The city is officially divided into 9 districts with 7 of them located within or around the city area. Nalaikh and Baganuur are the two districts that have their own city infrastructure located within 138 km radius of the city. Both of these cities are located on the east side of UB and were originally built as mining towns. On any eastbound journeys, travelers will find themselves stopping traveling through these cities. In the capital city, the four original districts are Sukhbaatar, Songino Khairkhan, Bayanzurkh and Bayangol where majority of the city population live today. Most downtown premises are located in the Sukhbaatar district.
Travelers who take the time to get to explore the city will discover a hospitable and warm-hearted people. The demographics of city are divided into two major parts. One part of the population lives in condominiums in the central part of the city while the majority of the population lives in what is called as ger districts.
Peace Avenue is the main street and it stretches from east to west through the center. It's the main shopping street and many of the restaurants are found alongside it. The street also passes by the southern edge of the central square, Chinggis Square. Tourist Information Centers are located on the first floor of Ulaanbaatar Bank Small Ring#15 and at Seoul Street.
Although summer temperatures can be over 30°C, the city shivers in sub-zero temperatures for five months of the year, with January and February being the coldest months with temps hovering between -15°C to -40°C. The duration of the heating season is 180 days. As a result of these prolonged periods of intense cold, the city has an average annual temperature of -1.3°C, giving it the dubious distinction of being the world's coldest capital. If you have breathing problems, be aware that Ulaanbaatar has high levels of Air Pollution . Ulaanbaatar has a population just over a twentieth of Beijing; yet according to the World Health Organization, Ulaanbaatar is considered the second most polluted city in the world in 2013 - behind Ahvaz, Iran. But the countryside air, away from the cities, is gorgeous. The majority of the pollution comes from coal burning as 92% of households use stove for heating and cooking.
The city features many landmarks representing different periods of its history. From Soviet style relics to modern high rises, UB now has many attractions for different tastes and interests.
• Sükhbaatar Square is the Istanbul/Constantinople of Ulanbataar. Originally called Sükhbaatar Square it was renamed to Chinggis Khan Square in 2013 and then rerenamed Sukhbaatar Square in 2016. It is one of the largest squares in Asia. It has an equestrian statue of the 1921 revolution hero Sükhbaatar, and seated statue of Chinggis Khaan and his sons and 2 military generals (Urlugs). During the summer time, especially around mid July, variety of rock and folklore concerts, as well as parades and other cultural events take place regularly.
• In the southern side, you can see a small hill with a monument on its top, called, Zaisan Memorial. A huge communist-era monument is located on a hill in the south of the city. It represents the Russian and Mongolian heroes who fought together during WWI and WWII. Nowadays it is a popular viewpoint where you can see over the whole city. There's also a huge Buddhist statue at the bottom.
• Moving to the central west part of the city is the State Department Store, locally known as Ikh Delguur, literally translated as “mega shop”. It was the largest shopping mall in Mongolia during the communist period and still is one of the largest outlets for imported goods, grocery store and souvenir shop. Across the State Department Store is Mongolia’s circus, which was a popular family place in the communist period.
• Gandan Monastery (Gandantegchinlen Khiid), Gandan Monastery District, Ulaanbaatar 16040 (011 36 0354). Moving to the north west side of the city, one will see a large Tibetan known as Gandan Monastery or Gandantegchenlen Khiid. Daily sessions start at 0900 am and continues to about midday. Approximately 150 monks do services here but the most important icon of the monastery ground is its 26.5 meter tall statue of Megjid Janraisag (Sanskrit: Avalokiteśvara). After being sacked and destroyed during the 1930s political purge in Mongolia, the statue was re-built in 1996 as a result of 4 years of national effort for fundraising and renovation works. Today, it is often seen as the symbol of Mongolia’s democracy and independence. Gandan Tegchenling Monastery was officially re-approved by the First Buddhist Congress of Mongolia held in 1992 as the main centre of Mongolian Buddhists.