GNF - Hovsgol Lake National Park

Help for Lake Hovsgol – Mongolia’s Natural Pearl is in Danger!


A GNF project for the development and enhancement of sustainable tourism at Lake Hovsgol National Park, Mongolia


Project funding is 75 % complete. Over € 100,000 are still required.


You can help in a variety of ways:

  • € 30 for educational and informational materials
  • € 60 for informative signs to guide visitors
  • € 120 pro rata for equipment such as GPS and transmission devices

Mongolia’s Natural Pearl

Mongolia is still blessed with an expansive natural landscape. Tundra, steppes, alpine and boreal forests can all be found here. The blue pearl of Mongolia — the fascinating Lake Hovsgol — lies at an elevation of 1,645 meters (5,397 feet), is 135 kilometers (84 miles) in length, and has a surface area of 1.2 million hectares (4,633 square miles). It counts among the oldest and cleanest lakes in the world. The plant and animal life here is also legendary. Elk, caribou, and the endangered Argali sheep live in the mountains where wolves and brown bears also dwell.


Threatening Developments

Streets, regional airports, and a new boarder crossing to Russia are being constructed with the hopes of giving the local tourist industry a boost. The negative impacts of these developments include unapproved camps, garbage heaps, and untreated sewage. Unguided groups and their demand for tourist activities are also becoming an increasing burden on the delicate natural balance.  


Tourism versus Nature?

The national park’s 20 rangers are fighting their last stand. In addition to the vast biodiversity, traditional nomadic cultures are also threatened. The large, undamaged natural pastures that they depend upon for their caribou and yaks are shrinking. The pristine Hovsgol Lake is being polluted by construction activities and sewage. Silting and runoff is starting to murky parts of the formally crystal-clear lake.


Sustainable Park Management

Under the project framework, park rangers will be outfitted with motorcycles and GPS systems. This equipment will help them maintain better oversight of tourist groups and help monitor ecosystem health. Their housing will be upgraded to meet standards within the ecotourism industry. The traditional system of horse relay stations (Morin Ortoo) will be reestablished. These measures are designed to protect natural resources while also supporting the local population with profitable economic opportunities.

Argali Mountain Sheep (Ovis ammon)

These wild sheep sport impressive spiral-shaped horns. Except for the mating season, rams roam separately from the heard. Experienced ewes lead herds of up to 100 animals strong. Previously spread throughout Asia, there are only 80,000 animals living today. Because of trophy hunting and competition with domestic herds and livestock, they have nearly disappeared from the earth.

Global Nature Fund (GNF)

Contact person: Manuela Uhde

Head of Marketing, Finances and Administration

Fritz-Reichle-Ring 4

78315 Radolfzell, Germany

Phone: +49 - (0) 77 32 - 99 95 - 85

Fax: +49 - (0) 77 32 - 99 95 - 88



 Fascinating landscape at Lake Hovsgol
 Lake Hovsgol is situated in a diversified landscape.
 Mongolian cavalier
 Solar panels in a settlement
 Yurts as accomodations for tourists at the shoreline of Lake Hovgol
 Argali sheep

© Sergejs Ivanovs /

 Shoreline of Lake Hovsgol
 Rangers in the National Park
 The following generations benefit from the sustainable park management.
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