This 5 day desert tour offers a fabulous way to explore most of Gobi’s best sights and some incredible natural wonders. Ideal for people who want to see all the major attractions in the Gobi desert in the minimum time. Explore the famous paleontological wonder of Bayanzag, the majestic Khongor Els Singing Sands, the Yol Am ice field gorge, and stay overnight at gers next to nomadic camel herders and characterful community run ger camps in idyllic locations. Hike on ice, catch a glimpse of fast running gazelles, ride a Bactrian camel and enjoy a sunset view from the top of the sand dunes. On this perfect five day prebuilt Mongolia itinerary you will find all the must-see’s and must-do’s with additional extra hidden gems.
DRIVE TO SOUTH GOBI AND STAY AT AUTHENTIC GER
After meeting your guide at your hotel’s lobby at 7:00 am, board the vehicle and travel south to the Gobi desert. The drive will take most of the day, around 8 hours (550 km), but you will stop for lunch in Mandalgovi, which is the mid-point of today’s drive and in the South Gobi’s provincial capital of Dalanzadgad, where you will be able to stock up on snacks and other supplies. Arrive at the nomadic family’s encampment in time for dinner. The family’s location is usually very close to the entrance of the Yol Am gorge, where you will venture tomorrow, but since they are nomads, it will vary depending on the time of the year. For dinner enjoy nomadic homemade food – if you wish, you will also have a chance to try your hand at Mongolian cooking. 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, Gobi sky.
Overnight you will stay at an authentic guest ger next to a nomadic family. Lunch and dinner are included.
EXPLORE YOL AM VALLEY (ICE WALK) AND TRAVEL THROUGH GURVAN SAIKHAN NATIONAL PARK
After a homemade Mongolian breakfast, travel 10-20km to Yol Am, the Vulture Valley. The vehicle will be left at the gorge’s entrance, from where you will need to venture on foot. Yol Valley is notable for a deep ice field, which is several meters thick by the end of winter and is several kilometers long. In the summer there is usually less ice, but you should still be able to walk on it. The area is also a habitat of ibex and birds of prey and you may be spot wildlife on top of the cliffs. After returning to the vehicle, continue your journey deeper on the trails to the Khongor Els dunes. Keep a lookout for gazelles and birds of prey as you drive – the scenery is beautiful and populated by a plethora of wildlife. Tonight you will stay in a guest ger next to a local camel herding family. Enjoy the hospitality in their ger where you will be able to try camel milk and other traditional Mongolian specialties. After dinner, if you wish, drive to the dunes and enjoy the spectacular sunset view from the top – or you can see the sunrise over the dunes tomorrow morning.
Overnight you will stay in a guest ger next to a camel herders family. Breakfast, lunch & dinner are included.
RIDE BACTRIAN CAMEL ALONGSIDE THE KHONGOR ELS DUNES AND TRY YOUR HAND AT MONGOLIAN COOKING
Before breakfast, if you didn’t see the sunset last night, drive a short distance to the dunes for the spectacular sunrise. Otherwise, enjoy home cooked breakfast while your camels are being prepared and take a 2-hours Bactrian camel ride alongside the dunes. Afternoon schedule is flexible: You can visit a camel herding family living nearby or have a cooking lesson in the authentic ger setting – learn how to prepare Huushuur (fried meat pastry) or Buuz (steamed dumplings). Alternatively, you may want to go for a longer hike in the area, along the river or to the dunes and take amazing photos, or just rest and enjoy the beautiful scenery – discuss your preferences with your guide.
Overnight stay in a guest ger next to a local family. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.
EXPLORE KHAVSGAIT PETROGLYPHS AND BAYANZAG FLAMING CLIFFS
After breakfast, say goodbye to your hosts and travel off-road to Bayanzag for 5 hours (150km). During the scenic drive, you are likely to see wild gazelles as they run along – it’s difficult for vehicles to catch up with them! On the way, you will stop at an ancient sacred site of Khavtsgait, where on top of a rocky hill there are hundreds of ancient stone engravings, called petroglyphs. Some of them are as old as 3000 BC and were painted by hunters while waiting for prey. The site also offers wonderful views over the desert. Have lunch in a village of Bulgan and soon after you will arrive at Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs. It was here that the first dinosaur eggs were discovered by an American explorer Roy Chapman Andrews, and the area remains one of the most famous paleontological sites in the world. Stroll for an hour or two among the flaming-red cliffs where the dinosaurs once roamed and in the evening travel a short distance to a nomadic family living nearby, where you will stay tonight. Arrive on time for dinner and settle in your ger for your last night in the Gobi.
Overnight you will stay in a guest ger next to a nomadic family. Breakfast, lunch & dinner are included.
RETURN TO ULAANBAATAR
Today you head back to Ulaanbaatar, it’s a long drive of 550km (7-8 hours) so you may want to start early. You will stop for lunch in Mandalgovi and you should arrive in the capital by 6 pm. Once back in town, you will be dropped at your hotel or another location of your choice.
Breakfast and lunch are included.
|Tour Price Per Person:||1 Pax||$1490||€1315|
|Single Supplement:||1 Pax||$60||€50|
Private tour: This is a private tour, and you can book it on any day of your choice.
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:
*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.
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