Located in the heart of Central Asia (7,000 km from Paris), enclosed between two giants (Russia to the north and China to the south), and without maritime border, Mongolia is an immense country where nature reigns supreme.
To get a better idea of it, you have to multiply the area of France by three and keep only the city of Lyon.
With such an almost uninhabited space, it is not surprising to find still wonderful landscapes shaped by nature, a sweet smell of steppes, rare animals and plants, and the feeling of being at the origins of the world …
And for those who like the figures, Mongolia is also 1.3 million city dwellers in the capital Ulan Bator, and 1.7 million nomads in 1.565 million km2 of steppes, forests, deserts and mountains, density of population excluding capital of 1 inhabitant per km² … the lowest in the world!
The Mongols of today are divided fairly equally between town and country. Between a traditional nomadic lifestyle on the one hand, and a modern urban lifestyle. But if there is a rupture, and it appears to us in the first place that Mongolia has two identities that everything seems to oppose, it will soon be realized that everything is not so simple.
Most Mongols in the cities come from the countryside, and “turn their jackets” as soon as they find themselves in the steppe to become perfect Mongols of the steppes. And numbers of urban family children spend their two months summer vacation in their family in the countryside.
No one can say how long these close links between two worlds so different will persist; but for the time being, Mongolia is doing better than Mongolia of the Steppes, poverty being above all urban poverty. And nomadism, which does not seem to have any place in our present societies, still remains “normality” here.