Tailor-made Tours & Small Group Travel to Mongolia

Golden Eagle Festival & Gobi Desert 2020 (13 days / 12 nights)

Region:
Western & Southern part of Mongolia
Duration:
13 days / 12 nights
Dates:
Sep 27 - Oct 9 (8 Spaces left), 2020
Note:
You can arrange your own trip date (with best rate possible) as you request
Number of travelers:
Min - 2, Max - 18
Price: $2999 for per person
Single supplement: $550
If you are traveling alone and wish to share accommodations, we will try to match you with a roommate.

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This trip gives you a chance to enjoy amazing Gobi Desert. The Gobi is not just sand and gravel and dead animals. It diversifies into mountains and evergreen forest and geological freak shows - including a dune system as long and high as a mountain range - and sustains an array of endangered species that includes wild ass, wild camels and snow leopards.

Every year during the first week of October, the “Eagle festival” is celebrated in Bayan Ulgii, in the far west of Mongolia. The aimag of Bayan Ulgii is situated in the breathtaking scenery of the Altai mountain range, where four Asian countries meet. The inhabitants of this area with its rich mix of cultures are mostly ethnic Kazakhs wearing their traditional embroidered clothes.

The “Eagle festival” is a tournament of falconers from the region, who hunt with trained eagles. Once a year, they come together from their home village to measuretheir skills. There are about 380 falconers organized in an association. They are of all ages, from the teenage boy to the octogenarian, but in keeping with tradition, nogirls or women may practice the art.

Sep 27 - Day 1 Arrival in Ulaanbaatar

Upon arrival at Chinggis Khan International Airport, you are met by tour guide and transferred to the hotel in the city center.
We will star city tour the fi rst stop is Sukhbaatar Square, the central square named after the revolutionary hero of 1921 Damdiny Sukhbaatar who declared independence from China. We visit Gandan Monastery the largest and most famous functioning monastery in Mongolia; here we may experience monks in worship and see the impressive Golden Buddha Statue of Migjid Janraisig. Time permitting Natural History Museum which is famous for its authentic dinosaur skeletons and visit Zaisan memorial hill to view of whole city from there.

Overnight in 4* hotel
Meals: Dinner, Lunch & Dinner

Sep 28 - Day 2 Ulaanbaatar to South Gobi

Following breakfast at the hotel Drive to Dalanzadgad. We will have lunch at local restaurant in Dundgobi province.

Overnight in Ger camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Sep 29 - Day 3 Flaming Cliffs

Drive to fl aming cliffs known as Flaming Cliffs is located 20 kilometers away from Bulgan country; a lot of Paleontological fi ndings have been discovered here. The place is known as 'Flaming Cliffs' was named by Roy Chapman Andrews, an American explorer who had visited Mongolia in 1922 and over the course of two years he searched throughout the Mongolian Gobi Desert and found dinosaur fossils and dinosaur eggs about 10-15 cm. It was the fi rst discovery of its scale and kind in the world that had been made at the time.

Overnight in Ger Camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Sep 30 - Day 4 Drive to Hongor Sand

After breakfast, take in the stunning scenery of the Gobi-Altai Mountain range as you transfer to the towering sand dunes of Khongor Sand Dune, home to the ‘Singing Sands’. These spectacular dunes got their name from the noise made by the shifting sand in the wind. Feel the breeze in your hair as you ride a camel across the dunes before returning to the ger camp. Isolated from the rest of the country, the Singing Sands are the best kept secret for thousand years in the history of Mongolia.

Overnight in Ger Camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

OCT 1 - Day 5 Drive to Yol Valley and Gurvan saikhan National Park

In the morning, we drive to Yol Valley. Learn about the local wildlife in the Natural History Museum before taking a gentle hike through the valley to discover their habitats. This valley is nestled deep within the hills and is a safe haven to get away from the desert heat. Some areas of the valley are continually sheltered from the hot sun and house huge, blocks of ice that gradually melt away during the summer. It is very wide at the entrance and narrows gradually into a remarkable gorge. You will get to see wild animals such as ibex and wild sheep, and the vulture. You can go horseback or camel riding around the area and go trekking to the gorge.

Overnight in Ger Camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

OCT 2 - Day 6 Day trip to Khavtsgait Petroglyphs and Nomads day

In the morning we drive to the site of the Khavtsgait Petroglyphs. The Khavtsgait Petroglyphs from the Bronze Age (4000- 3000 BC) are beautifully carved on many rocks on the top of a sacred mountain. It is easy to fi nd the rock paintings there because they are spread on rocks all around. The area is very rocky and can be slippery to climb, but by carefully following a path up the mountain, you can reach the top to see these beautiful rock paintings.
The petroglyphs were carved and painted with motifs consisting of animals, hunting scenes and weapons. They depict various animals related to everyday life of ancient people including deer, bears, wolves and hunters, and wolves with livestock. Other paintings depict more domestic scenes of yaks pulling carts, the wheels and horses fl attened sideways like hieroglyphs, and herders on horseback. The engravings vary in size, ranging from two-centimeters to the real life size of horses.
After the rest, we will visit a herder family nearby. We will spend some time there getting to know the family members and their casual yet unique daily lifestyle. It is a good chance to see how the family members cooperate together to do their daily even hourly chores such as milking mares, fencing and milking the goats. If you wish, you are welcome to try some mare’s fermented milk and other dairy products.

Overnight in Ger Camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Oct 3 - Day 7 Back to Ulaanbaatar

Following an early morning breakfast, we are driving back to Ulaanbaatar. Transfer to hotel. Rest of the day is open for you to pursue your own interest.

Overnight in 4* hotel
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

oct 4 – Day 8 Ulaanbaatar to Ulgii

Transfer to the airport for a morning fl ight to Ulgii (2.5 hours), capital of Bayan-Ulgii, Mongolia’s westernmost province. Ninety percent of the population here is Kazakh, Mongolia’s largest ethnic minority. The isolation of the Altai Mountains has preserved the language and traditions of the Kazakhs, who live amongst some of the most spectacular scenery in Mongolia.
Ulgii (or Ölgii) is the capital of the Bayan-Ölgii Aimag (province) located in the extreme west of the country. It has an altitude of about 5,600 feet and population of about 29,000. It is the largest town in the area. It is the center of the predominately Kazakh region of Mongolia. The isolation of the Altai Mountains has preserved the language and traditions of the Kazakhs, who live amongst some of the most spectacular scenery in Mongolia. We will visit Kazakh families in their settlement. Their Gers are slightly larger than Mongolian Gers, and are decorated with brightly colored rugs. We will enjoy their hospitality and friendliness and learn more in deep about their culture. You will see their traditional technology to make colorful rug.
A visit to the well regarded provincial museum should provide a good overview of the Muslim culture of Western Mongolia that differs so much from most of Mongolia.

Overnight in local hotel or ger camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

oct 5 – Day 9 Golden Eagle Festival - Opening Ceremony / Competition

The offi cial opening ceremony commences with the participants parading in on horseback with their eagles. The competition begins with each Kazakh displaying his hunting outfi t and accessories, the most elaborate and beautiful of which receive the highest points. In the afternoon, the judges will evaluate the Golden Eagles’ speed and agility. The eagles will be released from a cliff with their owners standing below, signaling for the eagles to land upon their arms as they do while hunting. Those with the fastest times and best technique will be awarded the highest scores. In the evening, attend a Kazakh play in honor of the hunters and their eagles.

Overnight in local hotel or ger camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Oct 6 – Day 10 Golden Eagle Festivals & Awards Ceremony

The Golden Eagles will be released from a cliff to attack fox skins that will be dragged by their owner on horseback. The eagles will be judged on their success of grabbing the “fox”, their speed, and “gripping” technique. As the points for the competitions are being tallied, the Kazakhs will compete in their traditional game called “kukbar”- passing goat skin which tests one’s horse riding skills, strength and agility. In the late afternoon, the winners of the festival will be announced at the awards ceremony. In the evening, enjoy a celebration dinner.

Overnight in local hotel or ger camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Oct 7 - Day 11 Visiting Eagle Hunting Family and explore their unique lifestyle

We will be visiting some of the nomads of the area and experiencing their unique lifestyle.
Kazakh craftswomen are renowned for their colorful embroidery and textiles, and their gers are beautifully decorated. Handcrafted felt carpets line the fl oor, and delicately embroidered tapestries adorn the walls of their homes, with each design unique to a particular family. After meeting a Kazakh, you will be impressed by the generous hospitality expressed through expansive meals with many dishes and countless cups of milk tea and sweets. The herder will also demonstrate his horsemanship and training techniques which have been passed down from generation to generation.
The ger will be decorated with beautiful embroideries which are handmade by the skillful Kazakh women. The embroideries are truly works of art and display fi ne workmanship with beautiful colors and patterns.

Overnight in local hotel or ger camp
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Oct 8 - Day 12 Fly back to Ulaanbaatar

After breakfast, we will transfer to airport for return fl ight to Ulaanbaatar. In the afternoon there is more to see here upon arrival if you are interested, such as a visit to the Bogd Khan Winter Palace Museum, a residence of Bodg Jabzan Damba Hutagt VIII whom was Mongolia’s last theocrat. Or take a leisurely stroll through the town center. In the evening perhaps you can enjoy a farewell dinner and attend the local folklore dance shows.

Overnight in 4* hotel
Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Oct 9 – Day 13 Departure

Check out from hotel and transfer to Chinggis Khaan International airport or Ulaanbatar train station for departure.

Price: $2999 for per person
Single supplement: $550
If you are traveling alone and wish to share accommodations, we will try to match you with a roommate.
IncludedNot included
Private ger for every 2 people in Ger campInternational airfare
All meals as listed in itineraryTravel insurance
All entrance feesBeverages
Sightseeing as per itineraryOptional activity cost
Accommodation in 4 stars hotel in Ulaanbaatar (twin standard room double occupancy)Excess baggage charge
Transportations by 4WD vehiclesSingle room supplement
English speaking guide (other language guide on request)Any additional things which are not mentioned above
Daily supply of bottled water
Cultural Show
similar tour
Hello Soyoloo

Just want to thank you for your wonderful hospitality and expert tour guiding during our trip to Mongolia. We loved visiting the Husai National Park and exploring the city of Ulaanbaatar. Our favorite part of the trip was seeing the beautiful countryside and encountering wild horses, camels and eagles. Thank you so much for showing us around and making sure our trip was a success. We also enjoyed our driver, Zoloo. Look forward to planning our next adventure with you.

Best,
Lisa Berkman
Tour group from USA

The Trip: Mongolia and the Golden Eagle festival

The Trip: Mongolia and the Golden Eagle festival

NAME Georgie Brown and Andy McArthur

THE TRIP Mongolia and the Golden Eagle Festival

Who could believe that anything could be so exciting and exhilarating? Our group of eight were in Mongolia, the 18th biggest country in the world, 300 kilometres from China on the Gobi Plains, a vast track of flat grey-green land alongside the Altai Mountains. We were on our way to see the towering Singing Sands of the Gobi Desert and the Flaming Cliffs where American Roy Chapman Andrews discovered the first dinosaur eggs in 1922. Dinosaur fossils of all types were piled on top of one another, giving credence to the Big Bang Theory that saw the dinosaurs' sudden demise. We later visited the Khavtsgait Petroglyphs, exquisite rock sketches of the local animals from the Bronze Age 4000BC-3000BC depicting bactrian (two-humped) camels, ibex, horses, goats, sheep, wolves, yaks, hunters with bows and arrows and hunting eagles

Suddenly, our guide accelerated across the plains. He had spotted a herd of rare black tail gazelles. We ran alongside a little animal. From 60km/h to 80km/h, and still it bounded ahead.

Our accommodation in the Gobi Nomad Lodge comprised roomy gers, round felt-lined tents with heating and private facilities (upon request), and all meals. The food was wholesome salads, and stews. We relished the silence and the stars at night.

We later flew to Ulgii for the Gold Eagle Festival, as seen in the documentary, The Eagle Huntress. More than a hundred traditional horsemen vied to display the best horsemanship, dress and, of course, the skill of their hunting eagles. The star of the movie, Aisholpan, now aged 16, appeared resplendent in white with her hunting eagle.

But not all went to plan. One eagle landed on the wrong horseman, another settled for a nearby barbecue, and Aisholpan had a white camel that sat down in the middle of the camel race and refused to budge.

Tour organiser Nomadic Voyages was without fault. Our guide and drivers were knowledgeable, kind and considerate. The Land Cruisers were new and comfortable. We had plenty of opportunities to visit museums to see the world of Genghis Khan and temples.

BEST BITS: The Golden Eagle Festival, and lunch with a local family, eating Russian caviar and mutton stew with a camel, an eagle, a wolf, several curious yaks and the odd red sheep.

WORST BITS None.

BEST TIP: Prepare for altitude (1980 metres) cold, dry and unavoidably dusty.

http://www.traveller.com.au/the-trip-mongolia-and-the-golden-eagle-festival-gz4c06


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