Ulaanbaatar City Tours – Choijin Lama Temple Museum 

Ulaanbaatar City Tours, Homestays & City Travel Information – Mongolia

Ulaanbaatar City is home to “Choijin Lama Temple” that is considered to be one of the most beautiful monasteries throughout Mongolia.  The 8th Bogd Jibzandamba had the monastery built for his brother in Ulaanbaatar, The State Oracle, Luvsankhaidav, in 1904 and its construction finished in 1908. Luvsankhaidav was commonly known as Choijin Lama, hence the name Choijin Lama Temple. The name Choijin meant “fierce defender of Buddhism”. 

This monastery was forced to close down in 1937 during the rise of the communist regime in Ulaanbaatar. However, it received state protection in 1939 and was eventually turned into a religious museum in 1942. The museum now consists of 5 temples: Zankhan, Zuugyn, Yadam, Enkh-Amgalangyn and the main temples. The main temple houses sculptures of Buddha and his two disciples, the keeper of the monastery Choijin Lama, the mummified remains of Choijin lama’s teacher and a 30 kilogram ritual mask made out of 7000 red coral beads. It also keeps gilded sculptures of gods, invaluable religious paintings, musical instruments and regalia worn for sermons all made by 19th century artisans using materials such as wood, ivory and human bones. 

The Zankhan Temple features Bogd Khan’s throne, which Choijin lama would visit once every moon to seek the gods’ answers pertaining to state matters. By its west walls, one can find 2 meter tall sculptures depicting the guardian gods of Buddhism, while tapestries depicting hell hangs from the ceiling, implying that those who do wrong end up in there. 

The Zuugyn Temple originally dedicated to Buddha, features Buddha’s three identities from the past, present and future. Before them lays an offering table with the seven gems of State surrounded by the sixteen Netans (individual tankas that stand for human behaviors) meditating while two of the guardian gods remain vigilant by the gates. A sanctum for holy prayers and the secret enchantments, the Yadam temple. It was reserved for Choijin Lama’s meditations and only his – the temple holds all gods dedicated to peace and synergy, with Choijin Lama’s main totem in the middle. 

The Enkh-Amgalangyn Temple was dedicated to the first Bogd Zanabazar. Inside you will find Bogd Zanabazar’s self-portrait, Buddha with his “16 Netans”. It is plenty with crafts from the first Bogd himself, his disciples and works of craftsmen from Tibet, China, India and Japan. 

GER to GER GEOtourism Mongolia - Ulaanbaatar City Tours and Attractions
GER to GER GEOtourism Mongolia - Ulaanbaatar City Tours and Attractions

SPECIALIZED ULAANBAATAR CITY TOURS & EXPERIENCES:

Ulaanbaatar City Tours, Homestays and Sightseeing Attractions

Ulaanbaatar City is the capital of Mongolia. Geographically, Ulaanbaatar city sits on the banks of River Tuul and in a valley between four mountains. According to the 2016 consensus, Ulaanbaatar City has 9 districts spread over 470,000 acres of land and 1,440,447 people, with 67 percent being under the age of 35.

Ulaanbaatar City originated in 1639 as a ger palace gifted to Zanabazar, when he was proclaimed as the First Bogd Khan. Following the nomadic ways, the city moved throughout the country 28 times before it grew too big to move in 1855 and settled in its current location. In the early days of Ulaanbaatar City’s history, it served as the political and religious center for Mongolia. 

By the 19th century, the once palace had turned into a proper city with religion, government, politics and trade with a population of twenty-thousand people. In 1924, the modern foundation of Ulaanbaatar City was divided into 13 districts, 4 of which were revamped into new districts in 1965, 5 were abolished and the youngest district was instated in 1992 when Ulaanbaatar City was declared the capital of Mongolia once again.