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In the region of Hulunbeier, to which Yakeshi belongs, there are six different tribes.
Most of the inhabitants in Yakeshi are Han Chinese or Mongolians, the minorities are for example Daur or Ewenke, which means “the people who came down from the mountain”.
The Ewenke people earlier lived as reindeer herdsmen. The Mongolians used to live as horsemen, with horses as a big part of their lives. Still the horses are very important, they are well-kept and appreciated. A very significant person to the Mongolians is Djingis Khan, the Mongolian sovereign who united all Mongolian tribes and founded an empire at the beginning of the 13th century. His picture can be seen in all traditional Mongolian houses.
At night, the nomadic tribes gathered around the cooking fires and prepared their simple meal. Chunks of meat were speared and cooked in a stew, bubbling in a primitive cauldron. Still milk and meat based food are the most common in the area. One local speciality is the Hot Pot, like a fondue with different sorts of meat and vegetables. Milk tea is the traditional hot drink the Mongolian people like the best. It is made by boiling the water with brick tea, fresh milk and some salt.