Our tour departs South Africa on 06 July 2015 and flies on South African Airways to Beijing and onward to UlaanBataar on Air China. We’ll spend two nights in UlaanBaatar exploring the city and then fly to Olgii in Western Mongolia.
We’ll arrive in Olgii in time for the summer Naadam festival and, during the three days we’ll be there, we will have the opportunity of seeing the Opening Ceremony, attending the archery, wrestling and horse-racing events, and finishing up with the Closing Ceremony.
Our adventure and 4×4 expedition then heads even further west into the remote Altai Tavan Bogd National Park in the high and rugged Altai Mountains where we will spend 3 nights on the magnificent Khoton Lake exploring the area. Here we will be able to hike and learn about fauna and flora, visit local nomads and golden eagle hunters to learn about their culture and their ancient traditions.
From the Altai Tavan Bodg National Park we will move on to the Araltolgoi National Park, visiting the UNESCO Petroglyphic Complex where we’ll see petroglyphs from the Bronze Age and Turkic monoliths, including rock paintings and cave drawings en route. We’ll spend one night in the Tsagaan Gol Valley.
The next day we will cross the Snake River and set up camp on the banks of the Grand Khatuu River for a night.
The itinerary continues to the Sacred Mountains, an area surrounded by ancient petroglyphs, tombs and stone monuments. We will experience the Tuvan Shaman culture and visit a few of the nomadic families to see their unique culture. There will also be opportunities for hiking.
We’ll drive from the Sacred Mountains to the Devsig Valley. Here we will see the Uriankhai Mongolian ethnic minority and be entertained by the Mongolian Throat Singing Champion.
From the Devsig Valley it’s a short drive back to Olgii and we’ll attend a local wedding ceremony and spend our last night under the Mongolian stars.
Liz Cotton will be accompanying the group from South Africa and professional local guides will be escorting the group from arrival in UlaanBataar throughout. This will be a unique and unforgettable experience for every member of the group.
Mongolia has always stirred up visions of the untamed: Genghis Khan and his hordes, and wild horses galloping across the Steppes. In Western Mongolia, you will definitely get the feeling you’ve stepped into another century rather than another country. This is an incredible trip which combines Mongolian culture and hospitality with spectacular landscapes Everything about western Mongolia beckons. This is, indeed, a once-in-a-lifetime journey.