Valley of the Lakes
|Valley of the Lakes|
|Location||Bayankhongor aimag, Mongolia|
|Area||45,600 ha (456 km2; 176 sq mi)|
|Designated||6 July 1998|
The Valley of the Lakes (Mongolian: Нууруудын хөндий) is an intermontane depression located in southwestern Mongolia, separating the Khangai and Govi-Altai mountains. The valley stretches 500 km long, has a width of approximately 100 km, and is located at altitudes ranging between 1000 and 1400 meters above sea level. The topography is dominated by sandy and rocky plains and there are several lakes (the largest being Böön Tsagaan Lake and Orog Lake), solonchaks and takirs present. Barchan sand dunes are located on the valley's margins. The region near the Govi-Altai is a seismically active zone and is where the 1957 Mongolia earthquake occurred.
The valley was first explored scientifically by the geographer Nikolay Przhevalsky. In 1998, the whole valley region (including Böön Tsagaan Lake, Taatsiin Tsagaan Lake, Adgiin Tsagaan Lake, and Orog Lake) was designated a Ramsar site of international importance.