The Khovsgol Ice Festival takes place on March 3rd and 4th in northern Mongolia.
Khovsgol is short for Khovsgol Nuur National Park located in Khovsgol Province. Probably the most famous element of this glorious national park is the 136km lake itself. Tour companies call it the ‘Blue Pearl’ of Mongolia. Mongolians call it Dalai Ej – Mother Sea – a much more suitable name. The lake is the younger sister to Lake Baikal in Siberia – part of the same Rift System. If the sky is clear, you can stand on the shoreline and see the snowcapped Sayan Mountains – the border with Siberia (the highest point in the Khovsgol watershed is Munkh Saridag at 3491m in the Sayan Mountains).
Connected to Murun by a relatively new and reasonably good asphalt road, the small community of Khatgal is located at the southern tip of the lake where it channels into the Egiin Gol. Khatgal is often bypassed but has an ambience that is a pleasure to discover especially during the Khovsgol Ice Festival.
Isn’t there a saying that goes a picture is worth a thousand words? So here is the Khovsgol Ice Festival through the eyes (and lens) of our guest Kairi Aun.
If you’re interested, you could always join the Eternal Landscapes team as we celebrate alongside the locals from the rural community of Khatgal at the Khovsgol Ice Festival. How? By joining one of our Mongolian winter tours.
‘I’ve been trying to travel in ways that give back to the local communities whenever possible, instead of funnelling money to overseas owners while paying locals a minimum wage. Also, I’ve traveled with other companies, where when you ask questions about the tour it’s obvious that the person answering your question has probably never been to the country you’re going to. I really like that EL is a small company and the people in charge are still really connected with what’s happening on the ground.’
Jess @ Eternal Landscapes.