanging outside. It could be his buddies or maybe not, I don’t know. I told the driver to give me my money back, no surprise he said “no”. At that moment I had a choice, do I walk away or fight him inside his car. Given the fact that the driver is bigger than me, I don’t know if he has a weapon on him, I don’t speak the language and there were other taxi drivers outside. I chose to walk away. When outside of the car I reached into my pocket to get my phone to get a picture of the license plate. But as I did that he drove away super-fast, he knew what I was trying to do. I was pissed off but what else could I do. Even if I fought him and won, he could go to the police and claim that I refused to pay him and that I attacked him first blah blah blah. Fortunately, he only stole $60 USD worth of Tughriks, so it wasn’t that much. But still, I was pissed for the next few days. I went to the police and they checked the CCTV cameras and of course it was out of range and it was night time. They wrote a report and told me they will look into it. But my translator who was with me told me that she was getting upset with them because they acted like they didn’t care. They were trying to rush us out as soon as possible as well. I’m not surprised really, they get so many pick-pocket and other tourist problems that they just don’t care anymore.

Anyways, hopefully my story helps prevent something like this from happening to someone else. I’ve traveled to many countries and I should have known better. I just got comfortable with using Uber, Grab or any kind of credit-card paying ride sharing app. I never had to worry about carrying cash. I wasn’t paying attention and I paid the price for it ($60 USD to be exact) haha. Here in Mongolia, the best thing to do is to take your taxi money out before. Put it in a separate pocket away from your wallet and sit in the backseat directly behind the driver when you’re alone. Always be careful with these drivers, sometimes you’ll get some shady people. One time I had a driver with a giant Nazi Swastika tattooed on his shoulder. And yes, it was the real Swastika not the Buddhist symbol as those two can be easily mistaken. I can’t wait till the day Uber or any credit-card paying ride share app arrives here. Until then, stay safe.


ONLINE GAME

Tinder

Now onto a lighter note. Tinder is relatively new here and there’s not a lot of profiles compared to other capital cities of Asia. The population of Mongolia is 3 million with 1 million of that living in UB (Ulaanbaatar). But it’s still worth it to swipe because most of the girls on Tinder all speak good English. Some of these girls studied abroad in western countries or other parts of Asia. I’m curious to see how popular Tinder will be here a few years from now.


DAY GAME

Shangri-La Mall: Brand new mall. It has the only I-Max theatre in Mongolia. Lots of cute girls walking around here and the girls working in the stores are cute too.

[Image: ET2222.jpg]


Seoul Street Night Market: They close this street on the weekends and it becomes a night market with lots of food and alcohol. It's only open during the summer months. Even though it’s during the night time it’s a good place to open girls because many of them pre-game here. Seoul street has many pubs, bars and the most popular club in the city is in here.


NIGHT GAME

There’s only two big clubs here and I only went to these two clubs. The locals tell me the other clubs aren’t worth visiting. As they’re empty or only old people go to them. But you never know, everyone has different opinions. There’s also many pubs and brewery’s here. I will only comment on the venues that I went to.


CLUBS:

ZU Club: In Seoul Street. For some reason, you can’t look this place up on google maps. I don’t know why. But its next to Tous Les Jours Bakery. If you google this bakery then you will see ZU right next to it. ZU Club is the newest biggest most popular club in town. Open Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. 20,000 Mongolian Tughrik cover charge everyday with no drink included. Plays all kinds of music. Good ratio of girls. Wednesday nights are lady’s night. Best time to arrive is 12:30am. Plays some Hip-Hop and Top 40. But lots of deep house and EDM.

[Image: zuclubrubric.jpg]


Mint Ulaanbaatar: In home plaza. Used to be the best club in town before ZU Club opened up. But it’s still good, and they’re supporters still consider them the #1. But the good thing about this place is that they’re open on the weekdays. The only day they’re closed is on Sundays. 25,000 Tughrik cover charge on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. 30,000 Tughrik cover charge on Fridays. Monday and Tuesday, I believe is free. Drinks are not included for all days. Even though ZU Club is the popular new kid in town. Mint still has crowded nights on weekends and they play more Hip-Hop and Top 40. I’ve been here once on a weekday, but that was during Naadam Festival (I will explain more about this later). Which is a Mongolian holiday where people get 1 full week off. I don’t know how the weekdays are when it’s not during Naadam holiday.

[Image: the-number-one-clubbing.jpg]


BARS:

MB Beer Plus: Cool modern bar. Serves food and drinks at a decent price. Good date spot.

[Image: DSCN0118.JPG]


Chinggis Brewery: Very Mongolian style bar. Affordable drinks and food. Gets hot inside due to lack of AC. Better to sit near the AC machine or downstairs. Nice date spot


Grand Khan Irish Pub: Popular bar with tourists, expats and locals. They have a nice outdoor terrace with a good view of the city. Good place for dates

[Image: 5673488-Grand_Khan_Irish_Pub-0.jpg]


SIGHT SEEING

Mongolia is known for its beautiful nature. But there’s a few tourist spots around the city that’s worth visiting.

Chinggis Khan Statue: About 1 hour east of the city center of UB. It’s a huge statue of Genghis Khan (the locals call him Chinggis instead of Genghis). Worth a visit.

[Image: statue_gengis_khan-MAX-w1024h720.jpg]


Zaisan Monument: A monument on top of a hill that overlooks UB. It’s a cool monument in commemoration of Mongolia’s involvement in helping the Russians fight the Nazi’s in World War 2.

[Image: zaisan_winter-MAX-w1024h720.jpg]


Gandantegchinlen Monastery: Here you can find a massive golden statue of Buddha. They are building a giant temple next to this Monastery that should be cool when it’s complete.

[Image: 130728_TRA_007_xgaplus.jpg]


Chinggis Square: Formerly known as “Sukhbaatar Square”. Is a giant square in the city center. There’s a statue of Genghis Khan (much smaller than the main statue outside of the city but still cool to check out) and other famous Mongols. The square is used as a venue to host concerts, political gatherings and other local activities.

[Image: maxresdefault.jpg]


MY EXPERIENCE

My first week in UB was during the Naadam Festival (I didn’t even know it was Naadam when I was planning my trip here). Which is like the Mongolian Olympics of some sort. It occurs every year in July. They have sporting events and it’s a huge celebration in the country. Everyone gets 1 full week off for holiday. So many Mongols go to the country side or go abroad for vacation. There’s pro’s and con’s to being in UB during Naadam.

PRO: There’s no traffic in the city. Seoul street is open every day including the weekdays. ZU Club is also open every day. Girls who are normally working on the weekdays are now out partying. But many of them are out of the country… Fear not though, as there were still a decent number of girls at the club.

CON: Everything is closed. Banks are closed so you have to go the “State Department Store” to get currency exchange done. Almost all the UNITEL and Mobicom stores are closed. These two companies are the two biggest cellphone networks in the country. So, you have to find that 1 store that’s open to get a local SIM card. Basic services like going to the barber shop or getting laundry done are all closed. Most importantly, many of the UB girls are out of town.

I noticed that on Tinder, there were more profiles available after the Naadam holiday was over because many of the girls were back in UB. Personally, I would rather be in UB before or after Naadam. As there’s more volume of girls in the city. But I still did okay during Naadam. I day gamed a lot, especially in the mall. I got this one girls number who works in one of the shops there. We hung out and banged the entire week of Naadam. After Naadam was over, Tinder started to become more resourceful. I met up with a few different girls. Eventually settling on this one girl who speaks fluent English and never says no to any sexual request. She’s cute and cooks me breakfast every day before she leaves for work.

Ideal Night Game Schedule:

Sunday: ZU and Mint are both closed so I don’t know

Monday - Tuesday: Mint

Wednesday: ZU or Mint. I'd try ZU first.

Thursday: Mint

Wednesday - Saturday: ZU or Mint


CONCLUSION

I’m impressed with the beauty of Mongolian girls. On average, they have good bodies with cute faces. They’re very feminine and they understand they’re place as a woman. They’re very sweet and are open-minded to sex. The average college educated Mongolian girl speaks good English. The past datasheets mention how aggressive the Mongolian men can be and how they don’t like foreigners getting with their woman. Since my ethnicity is Korean, I somewhat resemble the look of a local. I’ve had numerous Mongols tell me that they thought I was half Mongolian mixed with Japanese or Korean. So, I myself never had any aggression acted upon me.

Personally though, I’ve never seen Mongolian men acting aggressive or trying to fight foreigners of any kind who are with Mongolian girls. The locals tell me that as long as you stay in the city center you’ll be okay. But if you are in the outskirts of UB or in the “ghetto” parts of UB. You might run into some of that aggression, especially with the drunk Mongolian guys. I did see a fight in the dance floor of ZU one time, but that was between two drunk Mongolian guys.

The summer months here are really nice. Warm weather, no humidity, clear blue skies and not too much pollution. Many of the Mongolian students who study abroad come back home during summer break. The traffic can be a little hectic at times during rush hour, but nowhere in comparison to other Asian Capital cities. The city is small enough where you can walk everywhere and relax. But it’s just big enough where it’s not a small-town mentality and you can enjoy a decent night life.

Until next time, Peace!
07-24-2017 07:21 AM
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RichieP Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Awesome, thanks. Sounds like a cool city and I've always wanted to go. Do you think your ethnicity shielded you from aggression though? I've heard horror stories about white guys getting tons of aggro at night... but maybe its hyperbole.
(This post was last modified: 07-24-2017 08:08 AM by RichieP.)
07-24-2017 08:07 AM
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whiteknightrises Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Lol at "seoul street"

Guessing the Korean business presence is pretty big there

Thanks for the datasheet - UB is on my list, nice to see a datasheet from someone with a similar background

Edit: is there any plus from being Korean? Like do girls watch k dramas etc

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(This post was last modified: 07-24-2017 09:21 AM by whiteknightrises.)
07-24-2017 09:20 AM
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scotian Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
OP could you resize the photos in your post? This looks like an awesome data sheet but its a bitch to read because the photos are way too big.

Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things.
07-24-2017 10:51 AM
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Cool Runnings Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
RichieP Wrote:Do you think your ethnicity shielded you from aggression though? I've heard horror stories about white guys getting tons of aggro at night... but maybe its hyperbole

Maybe I don't know, it's hard to say. But during my entire time there I've never seen any problems with white guys during the night. I've met a few European white guys who live here and have Mongolian wives. They never told me about any problems. I feel like it's maybe over exaggerated. Like I said before, as long as you stay in the city center of UB I think you'll be fine. Once you venture out of the city you might face some aggression. I wouldn't worry to much to be honest.

whiteknightrises Wrote:is there any plus from being Korean? Like do girls watch k dramas etc

I don't think so. I feel like any guy who has style, game, decent looks and is in shape can do fine here. Regardless of race or ethnic background. Yes there's a big Korean business presence here. There's a Korean restaurant almost every block and there's a big Samsung office. I feel like girls of almost every East Asian country watch K drama haha.

scotian Wrote:OP could you resize the photos in your post? This looks like an awesome data sheet but its a bitch to read because the photos are way too big.

I'm past the point where I can make edits. But everything looks okay on my end...? Maybe next time ill use smaller photos. Sorry about that.
(This post was last modified: 07-24-2017 08:17 PM by Cool Runnings.)
07-24-2017 08:13 PM
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mcgooie Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Looking forward to being in Ulaanbaatar in November/December!
07-25-2017 01:49 PM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Damn thats crazy that they set up shop even in Mongolia of all places

Anyway thanks for the info! Good stuff as always

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07-25-2017 03:12 PM
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Heart Break Kid Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
See any black dudes in Mongolia? How'd they make out?

Would knowing Russian give you a major advantage there?
(This post was last modified: 07-25-2017 10:27 PM by Heart Break Kid.)
07-25-2017 10:25 PM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
(07-25-2017 10:25 PM)Heart Break Kid Wrote:  See any black dudes in Mongolia? How'd they make out?
Would knowing Russian give you a major advantage there?

I had a thing with a Mongolian lady here in the US. She spoke fluent Russian and her English even had a Russian accent. She told me it was common for people to know Russian, but that there is an age divide. It's more common for women under 35 to speak English than Russian.

I've never been to Mongolia so I can't speak to the rest of it.

I can say that based on my 1 experience that Mongolian women seem less conservative on the topic of sex than other nearby countries.
07-25-2017 11:02 PM
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Cool Runnings Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
mcgooie Wrote:Looking forward to being in Ulaanbaatar in November/December!

Make sure to bring a coat haha

whiteknightrises Wrote:Damn thats crazy that they set up shop even in Mongolia of all places. Anyway thanks for the info! Good stuff as always

Ya man there's a decent amount of Korean people here. Some of them live here and all have Mongolian wives. Koreans are everywhere in Asia now a days haha. Korea is a small country, so i'm not surprised that they're all branching out else where. I'll be in Kazakhstan next week and there's a sizable Korean population there as well.

Heart Break Kid Wrote:See any black dudes in Mongolia? How'd they make out? Would knowing Russian give you a major advantage there?

I saw only 2 black guys during my entire time in Mongolia. I saw them at ZU club. One of them was trying to hit on some of the Mongolian girls but they would just walk away. But he was short, fat, dressed weird and was a bit old. Based on their accent I think they were Africans from Africa (maybe Nigeria). Maybe the reception could be different for African-Americans or Africans from western countries. But I feel like any guy regardless of race who has style, game, charisma, dress wells, goes to the gym etc... Can find a girl out there that will like them.

As far as Russian goes. I feel like most Mongolian people have a basic understanding of Russian. Some Mongolians I've met lived in Russia for a period of time and they speak it fluently. It definitely wouldn't hurt having Russian speaking skills here. But you'll do just fine with English. On average from my experience, the younger generation seem to have a stronger grasp of English compared to Russian.
(This post was last modified: 07-26-2017 12:45 AM by Cool Runnings.)
07-26-2017 12:36 AM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Great effort mate. I have a business opportunity to go there for a month. Not sure if I will take it but if I do, will definitely take this into consideration.
07-26-2017 03:10 AM
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Zerdame Away
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Really cool and good effort. Never thought much about Mongolia until recently when I watched a documentary on the middle class in Ulaanbaatar. Probably wouldn't be able to make the trip in this few years but I would say in 4-5 years would definitely be going. Given the longevity of some threads here, hopefully this would still be updated and relevant by then haha.
09-01-2017 08:56 AM
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Cool Runnings Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Zerdame Wrote:Really cool and good effort. Never thought much about Mongolia until recently when I watched a documentary on the middle class in Ulaanbaatar. Probably wouldn't be able to make the trip in this few years but I would say in 4-5 years would definitely be going. Given the longevity of some threads here, hopefully this would still be updated and relevant by then haha.

I doubt it but please post an update when you do arrive there haha
09-01-2017 04:09 PM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
I might be going to Mongolia in June this year. Any updates on all this?
02-26-2019 08:45 PM
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Polero Offline
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Going to Mongolia this summer. Trying to get my visa at the moment, big pain. Really looking forward to this trip.
04-26-2019 10:04 PM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
The airport only has four gates and is one of the smallest I've ever seen. The traffic is absolutely horrible, even late in the evening. It's crazier here than Las Vegas. It took about an hour for us to get from the airport, and this was from 11am to noon.

The UB Cab requires 384 MB of space on my phone. That is more than twice as much for Uber. What gives?

Verizon phone service doesn't work at all here. AT&T does work here, but not very well.
06-07-2019 09:24 AM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
Well, it's the worst traffic city I have ever seen. It appears to have know expressways or limited-access highways of any kind. People drive around on streets.

Mongolians drive on the right side of the road. Curiously enough, the Japanese cars there also have the driver on the right. This was probably half of them.

The city has lots of North Korean refugees and lots of Korean restaurants. They gave me big portions when I ate there.

Amttai is a good Korean restaurant not far from the Holiday Inn, which is where I stayed.

Caffe Bene is a nice local coffee shop, which has quite a few locations in town

Mongolia has no coins, only paper money.

The city is over 4,000 feet up, so you may need a day to adjust.

There seems to be a lot of growth. Buildings are going up everywhere. It felt like a city of 10,000,000.

The Russian influence is waning. I went to an ATM which had options for Mongolian, English, and Chinese.
06-12-2019 06:22 PM
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RE: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia Datasheet July 2017
I’ve recently spent a little bit of in Mongolia and I thought I’d share my experience in the country, here it goes.


Visa & getting there:

I’m an EU citizen and I needed a visa, some other nationalities don’t need a visa but I did. I had to send copies of my flights, accommodation, medical insurance and my actual passport to the consulate of Mongolia in my country of origin and I had to paid 95 euros to get my visa. Add to that the cost of 32 euros of sending the documents by courier and having my passport returned to me by the consulate.
Expensive and complicated process. No online visa, no visa on arrival either as of July 2019.
I flew to Ulaanbaatar from Hong Kong with Mongolian airlines, MIAT, the return flight was about 500 USD.

Once I landed in Ulaanbaatar I had to wait one hour at immigration, lots of travelers and just two booths served by the police. When my turn finally arrived the police officer kept looking at my passport and said something on his radio, suddenly one other immigration officer approached me and very politely asked me to follow him. I was taken to a room with several other officers, they kept talking to each other, making calls, asking me questions and the whole process took 30 minutes, maybe longer. No one answered my questions. I finally cleared immigration and went to collect my suitcase, here I have to say that Ulaanbaatar airport is tiny, there’s a new one under construction; there was just one baggage carrousel and I couldn’t find my suitcase, I asked everyone but no one would help, after about another half an hour and out of desperation I knocked on a side door and some police officer made me understand some suitcases might be in another room, he walked with me there and my suitcase was there. I asked him why my suitcase had been put there but his answer was in Mongolian language so I couldn’t understand a word he said.
At this point I was tired as fuck, a friend of mine had been waiting for me all along outside. Found my friend, went outside to her car and she gave me a ride to my hotel.
As a side note, it was really cold out at night, about 5 degrees Celsius I figure.




Accommodation:

I spent the first five days in a hotel in central Ulaanbaatar, in the district of Sukhbaatar. The hotel was pretty decent and it cost around $50 a night. Really big bedroom with a huge living room, nice views of the city. I totally recommend this hotel, I can PM the name.
The breakfast was pretty good. The staff spoke good English and were very helpful. I had no issues of any kind.
The hotel was in a really good location, very near to the central square, very close to restaurants, supermarkets, ATMs etc.

I then spent a couple of nights in a traditional Mongolian ger in the Terelj National Park and after that back in Ulaanbaatar I booked the same hotel, everyone there calls it UB, by the way.

I will talk about my experience in the national park down below.



Money & getting around in Ulaanbaatar:

I withdrew cash with my bank card, plenty of ATMs in the city center. $1 equaled to around 3,000 Mongolian Tughrik. I didn’t pay much attention at what ATMs I was using, I think a couple of times I used ХААН Банк – Khan Bank, it allowed me to withdraw larger amounts, I think.

I found Ulaanbaatar to be pretty affordable, I’ll give a few examples of the costs there:
-Pack of smokes: 1 or 2 Dollars
-Taxi ride: 1 to 3 Dollars. People told me 1Km it’s 1000 Tughrik or 0.33 Dollars. I’m pretty sure I paid more than that, though. Still, taxis were very cheap. By taxis I mean private individuals who you flag down on the street and they give you a ride. Better to negotiate beforehand, for that you’ll need to speak Mongolian, if the driver is +40 yo, Russian might come in handy. Don’t expect them to speak English.
-Dinner for two people in an okay good restaurant, about 20-25 Dollars.
-Local beer Сенгур – Sengur in a bar around $1, maybe a bit more. I tried different beers, Sengur was my favorite. The cans are blue if you get them in a store. There was another beer I liked, there was a camel on the sticker on the bottle, I can’t remember the name.
-Nightclubs: I went to Mint one night, I got very drunk and I’m not sure how much I was paying for drinks but I don’t think it was a lot. Met lots of paying people, many guys bought me drinks, I bought some too. Lots of security guards in the club. Really good atmosphere.

I found it difficult sometimes to keep track of my expenses due to the fact that the denominations of Mongolian money go from 20 all the way to 20,000, so all the time I was carrying a lot of notes. Still, I can say UB is pretty affordable, compared to western Europe and even to most East Asian cities.



As other posters mentioned, the traffic in UB is crazy, there’s construction going on everywhere, something to bear in mind. I mostly walked, took taxis on the street and a couple of times I was given a ride by some girls.
The first few days in UB the weather was really nice and sunny, around 30 degrees, the traffic was fine. During my second week there it rained almost every day, then I got to experience the real traffic of Ulaanbaatar. It was fucking crazy. If you want to meet someone in the evening or if you want to go somewhere you need to give it plenty of time.
In winter, which pretty much starts in September and goes on until April/May, this is when there’s snow and ice, it gets even worse haha This is something everyone I talked to told me about and warned me.
As an example, a girl told me that in winter it takes her 3 hours in the evening to go from work to home, a distance of 3 or 4 kms at most. Let’s not forget that in Ulaanbaatar it gets really cold in winter, there’s ice and snow, so walking is for most people out of the question.

From my observations and what locals told me, I’d say the reason for this really bad traffic situation is that Ulaanbaatar is financially getting much better, lots of people are buying cars but the roads and streets are very narrow, therefore huge traffic jams occur in a city of less than 2M people. Also, no subway system, no trams, just buses.




Language:
Mongolian is the national language of the country. They use the Cyrillic alphabet, same as in Russia, but I think they’ve added some characters, there were some letters I couldn’t read. I speak a little Russian and for the most part I was able to read the names of the streets and names of stores and stuff like that.
In Ulaanbaatar some people do speak English, not everyone though. I met quite a few young people who could speak okay or good English, I also met lots of young people who could not.
People who are +40 will have some Russian language knowledge from back of the Communist days, I had some small talk conversations with drivers and supermarket employees.
I don’t think young people in Mongolia want to learn Russian nowadays, for them it's a thing of the past and they don’t want to be associated with Russia and the Communist times, you can’t blame them.
Most Mongolians were very helpful with me and tried to understand me, on several occasions I used Google translate and people were totally fine with it.

I bought a sim card at Unitel, the green mobile phone operator, it was good for 10 days. It cost me 25,000 T, or around 8USD. It worked perfectly in the city and in the countryside.



Food:
Mongolian food is based and all about meat and dairy products. I think I ate everyday beef and lamb. They have many kinds of milk and from many animals, they make lots of different types of dairy products. I’m not a huge fan of that so I only tried a few. I did try the fermented milk – айраг.

As I said, it’s all about meat in Mongolia. I tried a few dishes that I liked, I can’t recall the names.
I ate out every day, I can recommend a couple of restaurants in the city center.
-Modern Nomads has a few locations in town, the food is supposed to be sort of traditional. I liked the restaurant and the food was good, this is their website https://www.modernnomads.mn
-I went to this other restaurant, I liked it very much. BD’s Barbecue. A girl took me there and the food was really good, you could choose the kind of meat, the veggies, the sides, the spices, the different types of sauce and a guy would cook it for you. They also have a different section of the restaurant with salads, soups, other dishes, dumplings etc. Loved that place. I wanted to go back there but it never happened, time flies.

A few times I went to this kind of canteen, very simple places, food is okay and it usually comes in great portions. In Russia they have similar places. They normally only have a few things to choose from. People that eat here is usually middle or lower middle class, I think, or also people that want to eat something quick. The food sometimes is there already cooked. They have these canteens all over Ulaanbaatar, my favorite one was one very near Gandan Monastery, as you walk down from the monastery, it’ll be on your right hand side, about 200 meters from the temple.



The People:

Everyone I talked to and everyone I met ranged from nice to really nice. Everybody was very kind, friendly and hospitable.
Mongolians are physically bigger than other Asians, I saw plenty of tall and big dudes, not really the bodybuilder types but just big guys. People are generally active and even in the capital a lot of people go back to the countryside and they can ride horses, chop wood and so on.
I’m aware that Mongolians have a reputation of having a strong temper, saying so, I did not see any of that. I didn’t see any fights and everyone spoke quietly to each other. Had I stayed longer in Mongolia, perhaps I’d say a different thing.
About the girls I’ll just say that the average girl is definitely prettier than other Asians, they’re also taller and slim, most of them. Very cute faces.
The feeling I have is most Mongolians are very family oriented, with exceptions, of course, but the girls can cook and they do cook, they can look after a house and a family, too. I guess as the economy gets better these values might start to change, although I’d like to think there’s plenty of time till that happens to other countries’ levels, fingers crossed because I’d love to go back to Mongolia. I really liked this country.



Things to do and see in Ulaanbaatar:

Ulaanbaatar is a small city but it’s getting bigger, anyway, interesting locations are very near to each other, perhaps the only exception is Zaisan WWII memorial and the huge Genghis Khan statue which is 50 or 60 kilometers from the city.

I visited:
-Sukhbaatar square and the Mongolian Parliament.
-The National Museum of Mongolia.
-Gandan Monastery.
-Tsonjin Boldog/the huge statue of Genghis Khan.
-Zaisan WWII memorial.
-Choijin Lama Monastery.




Terelj National Park:

I didn’t want to spend all my time in Ulaanbaatar and I really wanted to see the countryside, the nature and the animals. I booked a 2 day trip to Terelj National Park, which is about 1 or 2 hours from UB, depending on the traffic and the weather. This trip was really awesome and I suggest everyone that goes to Mongolia goes somewhere to enjoy the countryside.
A driver picked me up in my hotel with a Prius and first drove me to the massive Genghis Khan statue, from there drove me to the National Park. I slept two nights. in a Mongolian traditional tent, or ger, rode camels and really enjoyed my time there. There was a local family in the park cooking the meals, good food for the most part.
For the transportation, meals, the ger and everything I paid $130 in total, someone told me this was very expensive, but I think it was totally worth it and I loved it.



Conclusion:

Mongolia is probably the country that has impressed me the most in recent years. The people and the nature are phenomenal. Although a short trip, I think I could even move to Mongolia but I foresee two huge problems for me: the weather and the traffic in Ulaanbaatar.
Anyway, it’s a fantastic country and I recommend everyone visit Mongolia once. I loved it.

I’ll be happy to answer any questions.


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