The Golden Week holiday celebrated across East Asia is an excellent time to visit Mongolia and it is also time of the Golden Eagle Festival held in the remote west of the country. On this activity-packed journey, you will have a unique opportunity to stay alongside a nomadic family in their yurt as well as next to an eagle hunter in the Altai mountains. Experience the way of life of the nomads, learn about their unique culture and join them in the festivities of the annual Eagle Festival in Ulgii. This trip combines exploring untouched beautiful nature and rich cultural heritage of Mongolia – experience off-road driving, mountain biking, archery, gyrocopter flight, and many other activities during the holiday week.
ARRIVAL TO ULAANBAATAR, CITY TOUR & WELCOME DINNER
After meeting your driver at the Ulaanbaatar Airport drive to the city and refresh in your hotel room. If you arrive early, meet your guide in the hotel reception at 14:30 for a half-day Ulaanbaatar city tour – first visit the imposing Sukhbaatar Square and take guided tour of the National History Museum to learn about Mongolia’s heritage. In the evening enjoy a traditional music and dance performance in the Tumen Ekh theater and a welcome dinner.
Overnight stay in Ramada Hotel in a standard twin/double room. Dinner is included.
EXPLORE TERELJ NATIONAL PARK, ARYABAL TEMPLE, VISIT NOMADIC FAMILY AND RIDE A HORSE
After meeting our guide at 08:30 am, board the vehicle and head east to Terelj National Park. The drive will take 2 hours (60km). On arrival, stop first at the sacred rock that looks like a turtle. Then venture up to a hilltop Aryabal meditation temple. After coming back down, drive 10km off-road to a nomadic family living nearby. On arrival drink milk tea, have homemade lunch and learn about the nomadic traditions and the way of life. In the afternoon, if you are up for it, mount a horse and set off with your guide for a ride to the nearby 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 the family’s encampment and in the evening enjoy a nomadic meal of Buuz (steamed dumplings) of khorkhog (mutton seared with hot stones) – you can help with cooking 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.
Stay overnight in authentic guest ger next to a local family. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.
MOUNTAIN BIKE RIDE, OFFROAD DRIVE TO CHINGGIS STATUE AND GYROCOPTER FLIGHT
After a home cooked breakfast hop on the quality mountain bikes that we took with us from Ulaanbaatar and follow your guide riding in epic locations 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 Chinggis Statue complex 35km away. The statue is 40m high and is located where, according to legend, Chinggis Khan found the golden whip. Explore the local museum inside and climb up the staircase to the viewpoint on top, from where there are scenic views of the Tuul River and the Khan Khentii mountains. Then board vehicle again and return to Ulaanbaatar in time for dinner and settle in your hotel room for the night.
Overnight stay at the Ramada Hotel in a standard twin/double room. Breakfast, lunch & dinner are included.
FLY TO ULGII, VISIT LOCAL MUSEUM AND KAZKH BAZAAR
Today you will fly to Ulgii, the capital of the western-most province of Mongolia located over 1000 miles from Ulaanbaatar and nested in the spectacular Altai Mountains. The town has heavy Kazakh influence and the majority of the population are ethnic Kazakhs. Upon arrival, our local guide will meet you at the airport, visit first the local museum and the local Bazaar (market). You will be staying tonight in a guest ger next to a Kazakh eagle hunter near Ulgii. Enjoy Kazakh hospitality and spend the evening together, learning about their culture and traditional eagle hunting which is still preserved in this region.
Stay overnight in a guest ger next to Kazakh eagle hunter. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included.
ULGII GOLDEN EAGLE FESTIVAL
Today and tomorrow take part in the annual Golden Eagle Festival. Eagle Hunters from around the region gather together to show off their birds, which weight 12-15 pounds and have a wingspan of up to eight feet. The festivities start with a parade of the hunters on horseback and then a plethora of shows and competitions take place – birds will be judged on their speed and agility and the winners will be announced. During the festival, you also see traditional Kazakh Games, such as “BushKushi” (goatskin grabbing on horseback), camel races, coin picking from the horseback and others. Have lunch at the festival site each day from one of the local stalls – Huushuur (fried meat pastries) are the traditional specialty. In the evening on Friday enjoy a performance of traditional Kazakh songs and music and stay at a local ger camp, and on Saturday after the award ceremonies head to the airport for your 5.50 pm flight to Ulaanbaatar, and after landing enjoy a farewell dinner before settling in to your hotel room for the last night in Mongolia.
Overnight in a local ger camp in Ulgii (Friday) and in the Ramada Hotel (Saturday). Breakfast, lunch and dinner are included on both days.
Our driver will meet you at the hotel at a pre-arranged time and transfer you to the airport (45 min to 1 hour depending on traffic) for your flight back home.
|Tour Price Per Person:||$2,480||€2,210|
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:
*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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