The game of three men or the Nadam traditional festival is held throughout the country during midsummer. The three games involving wrestling, horse racing and archery has been played since centuries.
July 11-13 is declared as the national holiday in Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia. It is here that the festival gathers the greatest form and structure. The Nadam Stadium hosts the event for 3 days. The President, Prime Minister and the Parliament Speaker honor the ceremony. The festival is held in every village otherwise and the time period does vary. But the number of participants in the National Nadaam is always higher and spectacular than others. But the time period doesn’t suit your travel period, then you can choose other times too, since Nadaam is celebrated during anniversaries of their administrative areas too. One has to pre-book the tickets since they are usually all sold out much before the time period.
The competition starts with a ceremony ornamented with performances by dancers, musicians, athletes etc. The ambiance during this time is that of fun and frolic. It is a harmonious mixture of traditional arts and sports. Everyone is seen in their traditional costumes called dell during this time.
The three games were played as an honor to the victory of People’s Revolution and the formation of independent Mongolia. Along with these sports a game called ankle bone shooting competition is also held. This is real ankle bones used for shooting!!
Khuushuur a fried pancake with meat is a must have on your visit!