Photos of the People of Mongolia

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The People of Mongolia

The people of Mongolia are among the most hospitable on earth, a result of their centuries of nomadic existence on the vast plains of this wide land. Its vast, open steppes and the great distances people would have to move in search of grazing for their animals made that hospitality to others was just necessary, not only a social custom. Each ger would be a place where anyone could find a place to stay and strangers are always made welcome too. Although many Mongolians have moved to the city, most are still a nomad at heart and would prefer to live the free life with their animals in the country.

Painting the statue
 
Train Passengers
 
Mother and son
 
Courtyard with pigeons
 
Journey break
 
Buryat man
 
Traditional costumes
 
Mongolian costumes
 
Traditional headdress
 
Mongolian costumes
 
Playing the Morin Khuur
 
Buryat people
 
Guessing game
 
Mongolian costumes
 
Calling on horseback
 
Brother and sister
 
Mr Dorjsuren
 
Procession at memorial
 
Buryat man
 
Zundui Dagva
 
Patching a tyre
 
Father and son
 
Motorist
 
Ger camp
 
Sacred tree
 
Mongolian family
 
Mare's milk
 
Playing iPad game
 
Milking a mare
 
Ger with solar
 
In a ger, Bayanzag
 
Kazakh eagle hunter
 
Kazakh eagle hunter
 
Kazakh breakfast
 
Kazakh couple
 
Family at home
 
Applying a ''khög''
 
Cooking in a yurt
 
Kazakh horseman
 
Kazakh eagle hunters
 
Going home
 
Kazakh music
 

The population of present day Mongolia is about 95% ethnic Mongol, with the main group (86%) the Khalkha, followed by Buriad (Buryats), both belonging to the Eastern Mongolic peoples. Another Mongol groups is the Oirat in the west. In the forests of north western Mongolia live small groups of Dukha or Tsaatan, reindeer herders speaking a Tuvan Turkic language. In the far west, in Bayan Ölgii province, is a substantial population of Kazakhs, a Turkic people, making up almost 4% of the total population of Mongolia.

Mongolian culture is very much alive, as can be seen in the colourful costumes that are worn, nowadays mainly in the large yearly festivals, like the Naadam Festival, held in every city and village and the Eagle Festival of the Kazakh people in Bayan-Ölgii: spectacular to see and marvellous to experience. And although almost all Mongols are Buddhist, shaman practices are still performed; there are numerous ovoo, ceremonial stone cairns, where people bring offerings, tie the blue "khadag" scarves around poles and circumambulate around three times in a clockwise direction.