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This week-long itinerary provides a fascinating and interactive experience for children and parents alike. It gets the kids out in nature and being active, whilst learning about the country’s history and really interacting with local Mongolians going about their everyday lives.
Arrival in Ulaanbaatar
Arrive in Ulaanbaatar and meet your local guide who will be with you for the duration of your trip. Drive straight out into the Mongolian Steppe and to Mongol Nomadic Ger Camp.
On the journey, your guide will be on hand to answer any questions you might have about Mongolian history and legends, customs and traditions, and the natural ecology, amongst other subjects.
At the camp settle into your cozy stove heated gers before dinner in the small restaurant ger.
Drive to Elsen Tasarkhai
This morning after breakfast, drive to the Elsen Tasarkhai sand dunes and check in to Sweet Gobi Eco Camp. Driving time is approximately 4 hours, but there will be plenty of places to stop and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
The land here is gravel plains and a string of sand dunes surrounded by rugged mountains. Meet local camel herding families and enjoy camel riding on the dunes at sunset. Settle into your cosy gers and enjoy the incredible night sky.
Khogno Khan Mountain and Uvgin Khiid
After a leisurely breakfast, explore the dunes on foot and slide down on sand sleds.
Visit the Uvgun Monastery in the rugged foothills of Khogno Khan mountain either by 4x4 or on horseback. A path behind leads to these 17th-century ruins where the kids can climb through the boulders and bird trees to the ruined complex.
Journey to the Khangai
This morning, drive northwest through the town of Kharkhorin towards Khotont, before breaking southward off the paved road into the wilderness of the Khangai.
Meet your horses for the ride to our private camp hosted by traditional herders (2-hour drive & 10km/1-2 hour horse ride, or up to a full day depending on starting point, experience, and speed).
The horses are quiet and well-mannered and saddled with comfortable English saddles. Your guide and members of the family will escort you on your ride. Mongolian horses are not big at around 12-14 hands, but they are strong, sure-footed, and fun to ride. The support vehicle will be on hand in case anyone gets tired.
Arrive at the camping site of some of our nomadic friends. Meet your hosts, their family, and animals. Help herd yaks to camp, milk the mares, and separate the goats from the sheep. The mares’ milk is fermented to make “airag”, which Mongolians love. You can also learn some traditional games and have a go at archery with a Mongolian bow.
This morning drive and then walk or ride through the forest to Tovkhon Monastery, perched on a rocky mountain top with spectacular views of the countryside. Explore and have a picnic lunch at the tree line before returning to camp.
In the evening enjoy a traditional Khorkhog supper - mutton cooked with hot stones from the stove family. Meat is carved off the bone with knives and eaten with fingers from a big plate. It is a communal meal shared with family and guests. It is served with vegetables cooked in the same way.
Kharkhorin and Erdene Zuu Monastery
Say farewell to your hosts and return to Kharkhorin, site of the 13th-century capital, “Kharakhorum” and first Buddhist monastery, Erdene Zuu. Enter the Tibetan style Lavriin temple for morning prayers.
After lunch, visit the impressive museum and walk up to the Three Empires monument for a view across the land the Hunuu, Turk and Mongols called their homeland, the Orkhon snaking into the Khangai westward and the town to the east.
Continue your walk to an ovoo at the end of the headland for a spectacular sunset. Your pick up is at the other end of the headland and you will be brought back to the camp for dinner.
Return to Ulaanbaatar
This morning you will set off on your journey back to Ulaanbaatar. Driving time is approximately 6 hours but you will stop often. Have a picnic lunch along the way or stop for lunch at a local “guanz” as you go through the town of Lun.
You might like to do some shopping in the cashmere shops or market on the way into town. Once settled back at the hotel, go out to a concert of traditional music and dance and enjoy a farewell meal in the capital.
This morning you will be transferred to the airport in Ulaanbaatar in time for your onward flight home.
our destination expert
- The kids will love the experience of sleeping in traditional Mongolian felt tents, or ‘gers’
- Whether it’s horse back riding or walking, get the kids out in nature and being active all throughout this holiday
- Learn about Mongolian culture first hand by staying alongside a nomadic host family, helping them with their daily chores and letting the kids play and interact with the host children
- When to go:
- Time Zone:
Get in touch with our Lightfoot Travel experts and they will create a bespoke itinerary designed to your exact needs and budget.
We won't take you to the usual tourist traps, instead we'll introduce you to people that show you the true side of a country. With our contacts in each destination, we can arrange for you to meet locals away from the crowds and ensure an authentic experience.
You can rely on our extensive first-hand knowledge and years of experience in the country you’re visiting. We use only the best expert guides, and provide insider tips on the local customs, and everything from vibrant festivals to hidden Himalayan monasteries
Your holiday will be as unique as you are. By getting to know you and what makes you tick, we fuse our wealth of expertise and a deep understanding of our destinations to create unique day by day itineraries that are built around you.