Nomads Winter Events

Each March residents living around the Khuvsgul lake celebrate the Ice Festival. The festival involves a variety of activities and competitions, including Ice Sumo, building a "ger" with ice, ice skating and sleigh riding all of which are held on shores of the beautiful Lake Khuvsgul. This two-day event is also a shamanistic ceremony offering fascinating insight into reindeer people's way of life. Each year Kazakh people who live in extreme west of Mongolia attend the competition which tests their speed, agility, and accuracy to hunt. The Kazakhs of Mongolia train their eagles to hunt for rabbits and foxes. This festival is organized by the local Kazakh community and the Berkut Association. Historically, nomadic Kazakhs depended on Golden Eagles for hunting. The Thousand Camel Festival, annually held in the Gobi desert, is organized by a local non-governmental organization working to protect and preserve endangered Bactrian camel population. This extraordinary festival includes a camel race, a polo competition and performances of traditional music and dance. By attending the festival you can also experience the nomads' way of life and famous paleontological sites.

Day 1

Ulaanbaatar - Moron

This morning we will take a direct flight to Moron the capital of Khuvsgul province. The flight will take you 3 hours. On arrival you will be driven to the lake, the smaller brother of Baikal, renowned for the clarity of its water and nature. In the end of the 4 hour drive you will reach the ger camp on the shores of the lake.

Days 2-3

Ice Festival - Lake Khuvsgul

Organized yearly on frozen Lake Khuvsgul by National Park rangers, local residents and businesses, the Ice Festival has been held five years running. A respite from the confinement of the winter months, the Ice Festival is a time to get outdoors and play games. The festival features a gathering of local residents and nomadic reindeer herders, and performances by shamans, musicians, and sportsmen. Competitions include ice sumo, a horse-drawn sleigh race, ice skating races, tug-of-war between local teams, and a Russian Jeep race on the ice. Many traditional games are played on the sidelines, and this is an ideal venue for visitors to join in the fun and games with local people. The festival is held at Khar-Us on Khuvsgul Lake, a short drive north of Hatgal across the frozen lake ice.

Day 4

Return to Ulaanbaatar

Early in the morning we will set out for a return drive to Moron. In the afternoon we will catch a flight to UB. On return you will be transferred to your hotel.

Day 5

Eagle Festival

You will be taken to the area where Eagle Festival will be held. At 10.00am the opening ceremony commences, as the participants join the parade on horse ride with their eagles. Then festival begins with each Kazakh displaying his hunting outfit and accessories. The Golden eagles will be released from a cliff and their owner will stand below and signal for them to land upon their arm, as they do during hunting. Then eagles will be released from a cliff to attack fox skins that will be dragged by their owner on horseback. Travel back to Ulaanbaatar. Stay overnight in the hotel.

Days 6-7

The Gobi Desert - The Camel Festival

Transfer to the local airport for a morning flight to the Gobi. Mongolia's two-humped Bactrian camel is nicknamed by locals "the Gobi Ship". It inhabits the Gobi desert in the southern part of Mongolia. The camel is an indispensable part of life for nomadic herdsmen, therefore a local association of camel herders organizes this gathering of camels and their breeders each year to promote continued breeding of the Bactrian camel and to educate both Mongolians and foreigners on the importance of the camel in the Mongolian way of life. Camels and riders compete in a race, in camel polo tournaments, and evenin a camel "beauty contest" where owners display the finest saddles and rigging for their camels. This festival is held in Bulgan village of the South Gobi province 30km from the ger camp. In the afternoon you will visit the ‘Flaming Red Cliffs’ – the famous site where the first dinosaur eggs were ever found by an American expedition in the 1920-ies. Meals and overnight at the same ger camp.

Day 8

Back to Ulaanbaatar

In the morning we will drive to the local airport for the return flight to Ulaanbaatar. On return you will be transferred to your hotel.

Departure code and date:
NCA-001, 01-08 March, 2016

Price per person for a group more than 9 people:
USD ...

Single Supplement: USD ...
Prices include the following:

Domestic flights, transportation within Mongolia. Single accommodation can be arranged at an additional cost. Tented accommodation while on trek, three meals a day, English-speaking guide, all sightseeing costs, transfers, camel or horse hire where specified, support staff including drivers, horse/camel men and camp assistants.

Prices do not include:

International transportation, travel insurance, visas, departure tax, alcoholic drinks, gratuities, items of a personal nature.

It is the responsibility of the client to be fully covered with travel and medical insurance while traveling in Mongolia.

Please note:

Upon request single supplement in the countryside can be provided at the additional cost. In case single accommodation in ger camps was not provided the amount would be calculated based on the missing nights and reimbursed. Nomads cannot be held responsible for over bookings, as long as the company can prove with sufficient documentation that overbooking has been the error of the third party.

Should circumstances beyond our control, such as the imposition of quarantine restrictions, any changes of domestic flight or train schedules, require a change of itinerary, we will inform your agent and propose an equivalent itinerary. Again, Nomads cannot take over the responsibility for the Airlines or the National Train Company. The traveler is responsible for having proper travel documents, such as a valid passport, proper visa and the necessary passport pictures.


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