Lake Khuvsgul and the dangers of uncontrolled tourism www.news.mn
Last year, the Mongolian Cabinet approved a project for establishing an eco-zone at the Khuvsgul Lake National Park with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank; it also decided to limit the number of tourism licenses for the area. However, there are still a total of 98 tourist camps operating in banks of the lake. In addition, some 500 locals and 30 enterprises make money from providing horse riding and boat trips. This affects the eco system of Lake Khuvsgul which holds 70 percent of Mongolia’s fresh water reserves.
Khuvsgul is one of the 17 oldest lakes in the world. It is 1,645 metres (5,397 feet) above sea level, 136 kilometres (85 miles) long and 262 metres (860 feet) deep.
Ger and chalet camps have increased around the lake due to the sharp rise in the number of local and foreign tourists. In 2013, Lake Khuvsgul was visited by 23000 tourists – within five years this had tripled to 120000.