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Western Mongolia Horseback Riding 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: Horse Riding   Cultural Journey  
Season: May - September
Airfare Included: No
Tour Customizable: Yes
Minimum Per Person Price: 1910 US Dollar (USD)
Maximum Per Person Price: 3030 US Dollar (USD)

The far west of Mongolia, dominated by Altai mountain range is a land of pristine nature, abundant wildlife and rich cultural heritage. Landscapes here comprise of vast glaciers, fast mountain rivers and lush alpine pastures where large flocks of yaks, goats and sheep graze. The country’s largest Muslim community sharing common origin with modern Turkish inhabits the region as well as a number of smaller ethnic groups that practice Buddhism and Shamanism. Their culture is authentic and their land is a treasure trove of human history with many ancient burials and rock art. Spend 7 unforgettable days on horseback in the company of Tuvan people whose hospitality and horsemanship are exceptional.

Day 1: Arrival to Ulaanbaatar, guided city tour.
Arrival in Ulaanbaatar (UB), the capital of Mongolia and transfer to a centrally located 4 star hotel. Afternoon guided city tour will introduce you to the highlights of the city: the Gandan Temple - city's main Buddhist center, the central city square with a grand statue of Genghis Khan and the Zaisan Memorial, an elevated hill on the city's edge providing a panoramic view of UB. Then choose to visit one or two museums from the following: National Museum introducing Mongolia's history from early humans to modern era, Dinosaur Museum with a unique collection of dinosaur fossils, Choijin Lama or State Oracle Residence-museum displaying best samples of Buddhist artwork and religious masks. The Winter palace of Bogd Khan showcasing rare statues of Buddhist deities and items of personal use of this last theocratic ruler of Mongolia is also worth considering. An evening folk show of music, throat singing and contortion will be followed by a welcome dinner. (Dinner, hotel)

Day 2: Flight to Ulgy and drive to Baga Oigor petroglyph gallery.
Transfer to UB airport for a flight to Ulgy town in Western Mongolia. Upon arrival meet with your support team and drive to Tavan Bogd NP. We first travel across mountainous desert and then along V-shaped mountain valleys before arriving to Baga Oigor valley, home to the largest rock art gallery in Asia registered in the UNESCO "World Cultural Heritage List. The gallery is 15 km long and 500 m wide and dates back to Stone and Bronze ages. Images depict wild and domestic animals and scenes of human life such as hunting, handling domestic animals, worship etc. Here we set up our tented camp and spend the rest of the day leisurely exploring the rock art gallery. We relax and acclimatize and possibly get a visit or two by local nomads who gingerly approach our camp to exchange greetings. (Breakfast, lunh, dinner, tent)

Day 3: Travel to Tavan Bogd national park.
Another half a day travel along V shaped mountain valley and by lunch time arrive to Tavan Bogd NP gateway. This is where the riding tour starts from. We spend the rest of the day acclimatizing further. This evening your local guides arrive bringing their horses and pack camels that will carry our camp, luggage and food in the next days. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Day 4: Ride to Tavan Bogd peaks.
After breakfast guides will select you a horse to suit your riding abilities and the tour starts. Riding stocky Mongolian horses requires skills quite different from the western riding style. Horses are used to a different set of commands and behavior on the riders end but still are very responsive and clever animals. Accompanied by the local guides we ride on a high mountain terrain with occasional bogs and many small streams to cross. Our entire luggage will be carried by the pack camels. Without much luck you will see marmots, Golden Eagles, vultures and falcons. Halfway through the route magnificent views of snow capped mountains and vast glaciers will come into your sight. After a picnic lunch we continue to our camp site with an impressive view of highest peaks of Mongolia and the Potanin glacier as the backdrop. We tonight camp at 2900 m above sea level. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Day 5: Climb to 4051 m Malchin peak.
We first hike along the Potanin glacier moraine for an hour before stepping on the mountain. Although clearly established the trail is mostly on the scree. Once at the top you can enjoy spectacular bird's eye views of glaciers beneath and of the Russian territory as the ridge overlaps with the border line. Only trekking poles are required for the Malchin climb. Alternatively, you can take a less demanding option of hiking up to a lower ridge and glance into Russia too. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Day 6: Ride out to Tsagaan Gol river.
The river takes source from the snow capped peaks and the glaciers of Tavan Bogd. As historic evidence suggests, the region was inhabited by hunter gatherers and prehistoric nomads from as early as the Stone Age. Dozens of burial mounds and rock carvings are scattered just in the Tsagaan Gol river valley alone. Today, a tiny community of Tuvan herders grazes their animals here during summer months. It is these very people who are serving as your local guides. Today’s ride is a gradual downhill interrupted by a couple bogs and slightly longer than the way up. Again loads are carried by camels. Tonight we taste local hospitality by visiting one our camel drivers. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Days 7-11: Ride to Khoton lake.
We ride in a linear way each day covering up to 30 km. The Tuvan guides accompany you looking after your safety and emotional wellbeing. They will certainly share their life experiences and you will get a rare opportunity to learn of mores of these modest and stoic people and of their unique symbiotic relationship with the nature and animals, particularly with their horses. Landscapes here are truly spectacular and vary every single day: fertile river valleys alternate with rugged mountains, open grasslands, alpine lakes and snow capped peaks. Riding terrain is suitable for all paces: trotting, galloping and racing. We will mostly be travelling at about 2000 meters above sea level.

Yaks and horses roaming about, local herders grazing large flocks of sheep and goats is a common scene. Invariably, they come to greet you, to exchange news or to just take a curious look. With some luck we may come across Kazakh eagle hunters who train golden eagles and use them for hunting. Although actual hunting is done in winter you can still see the massive birds and have a photo taken holding one on your arms to impress your family and friends. At any time you can take a break in of support cars. Shortly before the end of each day’s riding drivers go ahead to prepare camp and to let cooks start their operations. On day 11 we arrive to Khoton a spectacular alpine lake bordering with China’s Xinjiang province. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Day 12: Rest day.
We spend this well earned rest day at ease. The Khoton lake campsite is truly idyllic. A snow capped ridge marking the borderline with China and wooded slopes below reflect in the mirror-like surface of the lake. You can go swimming or explore some distinctly well preserved bronze age rock carvings just beside the camp. This is also time to part with the riding guides who will start their journey home. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, tent)

Day 13: Return travel to Ulgy town.
Our riding adventure is over and we head back to civilization. For the most of the day we drive along Khovd river, the largest in Western Mongolia. The river winds along rocky mountain slopes with sparse vegetation and some poplar trees that line the banks. In Ulgy we settle in the coziest local hotel before gathering for a traditional Kazakh dinner. (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, hotel)

Day 14: Return flight to Ulaanbaatar.
After breakfast transfer to Ulgy airport for flight to Ulaanbaatar. On arrival transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is at your own disposal. In the evening gather for a farewell dinner. (Breakfast, dinner, hotel)

Day 15: Departure.
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 (3 nights), tent (11 nights)
- Complete camping & cooking equipment
- Sleeping mattresses
- Horse riding tackle
- Indicated meals & drinking water
- All visits, sightseeing, national park and permit fees
- Overland transport
- Domestic airfare and airport transfers
- English speaking guide
- Expedition cook(s)
- Local guides
- Horse and pack animal hire

Price Excludes:
- Travel insurance
- Excess baggage fee on domestic air travel
- Personal riding clothes
- Sleeping bags
- Meals not indicated
- Drinks & 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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