Mongolia and the Naadam Festival

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This tour is a journey of discovery through the land of Genghis Khan, traversing the endless plains to explore sites of immeasurable beauty. Meet the lovely people and get involved in local festivities. This tour is also offered in reverse. Please enquire for further information.

Places Visited

New Zealand - Ulaanbaatar (2N) - Yolyn Am (2N) - Khongoryn Els (1N) - Bayanzag (1N) - Ongii (1N) - Mt Khogno Khan (1N) - Kharkhorin (1N) - Tsenkher Jighuur Hot Springs (1N) - Great White Lake (1N) - Jargal Jiguur (1N) - Lake Khovsgol (2N) - Ulaanbaatar (4N) - Terelj National Park (1N) – Ulaanbaatar (1N) - New Zealand

Days 1-2: Fly to Ulaanbaatar
Fly overnight to Mongolia's capital Ulaanbaatar. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.(D)
Days 1-2: Fly to Ulaanbaatar
Day 3: Ulaanbaatar
Ulaanbaatar is, perhaps surprisingly, a lively and bustling modern city. Explore Sukhbaatar Square, the Museum of Mongolian History and the Museum of Fine Art. Also, visit Gandan Monastery the largest and most important in Mongolia. (B,L,D)
Day 3: Ulaanbaatar
Days 4-5: Gobi Desert
Fly to Dalanzadgad which sits on the edge of the legendary and inhospitable Gobi Desert. Transfer to the ger camp near Gurvansaikhan National Park for two nights. You’ll spend two days immersed in natural beauty amongst jagged mountains and undulating sand dunes. Visit a local family to learn about their life in the desert. We also hike through the magnificent Yolym Am Gorge. (B,L,D)
Days 4-5: Gobi Desert
Day 6: Khongoryn Els Dunes
Embark on a 4WD adventure to Khongoryn Els and explore Mongolia’s largest sand dunes, also known as the ‘Singing Sand Dunes’. Enjoy the beauty of these landscapes and, for those who are feeling adventurous, climb to the top for fantastic views. (B,L,D)
Day 6: Khongoryn Els Dunes
Day 7: Flaming Cliffs
Continue exploring the magnifcent landscapes of the Gobi Desert before travelling to Bayanzag. Made up of peaks and canyons in a striking fiery red and orange sandstone, the Flaming Cliffs are a spectacular sight. The area is especially important thanks to the vast number of dinosaur fossils that have been found – even the amateur eye can spot them as you wander through the canyon. (B,L,D)
Day 7: Flaming Cliffs
Day 8: Ongiin Khiid Monastery
Journey to the banks of the Ongii River and view the atmospheric ruins of two monasteries – Barlim Khiid and Khutagt Khiid, comprising Ongiin Khiid, formerly one of the largest monasteries in Mongolia. (B,L,D)
Day 8: Ongiin Khiid Monastery
Day 9: Mt Khongno Khan
Spend the day exploring around the foot of the imposing Mt Khogno Khan. Set in the beautiful surroundings of a Natural Reserve, discover the remains of 17th-century Uvgun Khiid Monastery whilst enjoying the resplendent nature and mountain vistas. (B,L,D)
Day 9: Mt Khongno Khan
Day 10: Kharkhorin City
Mongolia's former capital Kharkhorin is located in a spot picked by Genghis Khan in 1220. However, the city remained Mongolia’s political, cultural and economic hub for only 40 years before power was transferred to Khanbaliq – now modern day Beijing. After the collapse of the Mongolian Empire, the city was abandoned to the elements and destroyed by roving soldiers until its remains were used to build Erdene Zuu Khiid, Mongolia’s first Buddhist monastery – which we will visit today. (B,L,D)
Day 10: Kharkhorin City
Day 11: Tsenkher Jiguur Hot Springs
Drive to Tsenkher Jiguur and lounge in the volcanic hot springs, surrounded by alpine scenery. (B,L,D)
Day 11: Tsenkher Jiguur Hot Springs
Day 12: Great White Lake
Enjoy the scenery of Great White Lake set amongst the extinct volcanoes of the Khangai mountain range. The extinct Khorgo Volcano sits watching over the lake – hike up to the crater for wonderful views, or walk along the lake shore. Later visit Zagaiin Monastery in the picturesque Tsetseling Town. (B,L,D)
Day 12: Great White Lake
Day 13: Jargal Jiguur
Spend a little more time lingering in the spectacular Great White Lake before driving to Jargal Jiguur ger camp. (B,L,D)
Day 13: Jargal Jiguur
Days 14-15: Lake Khovsgol
The extraordinary Lake Khovsgol is known as the Blue Pearl of Mongolia, a vast body of water enveloped in dense pine forests and backed by soaring mountains. Spend two days surrounded by nature in this national park, enjoying the incredible scenery. (B,L,D)
Days 14-15: Lake Khovsgol
Day 16: Lake Khovsgol to Ulaanbaatar
Travel through more delightful scenery before your flight to Ulaanbaatar. View the Mongol costumes on display in Central Square. (B,L,D)
Day 16: Lake Khovsgol to Ulaanbaatar
Days 17-18: Naadam Festival
Spend two days enjoying the revelry of the traditional Naadam Festival. Dating from the times of Genghis Khan the ‘three manly games’ have locals taking part in Mongolian wrestling, horse racing and archery. There is also a wealth of pageantry and ceremony in a festival of raucous fun that you’ll see nowhere else in the world. (B,L,D)
Days 17-18: Naadam Festival
Day 19: Terelj National Park
Soak up the beautiful alpine scenery of the Terelj National Park. Visit Turtle Rock and take an easy hike up to the Aryabal Monastery, perched on the mountainside. Visit a local family to get a glimpse of their nomadic lifestyle. Spend the night in a gercamp. (B,L,D)
Day 19: Terelj National Park
Day 20: Ulaanbaatar
Drive back to Ulaanbaatar, visiting the Genghis Khan statue complex en route. (B,L,D)
Day 20: Ulaanbaatar
Day 21: Folklore Performance
Take in the views from Zaisan Memorial Hill, wander Buddha Park and visit a cashmere factory. Discover Bogd King Palace Museum. This evening sit down to a folklore performance. (B,L,D)
Day 21: Folklore Performance
Day 22: Depart Ulaanbaatar
This morning is at your leisure before you are transferred to Ulaanbaatar airport to board your flight to New Zealand, arriving home to same or following day. (B)
Day 22: Depart Ulaanbaatar
Day 23 Arrive New Zealand
Arrive home today.
Day 23 Arrive New Zealand

Also Available

Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 0800 936 3998 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

Tour prices are per person, twin share departing Auckland. Regional departures available on request. Additional charges: Tipping is payable on arrival in destination (see Additional Price Information below).

Additional Price Information:


Single Supplement from $1,320
Land Only (Ulaanbaatar-Ulaanbaatar) 21 days from $10,580 per person
Additional costs: Customary tipping - US$135 per person (subject to change) payable on arrival.
8 Jul 2019 & 8 Jul 2020 departures operates in reverse, please contact us for deatils
Tour availability is updated each Monday. While every effort is made to ensure availability status is current, it is advisable to contact our reservations department on 0800 936 3998. Limited seats denotes 4 seats or less available.

A visa is not required for stays under 30 days.

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. It’s a good idea to check call costs with hotel staff or your local guide before making calls, as this can be expensive. A service charge may also be involved. To call New Zealand – the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 64, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number.
 
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are quite popular and you will find high quality coverage, with active roaming agreements with most of the service providers. Please make sure you are aware of associated costs and have activated your international roaming prior to departure.
 
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have wifi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and Mongolia is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount (in US Dollars) to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size and services used during the trip.
 
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure. In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
 
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

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Why Book This Tour?

Mongolia is a place of remote mystery. This tour is a journey of discovery through the land of Genghis Khan, traversing the endless plains to explore sites of immeasurable natural beauty. Expect many days of long driving

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