The Beauties of the Gobi

Spend a day exploring the sights and sounds of Ulaanbaatar before traveling for 9 days through the varied landscape of the Gobi. You will be staying in gers, the traditional dwelling of the Mongols. Visit Buddhist monasteries enjoying recent revival, sites of dinosaur fossils, an ice gorge and ride a camel through the Khongoriin Els sand-dunes.

This program combines the ancient traditions of Buddhism with the natural beauty and grandeur of the pristine nature. Erdenezuu is the largest functioning monastery in Mongolia and is slowly and lovingly being restored to its former glory after many years of abandonment and neglect during the socialism era. The Monastery is situated where the ancient capital of Mongolia, Karakorum, is located. It was here that Chinggis Khaan assembled his mighty cavalry to conquer half of the known world.

Next we head into the Gobi area. The sites of the Gobi are varied and unique, like the valley at Yoliin Am, known as Eagle Valley, whose depths support huge glacial sheets that remain until the hot summer months, or the massive sand dunes. Of great interest to foreign travelers and scientists alike are the dinosaur remains scattered throughout the Gobi.

Day 1

Arrive and transfer to a 4 star hotel. After lunch at the hotel restaurant, do afternoon sightseeing in Ulaanbaatar, including the Bogd Khan Palace, which is a series of beautiful traditional buildings where the last religious King of Mongolia resided. Also visit the National History Museum. In the evening there will be a cultural program consisting of a Folklore show. Overnight in a 4-star hotel

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Day 2

You will be met at your hotel at a pre-arranged time by your guide and driverand will head west into the countryside. The scenery is wide-open steppe with rolling hills in the background. We will stop for lunch along the way and reach Mount ‘Khogno Khan’ in the late afternoon. It is about a 6 hours drive from Ulaanbaatar. This mountain is perfect for some afternoon hiking and there are remains of an ancient monastery, which should be explored. Dinner and overnight will be at a ger camp.


Day 3

Today we will drive on to Karakorum, the ancient capital of Mongolia where there is now a small township. This is about a 2 hour drive from Khogno Khan Mountain. On arrival the first and most obvious landmarks are the remains of the Erdenezuu Monastery’s vast walls. This monastery was built in 1586 and is surrounded by a massive 400m x 400m wall. Not a single nail was used in the construction of the ornate temples, only a few of which remain standing after the communist purges. We will visit this monastery and then head on to the Karakorum ger camp. Dinner and overnight will be at a ger camp.


Day 4

Today we will make a trip to the Orkhon Waterfall, situated in the Orkhon Valley. This valley is known as the cradle of Mongolian civilization as many of Mongolia’s ancient monuments lie within its borders. Today we will visit some of its natural beauties. The Orkhon Waterfall marks the halfway point of the Orkhon River, the longest river in Mongolia. The area surrounding the waterfall is green and forested and we will spend the day walking in the area and having a picnic lunch. This area of Mongolia is well known for producing the best ‘airag’, or fermented mares’ milk, in the country. Many locals will love to challenge you to a singing game, the loser having to consume a whole bowl of the ‘airag’, so beware when visiting local families! The drive from Karakorum is about two-and-a-half hours and in the afternoon we will drive to a ger camp in the area for dinner and the night.


Day 5

Today we start driving towards the Gobi desert. The scenery will change into the vast open steppe that meets with the horizon. There will be occasional nomadic families’ gers in the distance. We will have a packed lunch on the way and in the afternoon we will come to a ger camp by the Ongiin River, where we will stay for the night. There is the ruin of Ongiin Monastery nearby, which we will visit.


Day 6

Continue driving to the flaming, red cliffs at Bayanzag. The first discovery of dinosaur eggs, as well as bones, was made in this area in the famous American expedition of the 1920’s. There will be a chance to meet local nomadic people and to visit their gers. Overnight will be at the local ger camp.


Day 7

Today we drive west along the Altai Mountain range until we reach Khongoriin Els. Reaching heights of 800m, these are Mongolia’s largest sand dunes. Locally they are called the ‘Singing Dunes’ because of the tons of sand, which shift in the wind, making a strange sound similar to that of distant aircraft. The drive is about 6 hours long. We will stay overnight in a ger camp close to the dunes.


Day 8

After some long days of driving we will have the opportunity to use a different type of transport. We will be riding on camels today to explore these massive sand- dunes. The two-humped camels are very comfortable to ride, as they walk slowly and gently and we will be well supported by the humps, sitting comfortably between them. Our camel wrangler will take us to the sand-dunes. We will take our lunch with us and ride back to the camp in the evening.


Day 9

Today we will drive to Yoliin Am (Eagle Valley). This is a long valley with high cliff walls, which shade some areas of the valley floor from the sun for the entire year, allowing the stunning ice sheets to form. We will walk through the valley and see the ibex grazing on the cliff faces. The wildlife in the area is abundant and the desert plants vibrant and varied. The areas we will be visiting are situated in the Gobi Gurvansaikhan National Park, which encompasses the ‘Three Beauties’ peaks and the eastern-most points of the Altai Mountains. Overnight at a local ger camp.


Day 10

After breakfast we will drive to Dalanzadgad and take a local flight back to Ulaanbaatar. The flight takes one-and-a-half hours and your guide will accompany you. On arrival, you will be taken to your hotel.

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Day 11

Today will be a full day of sightseeing including Gandantegchilen Monastery and the Dinosaurs Museum. After lunch at the hotel we will visit the Fine Arts Museum and Toy Museum. The evening program will include a folklore show followed by a farewell dinner at Hazara Restaurant. Overnight will be at a 4-star hotel.

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Day 12

In the morning you will be taken to the airport for your departure.

Departure codes and dates:
NCA-002,12-22 Jun, 2017
NCA-011, 26 Aug-6Sep, 2017

Price per person for a group more than 9 people: USD2.436

Single supplement: USD360
Prices include the following:

Domestic flights, transportation within Mongolia, twin accommodation in a 4 star hotel. 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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