Central region has many historical sights, natural wonders in Mongolia’s heartland, particularly in the Orkhon River Valley, which contains archaeological remains dating back several centuries. Few traces remain of Kharakhorum, the 13th-century capital of the Mongol Empire, but the nearby temple of Erdene Zuu was reputedly built from its ruins. The wall surrounding this vast monastery complex, which houses spectacular Buddhist art and architecture, is made up of over a hundred white stupas. Har Balgas, another vanished capital dating from the 9th century, shares the steppe with “deer stones” and ruined temples, all reminders of Mongolia’s rich and fascinating history. KHARAKHORUM Kharkhorum was ancient capital of the Mongolia Empire in the 13th century; In 1220 Chinggis Khan chose to move his capital from Khentii to Karakorum. But Chinggis khan died in 1227. It was completed by Ugudei khan and served as a Mongolian capital until Khubilai khan moved the capital to nowadays Beijing. It was center of the political, economic and cultural, housing great palaces, mosques, churches and monasteries representing many of the world’s religions. In 13th century Kharakhorum was the biggest city in the world and it was link between east and west. After collapse of the Yuan Empire, Kharakhorum was destroyed by invading Chinese soldiers. The remains of the city were used a late 16th century to build Erdene Zuu Monastery. Today archaeological excavations have also uncovered a variety of interesting objects. Now it is Russian style small town and 373 km from Ulaanbaatar city. Kharkhorun town population is about 9000 and located at the lower end of the upper valley of the Orkhon River, which is part if the World Heritage Site Orkhon Valley Cultural Landscape. ERDENE ZUU MONASTERY The monastery located in Kharakhorin small town of Uvurkhangai province. This monastery was built of stone walls remained in a ruin of Karakorum on an initiative of Avtai Sain Khan, a descendent of Chinggis Khan, in 1586. It is surrounded by a wall featuring 108 stupas, 108 being a sacred number in Buddhism, and the number of beads in a Buddhist rosary. Therefore, by 1792 there were 62 temples and over 500 buildings inside it. Later most of the buildings except only 18 temples were destroyed due to the religious purge. Monastery temples fine creations of Mongolian sculptors, artists, blacksmiths in the 17th century including freehand drawings, ornaments, sculptures, gilded gods, stupas, cauldron, incense burner, vessels, bell, ritual thunderbolt, circular disk with radial spokes inlaid in gemstones and mask-dance clothing. By the government resolution Erdenezuu monastery were listed as a unique valuable in the nation’s treasury fund. The monastery is now one of the tourist staples visited by about 20,000 people annually.