Skyline at Twilight and Other Cell Phone Photos of Ulaanbaatar

UB Twilight BannerAt some point I will go around the city with a better camera, but for now here are some cell phone photos of UB’s skyline at night and a couple of pictures of the ger districts during the day.

For the nighttime photos, we had dinner at a restaurant in a hotel that is so new that their top floor lounge is still being completed. But, the elevator access to the floor was not restricted, so after dinner we went to the top of the building and got some fun twilight pictures of the city.

There are no houses, just commercial buildings and apartments and condos in the urban core. If you live in the center, it’s a very small walkable city if you can deal with crossing the streets in traffic. To the south is an area called Zaisan, which is below the mountain where we went hiking. According to the women we hiked with, Zaisan is the most expensive area. Driving through it you can see the high-end housing (again, mostly condos and apartments) that’s been built just in the last few years and new construction in progress. Mountains surrounding the rest of the city hold the ger districts, where about half of the city’s population lives. I also recently learned that over half of the homes in the ger districts are in fact not gers, but are walled structures. The defining feature of the ger districts isn’t the gers themselves, but the complete lack of infrastructure (heat, water, sewage, etc.).

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