Experience Mongolian Gobi Tour
Experience the best that Mongolia has to offer: a living nomadic culture, Buddhist heritage, and incredible landscapes. On our Experience Mongolian Gobi trip you’ll stay with a nomadic community, learning about their way of life and stay overnight in a ger. You’ll also witness the desolation of the Mongolian landscape, and hike through national parks before reaching the Gobi desert. At the Gobi we’ll traverse the immense Khongor Sand Dunes, enjoying epic views.
Why We Love this Tour
This tour is a fantastic introduction to what makes Mongolia unique. Only a small group tour like ours gets you out in the wild landscape of Mongolia, meeting nomad families, and staying overnight in gers. You’ll never forget a sunset from atop the huge dunes of the massive Gobi Desert. Combine this with our Experience Western Mongolia & Golden Eagle Festival for an unforgettable journey.
- Day 1Arrival to UlaanbaatarArrive in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia. Transfer to hotel. After lunch we will visit Gandantegchinlen Monastery and the National Museum of Mongolia. We'll enjoy a traditional art performance and welcome dinner. Stay overnight in three-star hotel.
- Day 2Khustai National ParkTravel to Khustai National Park, home to the resurrected wild Mongolian horses, popularly known as Takhi (Przewalski’s Horse). Following our visit to the Information Center we will hike for a couple hours, covering about 8-10km, hoping to see Takhi horses and other wildlife. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 3Visit nomad community and hikingTravel for 200km to Gurvanbulag county to reach a community of nomadic herders. Upon arrival, you will be greeted according to Mongolian tradition and warmly welcomed to nomadic meals and tea. Experiencing this cultural immersion of nomadic life is a highlight of our trip. In the afternoon we will watch how skillful cowboys catch horses by “uurga” – a traditional wooden lasso and training an untamed horse that has never been ridden before. You will learn more in-depth about traditional technology and how to make a halter and hobble by leather. Stay overnight in community-based ger camp.
- Day 4KharaKhorumTravel to KharaKhorum. Visit the famous Erdene Zuu (Hundred Treasures) monastery, built on the remains of the ancient Kharakhorum city in 1586 by the order of Abtai Sain Khan, descendent of Chinggis Khan. This was the first Buddhist center in Mongolia. The monastery is surrounded by a wall with 108 stupas, 25 of which are on each side and two at every corner. We will visit a local historical museum and additional sites around the area. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 5From Steppe to DesertTravel 270 km to Ongi temple ruins. We'll reach our ger camp by late afternoon. In the evening we'll take a short hike along the area where the ruins are situated. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 6Bayanzag & HikingContinue traveling to Bayanzag. Here we will see the saksaul forest in the Gobi desert and the red flaming cliffs, which formed by the erosion of the sand and rock over many thousands of years. 70 million years ago dinosaurs lived here and this place is internationally famous for its dinosaur remains including complete skeletons, eggs and hatchlings from the Cretaceous Period. We'll hike through the saksaul forest for an hour or two followed by a Gobi sunset. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 7Khongor Sand Dunes and Camel RidingTravel to 170 km to the Khongor sand dunes. Known as the Singing sand dunes, the Khongor dunes reach up to 300 meters high, 15km wide, and 180km long. In the afternoon we'll walk over the golden sand dunes looking out at the incredible view from atop the dunes. Today we will visit a nomad family and have a chance to see nomadic life in the Gobi. You can taste traditional dairy products made of camel milk. We'll ride camels through the desert for an hour. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 8Yol Valley & HikingThis morning we will travel to the Yol Valley (Lammergeier’s Gorge) about 180km away. Sheltering rich wildlife, this picturesque valley is situated between the beautiful peaks of the Gurvan Saikhan Mountains. We'll also visit the Gobi museum and hike through the valley for about 5-6km. Stay overnight in ger camp.
- Day 9Return flight to UlaanbaatarAfter breakfast we'll drive to the local airport and take a flight to Ulaanbaatar. Arrive in Ulaanbaatar and transfer to your hotel. Guided shopping for cashmere and other souvenirs. Enjoy the farewell dinner. Stay overnight in three-star hotel.
- Day 10DepartureAfter breakfast transfer to airport for departure. (If you are joining our Experience Western Mongolia & Golden Eagle Festival. you'll join the group in Ulaanbaatar.
Packing List for Experience Mongolia trip (recommended)
- Weather in Mongolia in summer can be hot during the day and chilly at night. Pack light layer clothing.
- Comfortable shoes/hiking boots for walking/hiking
- Cash (new, clean Euros or USD printed after 2006)
- ATM cards, credit cards (only useable/accepted in the cities)
- Headlamp and/or flashlight (and spare batteries)
- Money belt
- Gifts from home like photos, stickers, postcards, children’s books, souvenir pins for the Nomad family
- Please note that the temperatures can become chilly at night an average about 8 to 12 degree Celsius (46-54 Fahrenheit) during the night time and about 25 to 30 degree Celsius (77-86 Fahrenheit) during the daytime.
For the current weather conditions in Ulaanbaatar, visit: http://www.bbc.com/weather/2028462
The accommodation will range from a three-star hotel for 2 nights in Ulaanbaatar before and after traveling through the countryside of Mongolia where we will spend 6 nights in ger camps and one night in a community-based ger stay.
The transportation during this trip will be by bus/minibus in the city and by 4WD Russian minivan in the countryside. There is one domestic flight.
Our trip provider: This exclusive Unquote Travel tour is brought to you in conjunction with local tour provider: Tour Mongolia. Tour Mongolia has been a local tour leader in Mongolia since 2001. We chose to work with them due to their experience connecting travelers with local Mongolian culture, their focus on adventure travel, and their continued dedication to Responsible Tourism. Hope you’ll let us show you the real Mongolia!
Cancellations and Refunds
If you must cancel your reservation for a tour and/or its extension, we will refund your payment, less the following fees per tour and/or extension:
|Days Prior to Trip Start Date||Trip Cancellation Fee Per Person|
|31 – 60 days||50% of trip price|
|0-30 days||100% of trip price|
Payment in full is due 90 days before trip start date.
About our Guide
In addition to our local Mongolian guide, Unquote Travel co-founder Paige Conner Totaro will join us on this trip as group leader. In 2013, she took a year-long family trip around the world and soon after established Unquote Travel. She has long had a fascination with the landscape and nomadic cultures of Mongolia.