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Earth > Asia > Eastern Asia > Mongolia
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Flag of Mongolia Mongolia
Language: Mongolian
Capital: Ulan Bator
Population: 2,951,786
Currency: Tögrög (MNT)
Hitchability: ?
More info: AVP Free Encyclopedia (Russian)
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<map lat='47' lng='104' zoom='4' view='0'/>

If you plan to hitch in Mongolia, it is good to know that drivers expect to be paid. Before entering the car bargain for the price or make it clear that you have no money, and expect a jam-packed car, packed with amazingly friendly people! Expect flat tyres, overheating jeeps and not much more than 100km a day. The easiest place to find rides in small towns is in the local markets, where locals look for shared rides and trucks are picking up and delivering supplies. Otherwise just stand by the road and madly wave down whoever is passing, they will stop (no need for a sign). Asking the locals is also a good way to get information on rides and routes. Be warned you probably won't be able to leave before endless cups of tea and milk cookies. Most Mongolians don't speak English, but Russian is common.

Of course you can get free rides, though it may be difficult to communicate with the locals.

Hitchhiking in the far west: Bayan-Ölgii, is very hard to hitch. It took Worldhitch 2 weeks from the Russian border in Bayan-Ölgii to Ulaanbaatar. Getting a Chinese visa is easy in Ulan Bator, Russian is not so easy – like in any other place.



Mongolia... the land of dusty, unpaved, unmaintained, "roads", in absolutely the worst shape, that this hitchhiker has ever seen (though I've only been to North America, Europe, Russia, and Northern Asia). Also, or maybe because of that, there is next to no traffic on the major thoroughfare across the southern part of the country. People are mostly, quite willing to pick you up, but there just aren't that many people. Walking sometimes staves off the boredom of just sitting and waiting. There are just some hundreds of km of paved road from Ulaanbaatar in some directions and that's it. No roads, no signs. The trunk roads out of Ulaanbaatar are paved and reasonably trafficked. Be careful if you walk out of the cities, along the roads so you don't get lost, and take water with you. Confusingly, names of cities equal names of states, so make sure city and state match.

Border Crossing

To China

Hitchhiking from Ulaanbaatar to Zamyn Yyd (Chinese border) is not too difficult. The road (half of the way down is paved) stays close to the Transmongolian Railway and gives you the security not to die of thirst. Worldhitch also got a lift by the great Defektoskop train.


Camping is great in Mongolia. It's legal to camp anywhere. You can filter water from springs and lakes, or ask any of the locals for some of their boiled water. It's a good idea to stock up on fruit, vegetables and any essentials in Ulan Bator.