Kharakorum is located in the Orkhon Valley of central Mongolia. And it was the capital of the Mongol Empire from 1235 to 1263. The site of Karakorum may have been first settled about 750. In 1220 Genghis Khan established his headquarters there and used it as a base for his invasion of China. The Karakorum was a busy spindled city with high civilization. And the best artists and masters of antiquity built the city. But Karakorum completely destroyed in the fierce battles of the internecine war. In 1267 the capital moved to Khanbaliq (modern Peking) by Kublai Khan. The Ming troops destroyed Karakorum in 1388.
Erdene Zuu Khiid
Erdene Zuu – The first Buddhist monastery called Erdene-Zuu was built on ruins of Karakorum . And it was built in 1586 at the initiative of Avtai khan, most influential Prince of that time in Mongolia. The monastery occupies an area surrounded by a stone wall with 108 stupas lining it. Also the Erdene-Zuu monastery preserves marvelous works of Mongolian artists, painters, cutters, sculptors, embroiderers and craftsmen of the XVII-XIX centuries. And it had between 60 and 100 temples, about 300 gers inside the walls and, at its peak, up to 1000 monks in residence.
Outside the monastery walls, there are two stone turtles. Four of these sculptures once marked the boundaries of ancient Karakorum, acting as guards of the city. And the turtles originally had an inscribed stone stele mounted vertically on their back. Next to the Turtle Rock you can see an area of raised earth surrounded by a wire fence. And this was the alleged site of Uguudei Khaan’s palace, who was third son of Chinggis Khaan. Travel to Mongolia with us!