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Gobi Desert and Central Mongolia Jeep Tour

offered by supplier M21605 (read about supplier)

Key Information:
Tour Duration: 15 day(s)
Group Size: 2 - 12 people
Destination(s): Mongolia  
Specialty Categories: Desert Expeditions   Cultural Journey  
Season: May - September
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 1584 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 2518 US Dollar (USD)

Travel to Gobi desert and mountains of Central Mongolia. Vast arid plains, immense sand dunes and dinosaur fossil sites await you in the Gobi. In Central Mongolia, you will visit the site of Chinggis Khan’s medieval capital – Karakorum. Its temples and museums will tell you the history of the largest land empire ever known. Explore natural and cultural sights and have their story told by your guide. Experience the nomadic culture which seemingly hasn’t changed for many hundreds of years.

Day 1: Arrival in Ulaanbaatar (UB).
The capital of Mongolia and transfer to a 4 star hotel in city center. Afternoon guided city tour will introduce you to highlights of the city: the Gandan Temple - city's main Buddhist center, the central square with the memorial complex of Chinghis Khan and Zaisan hill on the city's edge for a panoramic view of UB. Then choose to visit one or two museums: National Museum introducing Mongolia's history from early humans to modern era, Natural History Museum with a unique collection of dinosaur fossils, State Oracle Residence-museum displaying best samples of Buddhist artwork and religious masks. The Winter palace of Bogd Khan showcasing rare Buddhist art and items of personal use of the last theocratic ruler of Mongolia is also worth considering. A folklore show of traditional music, throat singing and contortion will be followed by a welcome dinner. (Lunch, dinner / hotel)

Day 2: Start of jeep tour and drive to Ikh Gazar.
An extensive granite rock formations surrounded by steppe habitat. A good third of the way is on smooth tarmac before it switches to well established jeep tracks winding across rocky mountains, semi-desert and dry riverbeds with elm trees. Tonight we will settle in a camp comprised of traditional felt covered tents, locally known as 'gers'. Showers and flush toilets are located in a separate building. Throughout the journey you will stay in the kind of camps. Dinner and overnight. The area is also a stopover habitat for many nesting and migrating raptors and other birds as well as wild goats (Capra) so you may try spotting some wild life early next morning. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 3: Drive to Tsagaan Suvraga cliffs.
Further south in to the desert vegetation quickly thins out and is replaced by vast barren plains. Occasionally you will see white tents of local herding population, their winter sheds and large flocks of sheep and goats, more seldom horses and camels. Our today’s destination is the limestone cliffs of Tsagan Suvraga formed by wind and water erosion. Part of an old sea bed the sedimentary rock here has different colors representing different geological times. After checking in to a local ger camp you may enjoy breath-taking panoramas of the desert expanses from the cliffs’ top. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 4: Drive to Flaming Red Cliffs.
Here in 1920-ies Americans unearthed the first samples of dinosaur eggs intact in their nests as well as hundreds of dinosaur skeletons among them of several new species. Hike through eroded ravines of red sandstone and make our own discovery. Then continue to a ger camp in just 40 minutes driving for dinner and overnight. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 5: Drive to Khongoriin Els dunes.
The dunes are over 100 km long and 3 to 15 km wide. From the foothill to the crest of the highest dunes is a good 200 meters. Local people refer to them as to the “Singing Dunes” due to the distinct propeller hum heard on windy days. Settle down in a local ger camp and later when the heat subsides take a short trip to the dune base. Optionally you can climb the dunes, ride a two humped Bactrian camel or just walk the lower slopes. The evening light creates especially beautiful landscapes. Back in camp enjoy myriads of stars that will phosphoresce the dome of the Gobi sky. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 6: A leasure day at the Khongoriin Els Dunes. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp).

Day 7: Travel to “Tevsh” volcano.
Leave the desert behind and we head north to Central Mongolia for which we will cross a couple hundred kilometers of endless arid plains and sandy tracts. Often people call such lands as the middle of nowhere. We overnight in a ger camp nestled amidst the moonscape of a small group of granite formations. En-route however, stop-over at “Tevsh” mountain, an extinct volcano that holds a unique gallery of rock carvings dated to 7th-1st century BC. In a leisurely manner we explore depictions of various animals, hunting and simple daily chore scenes of early humans. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 8: Drive to Kharkhorin town.
Where the 2nd son of Chinggis Khan built the capital of the Mongol Empire in early 13th century. Largely an experiment of city building in a pre-dominantly nomadic culture, Karakorum as it was known then never became a fully functional capital before it was demolished by invading Chinese Min Dynasty troops in late 14th century. Today the main attraction here is the monastery museum of Erdene Zuu established in 16th century by a Mongol khan as part of introduction of Buddhism as the main religion. The monastery then suffered almost a complete destruction during the anti-religion campaign of 1930-ies with just a dozen of temples surviving till present. Spend some time in the peaceful premises of the monastery and take a glance at a few surviving artifacts of the old capital. You may as well walk the earthen hills nearby that still contain remains of the imperial capital. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 9: Drive to Tsenker hot springs.
Wooded mountains and lush meadows dominate today's landscape. Felt walled gers of herding Mongols and large flocks of grazing animals will be a common sight today. En-route we briefly stop at ruins of the Uyghur capital of Karabalghasun. In the 8th century AD these ancient people who presently inhabit the Xinjiang Region of China came to replace the mighty Turks who had ruled Central Asia for over 200 years. A sizable mud wall with remains of a watch tower can be found here today vaguely reminding of the former glory of the Uyghurs. Upon arrival at the springs we settle in a cozy ger camp where you can relax in a pool filled with the spring water. You may as well take a relaxing body massage at a small additional fee. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 10: Drive to Oginur, a small freshwater lake surrounding by bare hills.
The lake is stopover point for migrating water birds such as Relic Gull, Whooper Swan and several species of geese and ducks. If wished you may rent a boat, some fishing gear and catch some pikes and perches in the lake. We recommend you bring some basic bait for the purpose. Both manual and motor boats are available for rent. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 11: Drive to Moilt Eco camp.
This low impact ger camp is located at the confluence of Khanui and Balig rivers at the foothill of Dolankhan mountain. The vast spaces of wilderness here are comprised of grassy valleys, wooded mountains, fast mountain rivers and canyons. A small number of local herders that live here depend on large flocks of sheep, goats, horses and yaks. This secluded and uniquely spectacular area became accessible to travelers only three years ago and a wise policy of preserving its wilderness is being enforced by the camp administration. Dinner and overnight upon arrival at the camp. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 12: A day of activities based at the Moilt Eco camp.
Accompanied by local guides you may ride horses, hike various trails, explore 3000-5000 year old rock carvings, practice archery skills, fish depending on season and visit local herding families. This will be a first-hand experience of a culture so different from that of the West and almost surely the most interesting part of your time at the camp. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 13: Drive to Amarbayasgalant Monastery.
Arrive to the valley of Holy Burenkhan Mt and visit the monastery. Initially built between 1727–1736, it was spared from destruction during the anti-religious campaigns of 1930-ies and remains the most complete Buddhist complex outside of the capital. It today houses a cheerful folk of monks and their teachers. Spend the evening in the peaceful premises of the monastery observing monastic life and taking pictures before continuing to a tour camp comprised of traditional felt covered tents, locally known as 'gers'. Dinner and overnight. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / ger camp)

Day 14: Return to Ulaanbaatar.
This morning take a 6 hours return drive to Ulaanbaatar. The tarmac road runs across the southern approaches of Siberia: wooded hills and fertile soils. Upon arrival transfer to your hotel. After a short rest we gather for a farewell dinner. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner / hotel)

Day 15: Departure transfer. Transfer to airport for your return flight home. (Breakfast).

Member discount:
10% discount for InfoHub customer. Request a free gift certificate.

Airfare is not included in the tour price.

Price Includes:
- All accommodation: hotel (2 nights), ger (12 nights)
- Indicated meals and drinking water
- All visits, sightseeing, national park and permit fees
- Overland transport (Japanese 4WD)
- Airport transfers
- English speaking guide

Price Excludes:
- Travel insurance
- Meals not indicated
- Drinks and Alcohol
- Gratuities.

About This Supplier
Location: Mongolia
Joined InfoHub: Feb 2016

With almost 20 years of travel experience, we offer professional services and unique tours throughout Mongolia. We organize mountain biking tours, trekking tours, horseback riding tours, nature and wildlife watching tours for both groups and individuals. Less vigorous options include family tours, day trips and jeep...

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