I had the opportunity to experience Naadam in western Mongolia with my Mongolian colleagues this summer when I was a fellow for the American Center of Mongolian Studies.
Find a seat
We took our seats in the stands after watching a morning archery competition, and felt excited to see our first Naadam in the west (as we had only experienced it before in Ulaanbaatar).
Let the games, begin!
After the usual speeches, the festivities began–with trancing shamans, Genghis Khan on horseback, a traditional Kazakh dance, and a parade of the athletes.
Eagle time (Photo: Emily O’Dell)
Best of all, of course, were the eagles being carried on horseback by men in traditional Kazakh dress. They were the first of many eagles on our journey to come…
On our way out of the stadium, I had to bend down a bit to get a good look at the coolest boots in town–silver moonboots is what they looked like! The man wearing them kindly let me get a close-up of them, and we all agreed that he definitely was sporting the best Mongolian boots this year at Naadam in western Mongolia.