SUBURBS OF ULAANBAATAR
Khustain Nuruu Nature Reserve
The Khustain Nuruu Nature Reserve was established in 1993 to preserve the steppe environment where wild takhi horses of Mongolia live. The takhi is probably the most recognizable and successful symbol of the diverse and unique wildlife of Mongolia. Also known as Przhevalsky's horse (named after the Russian geographer, traveller and researcher,
Nikolai Mikhailovich Przhevalsky, who discovered and described these animals in 1870-73), the takhi used to roam the countryside in great herds. In the 1960s they became almost extinct because poachers killed them for meat, and development of grazing reduced their fodder too. In the early 1990s, with assistance of the international environmental groups, many takhi were reintroduced into specially protected areas in Khustain Nuruu and in the south Gobi. About 200 specimen live in this park or in habitat now.
The Nature Reserve is about 100km (62mi) south-west of Ulaanbaatar. It's easiest to start your trip to Khustain from Zuunmod, 40km (25mi) south of Ulaanbaatar. There are daily buses, minibuses and shared taxis to Zuunmod from Ulaanbaatar. You'll need a jeep to reach the reserve from Zuunmod.