Inner Mongolia/内蒙古

Inner Mongolia is the place that asks the question: just what was beyond the Great Wall? Being part of the territory ancient Chinese leaders were trying to protect themselves from, Inner Mongolia to this day still sustains a healthy amount of wildness. But whereas places like Qinghai are nigh-impossible to navigate due to transportation issues, Inner Mongolia manages to find a happy medium.

Don’t let that fool you into thinking that Inner Mongolia is tame, though. Some of my best travel moments are from Inner Mongolia, and this is largely because it is (relatively) less touched by the hand of the tourism industry. Sure, if you go to Hohhot, there will be organized tours into the grasslands, but if you just go out east to Inner Mongolia’s Hulunbuir region (the one that borders Russia) you need not search for the grasslands. Just open the door and step outside. Likewise, if you want to experience the desert, you can go out west closer to Gansu province, where the desert stretches out with some of the world’s tallest sand dunes.

Inner Mongolia is certainly not the right place for a quick jaunt into the wild. It’s big, and takes some time to enjoy. But if you take that time, you’ll be well-rewarded with a wild place whose heart races like the beating hooves of a horse.

And also, while you’re there, eat some lamb. Lots of Chinese people would tell me the same, and you know what? It’s seriously the best out there.

我对内蒙古提出来的问题就是:长城的对面到底有什么呢?内蒙古就是中国古代领导要守护的一部分,到现在还有一种野性感。但是内蒙古不像青海那么开阔、很难去独自旅行因为内蒙古的交通稍微好一点,可以说趋于“野性”与“方便”中间。

但是你也不要想得太简单了,因为内蒙古也并不是被驯服的。我旅行当中最好的回忆就是在内蒙古发生的,这就是因为内蒙古还没有(特别的)受到旅游商业化影响。那当然你可以去呼和浩特跟一个旅行团去草原玩儿,但是如果你直接去内蒙古的东部呼伦贝尔(靠近俄罗斯那个),你就不用寻找草原,直接开门,全都是。同时,如果你想去沙漠玩儿,你可以去内蒙古的西边(靠近甘肃那个),因为那里的沙漠很开阔的,也包含世界上最高的沙山。

内蒙古并不适合快速的旅行因为太大,你需要花更多时间去玩儿。但是如果你愿意花那么一点时间,你会赢得很好的经历,也会感觉到你的心一匹野马一样跑得飞快。

最后:如果你到了那里的话,一定要吃羊肉。很多中国人也建议我这吃羊肉,的确是超级好吃的。

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