My Photo Travelogue on Mongolia《蒙古大草原，景胜油画 鹰击长空》Published in Lianhe Zaobao 联合早报旅游版 on 23 November 2023
谢谢联合早报今天刊登了我的摄影文章《蒙古大草原，景胜油画 鹰击长空》为旅游封面! 我一直对大草原有深深的向往，也许是在城市生活久了，内心特别想去某个人迹罕至的遥远地方，憧憬大草原生活自由宁静的感觉。草原辽阔的蒙古，成了我向往的纾压之地，决心这辈子一定要去蒙古一次，更希望借此一圆在蒙古草原上策马奔驰的愿望。由于蒙古大部分被草原覆盖，北部和西部多山脉，草原生活成为最有吸引力的旅游项目。走进蒙古，这里正是我期待的样子——蓝天绿草围拥的寂静，群山草原一泻千里，野生植物漫山遍野。秋季的蒙古温度宜人，阵阵凉风吹过，让人远离酷暑的折磨，美丽的景色令人心旷神怡。💙 在辽阔无际的蒙古草原，感受世界的广袤，浸淫其中常觉得自身的渺小。此行挑战了我的视力极限，能装下这些壮丽景致的，不是广角镜头而是开阔心胸，任何言语都无法准确地形容草原的美，就像做了个去到另一个世界的梦似的! ✈️🧳📷✍🏻🇲🇳
Happy Thursday! Thank you so much to @zaobaosg @zaobaosg.lifestyle for publishing my travel photo story on Mongolia in full coverage today! Mongolia offers a wide, varied and mostly untouched landscape that is breathtaking for any visitor. The home of herders and the birthplace of Genghis Khan and his subsequent empire, this country and its long vibrant history is truly like no other, and once you’ve had a taste of it’s magic, it’s hard to leave it behind. The first thing that I noticed about Mongolia is the space. And this wide-open space makes it easy to understand the lure of the nomadic lifestyle that many of the countries people lead across the numerous steppes and mountain ranges of this spectacular country. Once you have had a taste of this unlimited freedom then the cramped, claustrophobic city life is hard to go back to!
Hustai National Park is one of the protected areas in Mongolia – a huge expanse of grassland steppes and surrounded by rounded hills. The absolute highlight of the park are the rare species Przewalski’s wild horses – the Mongolians call it Takhi. They were reintroduced to the park in the 90’s and today there are over 220 takhi in the park. Hustai is the only place in the world where these horses live in the wild. The best time to see them is in the evening. The horses hide out high in the hills during the day, but in the evening they come down to the Tuul River which runs through the park.
During a short journey in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia before adventuring the countryside, was a visit to the Zaisan memorial which lies in the foot of a hill in Ulaanbaatar. After driving to the uppermost parking lot on the hill, I climbed 300 steps before reaching the monument and mural (612 steps if I had started at the base of the hill). I was rewarded with excellent panaromic views of the entire city of Ulaanbaatar after I made it to the top of the hill.
The Zaisan memorial is a ring-shaped structure built to commemorate the sacrifice of the Mongolian and Soviet soldiers martyred in World War II. A circular mural exhibits the friendship shared by the Mongolians and people of the USSR. A Soviet tank mounted on a concrete pedestal that celebrates the efforts of the Mongolia People's Tank Brigade that covered a distance from Moscow to Berlin in World War II is also part of this memorial.
Eagle 🦅 hunting dates back thousands of years in Mongolia 🇲🇳. But in more recent times, when the communists took control in Kazakhstan, many Kazakhs fled into Mongolia and primarily the region of Olgii. That’s where the majority, if not all of the remaining eagle hunters reside in Western Mongolia. I flew into Olgii town from Ulaanbaatar and visited a mountain nomad kazakh eagle hunter family to observe, to experience the nomad way of life as well as eagle hunting safari.
I jumped out of my seat in the car when I heard the words "The horses 🐎🐎🐎 have arrived ! " as the sound of the hooves pounding the ground & the people waiting for their arrival were filled with excitement. And it's not just the people. The horses too seem to become energised as the rider becomes one with the horse in that silken moment when the eyes of the rider & audience alike are filled with tears.
This emotional fusion between horses & humans resembles the merging of the souls of Mongolian riders with those of their horses. It evokes memories of the path traveled & the history passed down, evoking empathy & affection for all involved in such poignant moments. The secret of how the horse & the Mongolian rider unite & become one breath remains unknown to this day. Between these horses & humans remains a secret that no one can explain, shrouded in the dense fog of the past....