Mongolia - Provinces & Cities
Mongolia is a landlocked country located between China and Russia. It is a vast emptiness that links land and sky, and is one of the last few places on the planet where nomadic life is still a living tradition. Mongolia may have various geopolitical, cultural and geographical meanings. Mongolia consists of historic Outer Mongolia. The province of Inner Mongolia is geographically and politically separate and located in the northern part of China, yet it borders Mongolia.It is roughly oval in shape, measuring 1,486 miles (2,392 km) from west to east and, at its maximum, 782 miles (1,259 km) from north to south. Mongolia’s land area is roughly equivalent to that of the countries of western and central Europe, and it lies in a similar latitude range. The national capital, Ulaanbaatar (Mongolian: Ulan Bator) is in the north-central part of the country.The country has a marked continental climate, with long cold winters and short cool-to-hot summers. Its remarkable variety of scenery consists largely of upland steppes, semideserts, and deserts, although in the west and north forested high mountain ranges alternate with lake-dotted basins. Mongolia is largely a plateau, with an average elevation of about 5,180 feet (1,580 metres) above sea level. The highest peaks are in the Mongolian Altai Mountains (Mongol Altain Nuruu) in the southwest, a branch of the Altai Mountains system.
The Mongols have a long prehistory and a most remarkable history. The Huns, a people who lived in Central Asia from the 3rd to the 1st century BCE, may have been their ancestors. A united Mongolian state of nomadic tribes was formed in the early 13th century CE by Genghis Khan, and his successors controlled a vast empire that included much of China, Russia, Central Asia, and the Middle East. The Mongol empire eventually collapsed and split up, and from 1691 northern Mongolia was colonized by Qing (Manchu) China. With the collapse of Qing rule in Mongolia in 1911/12, the Bogd Gegeen (or Javzandamba), Mongolia’s religious leader, was proclaimed Bogd Khan, or head of state. He declared Mongolia’s independence, but only autonomy under China’s suzerainty was achieved. From 1919, nationalist revolutionaries, with Soviet assistance, drove out Chinese troops attempting to reoccupy Mongolia, and in 1921 they expelled the invading White Russian cavalry. July 11, 1921, then became celebrated as the anniversary of the revolution. The Mongolian People’s Republic was proclaimed in November 1924, and the Mongolian capital, centred on the main monastery of the Bogd Gegeen, was renamed Ulaanbaatar (“Red Hero”).
Mongolia can be divided into three major topographic zones: the mountain chains that dominate the northern and western areas, the basin areas situated between and around them, and the enormous upland plateau belt that lies across the southern and eastern sectors. The entire country is prone to seismic movements, and some earthquakes are extremely severe. Their effects, however, are limited by the low population density.