recap: Ulaan Ude - Ulaanbaatar

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October 10th 2009
Published: October 19th 2009
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UU to UB busUU to UB busUU to UB bus

The bus from Ulaan Ude to Ulaan Baatar
Hello again, now from Beijing. Apparently this site is not blocked, but facebook is.... But ok, this posting should have been done in Ulaanbaatar (UB) - Mongolia, but this didn't happen due to a lack of time. So this posting is just a copy-paste from a e-mail draft that lingered in Agi's mail box for ~2 weeks.... Enjoy.

Ulaan Ude - Ulaanbaatar

After 13 hours on the bus we arrived to UB yesterday at local time 7.30 pm. The trip was OK except for the border crossing which took 3.5 hours. I love the European Union, just so easy. Here the procedure is the following: at Russian border exit customs guy enters the bus and checks all passports for Russian visas. After this the bus pulls to the customs building where everybody has to leave the bus and enter the building for luggage check and immigration control. The luggage goes to a security belt for scanning and people queue for immigration control where they check if you properly registered in the major cities of your stay during the time you spent in Russia. The rule is to register at each location where you spend at least 72 hours. Of
No clue where we are....No clue where we are....No clue where we are....

but apparently it's between Mongolia and Russia. No cameras were allowed on the border crossing, so although we've spent there several hours: no pics, just stamps in our passports ;-)
course there are always problematic people in the queue, so after over 2 hours we could board the bus to approach the Mongolian entry side. Here again the customs guy enters the bus, checks for visa then we go to the customs building with our luggage, immigration, luggage scan, customs declaration and re-enter the bus. Before departure from the boarder an other Mongolian customs guy enters the bus to see if everyone got a stamped on their visas... now you see why I love travelling in the EU.

During the bus trip we chatted with other foreigners (we were 6 backpackers on an approx 35 persons bus) and decided to join them to the hostel where they booked their beds already, fingers crossed that the hostel would also have place for us without booking (by now probably you noticed that we dont bother with too much preparations in our trip... :o) And we were lucky, as we found the hostel quickly and at a great price, USD 6 per person per night! This is a great improvement compared to average EUR 12 per person prices in Russia (however, that's also not that bad).

While crossing the city to
Bye Bye Mother RussiaBye Bye Mother RussiaBye Bye Mother Russia

Konstantin, my Russian military pilot, I miss you already....
the hostel we had the opportunity to experience the traffic in UB. Being a pedestrian is VERY dangerous, there are way too many cars and the drivers dont respect anyone. We had to run across pedestrian crossing risking our lives, but made it...

Additional photos below
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Hello MongoliaHello Mongolia
Hello Mongolia

With hindsight I just wished they also learned to cook their pasta dishes without big lumps of fat....

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