Liza Hayward

Liza Hayward

Modified & Updated: 11 Oct 2023


Hovsgol Lake, located in northern Mongolia, is a hidden gem of nature that is sure to leave you astounded. This stunning freshwater lake, often referred to as the “Blue Pearl of Mongolia,” is surrounded by breathtaking landscapes and offers a unique and untouched wilderness experience. From its shimmering turquoise waters to its diverse ecosystem teeming with rare flora and fauna, Hovsgol Lake is a true paradise for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike. In this article, we will delve into 12 astonishing facts about Hovsgol Lake, shedding light on its fascinating features, cultural significance, and the efforts being made to preserve its pristine beauty. So, let’s embark on a journey to discover the wonders of Hovsgol Lake, one of the most remarkable natural wonders on the planet!

Table of Contents

Hovsgol Lake is one of the oldest and deepest lakes in the world.

With an estimated age of over 2 million years, Hovsgol Lake is considered one of the oldest lakes on Earth. It is also one of the deepest freshwater lakes, with a maximum depth of 262 meters (860 feet)!

The lake is home to over 60 species of fish.

Hovsgol Lake boasts incredible aquatic biodiversity, housing over 60 species of fish, including the endemic Hovsgol grayling. This makes it a paradise for fishing enthusiasts and researchers alike.

It is surrounded by the magnificent Hovsgol Mountains.

The lake is nestled within the picturesque Hovsgol Mountains, which are part of the Sayan mountain range. The breathtaking scenery of snow-capped peaks, lush green valleys, and crystal-clear waters make it a haven for nature lovers.

Hovsgol Lake is a sacred site for the local Tsaatan people.

The Tsaatan people, who are a reindeer herding community, consider Hovsgol Lake to be a sacred and spiritual place. They believe that it is inhabited by ancestral spirits and guardians.

The lake freezes over completely during winter.

Due to its high latitude and harsh climate, Hovsgol Lake freezes over completely during the winter months, creating a stunning icy landscape. This frozen wonderland attracts visitors from around the world.

Hovsgol National Park surrounds the lake.

The lake is situated within Hovsgol National Park, a protected area spanning over 8,638 square kilometers (3,337 square miles). The park is home to diverse flora and fauna, including rare and endangered species.

Hovsgol Lake is a major water source for the Selenge River.

The lake feeds into the Selenge River, which is one of the main tributaries of Lake Baikal. This makes Hovsgol Lake a vital water source not only for the local ecosystem but also for the surrounding regions.

It is a haven for bird enthusiasts.

Hovsgol Lake attracts a wide variety of bird species, making it a paradise for birdwatchers. Over 200 species of birds have been recorded in the area, including the elegant Swan Goose and the majestic White-naped Crane.

The lake is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In 2011, Hovsgol Lake and its surrounding areas were designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its exceptional natural value and significant cultural heritage.

Hovsgol Lake experiences unique weather patterns.

Due to its geographical location and proximity to the Siberian, Mongolian, and Central Asian weather systems, Hovsgol Lake experiences distinctive weather patterns, often characterized by abrupt changes and extreme conditions.

It is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

Hovsgol Lake offers a wide range of outdoor activities, including hiking, horseback riding, kayaking, and camping. Exploring the surrounding wilderness is a must for adventure seekers.

Hovsgol Lake holds significant scientific value.

Scientists and researchers are drawn to Hovsgol Lake due to its unique characteristics and ecological importance. They study the lake to gain insights into climate change, biodiversity, and the intricate interactions between ecosystems.

There you have it, the 12 astounding facts about Hovsgol Lake that showcase its beauty, cultural significance, and ecological importance. This mesmerizing lake truly is a hidden gem in the heart of Mongolia, waiting to be explored and admired.


Hovsgol Lake is truly a remarkable natural wonder that captivates visitors with its beauty and diversity. From its pristine waters to its abundant wildlife, this lake offers a unique and unforgettable experience for anyone fortunate enough to visit. Whether you’re a nature lover, an adventure seeker, or simply someone looking to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life, Hovsgol Lake is the perfect destination.

With its astounding facts and breathtaking scenery, Hovsgol Lake showcases the awe-inspiring wonders of the universe. Its crystal-clear waters, surrounded by stunning mountains and lush forests, provide a serene and peaceful environment that is unmatched. The rich biodiversity found in and around the lake only adds to its allure, with a wide array of flora and fauna waiting to be discovered.

Whether you’re exploring the lake by kayak, hiking along its shores, or simply soaking in the beauty from a nearby beach, Hovsgol Lake has something to offer everyone. Its tranquil ambiance and untouched landscapes make it a true hidden gem, waiting to be explored and appreciated by adventurous souls.


1. Is Hovsgol Lake accessible all year round?

Yes, Hovsgol Lake can be visited throughout the year. However, the best time to visit is during the summer months when the weather is milder and the area is more accessible.

2. Are there any accommodations near Hovsgol Lake?

Absolutely! There are several accommodations available near Hovsgol Lake, ranging from cozy guesthouses to luxurious resorts. You can choose the one that suits your preferences and budget.

3. Can I engage in water activities at Hovsgol Lake?

Definitely! Hovsgol Lake is perfect for a variety of water activities such as kayaking, fishing, and swimming. Just make sure to follow any guidelines and regulations set for the conservation of the lake and its ecosystem.

4. Are there any hiking trails around Hovsgol Lake?

Absolutely! There are numerous hiking trails around Hovsgol Lake that offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. Choose a trail that suits your fitness level and embark on an unforgettable adventure.

5. Can I spot wildlife near Hovsgol Lake?

Yes, Hovsgol Lake is home to a diverse range of wildlife species, including rare and endangered animals. Keep your eyes peeled for glimpses of moose, ibex, and even the elusive snow leopard.