Young Pioneer Tours

Erenhot, China

Erenhot is China’s northern gateway. A desert settlement at the crossroads of cultures and the portal to vast and mysterious lands.

Where is Erenhot?

Erenhot, also known as Erlian or Erlianhaote, is situated in the Nei Mongol Autonomous Region of China, known simply as Inner Mongolia. It sits on the border of the state of Mongolia, facing the town of Zamiin-Uud. The town sunders its history as a palaeontological hotbed. The Erguang highway, stretching out into the desert leading to Erenhot features sculptures of dinosaurs dotting it to either side, and greets you with a gateway formed by the necks two outstretched Brontosauruses.

Dinosaur Square, Erenhot

Transport in Erenhot

Erenhot is not Shenzhen. In Erenhot, to get around, you take an e-bike or a car. There are a few taxis and even fewer municipal buses. If you are passing through Erenhot to get to Mongolia, then read about that here. Cheap flights can be booked weekly from Beijing to Erenhot for less than 500 RMB return. An overnight train to Erlian Railway Station will usually cost less than 200 RMB,. We invite you to take the Transsiberian with us through Erenhot on our Eurasian Adventure Tour.

typical food street in erenhot china
A typical food street in Erenhot

Transport in Erenhot

Erenhot is in Inner Mongolia, because of this, it shares cultural and linguistic ties to its neighbour, the Republic of Mongolia. Inner Mongolia, despite being less well-known, has almost ten times as many people as Outer Mongolia, with 25 million, compared to its northern neighbours’ 3 million. In Erenhot, signs are often presented in Han, Mongolian and Cyrillic script. Something of note is that Outer Mongolia now uses Cyrillic almost exclusively. The food is Erenhot is quintessentially Mongolian, with mutton being sold in virtually every shop.

roast mutton popular in erenhot china
Roast Mutton is a popular dish in Erenhot

What is Erenhot Actually Like?

To be sure, Erenhot is unlike most other Chinese cities. The city is largely a collection of low-lying light-coloured homes and shops. It certainly has a frontier feeling, it is after all on the northern seams of China. You will not find KFC, Pizza Hut or McDonalds here either, which itself is a breath of fresh air. To visit Erenhot, Inner Mongolia and large swaths of the country of Mongolia for some of the most important festivals of the year, book our Naadam Festival Summer Wilderness Tour or traverse the whole of Mongolia into Russia with the Naadam, Baikal and Buryata Tour.