Ethnic Groups of Bulgan Aimag - Bulgan Province of Mongolia :
Highlights, Monuments and Scenic sites of Bulgan Province
Due to the fact that historically, until recent decennia, the far majority of Mongolians were nomadic peoples, who lived in Yurts and built no houses, buildings were scarce to begin with in Mongolia.
Historic turmoils among which recent Communist Upheavals have damaged or destroyed the few important monasteries and other structures in the Nation.
History of Bulgan Province :
Transport in Bulgan Province :
Economy of Bulgan Province :
Climate in Bulgan Province :
Cold and dry with a yearly average temperature of -1.6˚C, in January -21.3˚C and in July + 16.3˚C with annual precipitation of 324mm.
There is no information available on the Climate in Bulgan Province.
Although Mongolia is mainly an agricultural Nation, the North of Bulgan Province is a highly forested and green region. The South is too arid. In the center and middle regions of the province lie some 50.000 hectares of farmland which are usually used to grow wheat and corn.
The Bulgan Aimag, as a wild, underpopulated and remote region is rich in natural products.
Among the traditional products from Bulgan are medical herbs such as berry, goosberry, hippobophae, plantago, great burhet.
Overall, as in the majority of Mongolia except perhaps the Capital of Ulaanbaatar, the main sector of economy is agriculture. In the total agricultural output of the Mongolian Nation, Bulgan aimag is ranked the 3rd. The year 2008 was an exceptionally good year for agriculture in the region. Total crop harvests were 24,850 tons, up by ten thousand tons, or 57.8 percent, compared to 2007.
Specifically, three thousand tons of wheat was stored in state warehouses in Selenge and Khutag-Ondor soums in the province. That same season, 8.544 tons of potato and 2,455 tons of various vegetables, were harvested, an increase of 11.8 and 12.5 percent respectively over the previous year 2007.
The Province is rich in fruits, forests, coniferous trees, flowers - especially the artemesia species of the peony grow well in Bulgan.
As for other herbs and products; thyme grows well in the fertile soil of the central regions, as do maize (corn) and various sorts of wheat.
As described, Mixed forest occupies about 30 percent of the aimag's territory. The Forest are however largely protected wildlife reserves and thus do not have a substantial logging activity or forest industry.
Instead wildlife thrives throughout the regions, seeing species of Elks (a species of Deer), bears, deer, white antelopes, wild boars, musk deer and lynxes in the Forest, and squirrels, marmots inhabiting the dryer steppe like regions.
The Erdenet mine opened in the year 1978 AD in a location that is very rich in porphyry copper-molybdenum deposits. It is now listed as the largest mine of any kind in Mongolia with a reported capacity of approximately 20 Mt/y of ore. Reserves are estimated at 1.78 Gt, grading at 0.62% Cu and 0.025% Mo. The Erdenet mine is by far the largest employer in Erdenet, a town which otherwise would hardly exist but has now risen to become Mongolia's third largest city.
The local industry produces a broad range of products including foodstuffs, gold, consumer and export goods. Average annual industrial output reaches 1.9 billion tugriks. Over 70 percent of aimag's budget comes from local revenues.
There is hardly a tourism industry to speak of. Most tourist come for the scenery, Mongolian
The Topography of Bulgan Province can general be seen as follows - the Capital City of Bulgan lies in the center of the Province.The north of the aimag is characterized by alpine forests, gradually blending in the arid steppe plains of the central Mongolian highland. The regions north of the Orkhon Gol (Orhon River) on the Russian Border are mountainous as well as forested. Mixed forest, mainly consisting of birch and poplar trees, occupies about 30 percent of the aimag's territory.
Introduction to Bulgan Province (Булган аймаг) of Mongolia
Main Cities & Population Centres of Bulgan Province :
Cities in Bulgan Aimag are in order of importance and size Bulgan, Erdenet and Hadasan.
Notable Towns in the south-east corner of the province are Dashinchilen and Bayannuur.
Teshig is the only worthwhile village in the North-West of Bulgan Province, some ways north of the Selenge River. There a few other population centers but their size is small.
The Aimag of Bulgan is sub-divided into 16 Sums or Districts.
The Town of Bulgan is located at the historic site of the Daichin Wangiin Khüree Buddhist Monastery, now destroyed.
Main Railroads in Bulgan Province :
There is no information available on the railways and railroads in Bulgan Province.
Main Roads and Highways in Bulgan Province :
Roads throughout Mongolia are notoriously bad or simply non-existent. Until recently there were only 100 kilometers of fully paved highway in Mongolia entire. Although upgrades are underway and a national highway network is under development, in gneral roads are sparse, and often unpaved.
The main road from Bulgan City to the much larger industrial settlement of Erdenet is a mud road of 40 kilometers through rough, hilly and forested terrain.
No additional information available.
The ethnic groups of Bulgan Province ar the Khaik, the Buryat people and the Russian immigrant minority.
Read More in: ’Ethnic Minorities of Bulgan Aimag (Province)’.
The main river in Bulgan Aimag is the Selenge River. The Selenge flows into the Province from the south and Övörkhangai, but only develops into a wide stream in the mountainous regions of the North of the Province.
The second river in Bulgan Aimag is the Orkhon River (Orkhon Gol, also: Orhon Gol), which has largely dried up in recent decades. It used to run as far down south as Bulgan, but more easternly, however currently the real river only takes shape near Erdenet, from which it flows east in the direction of Selenge Province, before crossing over the border and flowing into that Province.
A third river in Bulgan Aimag is the Tuul River, which only runs through the souther parts of the region.
The main rivers are the Orkhon and the Selenge, both of which enter Bulgan Aimag from the South and the direction of Övör-khangai. As a result, southern Bulgan has
The South of the Province is the opposite of the North, in the respect that it is arid, brown and unfit for agriculture. Desertification is a problem in these parts.
In the middle of the Province are arible lands which are irrigated using the waters of the Selenge, and to a lesser degree the Orhon. As a result of the diversion of waters the Selenge river has suffered.
Except for the Town of Bulgan and the mining enclave of Erdenet nearby, there are but a few villages dotting the countryside. A large part of the population is not engaged in industry or agriculture but are nomadic peoples who move about tending to their lifestock while camping out in their portable homes, the Gers (Russian: Yurt).
Overview Map of Bulgan Aimag in Mongolia.
- Click Map to go to Full Version -
The 16 Districts (Sums) of Bulgan Aimag are: Bayan-Agt (Баян-Агт), Bayannuur (Баяннуур), Bugat (Бугат), Bulgan (Булган), Büregkhangai (Бүрэгхангай), Dashinchilen (Дашинчилэн), Gurvanbulag (Гурванбулаг), Khangal (Хангал), Khishig-Öndör (Хишиг-Өндөр), Khutag-Öndör (Хутаг-Өндөр), Mogod (Могод), Orkhon (Орхон), Rashaant (Рашаант), Saikhan (Сайхан), Selenge (Сэлэнгэ) and Teshig (Тэшиг).
The Capital City of Bulgan is only a city by name. In reality it is a village of some 11 to 12.000 souls, only known to foreigners as a stop-over point on the long trek to the Khövsgöl Nur, in Khövsgöl Aimag. Bulgan lies at almost half the distance between the Capital Ulaanbaatar and the Khövsgöl Lake at 330 kilometers (205 miles) from Ulaanbaatar.
The Town itself is quite interesting and unusual, in the sense that there are usually no Yurts (Gers) and no nomadic tribes to be found. Most people live in wooden houses, log-cabins, or lately in modern concrete constructions. Streets are kozy with plenty of conifer trees.
In the year 2008 The United Foods Corporation (UFC) opened a Whole-sale distribution and sales center as part of their “Wholesale Network Project” in Mongolia.
The UFC Wholesale center has been developing in conjunction with the Mongolian government and Ministry of Industry and Trade. The corporation's wholesale center will provide the aimag with safe consumer and food products, including low cost rice, sugar and flour. At the time of the opening, the Provincial Governor spoke as well as some officials. Afterwards a wrestling contest and a public party entitled ''My Homeland'' were held.
Bulgan Sum, the district, measures a considerable 99.95 square kilometers (38.6 sq miles) in surface area but only counts another 1000 or so rural inhabitants.
In the southern parts of Bulgan Province, located within the Dashinchilen sum are a number of historic ruins to visit.
On the west side of the Tuul Gol, about 35km north-east of Dashinchilen, are the ruins of Tsogt (Tsogt Tayjiin Tsagaan Balgas), a 17th century fort which was the home of the mother of Prince Tsogt. It is therefor also known as Tsogt Taij Palace. Part of the ruined remains are the Madai Taigal queen’s residence with a big library and dancing hall.
Prince Tsoght is a sort of National Hero of the 17th century who is hailed for fighting against the Chinese Qing Dynasty (1644 AD - 1911 AD) over these regions. There is a stone stele dedicated to the prince nearby the site of the ruins.
Closer to the Dashinchilen is another ruined Fortress, the Fortress of Khar Bukh (Khar Bakhin Balgas), situated just a few kilometers North of the main road to Dashinchilen.
Baibalyk city: During the middle of the 8th Century a roaming tribe known now as the Uigars established Baibalyk city. Once a huge settlement and even city and cultural center in Central Asian, the city was ruined during a long forgotten war with nomadic tribes from Central Asia.
In the west of Bulgan Aimag, in Khutag Ondor sum, there are more historic sites of the same historical period. These include a Turkish inscription at Ar Khana and a stele north of the town centre.
Among the favorite tourist activities in Bulgan Aimag is Mongolian Ice Fishing, which is done in both modern and more traditional ways. Other foreigners come in groups to bicycle along what is known as the Bulgan Trail, which is quite a five day ride through both Bulgan Aimag and Orkhon Aimag including a visit to a local Monastery, Amarbayasgalant. Depending on season Mongolia is a challenge, but perfect for a great mountainbiking experience.
Today there are three active Buddhist Temples in Bulgan Aimag. The first one is known as Dashchoinkhorlon Khiid.
The second Buddhist Temple in Bulgan Aimag is the Uvgun Khiid Monastery also known as Khögnö Tarnyn Khiid, which is situated at the foot of Khogno Khan Uul Mountain which is a part of the immense granite massif originally known as Bat Khan Uul. This massive extends for some 12 by six miles, and looms to a height of 6453 feet or some 2000 feet above the surrounding steppe.
The Khogno Khan Uul mountain has been a center of reverence for millenia and was a favorite haunt of shamans both before and after the advent of Buddhism in Mongolia. Today its monastery, although very modest is once more active. Among the latest reconstructions is a Temple dedicated to the Five Guardian Deities of Buddhism.
The Monastery is situated remotely but is conveniently located along the main route from Ulaanbaatar to Kharkhorin ((Mongolian: Хархорин) at the Orkhon River in Övörkhangai Province at some 140 miles west of Ulaan Baatar. The Monastery is situated along the road just before the turnoff to Kharkhorin.
Due to the sparse human population and the enormous spaces, nature remains largely untouched and wildlife thrives in Bulgan Aimag. One can regularly see Eagles, Vultures and other smaller birds of prey. Near the lakes cranes are frequently seen and partridges abound throughout especially in hilly and forested areas.
Be vigilant in the Forest as one might easily come across a wild boar, Lynx or even bear.
FESTIVALS IN BULGAN AIMAG:
The largest and most important Mongolian Festival of the Year is the Nadaam (Наадам), which is held throughout Mongolia and Inner-Mongolia Autonomous Region of China. Better known and translated as the ′Three Games of Men′, the Nadaam Festival is mainly a grandiose show of Mongol masculinity in which impressive skills are practised and shown. One could call it the Mongolian Olympics as well. A Mongolian Nadaam festival cannot do without hore races, nor without the traditional Mongolian Men′s wrestling (although a women league has also been formed). The archery skills of the Mongolian are legendary and worth the visit all by themselves.
On September 26, an environmental event was held in Bayannuur Soum, Bulgan Aimag. This event was evolved from a local festival that used to share vegetables and dairy products with other residents every autumn in order
You Tube Video: Mongolian Nadaam Festival on the grasslands of Bulgan Aimag, Republic of Mongolia.
to transform the town into an ecological habitat. Bayannuur Soum is designated by Mongolian Government as a key site of the Green Belt Project due to its rapid desertification, and Green Asia Network (GAN) has developed a forestation site since 2007, which covers an area of 27 hectares with approximately 36,000 trees.
Map Trade Routes in Asia in the 13Th Century.
A Schematic Map of the Eurasian Trade Routes existing in the 13Th Century. Clearly marked in Red Accent on the Map are the cities of the network of land-bound trading routes through Central Asia known as the Silk Road (the path of Marco Polo and others).
The Khitans, a proto-Mongolian people who originated from what is now Manchuria in North-East China, ruled much of northern China and Mongolia as the Liao Dynasty from 907 AD to 1125 AD. The ruins of one of their fortified outposts at the very western edge of their once wide Empire, can be seen in Bulgan Aimag. A relatively well-preserved stupa near the 1000 year old fortress is said to be one of the oldest, if not the oldest, remaining Buddhist monument in Mongolia.
Because this is a location in the middle of steppe grasslands and slow weaving hills, the exact location must be given as coordinates: 47º 53.262′ North, 103º 53.685 ′ East.
where possible or otherwise rebuild at a different place and new monasteries arise.
Bulgan Aimag (Province) was founded in the year 1938 AD. In the summer of 2008 large scale celebrations were held in Bulgan City and area for the 70Th anniversary of the Aimag.
American missionary groups with members from Oregon, U.S.A. are currently engaged in Christian Missionary activities within Bulgan City and Province. Bible classes are frequently arranged.
During communist purges in the 1930´s most monasteries in Mongolia have been destroyed. Monks have been killed or taken to forced Labor Camps in the Russian Province of Siberia more to the North, to be never heard from again.
Since the fall of communism in Mongolia however there is a serious revival of Buddhism ongoing. Today, Lama´s are trained again, old monasteries are being restored
You Tube Video: Celebrations of the 70Th Anniversary of Bulgan Aimag, Republic of Mongolia.
You Tube Video: National Star Batbold sings an Ode to the Orhon River Valley and the Beautiful People and Scenery of Bulgan Aimag.
Perhaps the most spectacular region to visit within Bulgan Aimag is the Uran-Togoo Tulga Uul Natural Monument (Mongolian: Уран-Тогоо Тулга уулын дурсгалт газар), which includes a several dead volcanoes, such as the Uran. The National level Park is located about 60 kilometers directly west of Bulgan city in what is known as Khutag-Öndör district (Sum).
The scenery in this region is formed by the Uran valley, which lies at altitude of 1420 to 1450 meters and is surrounded by Jalavch, Ikh togoo, Tulga (Brazier), Uran Burkheer 'Mountains' which seem like hills but are in fact volcanic. The Uran volcanoe stands 12 kilometers from the other three, Tulga, Ikh Togoo and Jalavch.
The Tulga Mountain has a height of 1540 meters and is only slightly elevated above the plain. Uran Burkheer mountain has an altitude of 1688 meters and measures only 5 to 600 meters by 50 to 60 meters with inside of it a small crater lake, some 20 meters across. Several stories are attached to the mountains surrounding the valley. According to the locals the Togoo Mountain looks reminiscent in shape to three stones placed around a heart in a ger, the Tulga Mountain is supposed to resemble a brazier, hence its name which translates as such.
Apart from the Uran and other extinct volcanoes, there are three more to visit; the Tulga, Togoo, and Jalavch volcanoes. The entire park is a high level national protected area and entirely undeveloped. There is a hardly a tourism industry, only pristine wilderness. A total of 5,800 hectares to be exact.
Bulgan aimag is rich in beautiful places, such as Eg-Selenge, Eg-Tarvagatai meadow,Uran-Togoo, Khugnukhan. Khuiji, Uurt and other springs of the province are popular destinations. Of historic memorials there are remnants of old Stone Age, ruins, and the site of Baibalyk, the ancient city of Uighur State, and the ruins of the residence of prince Tsoght. Bulgan is a famous area of pilgrimage of Mongolians due to its historic places. The main sector of economy is agriculture. The aimag takes the 3rd place in the country for its farming. The local industry produces a broad range of products including foodstuffs, gold, consumer and export goods. Average annual industrial output reaches 1.9 billion tugriks. Over 70 percent of aimag's budget comes from local revenues.
Sights of Bulgan Town:
In remote Bulgan Aimag there are but few real Landmarks and Monuments to visit and admire.
One could start out with a walk through the Town of Bulgan, a virtual museum of Log Cabins itself.
While doing the round through the minute Town, stop of at the The Bulgan Aimag (Provincial) Museum, which is situated conveniently on the main street.
The museum is but modest but can provide some basic materials such as proper road maps, and other useful information on tourist sights in Bulgan Province. The museum includes what looks like a small shrine to Mongolia's first man in space. This man, J. Gurragcha is a Bulgan Native and a much lauded National Hero. The Museum of Ancient Things (Ugsaatny Zizuyn Salvar) has a few ethnographical exhibits and old photos.
Sights of Bulgan Aimag (Province):
The North of the Province is home to the large Bugat
(Ханжаргалант Уул - Chinese:國家公園) Forest and National Park. Just west of it on the border with Khövsgöl Province lies the smaller Tarialan (Намнан Уул - Chinese: 國家公園) National Park, both of which are reachable by train and have their own very small station.
The South of the Province on the narrow border with is home to the Khogno Tarna (Хөгнө Тарна - Chinese: 國家公園) Forest National Park.
At some 20 kilometers to the South-West of Bulgan Town stand the so called ′Deer Stones′. These deer stones are in fact 7 incredibly ancient grave tombs dated to years 700 to 300 BC and decorated with deer motifs.
Another similar such Tomb Stone can be found at 75 kilometers due south of Bulgan City. This second stone is known as the Tsakhiurt Stele, and is similarly decorated with images of deer.
The entire route to this ancient stone is off-road and requires a special expedition.
More such stones, dating from various era′s dot the countryside of Bulgan Aimag. At some 25 kilometers North of Bulgan another set of stones, known as the Balbal can be found. These particular tombs are thought to be graves of ancient Chiefs and Clan leaders, from the ′Turkic Period′ of Mongolian history.
In total there are over 500 Deer Stones in Mongolia, more than 40 in the
Tuva Republic and more than 50 in Siberia. Called Olenniye Kamni in Russian, there are 3 basic
types; Mongol Transbaikalian, Sayan Altai and Eurasian.
The ’Road’ from the Capital of Bulgan to the ’City’ of Erdenet is considered as a particularly scenic drive in these regions. The special attractions of this mud road include fantastic sceneries of coniferous forests among alpine steppes, a good chance to spot Deer and Elk, as well as -depending on season- the view and smell of endless fields of wild flowers, for which this region in Mongolia is especially famous.
The 40 kilometer 4 wheel powered drive leads down to Erdenet, which is part of the Orkhon Autonomous Aimag (not part of Bulgan Aimag) but is noteworthy for its original ethnic inhabitants and the presence of the Erdenet Open Pit Copper Mine, which is the largest in Mongolia.
Please make use of the above AsiaReport.com Google supported map of the Republic of Mongolia, including all locations of interest to travelers in Dornogovi Aimag.
For more information on Erdenet City, the third largest City in Mongolia, go to the pages on: Orkhon Province (Autonomous Aimag).