(Locator)...Ulaanbaatar city is the capital of Mongolia. It has grown rapidly in the past few years. Most visitors come to Mongolia by train or air. It takes about 20-30 minutes to reach the city from the International Buyant Ukhaa airport and 10-15 minutes from the train station. Often described as sunny, peaceful and open, Ulaanbaatar is a city of contrast where modern life comfortably blends with Mongolian traditional lifestyle. With close to 900,000 residents, the city claims almost half of the nation's population and is urban enough to get your expectations confused if you just arrived. In fact, architecturally Ulaanbaatar is no different from a typical "soviet" city with its gray high-rise apartment blocks, Russian made cars, and a few remaining monuments of soviet era. We agree that the look of the city might not be worthy of a travel destination, but we can assure you that the spirit and the energy of the city is very different today. Together with a rapid return to religious and historical roots, the city and people of modern Ulaanbaatar have a lot to offer, particularly to those who are interested in art, anthropology, religion and history. Hikers are welcome to explore nearby Khentii and Bogd mountains, and those who enjoy the social aspect of travel will have a great time at the summer gatherings outside of the city, which often include jazz concerts, dancing, and conversation around the bonfire.