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UlaanbaaTOUR

sunny -21 °C

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Had a wander round Ulaanbaatar today. The climate is really wierd. Probably the coldest place I have ever been but walking around you don't feel it because it's so dry. There was deep snow the whole journey from Moscow apart from the last couple of hours into UB. For a capital city it felt almost deserted, although it was a Saturday in Winter, maybe that was the reason. About 70% of pedestrians wore facemasks. I'm not sure if this was because of the virus or because of the poor air quality the city is famous for. Beard was getting out of hand so when I saw a sign in English T10,000 (about £2:80) I went in. Apparently though this was the Mongolian price and I was charged double! Still very cheap though. The lady that owned the place used to work in CityGent in Altrincham!

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The square opposite the state department store is known locally as Beatles Square!

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So from here: I have left it absolutely as late as possible but flying is unfortunately necessary. I'm gutted partly because it was meant be a no fly trip and also because the route from here to Beijing is meant to be the most interesting so far. You even get views of the great wall.

Flights South from here are quite limited and there are no flights at all from Mongolia to Vietnam. Any flights that might have gone via China are either cancelled or involve a self transfer meaning a Chinese passport stamp, something which I might as well now avoid if I can help it. The only place in Southeast Asia I could fly to is Bangkok and that's later in the trip so don't want to do that, so the next best place is Seoul.

I have to admit, even though I'm gutted to be flying for the first time in ages, I've only flown once on my own before, it's from an unusual airport on an unusual airline to a country a didn't know I was going to until yesterday morning so I am quite excited! This morning I had to commit a John Midgley cardinal sin and take a taxi to the airport as I don't think there was a bus early enough. I'm now waiting for MIAT Mongolian Airways Flight OM301 which will get me to South Korea in 3 hours.

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Posted by around129 14:27 Archived in Mongolia

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Comments

Well done John - an exciting new schedule; hope your beard has a visa.

by RayEliz

Superb blogs John - really enjoying following your travels ????

by Medway

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