Ordos City Ghost Town, Mongolia Interior, China 

Ordos Kangbashi is a new city of world-class architecture, extravagant public plazas, international scale stadiums, and seas of crisp new housing that rose up from the barren deserts of China’s Inner Mongolia in less than a decade. However, this new city soon found itself showcased in the international spotlight not for all the things it had but for what it was perceived to lack: namely, people, businesses, and the vital innards that make up a real, living city.

Having been called a modern ghost town, a stillborn city, and a failed utopia, Ordos Kangbashi has been the recipient of an ongoing stream of criticism from myriad international media sources. The majority of this coverage has posited the place as a shining example of whatever Chinese financial crisis is the flavor of the day: housing bubbles, municipal debt, over-supply, bankrupt developers, as well as nefarious plots by local officials to artificially boost GDP to get promoted.

Epic China Culture & Adventure Route © Monika Newbound

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