This week with all this sudden cold outside I started to think about winter and snow and found myself enchanted with this photo taken in Hovsgol, the northernmost peninsula of Mongolia, bordering Russia. The hard climate in the Siberian taiga (subarctic coniferous forest) creates amazing sceneries with lichens in bright colors, snow-tipped mountains and lakes that are believed sacred by the local population because they never freeze despite the low temperatures. Everything looks like a fairy tale in this forgotten land that only recently has started to open up to tourists. One of the most interesting things to do here (and what I would definitely have as a first priority in my to-do list if I happen to go there someday!) is to go on a Mongolian pony ride through the wilderness in search of the Tsaatan - small bands of nomadic reindeer herders who live in encampments and follow shamanistic beliefs. It seems to be such a surreal world, as if nothing had changed here throughout the centuries!
Photo: National Geographic