We departed our lodge at 11.30am for the local Naadam festival games of horse racing, wrestling and archery. Known as the Three Games of Men, although women now participate in the archery and girls in the horse-racing games, but not in Mongolian wrestling. We saw the opening ceremony, but then the start of the games were delayed for an hour as some of the wrestlers were delayed due to a puncture. So, we returned to the lodge for lunch and then went back to the Naadam gamesThe 2 horse races are both ridden by children under the age of 13. One race is 7.5km for horses up to 4 years and the other 10km for over 4 years. The entrants have to walk/trot/canter from the festival site to the start point and then gallop back. There were about 100 entrants, male and female, in each race with many very young riders.A dust storm suddenly hit but fortunately, it started when the Naadam was in its final stages so we only missed the horse-riders who pick up a pole from the ground and the award for the best dressed couple.The Naadam Festival is the ultimate celebration of nomadic and Mongolian cul-ture. Naadam, which means "games", is traditionally celebrated in every town and rural district across the country in July each summer. It features the three manly sports: wrestling, archery and horse racing. The strongest wrestlers, fastest horses and expert marksmen come together to compete for National and regional titles. Another popular Naadam activity is the playing of games using shagai (sheep or ibex anklebones) that serve as game pieces and tokens of both divination and friendship. The objective is to flick the bone into a central target. Local festivities and merry-¬making are also key feature - something that everyone's encouraged to participate in!