KHARKHORIN AND KARAKORUM
Kharkhorin - is a small village and one of the country's major tourist destinations and historically known as Karakorum city.
The most prominent historical site in Orkhon Valley is Kharkhorum, ancient capital of Mongol empire. Kharakhorum, founded in 1220 by Chinghis khan, was not only the capital of the vast Mongolian Empire, but the epic center of trade along Silk Road, and a cultural melting pot bridging east and west. It was from there that the Mongol Empire governed and controlled through Asia and Eastern Europe for over 400 years. Craftsmen from Mongolia and abroad participated in the construction of the city. Highlight of construction in Kharakhorum occurred during the reign of Ogodei khan. At that time, the inhabtants of the city were mostly merchants and craftsmen who arrived to Kharakhorum from every corner of the world. Today the only information known about the rise and prominence of Kharakhorum comes from the notes and stories of travelers who visited the city during its years as the treasure of the Mongol Empire. Famous travelers and historians such as William De Rubruk, Plano De Carpini, Rashid Ad Din and Marco Polo provided marvelous descriptions of Kharkhorum. When Khubilai Khaan moved the capital of the Mongol Empire to the China, establishing the Yuan Dynasty, Kharakhorum began losing its importance. In 1379 much of the city was badly damaged during an attack by the army of Ming Dynasty. Today there is an museum does show off some of the artefacts.