We flew north to Muron and visited the large supermarket for a few provisions – water, wine and biscuits then drove North to Hatgal - the small village on the southern tip of the lake. Our soup lunch in a local restaurant was interesting as people sit on long tables, anywhere they can find a place. We then took a small boat to the east side of the lake, which only has a couple of ger encampments - versus the over-crowded touristy west side. It is just as beautiful, more peaceful but less accessible.The following morning we walked along a forest trail that led to a promontory known as The Wishing Rock, with great views over the vast Lake Khovsgol and the mountains beyond. We continued along the pebble shoreline to another lookout point. In the afternoon we went for a 2-hour horse ride from the camp into the surrounding countryside and another shoreline of the lake.Lake Khövsgöl is Mongolia’s largest lake and is located near the border with Russia, at the foot of the eastern Sayan Mountains. Among the clearest lakes in the whole world, it is surrounded by pristine nature with beautiful forests, mountains and meadows and an abundance of bird species and orchids. The name Khövsgöl is derived from Tuvan language, meaning 'Blue Water Lake', and is also referred to respectfully by locals as Dalai Eej (Mother Ocean). It is the second-most voluminous freshwater lake in Asia, and holds almost 70% of Mongolia's fresh water and 0.4% of all the fresh water in the world.The surface of the lake freezes over completely in winter. The ice cover got strong enough to carry heavy trucks, so that transport routes were installed on its surface as shortcuts to the normal roads. However, this practice is now forbidden, to prevent pollution of the lake from both oil leaks and trucks breaking through the ice. It is estimated that 30-40 cars have sunk into the lake over the years.Khovsgol is Mongolia's northernmost province, bordering with Russian Siberia. The area is home to endangered animals such as reindeers, moose, ibex, Argali (horned wild sheep), otters, sables, martens, bears, deer and musk deer.