Inner Mongolia Culture

Inner Mongolia has been an inhabitation to Mongolians for a long time since ancient times. As the hometown of the great hero Genghis Khan, it has a long history of ethnic culture, being the birthplace of human civilization and the source of grassland culture. The culture of Inner Mongolia is largely influenced by the famous Genghis Khan. The Mongolians of the grasslands provide for the agricultural industry with their livestock, handicrafts and dairies. Join in Inner Mongolia culture tour, tourists will have the opportunity to fully discover and experience the Mongol culture and local customs. 

Ethnic Groups in Inner Mongolia

The Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region is inhabited by 49 ethnic groups, including Mongolian, Han, Manchu, Hui, Daur, Ewenki, Oroqen, Korean, Xibo, Tujia, Dongxiang, Miao, etc. Among them, the Han population is 19,650,687, accounting for 79%; the Mongolian population is 4,226,093, accounting for 17% while the population of other ethnic groups is 829,541, accounting for 4%. Hui and Manchu have a population of over 100,000. There are Korean, Daur and Ewenki ethnic groups with a population of over 10,000; Oroqen, Zhuang, Xibo and Russian ethnic groups with a population of more than 1,000; 38 ethnic groups with a population of less than 1,000, including Tibetans, Uighurs, Yi and Buyi. Ewenki people are industrious, brave and intelligent. Ewenki people have rich and colorful traditional customs and cultures. Daur nationality is one of the ethnic minorities with a long history and splendid culture in northern China. The Oroqen nationality is a hunting nationality. Their religious beliefs, food, clothing, housing, transportation, customs and culture all embody the characteristics of the hunting nationality. 

Ethnic Banners in Inner Mongolia

As of late 2017, Inner Mongolia has juridiction over 49 banners and 3 autonomous banners, listed as followings:

49 Banners Tumed Left Banner (土默特左旗), Tumed Right Banner (土默特右旗), Darhan Muminggan United Banner (达尔罕茂明安联合旗), Old Barag Banner (陈巴尔虎旗), New Barag Left Banner (新巴尔虎左旗), New Barag Right Banner (新巴尔虎右旗), Arun Banner (阿荣旗), Horqin Right Front Banner (科尔沁右翼前旗), Horqin Right Middle Banner (科尔沁右翼中旗), Jalaid Banner (扎赉特旗), Horqin Left Middle Banner (科尔沁左翼中旗), Horqin Left Rear Banner (科尔沁左翼后旗), Hure Banner (库伦旗), Naiman Banner (奈曼旗), Jarud Banner (扎鲁特旗), Ar Horqin Banner (阿鲁科尔沁旗), Barin Left Banner (巴林左旗), Barin Right Banner (巴林右旗), Hexigten Banner (克什克腾旗), Ongniud Banner (翁牛特旗), Harqin Banner (喀喇沁旗), Aohan Banner (敖汉旗), Abag Banner (阿巴嘎旗), Sonid Left Banner (苏尼特左旗), Sonid Right Banner (苏尼特右旗), East Ujimqin Banner (东乌珠穆沁旗), West Ujimqin Banner (西乌珠穆沁旗), Taipusi Banner (太仆寺旗), Xianghuang Banner (镶黄旗), Zhengxiangbai Banner (正镶白旗), Zhenglanqi Banner (正蓝旗), Qahar Right Front Banner (察哈尔右翼前旗), Qahar Right Middle Banner (察哈尔右翼中旗), Qahar Right Rear Banner (察哈尔右翼后旗), Dorbod Banner (四子王旗), Dalad Banner (达拉特旗), Jungar Banner (准格尔旗), Otog Front Banner (鄂托克前旗), Otog  Banner (鄂托克旗), Hanggin Banner (杭锦旗), Uxin Banner (乌审旗), Ejin Horo Banner (伊金霍洛旗), Urad Front Banner (乌拉特前旗), Urad Middle Banner (乌拉特中旗), Urad Rear Banner (乌拉特后旗), Hanggin Rear Banner (杭锦后旗), Alxa Left Banner (阿拉善左旗), Alxa Right Banner (阿拉善右旗), Ejin Bannner (额济纳旗)
3 Autonomous Banners Morin Dawa Daur Autonomous Banner (莫力达瓦达斡尔族自治旗), Oroqen Autonomous Banner (鄂伦春自治旗), Ewenki Autonomous Banner (鄂温克族自治旗)

Minority Autonomous Counties in Inner Mongolia

Chinese Name  English Name
新宾满族自治县 Xinbin Manchu Autonomous County
岫岩满族自治县 Xiuyan Manchu Autonomous County 
清原满族自治县 Qingyuan Manchu Autonomous County 
本溪满族自治县 Benxi Manchu Autonomous County
桓仁满族自治县 Huanren Manchu Autonomous County
宽甸满族自治县 Kuandian Manchu Autonomous County
喀左蒙古族自治县 Kazuo Mongol Autonomous County
阜新蒙古族自治县 Fuxin Mongol Autonomous County


Traditional Villages in Inner Mongolia 

 Chinese Name   English Name
包头市土默特右旗美岱召镇美岱召村  Meidaizhao Village of Meidaizhao Town in Tumed Right Banner, Baotou City
包头市土默特右旗将军尧镇小召子村  Xiaozhaozi Village of Jiangjunyao Town in Tumed Right Banner, Baotou City
呼和浩特市土默特左旗毕克齐镇腊铺村  Lapu Village of Bikeqi Town  in Tumed Left Banner, Hohhot City
呼和浩特市清水河县北堡乡口子上村  Kouzishang Village of Beibao Town in Qingshuihe County,  Hohhot City
呼伦贝尔市额尔古纳市奇乾乡奇乾村  Qiqian Village of Qiqian Town of Ergun City, Hulunbuir
呼伦贝尔市莫力达瓦达斡尔族自治旗腾克镇腾克村  Tengke Village of Tengke Town in Morin Dawa Daur Autonomous Banner, Hulunbuir City
赤峰市敖汉旗丰收乡宋杖子村  Songzhangzi Village of Fengshou Town in Aohan Banner, Chifeng City
赤峰市松山区老府镇东杖房村  Dongzhangfang Village of Laofu Town in Songshan District, Chifeng City
 通辽市科左后旗阿古拉镇阿古拉嘎查  Agula Gacha(village) of Agula Town in Horqin Left Rear Banner, Tongliao City
 鄂尔多斯市准格尔旗龙口镇杜家峁村  Dujiamao Village of Longkou Town in Jungar Banner, Ordos City
 鄂尔多斯市鄂托克前旗城川镇大沟湾村  Dagouwan Village of Chengchuan Town in Otog Front Banner, Ordos
 巴彦淖尔市乌拉特前旗沙德格苏木沙德格嘎查  Shadege Gacha(village) of Shadege Sumu in Urad Front Banner, Bayannur City
 巴彦淖尔市乌拉特后旗新忽热苏木莫仁嘎查  Moren Gacha(village) of Xinhure Sumu in Urad Rear Banner, Bayannur City
 乌兰察布市四子王旗红格尔苏木大庙村  Damiao Village of Hongge'er Sumu in Dorbod Banner, Ulunqab City
 乌兰察布市卓资县梨花镇土城子村  Tuchengzi Village of Lihua Town in Zhuozi County, Ulunqab City
 阿拉善盟阿右旗雅布赖镇巴丹吉林嘎查  Badanjilin Gacha(village) of Yabulai Town in Alxa Right Banner, Alxa League

More about the Traditional Villages in Inner Mongolia 

Inheritors of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Inner Mongolia

Order Number



Date of Birth

Project Name

Declaration Place



Badema (巴德玛)



Mongolian Long Tune Folk Song (内蒙古长调民歌)

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Traditional Music 


Erige Jidema (额日格吉德玛)



Mongolian Long Tune Folk Song (内蒙古长调民歌)

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Traditional Music


Modega (莫德格)



Mongolian Long Tune Folk Song (内蒙古长调民歌)

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Traditional Music


Baoyin Delige'er (宝音德力格尔)



Mongolian Long Tune Folk Song (内蒙古长调民歌)

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Traditional Music


Qi. Baoligao (齐·宝力高)



Mongolian Morin Khuur (蒙古族马头琴音乐)

Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region

Traditional Music


Wu Yunlong (吴云龙)



Mongolian Sihu Folk Music (蒙古族四胡音乐)

Tongliao City, Inner Mongolia

Traditional Music

More about the Inheritors of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Inner Mongolia

Folk Customs in Inner Mongolia

  • Nadam: Usually held in August,  it is the biggest traditional Mongolian festival, and also, it is the only one of its kind to express the nomadic culture with traditional ethnic performances, equestrian shows and competition.
  • Mongolian Yurt: The Mongolian yurt, or Ger (pronounced “Gher” in Mongolian) is a portable, round tent covered with skins or felt and used as a dwelling by generations of Mongolian. It is a traditional living appliance in grassland and pastoral areas and is also a unique accommodation  where tourists are interested.
  • Ji Aobao (Aobao Festival): It is also known as Aobao Meeting, which is a traditional worshipping festival in Inner Mongolia when people pray for good weather and safety for both humans and livestock. After the Aobao Worship Ceremony (Ji Ao Bao, 祭敖包) is finished, comes the activities such as wrestling, singing and dancing.

Inner Mongolian Food Culture

  • Mongolian food: Traditional Mongolian food is found throughout Inner Mongolia. Meats, especially lamb, form most meals, and are divided into the Red Food category while the dairy produce such as milk, yoghurt and cheese are put into the White Food category. In local custom, White Food is the highest treat to their guests.
  • Mongolian toast: Mongolian toast: the host pour wine to show respect to the guests. Wine is the most precious food that can express the loyalty of friends. The host pour the wine into a silver bowl or a gold cup, supported it on Hada, sing toast song, and express his sincerity and hospitality. At this time, the guest should immediately take over the wine, drink if he can, or taste a little if he cannot. Then he should return the wine to the host, not to give up and decline the host's toast.

Inner Mongolian Folk Music

  • Mongol Stringed Instrument: Morin khuur (马头琴), or horse head instrument, The structure of Mongol stringed instrument is simple, including a thin and long body as well as a fiddle bow. It can be played solo, duet and concerto. Its sound is deep, booming and sonorous.
  • Sihu Music: The Sihu is also known as the houle, khuur, or khur in Mongolian, which is one of the most distinctive musical instruments, and includes treble, alto and bass versions.The music of the Sihu is highly expressive, profound, melodious, simple, and pure. It is the greatest musical creation of the Mongolian people, who are most famous for leading an agricultural-nomadic life.  
  • Folk Songs: There are three kinds of folk songs listed on the National Intangible Cultural Heritage: Ordos Short Tune folk song (短调民歌),  Manhan folk song (漫瀚调), which means “folk songs in desert areas” in Chinese), Guru folk song (古如歌), originated from the royal court and is the only complete preserved court song of Mongolian nationality.

Languages used in Inner Mongolia 

Mongol ethnic group mainly uses Mongolian (Inner Mongolia dialect), including Chahar, Bahrain, Erdos, Horqin, Harqin and other local languages used by Mongolian live in central Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. Han nationality and other ethnic groups mainly use Chinese, which is inconsistent in different regions. Northeastern mandarin is mostly used in the eastern region (East Four Leagues and East Xilingol League). Jin language is widely spoken in the central and western regions (from Bayannur to the west of Xilingol League). Alxa League is greatly influenced by provinces of Gansu and Ningxia, with official Lanzhou and Yinchuan Mandarin as the main language.