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Gobi Circuit

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FromUS$ 1,395
Price
FromUS$ 1,395
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Terms & Conditions

The purchase of travel services offered by Tour Mongolia constitutes a contractual arrangement between the person making the booking and Tour Mongolia, and represents acceptance of Tour Mongolia’s Terms and Conditions described here.  They form the basis on which bookings are accepted by Tour Mongolia and it is important that you read them carefully.

 

The very best of sensational Mongolia in just 9 days. Visit some of the most amazing destinations around Mongolia, from the majestic singing sand dunes of Khongor Els to the ancient Mongol capital of Kharakhorum, the dinosaur fossils at the Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs and the Vulture Valley of Yol Am. Wild Takhi horses watching, hiking, horse and camel riding, staying overnight in a Mongolian ger alongside an authentic nomadic family and far more.  Travel by air south to the Gobi desert and return to the capital overland. This nine-day tour is a fabulous option for people who really want to make the most of their time in Mongolia. You go further, explore more, straying off the beaten track. Meet travelers from all over the world and craft incredible memories.

Tour Departures:

Jun 2, Jul 18, Aug 25

Duration:

9 Days

Group Size:

4-12 Pax

Highlights

Terelj National Park - Aryabal Temple - Ger Homestay with Nomadic Family - Horse Riding - Chinggis Statue - Gobi Desert - Yol Am (Vulture Gorge) - Khongor Els (Singing Dunes) - Camel Ride - Bayanzag (Flaming Cliffs) - Ongii Monastery Ruins - Kharakhorum - Erdene Zuu Monastery - Gurvanbulag Nomadic Community - Archery - Hustai National Park - Wild Takhi Horses - Manzushir Ruins - Mt. Bogd Khan Climb

Fitness Level

- ACTIVE: This tour involves considerable walking and long travel days

Meeting point

Good news! You can be picked up from your hotel, just email us the details. Don't worry if you haven't booked the accommodation yet, you can email it to us later.

Transport

On the dust of the desert and mud of the steppe, the Japanese off-road MPV provides comfort and safety for your trip. These 4x4 vehicles are specifically tuned for the rough off-roading that's inevitable when traveling in the wilds of Mongolia. They provide ample space, air conditioning and are well maintained, while offering ample luggage space, seat belts and speed.

Guide

At Tour Mongolia we believe that a good guide is essential to the enjoyment of any trip. Your guide will be English speaking and hand picked by us to suit your itinerary and requirements. Each guide is personally briefed on all elements of the trip. You will be sent guide details in the confirmation document prior to your tour.

Accommodation

During this trip, you will be staying at our hand-picked, quality ger camps, and a guest ger next to a nomadic family. Gers are equipped with beds, linen, stove, table and chairs and have electric lightning. Loos, showers are only available at the ger camps, with homestay facilities being more basic.

ROUTE MAP

ITINERARY

A day-by-day plan to guide your journey.

DAY 1
DAY 2
DAY 3
DAY 4
DAY 5
DAY 6
DAY 7
DAY 8
DAY 9

TERELJ – ARYABAL TEMPLE – HORSE TREK – GER HOMESTAY
You will be picked up from your hotel or another pre-arranged city location around 9:00 am (pick ups are scheduled between 8:30 and 9:30), hop into vehicle and journey east to Terelj National Park, stopping quickly en route at the sacred Turtle Rock which you can climb up and hike to the nearby Aryabal Meditation Temple set on a hill. The National Park yields some great scenery which makes it a very popular weekend getaway for both locals and tourists alike. However, you will now pass through the main valley to get away from the crowds, and after Terelj village cross over the river – or rather, through the river! A few kilometers further on you will stop at a family’s ger – step inside and experience local hospitality, drink milk tea, and enjoy homemade lunch, while the horses are being prepared outside. Then saddle up for a ride up into the valley towards the Khan Khentii hills. No horse riding experience is necessary – Mongolian horses are small and we match horses to riders – you should be comfortable quickly and your guide will be there to assist. Return to your ger and in the evening enjoy a nomadic feast of khorkhog or similar countryside fare – you can help with food preparation if you wish. In the evening there will be time to socialize with your nomadic hosts over homemade vodka made of fermented mare’s milk, or alternatively for some incredible stargazing of the clear, Mongolian sky.

Travel details: 2h/60km to Terelj
Accommodation: Simple guest Ger next to a nomadic family
Meals included: Lunch, Dinner

OFF ROADING/BIKE RIDING (Optional) – CHINGGIS STATUE – GYROCOPTER
After breakfast, say goodbye to your hosts and hop on the quality mountain bikes that we took with us from Ulaanbaatar and follow your guide riding on the country trails of the Terelj National park. Riding will be on rather flat dust trail which is suitable for average fitness levels, but if you rather not ride, just stay at the ger and observe nomads herding to families – you can get involved too. After returning, set off for some great off-road vehicle excursion to the remarkable Chinggis Statue complex near Erdene. Once you arrive, climb up inside until you reach the exterior staircase which runs up the mane of the horse to a viewpoint overlooking the Tuul River, Terelj & the hills of Khan Khentii – Chinggis’ homeland. Then, visit the nearby Gyrocopter pad and take a 10-minute flight over the Chinggis Statue and enjoy the panoramic views from above Mongolia.

Upon landing back on the ground it’s back to Ulaanbaatar, arrive on time for dinner and settle in your hotel room for the night.

Travel details: 2h/50km to Chinggis Statue; 1.5h/55km to Ulaanbaatar
Accommodation: Twin Room – Ramada Hotel
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

YOL AM (VULTURE VALLEY) – KHONGOR ELS (SINGING DUNES)
Today you fly to the Gobi Desert. Usually, Dalanzadgad flights depart very early, around 6 am, so you will have packed breakfast prepared earlier in the hotel. Your guide will pick you up from the hotel around 4:45 and will fly with you. After landing, drive to Yol Am – we always advise an early visit to avoid other people, to maximize the chance of seeing wildlife before the heat of the day comes, and for the best light for photography. Park up at the head of the valley and keep a lookout for birds of prey and ibex on top of the rocky outcrops above you as you wander down into the gorge. The walk here typically lasts around 1-2 hours depending on distance ventured and one’s individual pace. As you walk further down the valley the steep rock faces close in and the stream that crisscrosses the path disappears under sheets of ice – there may not be much ice in the summer months but there should be some. After you have explored the area, continue driving through the rocky tracks through the Gurvan Saikhan hills via the Dungenir Pass, and onto Khongoryn Els via the scenic southern route. Reach the ger camp you will be staying at in the afternoon and rest a bit. There is normally plenty of time in the evening for the short drive to the Singing Dunes, and to climb up for a spectacular sunset view.

Travel details: Flight 1.5hrs; 1hr/50km to Yol Am; 5h/140km to Khongor Els
Accommodation: Standard Ger – Gobi Erdene Ger Camp
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

KHONGOR ELS – CAMEL RIDE – KHAVSGAIT PETROGLYPHS – BAYANZAG
If you are an early bird, and if the forecast is good, you may like a dawn climb of the dunes – especially if you didn’t go the previous evening. After breakfast at camp, visit a camel herding family who spend the summers near the water springs close to the dunes – enjoy the hospitality in their ger where you will be able to try camel milk and other traditional Mongolian fare. Afterwards saddle up for a camel ride alongside the dunes, before driving back east across the plains, picnicking en-route. As you drive, look out for herds of white-tailed gazelles and demoiselle or white-naped cranes. Stop at Khavtsgait to explore the petroglyphs. Walk up a rocky outcrop and search the surrounding rocks for ancient engravings that dot the area. You will be surprised by how many there are one can spend a good half an hour exploring and discovering. From this vantage point there is a fantastic view over the surrounding plains. Then continue onto your characterful ger camp and enjoy the evening in your en-suite ger located very near the spectacular Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs – you may be on time to catch the sunset  – otherwise, you will have the chance to see the cliffs tomorrow.

Travel details: 4h/120km to Khavsgait; 1hr/50km to Bayanzag
Accommodation: Deluxe, En-Suite Ger – Gobi Mirage Ger Camp
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

BAYANZAG FLAMING CLIFFS – ONGIIN KHIID
After breakfast, drive a short drive to the Bayanzag for an exploratory walk around the spectacular sandstone formations, known as the Flaming Cliffs due to their deep red hue. We advise spending up to an hour and a half strolling around this paleontological wonder – both atop the cliffs and down on the valley floor. Then you will take a diversion en-route to the village of Bulgan – perhaps even stop there for lunch. This might also be useful if you would like to pick up provisions (beer, snacks, chocolate etc.), and there is also an organic vegetable farming project here that is worth a look. Then continue the journey north towards the heartland of Mongolia, whilst still remaining in the middle Gobi. The temple complex of Ongiin Khiid is a noteworthy and convenient stop-off point mid-way. Arrive and settle into your ger camp in late-afternoon before taking a stroll around the Ongiin temple complex. Enter the reconstructed temple, see the stupa engraved with the names of the victims of the purges, and see the monks who run the monastery.

Travel details: 6h/350km drive to Ongii Temple
Accommodation: Standard Ger – Ongiin Nuuts Ger Camp
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

KHARAKHORUM – MONUMENT OF 3 KINGS
After breakfast, continue your north. As you drive you will see the open flat plains give way to greener undulating countryside, with more families and livestock. Pass through the village of Khujirt where you may stop for a pit stop, supplies and maybe lunch – depending on what time you have set off in the morning. Arrive at your ger camp by around 3 pm. After resting in the camp, drive a short distance to visit the Monument of the 3 Kings overlooking the Orkhon River, and the fertility stone on the edge of town. 

Travel details: 6hrs/300km to Kharakhorum
Accommodation: Deluxe, En-Suite Ger – Monkh Tenger Ger Camp
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

ERDENE ZUU MONASTERY – GARVANBULAG COMMUNITY
Head to Erdene Zuu Monastery in time to hear the monks chanting, which takes place mid-morning. Take a guided tour around the main temples, and walk around the grounds. You will then visit the town’s interesting local museum and the local market. Then it’s onto Gurvanbulag, where you will be staying at a community run eco-lodge. On arrival enter one of the gers of local nomads and experience the hospitality and traditional way of life – you can help make and drink milk tea, try homemade produce such as yogurt and dried curds. In the afternoon saddle up for some horse riding to the sand dunes nearby and try your hand at traditional Mongolian archery – your guide and driver will be delighted to teach you and enter a bow and arrows competition. In the evening enjoy a traditional countryside feast of khorkhog – mutton and vegetables seared and steamed with red hot stones from the fire.

Travel details: 2hrs/70km to Gurvanbulag
Accommodation: Deluxe Ger; Gurvanbulag Eco-Lodge
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

HUSTAI NATIONAL PARK – WILD ‘TAKHI’ HORSES – TERELJ NATIONAL PARK
After a leisurely breakfast jump in the vehicle for the journey back east to Hustai. On the way, you will stop briefly at horse racing fields west of the city and once more to visit Khar Bukhiin Balgas, interesting remains of an ancient fort used by nomadic tribes dating back to 10th century. Then it’s onto Hustai where you will be staying at a ger camp located at the park’s entrance. Have lunch at the ger camp’s restaurant and drive in to see the Takhi horses, herds of deer and other wildlife. You may want to combine the trip with a longer walk in the park – discuss your preference with your guide. Return to the camp for dinner and settle for your last night in a ger.

Travel details: 4hrs/200km to Hustai
Accommodation: Standard Ger; Hustai Resort Ger Camp
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch; Dinner

MANZUSHIR RUINS – MT. BOGD KHAN – ULAANBAATAR
Today you head to Bogd Khan Mountain Reserve, the oldest nature reserve in the world, perhaps taking the scenic back route from Hustai, along the Tuul River. You can discuss timings and preference with your guide. On arrival at the park entrance, visit Manzushir ruins – see the restored temple museum, and wander around the ruins. Afterwards, head up on the hill trails to the summit and have picnic lunch there It takes a good 2-3 hours of climbing and another 2 hours to come back. Once back down, board the vehicle and head back to Ulaanbaatar, where you will be dropped at a location of your choice (multiple drop-offs are possible).

Travel details: 2hrs/110km to Manzushir; 4-5hrs round hike; 1hr/52 km to UB
Accommodation:
Meals included: Breakfast; Lunch

COSTINGS

Cost Per Person:   $1,395 €1,235
Single Supplement:   $185 €165

Included:

Domestic airfare - Surface transportation - Road taxes - Accommodation as specified - Local Guide - Sightseeing and activities as specified - Museum & park entrance fees - Meals as specified

Excluded:

International flights - Tips - Laundry - Bar bills - Items of a personal nature - Visas - Photography/filming charges at e.g. museums and monasteries

NOTES:

Private tour: This trip is available as a private tour too, and you can book it on any day of your choice for you and your family or friends. Just email us with your proposed dates and your group size for pricing.

Occupancy: you can stay in a single, twin or double room/ger/tent (where applicable). Single occupancy may not be possible during the Naadam festival (July 5th -15th) at ger camps. At community-based camps and ger homestays, single occupancy is subject to availability. Single and twin/double occupancy at ger camps require an extra supplement as shown in the above table.

Discounts*: Our clients can take an opportunity to get following discount options:

  • Early bird discount of 10% is applicable for bookings made 6 months in advance.
  • Children up to 2 years old travel free, 3-8 years old get 40% off and 9-12 years old get 20% off. Age as on the last day of the tour.

*Discounts are not cumulative, only one discount is available per client/group.

Travel arrangements: We are happy to book your international or domestic flight/train tickets or accommodation in Ulaanbaatar at discount prices, please contact us for availability.

More information: info@tourmongolia.com