The third largest province in China spanning a broad stretch of the northern border, Inner Mongolia offers travellers a taste of culture found nowhere else throughout this vast country.
Visitors familiar with China will notice the differences almost immediately. The first being the use of the traditional Mongolian script. Whilst the primary language is Mandarin and widely spoken throughout, to hear and see the Mongolian language around will assure you that you're not in Kansas anymore!
If you're finding yourself in Inner Mongolia, or planning to make the journey, it will almost certainly be to experience the renowned grasslands or deserts. Be sure to visit both!
The grasslands of Inner Mongolia provide tourists with that, one of the most unattainable things in China, peace and quiet!
With several choices of grasslands to choose from this trip can be very easily arranged with most hotels and hostels offering excursions in one form or another for a reasonable price.
It should be mentioned that an important part of your plans to visit the grasslands should take into account the polarising nature of Inner Mongolia’s weather. Winter being long, cold and bringing frequent blizzards to the hot and humid summer. So before you decide on a timeframe you must consider weather you want your grasslands green or white. But be assured that both remain a spectacular environment to find yourself in.
After being driven out of the city via quiet yet very scenic winding roads you’ll arrive at your camp of choice. It’s when your finally away from roads, buildings and power lines that you’ll be able to take in the inspiring 360 degree views of, well, nothing. Though believe that, ‘nothing,’ could be seen in no greater fashion! Rolling hills and perfect flats that unfurl out towards the unreachable horizon instantly convey a sense of peace and tranquility that many of us struggle to find in our own day to day lives.
Sure, it looks fantastic, now what? Many of these trips offer similar if not the same activities included in your initial payment. From horse riding and archery to traditional music and dance performances. Brought to and end by a night in the oft heard of Yurts. Settle down for the evening in the traditional tent variant. Enjoy heated floors and fur lined walls as you drift off after an eventful day.
Even those new to horse riding would be making a big a mistake to not take part. Explore the endless expanse at a pace your comfortable with whilst secretly imagining your discovering untouched lands with your tribe of Nomads! The music and performances help the time pass giving you a chance to take in some of the traditional dress and instruments.
Finally no place in China can be mentioned without a nod to it’s local food. Inner Mongolia looks after it’s Western guests with soul warming broths and large portions of melt-in-the-mouth lamb shanks.
If it’s good enough for Genghis, it’s good enough for you.