From Hamburg to Mongolia

When in Hamburg…

I was looking on AirBnB for some accommodation in Hamburg, but because of the Hafenfest taking place over the weekend, there was not a lot to choose from. As we had a car, I looked a little further outside the city and came across a Mongolian Jurte.

Years ago I watched a documentary about Mongolia and how they pack up their homes within an hour and take it over the mountains to the next place they will call home. Since then it has been on my list of places to go and here was my chance!

You need to see the photos to believe it, so here you are:

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The owners Volkmar (German) and Aurora (Mongolian) met in Mongolia, whilst Volkmar was working out there. As a wedding present, Aurora’s parents gave them a jurte and they built it in their back garden four years ago. Every winter they pack it up and then it comes out again in the warmer months.

The only German products are the mattresses and the fire stove. The walls are made of sheep skin, the rope of horse’s tail, the nails are from camel, as are the duvets.

photo 4I will pre-warn you that there is a certain constant animal smell and you will carry this on your clothes until they are washed. The fire goes on in the evening and when we came home late at night it felt like we were entering a sauna. It was so warm and inviting and our wet clothes dried in an instant. The fire did go out during the night but none of us felt cold.

The only thing to keep in mind, is that the bathroom and kitchen area are in the house, a few meters away. It was cold, rainy and pitch-black outside, so a ‘psp’ (pre-sleep-pee) is a must!

The owner said he works away from home and at weekends when he returns, he says hi to his family and then he just chills in the jurte for an hour or two. He told us that when his three sons act up, he just puts them in the jurte and within one minute everyone is calm again.

It was strange, as I felt very relaxed and calm in the jurte. You completely switch off from the rest of the world, forgetting all your worries.

On warm days they have barbeques in the garden and this summer a famous Mongolian singer will join in their Mongolian Day. There will also be Mongolian food – apparently this means lots of meat! They don’t use a lot of flavouring in their food, but they do have lots of milk products, from goat’s milk to horse yoghurt. He said it was all very bland but I really want to go back and try!

Instead of making lots of money, the couple would like to show Mongolian culture to the world. It’s something a little special off the beaten track. I’ve never seen anything like it and cannot recommend it more! Absolutely fabulous :)

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