Difficulty of trip: Moderately challenging
Package Fee 2-4 Pax: $785 USD for 6 days/ 5 nights
Package Fee 5-8 Pax: $682 USD for 6 days/ 5 nights
Minimal pax: 2 persons
Day One - Camel and Horseback Riding to Locally Respected and Honored Khadagt Khoshuu Site (B,L,D): In the morning you will depart from Ulaanbaatar 08am and travel by public bus Rashaant village for 280kms, along the way you will see many scenic locations from the bus as it drives by vast nomadic pastures. Upon arrival a rural vehicle will take you to the Mr. Byambatogtoh’s family (first family), they will prepare and greet you with an afternoon lunch. Afterwards Mr. Byambatogtoh and/or his sons will guide you to the locally worshipped site of Khadagt Khoshuu that is 10.5kms away. When you arrive, you will dismount from your camels or horses and either observe or even participate with the herders’ local customs that honor the site. In the early evening you will return to the family’s ger where you will be welcomed with dinner before retiring to the family’s extra ger to rest and sleep for the night.
Day Two - Camel and Horseback Riding to Next Nomadic Family then Travel by Ox Cart to Bugdiin Ovoo (B,L,D): After breakfast, you will travel by for 10 kilometers by camel and/or horseback to the next family where upon arrival Mr. Otgonbayar and his family will serve you a nomadic lunch and tea. Afterwards they will prepare an Ox cart that you will travel by for 12ms to visit the locally honored and highly respected Bugdiin Ovoo which translates as “All People’s Ovoo”. Generally, Ovoo worship ceremonies originates from the Mongolian peoples deep traditional respect and historical connection to nature. An Ovoo is a pyramid shaped collection of stones, bones, woods and silk scarves that is often established on the top of the hill, mountain or site of sacred significance.
It is customary when visiting an Ovoo to walk around it three times in a devotional state and make your wishes - afterwards you return to the family where you will be welcomed with dinner before overnighting in the families extra ger.
Day Three - Horseback Riding to Mongol Desert Sand Dunes and Locally Famous Swan Lake (B,L,D): After breakfast, you will continue your trip by horseback for 6kms to next family where you will be greeted by Mr. Idertsogt and his family with an afternoon nomadic lunch and tea. After your meal and some rest, you will have an afternoon horseback ride to the beautifully scenic Swan Lake that is located at the base of the Mongol Desert Sand Dunes. This roundtrip is generally a 6km horseback ride - Swan Lake is both a pristine example of the beauty of co-existence of extremes (desert and water) as well as vibrantly intoxicating home to Swan Couples that are testimonies to strength, tolerance and passion. Later you will return to the family where you will be warmly invited to enjoy your evening dinner before returning to the family’s extra Ger for rest and sleep.
Day Four - Horseback Ride to Queen Manduhai Location followed by Overland Travel to Ancient Kharakorum (B,L,D): In the early morning you can participate with the family with the daily nomadic chores that include milking of livestock before your breakfast. Afterwards, Mr. Idertsogt will guide you by horseback to the location of the monument that was constructed for the featured film about Queen Manduhai (5km round trip). In the afternoon, you will return to the family where they will prepare and serve you with a farewell lunch and tea. This afternoon you will travel overland to the Ancient Capital City of the Mongol Empire known as Kharakorum where you can spend time walking through the ruins as well as visit the Erdenezuu monastery that is located within its fortress walls before retiring to a nearby ger camp. Kharakorum was established in 1220 and flourished both as Mongol Empire’s Capital for 32 years as well as Mongolia’s Capital for 140 years and Erdenezuu Monastery is Mongolia’s first Buddhist Monastery established by Abtai Sain Khan in 1585.
Day Five - Overland Travel to Ahangai Province’s Tsenher Hot Springs for Relaxation (B,L,D): After breakfast, you will travel overland to Arkhangai Province which is commonly referred to as the ‘horse breeders’ paradise’ as its pastures are geographically rich in vast green fields and clear river valleys. Some travelers and locals refer to Arhangai Province as to be comparative with Switzerland with its amazingly beautiful mountains, cliffs, rapid rivers, and green forests. Today you will enjoy the natural bounties of Tsenher Hot Springs where the hot spring water flows out of the ground at 82° C and overnight at the ger camp.
Day Six - Travel Overland to Rashaant to Return by Rural Bus to Ulaanbaatar (B, L):After breakfast, you will travel overland back to Rashaant village where along the way you will stop by a nomadic family for lunch before boarding the bus back to Ulaanbaatar that departs around 5pm.
Visiting nomadic families
All nomadic breakfast, lunch and dinner which are stated on itinerary
Home stay at all families’ extra Ger
Herder guide service on routev
Horse riding according to itinerary
Camel riding according to itinerary
Pack animals on route
Cultural activities (milking animals, play ankle bone game etc)
Boiled water on route
Local transport service according to itinerary
Two ways bus ticket between UB city and Rashaant
National park fee & monastery entrance fee
2 nights at tourist camp
Camping equipments /sleeping bag /
Mongolian Cultural Travel Tips & Information
Horseback Riding in Mongolia
Mongolia's Gobi Desert Camels
Mongolians and horses have historically co-exist since the early times and It’s impossible to imagine Mongolians without horses. There are many horse related folk legends, stories about horses, epic literature and songs written about horses. Mongolians prohibit the cursing of horses, beating horses and whipping of horses on their heads and chests. Mongolia’s horse culture according to their traditions teaches to show to respect to the horse during its life and honorifically place the horse’s head on an Ovoo or other sacred place to show their respect to the nobility of their horse’s life. The head of a horse is often decorated with white stones or horse dung. Heads of especially fast racing horses are usually wrapped in a blue scarf. The Mongolian traditional horse head fiddle further glorifies the station of the horse by its artistic design and traditional sounds. The culture of the Mongolian horse even spreads to embroidery, handicraft, wooden carving, metal and silver crafts – Mongolia’s respect of the horse can be found everywhere throughout the country.
The world’s rare two-humped Mongolian Bactrian Camel is considered to be the tolerant and noble animal among five animals (horse, cow, sheep, goat and camel) and is sand colored herbivores mainly found in the Gobi Desert region of Mongolia. Mongolia leads the number of Bactrian camels in the world and Mongolian camels were domesticated in olden days and are traditionally used as nomadic transport. When Mongolian camels are used for nomadic transportation their noses are pegged and they are outfitted with a leading rein, halter, saddle, saddle cloth and stairs. Mongolian camels weight is between 400-800kg and camel meat is low in fat and lean. Mongolian camel milk is a staple food for Gobi Desert nomads and is more rich in fat and protein than cow’s milk. A female camel produces about 3 to 4 liters of milk a day; camel milk can readily be made into airag (fermented beverage), hoormog (yogurt diluted with milk) and dried curds. Mongolian camel wool is produced as a natural insulation against the cold and easily sheds in the heat. Mongolian camel wool has unique characteristics of silky softness and strength.
Riding Mongolian Camels
Mongolian nomads say that it’s much closer to the sun from the top of the tallest animal of desert - so while you are riding a Mongolian camel you will always have a panoramic view of the Gobi Desert. Generally, Mongolia’s camel guides are Mongolian nomads that are born and live in the Gobi Desert. Mongolians often start to ride camels at a very early age and have plenty of experience to share with you about how to saddle, groom and command to lay down a camel to mount and dismount. During your camel trek, you can help the Mongolian nomad by looking after your camel; learn how to groom it, saddle and unsaddle it as well as bring water and feed it. Kind attention between the camel and the rider always contributes towards establishing a close. Almost any traveler can ride a camel (in reasonable physical condition) and learn how to control it quickly – though its highly recommended to review the camel riding tips that can be found in the Ger to Ger Travelers’ Handbook. Its good to apply your knowledge and practice on a camel with a Mongolian nomad around their Ger (traditional dwelling) before starting a long trek. A camel trek could cover between 5 to 25kms a day between nomadic families or even for a short roundtrip for sightseeing.