Mongolia Population, Main Cities and Geography

By | January 27, 2023

Mongolia: population, cities


According to Countryaah website, in 2017, Mongolia had a population of around 2.8 million.

Ethnic composition

The residents of the country are about 94% Mongolians, 4.3% Kazakhs and 1.1% Tuvins. There are also small minorities of Russians and Chinese in Mongolia.

Mongols are a language-related group of peoples belonging to the Tungid branch of the Mongolian race. Of these, however, only the smaller part live in Mongolia. About twice as many Mongolians are resident in neighboring China, especially in the autonomous region “Inner Mongolia”, but also in the autonomous republic of Buryatia in Russia on Lake Baikal are Mongolian ethnic groups.

In Mongolia, around three quarters of the population belong to the Eastern Mongols (Khalcha), the rest is mainly divided into the Kalmyks in the west and the Buryats in the north of the country. The members of the Turkic Kazak people mainly live in the Altai.


affiliation About 50% of the Mongolian population are followers of Lamaist Buddhism, which was introduced from Tibet between the 13th and 17th centuries and mixed with Tengrism, the traditional natural religion of the Siberian and Central Asian nomads.

Another 40% describe themselves as non-denominational.

There are also about 6% Christians and 4% followers of Islam (Muslims) (mostly Kazakhs) in the country.

National languages

Mongolian is the country’s official language and is spoken by around 93% of the population. Another 4.3% speak Kazakh. Russian and English are also common here and there.

Capital, other cities

The capital of Mongolia is Ulan Bator with around 1,200,000 residents. According to Abbreviation Finder, MNG stands for Mongolia in English. Click to see other meanings of this 3-letter acronym.

Other cities are:

  • Darhan with around 90,000 residents
  • Choybalsan with around 80,000 residents
  • Erdenet with around 60,000 residents
  • Ölgiy with around 30,000 residents

Mongolia: geography, map

Mongolia is a landlocked country in Central Asia between Russia in the north and China in the west, south and east. Check topmbadirectory for politics, flags, famous people, animals and plants of Mongolia.

In the north are the high mountain ranges of the Mongolian Altai and the Changai Mountains, to which the Gobi-Altai and the Mongolian highlands connect.

In the south-east is the Gobi desert, while the south-west of the country is rich in water, with forests and grass steppes. The country is considered to be one of the most resource-rich countries on earth.

The deposits of “rare earths”, which play an important role in the manufacture of cell phones, are particularly in demand.

Mongolia covers an area of 1,565,500 km².


  • ForestAround 9% of the country is forested.
  • Meadow and pasture landAround 78% of the land is used as meadow or pasture land.
  • GebrigeIn the north of the country the high mountain ranges of the Mongolian Altai and the Changai Mountains extend, in the southwest the Gobi-Altai connects.
  • DesertThe south of the country is partially covered by semi-deserts and the Gobi desert, which, however, consists of less than 3% sand, otherwise mainly grass, bushes and rocks and is therefore a semi-desert there.

National borders

Mongolia borders on two countries:

Russia with a length of 3,485 km

China with a length of 4,677 km.

Longitude and latitude

Mongolia extends over the following geographical latitude (abbreviation Δφ) and geographical longitude (abbreviation Δλ):

Δφ = from 41 ° 32 ‘to 52 ° 06’ north latitude Δλ = from 087 ° 47 ‘to 119 ° 54’ east longitude

You can find detailed information on this subject under Longitude and Latitude.

Legal times

There are three different time zones for Mongolia compared to Central European Time (CET). The plus sign means that it is later than CET:

Western Mongolia:

Δt (CET) = + 6 h

Central Mongolia:

Δt (CET) = + 7 h

Eastern Mongolia:

Δt (CET) = + 8 h

Further and detailed explanations of the time can be found under Time zones, time.

The highest point of the sun in Ulan Bator

Ulan Bator lies at a northern latitude of around φ = 48 °.

If the sun is at the tropic, i.e. at δ = 23.5 °, summer begins in Ulan Bator, this is June 21. Then, for the highest position of the sun at noon, according to Eq. 1 (see position of the sun):

48 ° = (90 ° – h) + 23.5 °


H = 65.5 °

This is the highest level above the horizon (exactly: above the chimney) that the sun occupies within the year in Ulan Bator.


Hüyten Uul

The highest mountain in Mongolia is the Hüyten Uul with a height of 4,374 m. It is located in the Mongolian Altai Mountains in the northeast of the country.

Other high mountains in the Mongolian Altai Mountains are:

  • Mönh Hayran Uul with a height of 4,231 m
  • Cast Uul with a height of 4,208 m
  • Tsast Uul with a height of 4,193 m
  • Sutay Uul with a height of 4,090 m

Ich Bogd Uul

At 3,957 m, the Ich Bogd Uul is the highest mountain in the Gobi-Altai, a little further south

Olgon Tenger Uul

The Olgon Tenger Uul has a height of 3,905 m, it is located in the Changai Mountains in western Mongolia.



The longest river in the country is the Selenga with a total length of 1,024 km, it flows into Lake Baikal in Russia. Its main tributaries are the Ider and Orkhon.

Lakes, Uvs Nuur

There are several hundred lakes in the country.

Uvs Nuur

The largest lake in the country is the Uvs Nuur, which is located in the bay of the same name . The Uvs-Nuur is an outflow-free, salty lake with a size of about 3,350 km² and an average depth of 6 m – while the entire basin covers an area of 1,068,853 ha = 10,688.53 km². The lake is located in the northernmost closed basin in Central Asia at approx. 760 m above sea level and offers migratory, water and sea birds space to live. The neighboring mountains are important places to live for snow leopards, giant wild sheep and Asian ibex, among others. The Uvs-Nuur basin also partly belongs to Russia. The basin was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2003.

Other larger lakes in Mongolia are:

  • Hövsgö Nuur
  • Har Us Nuur
  • Dörgön Nuur

Gobi desert

Despite its name, this desert consists of less than 3% sand, otherwise mainly grass, bushes, scree and rocks. Correctly, it is therefore not a “real” desert but a steppe or rubble desert. However, rain only falls every two to three years and the temperature fluctuations are extreme, so in winter the thermometer can fall below -60 °C, while in summer it gets unbearably hot during the day. It covers an area of about 1 million km² and extends over both parts of Mongolia and China. The desert is crossed by the “Trans-Mongolian Railway”. This railway line runs from Ulan-Ude on the Trans-Siberian Railway via Nauschki in Russia, then through Mongolia via Ulan Bator to Jining in the People’s Republic of China. Jining is approx.

Mongolia Population