Tour Scope: Southern Mongolia and Central Mongolia Tour Route: UB-Dalanzadgad-Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs)-Khongoryn Els Sand Dunes-Yol Valley-Dalanzadgad-UB-Karakorum-Terelj National Park-Tsonchinboldog (Giant Statue of Chinggis Khaan)-UB
Highlights: Khongoryn Els Sand Dune, Yolyn Am (Eagle Valley), Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs), Karakorum, Wild horses in Hustai, Chinggis Khan Statue and Terelj
Tour Season: 15 May- 15 September Tour Level: Extreme
Day 1. Ulaanbaatar
Day 2. Flight to Gobi and travel to Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs)
Day 3. Khongoryn Els Sand Dunes
Day 4. Yolyn Am (Eagle Valley)
Day 5. Flight to Ulaanbaatar
Day 6. Karakorum
Day 7. Hustai National Park
Day 8. Terelj National Park
Day 9. Chinggis Khan Statue-13th Century Complex-Ulaanbaatar
Day 10. Departure
Accommodations: 3 nights in hotel and 6 nights in ger camps Meals: Inclusive meals are indicated in itinerary (B = breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
Transport: Bus or minibus in Ulaanbaatar and 4WD minivans in the countryside Optional activities: Camel riding, Horse riding
Staffs: Visit Mongolia Team (Tour guide and driver)
DAY 1 ULAANBAATAR
Upon arrival at the Chinggis Khan International Airport in Mongolia, you will meet Visit Mongolia crew and transfer to the hotel, conveniently located in downtown Ulaanbaatar. After freshening up from your flight, we start our first day around Ulaanbaatar at Gandan Monastery, the largest and most important monastery of Mongolia with 500 monks. From here we will go to the National History Museum which tells the rich history of Mongolia. The heart of Ulaanbaatar, Sukhbaatar Square, is just a short walk away. Here we will see the Parliament House, National Opera and City Hall. Afterwards, we will visit Zaisan Hill, which offers great views of the city. In the evening, you will attend a performance of traditional dancing and khoomii (Mongolian throat singing). Overnight in hotel. (L,D)
DAY 2 GOBI DESERT/BAYANZAG (FLAMING CLIFFS)
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 1.5h flight and 100 km, 2 hours drive
Flight to the Dalanzadgad, the center of the South Gobi province. From the Dalanzadgad airport, we will start our journey in the famous Gobi Desert driving toward Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs), more commonly known as the legendary “Flaming Cliffs”. Through the journey we will see arid steppe landscape with many camel herds and herding families. Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs) is a red rock creation, formed 60-70 million years ago, made famous by an American explorer Roy Chapman Andrews’s discovery there of complete dinosaur skeletons and eggs in 1920s. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 3 KHONGORYN ELS SAND DUNES
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 180 km, 4-5 hours
Travel to Khongoryn Els Sand Dunes, Mongolia’s largest sand dunes, reaching a height of 800 meters in its highest areas and known as the “Singing Dunes”. Evening visit to a camel-breeder’s family with a chance to go camel riding. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 4 YOLYN AM (EAGLE VALLEY)
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 200 km, 4-5 hours
Travel to Yolyn Am, or ‘Eagle Valley’, located in the foothills of the Altai Mountains. The valley’s remnant streams create ice formations which one may find in the mouth of the valley as late as July. The mountains surrounding the valley also provide habitat for Argali wild sheep (one of the last wild great-horned sheep) and ibex, which may be spotted in the early morning as they walk along the mountain ridges. Visit the Gobi Museum and trek through the valley. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 5 ULAANBAATAR
Flight back to Ulaanbaatar. In the afternoon, we will visit some interesting museums including the Winter Palace of the Bogd Khan and the Choijin Lama Temple. Overnight in hotel. (B, L, D)
DAY 6 RUINS OF 12TH CENTURY CAPITAL CITY KARAKORUM
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 360 km, 4-5 hours
Travel to Karakorum, the former capital city of world’s greatest land empire, established by Chinggis Khan. Here we will tour the oldest Buddhist monastery, Erdenezuu, a religious complex spanning over 400 sq. meters surrounded by 108 stupas. It was first built on the ruins of Karakorum in 1586 by Abtai Sain Khan. The site has some of the best works of religious art and architecture in Mongolia. Visit Karakorum Museum. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 7 HUSTAI HILL
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 280 km, 3-4 hours
Travel to Hustai Nature Reserve to see the Przewalski wild horses, reintroduced back into the wild in their native homeland. Visit the local information center to learn about the history of the last pure wild horse and the history of the area. In the evening you have chance to go horse riding. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 8 TERELJ NATIONAL PARK
Approximate distance covered and estimated travel time: 170 km, 2-3 hours
Drive to Terelj National Park, one of the most visited sites near Ulaanbaatar. Terelj is set in the picturesque valley of granite mountains and the beautiful Terelj River. Transfer to tourist ger camp. We will then visit the Turtle Rock and the Temple of Meditation “Aryabala”. Visit Nomadic family. Hike around or horseback riding for an hour. Overnight in a ger camp. (B, L, D)
DAY 9 CHINGGIS KHAAN STATUE-13TH CENTURY COMPLEX-ULAANBAATAR
Travel to the Tsonchinboldog, the Giant Statue of Chinggis Khan. Afterwards, a short drive to the 13th Century Complex. This tourist park complex is wholly-dedicated to show the ways of living and working of 13th century Mongolia to the visitors. Everything modern is absent in the park territory. In the afternoon, drive back to Ulaanbaatar. Farewell dinner. Overnight in hotel. (B, L, D)
DAY 10 DEPARTURE
Transfer to airport for return flight. (B)
Visit Mongolia’s policy is to provide top quality service to our customers at reasonable prices. We will pleased to provide detailed price quotes for those interested in specific tours.
Hotels are available in different ranges of quality and service. The package cost includes all services except accommodations in Ulaanbaatar (UB). We do give “choices” for our clients to pick their appropriate accommodations in Ulaanbaatar. However we encourage group travelers to pick the same property. We will provide hotel rates for Visit Mongolia customers for your selection. Please select hotel and room type and let us know.
In the Countryside:
– Ger Camps
While touring in the countryside, the most common accommodations outside cities on our tours are called ger camps. A ger is the traditional felt tent of nomadic herders. Accommodation in the ger camps is based on two people sharing one ger. Each ger is heated by a wood stove and has two wood-framed beds.
The camp restaurant and western-style toilet/shower facilities are located in the middle of the camp or close by. All camps supply towels. The ger camps provide all bedding and clients will not be expected to bring their own sleeping bags if they stay overnight in the ger camps. Staying in a ger is a memorable experience of Mongolian culture.
– Tented camping
We use tented camps on our adventure journeys to more remote areas. The tents are either 2 or 3 person tents. A sleeping mat will be provided to each person staying in a tent but clients are asked to bring their own sleeping bags. Our expedition staff sets up camps and prepares meals and takes care of all your needs. Tented camps allow you to interact more with the nature and visit the remotest areas of the country.
We use different types of vehicles depending on the nature of tours, destination and final number of travellers.
– For jeep overland adventure tours we use Japanese 4WD vans and SUV’s (Mitsubishi, Toyota, Nissan), which is the best available for its type
– A bus or mini-bus serves group tourists within Ulaanbaatar
– In some remote areas where we have to fly, we arrange local vehicles most of which are Russian 4WD jeeps or minivans. Daily driving distance will be appr. 200-250km.
– For sightseeing in Ulaanbaatar we use deluxe coaches, vans and sedans.
All Visit Mongolia drivers have many years of experience. They know their way around the Mongolian countryside including many places where they are no marked roads. They are all skilled mechanics which is crucial in remote places. Technical inspections on the vehicles are made regularly.
An English speaking Mongolian guide will accompany the entire time of your trip. The most of our guides have a wonderful and outstanding reputation among our clients. They have an in depth knowledge of Mongolian history, nomadic civilization, customs, traditions, and nature memories. After every tour we get feedbacks and emails about our guides.
Meals are included in the cost. Visit Mongolia provides the selection of the best available local restaurants on cities and popular destinations.
When you are in Ulaanbaatar, you can eat out in number of restaurants as serving Indian, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Italian, English, French, German, Russian, Latin American and of course Mongolian cuisines. FYI, basic foodstuffs for Mongolians are beef, mutton and noodles.
When you stay in tourist Ger camps, the most camps provide meals as western cuisine. During excursions to remote areas we provide services of professional chefs who normally accompany the group. Arrangements can be made for vegetarians and those with special dietary needs with advance notice.
Mongolia’s climate is continental and extreme. With more than two hundred days of full sun per year it has been given the nickname of ‘the’ Country of Blue Skies’.
The tourist season in Mongolia is between the months of May and September. The weather during this time varies considerably from region to region. The highest rainfall period is in July and August, however, there are still days of glorious sunshine during this time. The Gobi usually has the hottest temperatures. Summer evenings in the Gobi can be cool because of Mongolia’s high altitude. The best time to visit the Gobi is June and September. The spring is a time of strong winds, especially difficult in the sandy areas of the Gobi.
Most travelers come to Mongolia in mid-July for the annual National Naadam Festival.