Mongolia at Naadam
The Naadam Festival is Mongolia's most popular cultural and sporting event of the year. It It originated many centuries ago as a test of the courage, strength, daring, archery skills and horsemanship necessary for nomads and warriors. Naadam provides an exciting opportunity to see one of Mongolia's grandest and most spectacular traditions. Experience the thrill of watching hundreds of Mongolian wrestlers and archers, and thousands of horses and young riders compete in these ancient sports. The pageantry accompanying Naadam and colorful traditional clothing provide limitless photo opportunities.
Day 1 Ulaanbaatar Arrive in Ulaanbaatar and transfer to hotel. Visit the Museum of Natural History. Evening tour of Ulaanbaatar city.
Day 2 Gobi/Yol Valley Fly to the Gobi Desert. Visit the Yol Valley National Park for a trek and opportunity to photograph the stunning landscape, "Gobi Glacier" and wildlife. Visit a camel breeder's camp for photo opportunities, camel riding and discovering the nomadic lifestyle of Mongolians in the Gobi.
Day 3 Flaming Cliffs/Moltsog Els Day trip to Bayan Zag, the Flaming Cliffs, for exploring the Gobi's Dinosaur Cemetery, and follow the trail of Roy Chapman Andrews. Visit the Moltsog sand dunes.
Day 4 Ulaanbaatar Return to Ulaanbaatar. Visit Bogdo Khan Winter Palace Museum. The remainder of the day at leisure.
Day 5 Karakorum Drive to Karakorum and a visit to Ereden Zuu, one of the largest monasteries in Mongolia.
Day6 Naadam Festival Attend Naadam festival celebrations in Karakorum, the capital of 13th century Mongol Empire. Enjoy the opening ceremony and witness wrestling and archery competitions, and horse races.
Day7 Bayangobi Drive to Bayangobi the unique combination of steppe, forested mountains and desert-type landscape.
Day 8· Ulaanbaatar Drive to Ulaanbaatar. Enroute visit to Hustai Nuruu National Reserve to see Przewalski wild horses.
Day 9 Manzshir Monastery/Terelj National Park Excursion to Manzshir Monastery, located in the southern entrance of Bogdo Khaan National Park. The surrounding beautiful valley with streams and pine, birch tress, dotted with granite boulders is perfect place for walking and hiking. Drive to Terelj, famous for its unique granite rock formations and alpine scenery. Explore the area on foot or on horseback.
Day 10 Ulaanbaatar Morning at leisure. Return to Ulaanbaatar for evening cultural performance and farewell dinner.
Day 11 Departure Transfer to the airport or train station for departure.