Ea­gle Fes­ti­vals in Mon­go­lia

The UB Post - - WHAT’S ON - By B.DULGUUN

Each year, sev­eral dozen Kazakh hun­ters take part in ea­gle fes­ti­vals held in West­ern Mon­go­lia to test the speed, agility, and hunt­ing skills of their Golden Ea­gles, known as Berkut. Cer­e­monies, dance per­for­mances, pa­rades, and Kazakh plays are held in honor of the 2000–year-old tra­di­tion of hunt­ing with trained Golden Ea­gles.

Ea­gle fes­ti­vals are the high­light of any trav­eler’s visit to Mon­go­lia.

The thrilling fes­ti­vals fea­ture nu­mer­ous tra­di­tional Kazakh games, passed from gen­er­a­tion to gen­er­a­tion among the Kazakh no­mads in the beau­ti­ful Al­tai Moun­tains, in­clud­ing the fa­mous Kok­bar, where no­madic men com­pete for a goatskin on horse­back. The oth­ers are Tiyn Teru (a race to pick a coin off the ground from horse­back) and Kyz Kuar, or the Women’s Chase, (a man and woman rac­ing with the woman whip­ping the man).

Win­ners are se­lected and awarded in each com­pe­ti­tion.

You can find the de­tails of this year’s three ea­gle fes­ti­vals in Bayan-Ul­gii Prov­ince be­low.

Fes­ti­val­go­ers will be able to taste lo­cal del­i­ca­cies and buy tra­di­tional Kazakh crafts at the fes­ti­vals. Gers and tents will be avail­able for rent at the venue and nearby ar­eas. Most Mon­go­lian tour op­er­a­tors pro­vide good pack­age tours as well.

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