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Trail ride across Mongolia

Mongolian Grand Traverse

23 days / 12 days riding - Price: contact us

Riding levels

Each of our trips is assigned a minimum level of riding ability required. This reflects whether there is technical riding required; the terrain to be covered; the liveliness of the horses; the length of the riding days and the riding fitness required.




For novice riders, these riding holidays will give beginners the chance to get used to being in the saddle. In general, a beginner/ novice hasn't learned how to canter and has not yet mastered rising trot. They are able to mount safely and to control a horse at a walk. 



For intermediate riders who are at ease at 2 paces (walk and rising trot and are starting to canter in a forward seat) out in open countryside. The intermediate rider is able to mount and dismount their horse unassisted, use basic riding aids, ride at a rising trot for at least 10 minutes, to change and control the pace from a walk to a trot and comfortably canter over short distances.



For experienced riders who have mastered all 3 paces (walk, rising trot, canter in a forward seat) over uneven terrain. The experienced rider rides regularly, has a good seat and is confident of their own ability. They are able to control the horse at speed and change direction of their horse at any pace and in any circumstance as needed.



For advanced riders who have mastered all 4paces (walk, rising trot, canter gallop in a forward seat) over uneven terrain on all types of horses including those that are very spirited. The advanced rider rides regularly has good physical fitness, has good soft hands and has the ability to gallop for long stretches without getting tired.



For all riders, whether they are novices, intermediate level, experienced or advanced. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capabilities of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, endurance training, natural horsemanship, trail riding orcentre based safaris.



For beginners and intermediate level riders. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability level. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capability of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, endurance ridingtraining natural horsemanship and centre based safaris.



For beginners, intermediate level  and experienced riders. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability level. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capabilities of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, endurance ridingtraining natural horsemanship and centre based safaris.



For intermediate level and experienced riders. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability level. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capabilities of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, long-distance ridingtraining,endurance ridingtraining natural horsemanship and centre based safaris.



For intermediate level, experiencedand advanced riders. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability level. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capabilities of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, long-distance ridingtrainingendurance ridingtraining natural horsemanship and centre based safaris.



For experiencedand advanced riders. Each rider will be allocated a horse that is suited to their ability level. These riding holidays have a level of difficulty that can be adapted to the capabilities of each rider. For example: working with cattle on a ranch, dressage training, long-distance ridingtraining,endurance ridingtraining natural horsemanship and centre based safaris.

Comfort

Each of our rides has been assigned an expected level of comfort

Nights in tents, outdoor dining

 

EQUUS JOURNEYS THE THRESHING BARN - HOMME CASTLE BARNS
SHELSLEY WALSH
WORCESTERSHIRE, WR6 6RR. UK
Phone : +44 (0) 1905 388977
INFO@EQUUS-JOURNEYS.COM

Imprimer

MONGOLIA-Mongolian Grand Traverse

23 days / 12 days riding - Price: contact us


Activity :

Level :

Comfort :

A horseback trail ride from Karakorum to the shores of Lake Khuvsgul on the border of Siberia. Ride off the beaten track on mountain steppes and stay with a nomadic family. One of the most beautiful equestrian adventures in Mongolia!

Strengths

- A 100% Mongolian Team
- Horse riding in three of the most beautiful regions of Mongolia - Khuvsgul lake, Orkhon valley and the wild steppes of Arkhangai North
- Visit the reputed sites of the Orkhon valley: the city of Karakorum, Orkhon falls, Tsenkher hot springs and Tovkhon monastery
- Spend 4 days and 3 nights in a yurt with a nomadic family near Lake Khuvsgul
- Immerse yourself in the life of nomadic families and farmers in each region
- Possibility to visit Naadam games on certain departures

Itinerary

Day 1: LONDON - ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation :

Flight from London to Ulaanbaatar - it is likely that you will have to change planes at least once.

Day 2: ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTE ALAG SAR

Arrive in Ulaanbaatar during the morning and be transferred to your comfortable ger camp to rest. During the afternoon you can visit this capital city on the banks of the Tula and perhaps take a tour of one of the museums to immerse yourself in the rich and glorious history of Mongolia, from pre-history to the Soviet rule.

Day 3: ULAANBAATAR - KHOGNO KHAN - KHARKHORIN - +/- 8 hours in the vehicle

Accommodation : TENTE

During the morning you visit the Buddhist Gandan monastery, one of the largest in Mongolia. You are then transferred west by road to the beautiful rock formations at Khogno Khan. You can walk through this national park to view the steppes, semi-desert, taiga and monastery Ovgon Khiid. This monastery dates from the 17th century and was built into the mountain by Zanabazar in honour of his teacher.

Your night is spent in a touristic ger camp "Munkhtenger" where there are hot showers available - a small pleasure which will not be available for most of the trip!

Day 4: KHARKHORIN - ORKHON VALLEY - No riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Today, visit the legendary Silk Road city of Genghis Khan, founded in 1220. It was from there that the Mongol Empire was governed until Kublai Khan decided to set up the capital of the Mongol EMpire in Beijing. Visit the important monastery Erdene Zuu ("Hundred Treasures") which was built in 1586 on the ruins of the ancient imperial city.

You are then transferred to the Orkhon Valley (c. 5-6 hours) for the start of your riding adventure. You will spend the rest of the day with a nomadic family where you may be offered your first bowl of airag (fermented mares milk) as a welcome.

Dinner will be taken alfresco amidst the vast expanses of steppes where yaks and horses graze peacefully. You will meet your equestrian guides and horses.

Day 5: ORKHON VALLEY - ULAAN TSUTGALAN - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After saying goodbye to the family it's time to head out on your riding adventure. Your destination is the waterfall at Ulaan Tsutgalan. This is a touristy place but it is worth it - the waterfall is 20m high and 10m wide and falls into a bottomless pit. Walk down the cliff to the bottom of the falls where you can swim in the river.

After a picnic lunch by the falls, re-mount and ride on to your first camp.

Day 6:ORKHON VALLEY - TOVKHON - 5-6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Ride in a north-easterly direction toward the Thovkhon mountain. Along the way, meet the nomads who live in this area and visit their yurt. Continue towards the summit of the mountain - you will need to leave your horse behind in order to complete the ascent on foot.

Visit the monastery Tovkhon where Zanabazar, the first religious leader of Mongolia, wrote the Soyombo alphabet, the first letter of which has become a symbol for the country. There are several temples which have been built as this place, known as the "Land of happy solicitude". This monastery is located at 2,312m and so the view of Khangai and the valley is beautiful.

Day 7: TOVKHON - ORKHON RIVER - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

The mornings ride is an adventurous one as you cross the green steppes and many rivers, past the homes of many families.

The ride alternates between narrow crooked trails and open grassland, ideal for long canters. Many small rivers allow for breaks to let the horses have a drink.

Day 8: ORKHON RIVER - 6-7 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Another long, exhilarating day of riding through the steppe, interspersed with streams and long trails.

This is still a very remote and wild area, covered in flowers. Keep an eye out for the birds of prey that often fly over the vast steppes of Mongolia.

Day 9 - ORKHON RIVER - TSENKHER HOT SPRINGS - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Your ride takes you towards Tsenkher hot springs. You ride through lush green plains and past herds of horses or a Mongolian horseman with his herd of yaks. You reach Tsenkher in the afternoon - there are several camps with pools and you can relax in the warm water (c. 25c) which is rich in minerals and known for its benefits against back pain, skin diseases and fatigue. Massages are available if you wish (payable locally). Showers are also available on-site.

Camp is set up close to the source, but far enough away from the crowds.

There is a small fee ($10 togrog) to access the hot springs. Please make sure to have some cash with you to pay for it.

Day 10: TSENKHER - TAMIR RIVER - 5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After the moning ride, lunch is taken beside the Tsenkher river where you can swim if you wish.

In the afternoon, ride towards the city of Tsetserleg ("beautiful garden") - the capital of Arkhangai and a place where all roads meet. It may be possible to stop at the monastery of Zaya Geggenii Khiid which is now an interesting museum the chronicles nomadic Mongolian life.

Your camp is next to the Tamir river in the middle of the steppes.

Day 11: TAMIR RIVER - CHULUUT RIVER - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After a road transfer up to the camp where the second nomadic team awaits, on the Chuluut River. You might stop for a break to visit a Monastery and take a look at the Taikhar Rock, subject of many local legends.

You will meet your new horses tonight. In the evening, enjoy a warm dinner by the campfire and share a few traditional Mongolian songs.

Day 12: CHULUUT RIVER - RIVIERE SUMAN - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Wake up in a truly magical place. You ride out with your new team and horse, starting with the crossing of a river across a bridge.

You ride along the Chuluut Cliffs before enjoying a well-deserved lunch.

This afternoon will offer plenty of opportunities for exhilarating gallops across the steppe. As you get closer to your camp for the night, note the presence of volcanic rock and ancient lava flows.

Day 13: SUMAN RIVER - TARIAT - KHORGO - TERKHIIN TSAGAAN LAKE - 5 hours riding

Accommodation :

Continue riding along the gorge formed by the river Chuluut, past the village of Tariat and on to Khorgo volcano which rises to 2,965m. Around the volcano the impressive lava flows have formed a unique landscape which is very different to the ones you have crossed previously. After climbing Khorgo, set up camp near the lake, one of the most beautiful in the country.

Day 14: TERKHIIN TSAGAAN LAKE - SHINE IDER - SANGIYN DALA LAKE - no riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Transfer by road from Terkhin Tsagaan to Sangiyn Dalay lake which is in the Shine-Ider region. The road twists and turns so the journey takes 6-7 hours, but the scenery is beautiful. The afternoon is free to rest and relax.

Day 15: SANGIYN DALAY LAKE - KHUVSGUL LAKE - no riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

A second day in the vehicle. Today you cross several passes over 2,000m before entering hidden valleys where landscapes are changing rapidly. In the afternoon you finally reach Khuvsgul lake. This lake is rightly regarded as one of the natural wonders of the world. At 1,700m high, this huge mountain lake is surrounded by hills and mountains covered with pine forests and lush meadows where yaks and horses graze. The water is so pure you can drink it and many nomadic families set up camp here. You cross Khatgal and spend the night with a family located on the eastern shores of the lake.

Day 16: LAC KHUVSGUL - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

For the next two days you stay with your host family and share the simple moments of daily life with them. Ride on horseback to discover the area around Lake Khuvsgul, where the scenery is as wild as it is beautiful.

Day 17: KHUVSGUL LAKE - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation :

A second day riding with families near Lake Khuvsgul. The pace of life is peaceful and the landscape is full of flowers - you may canter across fields of edelweiss! To the west, on the opposite shore of the lake, the peaks rise to over 3,000m and reflect in the crystal clear water.

Day 18: KHUVSGUL LAKE - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation :

Today, you ride out around the lake again, although every day and every scenery is different and alternate between banks and forest.

Day 19: LAKE KHUVSGUL - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Your last day riding is spent around Khuvsgul Lake. Today should be a nice, relaxing ride with a few canters across fields in full bloom. To the west, on the opposite side of the lake, the peaks can reach 3000m.

Day 20: LAKE KHUVSGUL - LAKE ERKHEL - No riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Spend the morning with the family, perhaps making cheese or helping with the herds. In the afternoon you are transferred in the direction of Moron. The final camp is set up next to Lake Erkhel.

Day 21: LAKE ERKHEL - MORON - ULAANBAATAR - No riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Transfer to Moron where you can look around the local market. Moron is the capital of the Khuvsgul province: situated on the northern side of the mountains alongside the Ertchim Delgermoron river, this city was founded on the site of an ancient monastery which, before the revolution was considered to be the religious centre of northern Mongolia.

In the afternoon you fly (1.5 hours) to Ulaanbaatar and spend the night in a ger camp on the outskirts of the city.

Day 22: ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Transfer to the city centre, where you will get a guided tour of the black market before settling in your yurt camp.

You are free to do as you please for lunch and the afternoon, then a map will be given to you so that you can meet your guide in the evening for a traditional show of theatre, music and dances followed by a final dinner in town.

Day 23: ULAANBAATAR - LONDON -

Accommodation :

After breakfast you will be transferred to Ulaanbaatar in time for your flight back to the UK.


Price details

No departure for this destination. Please contact our travel advisers for more information.
- International flights are not included. The internal flight from Moron to Ulaanbaatar is included in the price.

- For the Nadaam date, 8th July departure, there is a tax of $40 to be paid locally.

- The group is usually composed of between 3 and 10 riders plus guides. There is a small group supplement payable if the group consists of less than 4 riders.
If there are only three riders in the group then the supplement is c. £335 per person;
If there are only two riders in the group then the supplement is c. £1120 per person.

- The rider weight limit is 90kg.

- Additional dates can be scheduled on request - please enquire.
Please Note
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.

PRICE INCLUDES

Logistics

1 guide and interpreter from Ulaan Baatar
1 expedition crew
1 support vehicle
1 cook for groups of 4+ riders. For smaller groups, the guide is in charge of cooking.
1 horse equipped with saddle and bridle per rider +1 back up horse

Inland transports

Internal flight from Moron to Ulaanbaatar
Airport transfers

Accommodation

Accommodation in turts or tents

Meals

Full board from lunch on day 2 to breakfast on day 23

PRICE DOESN'T INCLUDE

Transports

International flights
Visa fees

Extra

Small group supplement

Extras

Tips to the local team
Park, museum and other site entry fees
$40 tax for Nadaam Festival

Insurance

Cancellation and travel insurance are not included in the above listed price. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend taking out an insurance policy as soon as your trip is booked to cover you in case of cancellation

TIPS

If you are happy with the service you receive from your local guides and driver then you may wish to leave a tip. In order to remain consistent with their standard of living, we would recommend something in the region of £40 - £50.

HORSES

The Mongolian horse is legendary. He is small, energetic and tough but gentle and perfect for trail riding on all types of terrain. The horses are sociable and live happily in a herd. They are not difficult to ride but some will be more spirited than others.
The saddlery will be locally made in an English style.

MINIMUM RIDING ABILITY

You need to be a capable rider, balanced and in control in all paces in open spaces.

PACE

Whilst much of the ride is at a walk there are plenty of opportunities for long trots and canters across the immensity of the steppes.

TACKING ABILITY AND PARTICIPATION

The horses are tacked and untacked by the Mongolian team but you will be asked to assist around camp (erecting and dismantling tents etc).

TRIP CONDITIONS AND REQUESTED EXPERIENCE

You need to be fit and in good condition for this trail across varied terrain - waves of undulating mountains, beautiful spaces for canters, numerous rivers, forests, deep blue lakes and magical panoramas. Some days are long and take place at an altitude of 1,400 - 2,500m. Temperatures are generally pleasant during the day (18 - 30c) but it can get cold at night with the possibility of frosts. Although it is usually sunny you could experience thunderstorms, heavy rain, hail or even snow.
You need to remember that you are in an isolated area and even though you are supported by vehicles, the nearest medical clinic is at least one day away by road.
Previous experience of riding a trail for several days is an advantage but is not required. Riders who do not ride regularly are requested to get riding fit before the holiday.

Visiting a new country offers the opportunity to meet other cultures with different mentalities, therefore it is important to accept these differences and respect the local way of life. Be prepared to adapt to a different style of riding and accept that Mongolians relate to their horses in a different way to us.

EQUESTRIAN EQUIPMENT

Saddles are old English military style but local made.
Whilst the stirrup leathers are adjustable, riders who are tall may find that they are short in length and are recommended to take their own pair of leathers.

COMFORT

For most of the trail you stay in 3 person tents (two sharing). Mattresses are provided but you need to take your own high quality sleeping bag. A small table and chairs are provided for dining within the main tent. A portable shower tent is also erected.

5 nights are spent in a comfortable ger camp with hot showers; 3 nights are in a yurt with a family and 13 nights are camping.

CLIMAT

Mongolia has over 260 days of sunshine a year! Generally there is very little rain - the annual average in the north is 200-350mm and this decreases in the south. Mongolia is located in the heart of a high pressure system which leads to clear skies and Mongolia is sometimes known as the "Land of Blue Skies".
Winters are long and cold (October - April) and so rides run during the summers months of May - September. There is a short rainy season during mid-July - September but rainfall is usually short and scanty in the late afternoon. Temperatures are mild in the north and hotter in the south. Because of the altitude, nights can be cold even in summer.
Winds can be strong, particularly in spring and autumn and the weather can change quickly, so take layers and be prepared!

Meals

The food is simple, abundant and based on fresh products prepared by a local cook and adapted to western tastes. Meals are served on small camping tables with stools, except for some picnic lunches.
Breakfast is usually hearty.
Lunch is often hot when meeting the logistics truck, but sometimes a picnic.
Dinner is a full hot meal (soup, main course, dessert) and may well include lamb/mutton purchased from local nomads.

Water:
Take care not to drink water from unknown sources. The cook will boil water each day for you to fill up your water bottles. Alternatively you can use water-purification tablets such as Micropur, or buy mineral water.

Support Team

Guide and local team

You will be accompanied by at least two local horse guides. There will also be a cook to prepare meals and a vehicle driver.

Packing list

Head
- Equus Journeys strongly recommend that you wear a riding helmet and that you take your own to ensure a correct fit. There are many lightweight options available nowadays
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana
- Warm hat for cold nights when camping

Upper body
- Thermals (long or short sleeved)
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun and are an extra layer
- T-shirts
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Warm fleece or jumper (and a spare in case one gets wet)
- Warm and waterproof jacket - it can rain at any time of year and the evenings can be particularly cold

Legs
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub
- Thermals
- Casual trousers for the evenings, such as jeans or tracksuit bottoms
- Waterproof over trousers

Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may wish to take long chaps as an extra layer against inclement weather. We don't recommend taking your favourite long leather boots in case they get damaged
- Waterproof shoes/boots can be useful for abundant dew in the mornings or when it rains
- Trainers or equivalent light shoes for moving around the camp in the evenings
- Several pairs of warm, thick socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, cold or rain whilst riding. Waterproof gloves can be particularly useful

Nightwear
- Sleeping bag. You need at least a comfort factor down to minus 5 celsius, but would recommend at least minus 8 or 10 celsius.
- Sleeping bag liner - silk, cotton or fleece - adds an extra layer
- Pyjamas or tracksuits or thermals for sleeping in

Our Recommendations
- Please don't take a hard sided suitcase. Your luggage should be soft sided with a capacity of 60-80 litres. We recommend taking a backpack or similar. The luggage limit on the ride is 15kg per person.
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (camera, sunscreen, lipbalm etc)
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- Tall riders may benefit from taking a pair of long stirrup leathers with them (the local stirrups are adjustable but are sometimes limited in length)

Other useful items
- Swimsuit - for swimming/bathing in rivers
- Towels - camping ones will both dry and pack more easily
- Small backpack for accessing items required during the day (carried by support crew)
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Headtorch or small torch for moving around camp at night - bring spare batteries and bulbs
- Water bottle (2 litres or 2 x 1 litre)
- Wet Wipes or equivalent (for when washing facilities aren't available)
- Toilet paper and a lighter to burn it with
- Small plastic bags for rubbish
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)

In your hold luggage
- Any liquids, such as shampoo, moisturiser, deodorant unless they are less than 100ml and all bottles can fit in a small, clear, plastic ziplock bag. We recommend biodegradable washing products where possible.
- Swiss army knife (or equivalent)

In your hand luggage
- Any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Your riding hat

Medical kit
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent, preferably containing deet
- Any medication you regularly take
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Water purification tablets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel

Miscellaneous
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals
- Please take your rubbish home with you. There are no recycling facilities in Mongolia, so take your used batteries, aerosols etc back home and dispose of them appropriately. Try to leave excess packaging material at home before travelling
- You may wish to take some photographs or postcards of your home with you to show your hosts. You may also wish to take some crayons, colouring books etc for the children

ENTRY FORMALITIES

To travel to Mongolia, a passport valid for at least six months is required by all nationals of Australia, Canada, USA, UK and other EU countries.

Visas:

To visit Mongolia, you will need to organise a visa. A Mongolian visit visa is usually valid for a stay of up to 30 days within six months from the date of issue. You can find more information by following the link below.
www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/mongolia/entry-requirements.

Nationals of the USA do not require a visa if entering Mongolia as a tourist for stays of up to 90 days.

When travelling to Russia or China from Mongolia, the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office advises you to get visas before travelling - seek advice from the Chinese and Russian Embassies in London BEFORE travelling. There have been issues with getting Russian visas in Ulaanbaatar.

Types and cost:
Single-entry transit visa: £35; double-entry transit visa: £55; single-entry tourist/business visa: £40;
double-entry visa: £55;
multiple-entry visa: £70.

Validity:
Single-entry visa: 30 days within three months of issue;
double-entry visa: 30 days within three months of issue;
multiple-entry visa: six or 12 months.


Addresses of consulates

  • Agence de l'immigration, de la naturalisation et des etrangers
    Buyant Ukhaa
    Khan Uul District
    Oulan-Bator
    Tél. : +1900-18-82 / +976-7
    Fax :
    http://www.immigration.gov.mn/
  • Ambassade de France en Mongolie
    3, avenue de la Paix
    quartier 1 - district de Chingeltei PO Box 687
    Oulan Bator
    Tél. : +976 (11) 32 45 19
    Fax :
    contact@ambafrance-mn.org
  • Ambassade de Mongolie en France
    5, avenue Robert-Schuman
    92100 Boulogne-Billancourt
    Tél. : 01.46.05.28.12
    Fax : 01 46 05 30 16
    info@ambassademongolie.fr
  • Ambassade de Mongolie en Belgique
    Avenue Besme 18
    Foret
    1190 Bruxelles
    Tél. : +32 (0) 2 344 69 74
    Fax : +32 (0) 2 344 32 15
    brussels@embmongolie.be

HEALTH

There are no vaccinations legally required to travel to Mongolia. It's a good thing to get your vaccinations in order before travelling to Mongolia. The general vaccination against Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio (DTP) is recommended. Also a hepatitis A vaccination is recommended and when travelling longer than 2 weeks also typhoid.
If you are staying longer than 3 months or have a particular risk (travelling by bike, handling of animals and visits to caves) you might consider a rabies vaccination. Vaccination against Tuberculosis as well as hepatitis B is also sometimes recommended for stays longer than 3 months. It is also recommended to have a vaccination against tick borne encephalitis when you go hiking and/or camping for several days or more in the north of the country in the period of March to November. A vaccination against meningitis is recommended when travelling for more than 6 months, in combination with close contact with the local people.

TRAVEL INSURANCE

It is a condition of your booking with Equus Journeys that you have travel insurance which covers you for the riding activities to be undertaken. Your travel insurance should cover you for medical expenses and repatriation. Your guides will require your travel insurance details before they allow you to ride and may refuse to let you ride if you cannot provide them. You should take your insurance documents with you.

Our recommendation:
Cancellation and travel insurances are not included. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend to take out an insurance policy as soon as your travel is booked in case of cancellation.

TELEPHONE AND JET LAG

Mongolia Country Code 976

Central and Eastern Standard Time +0800 GMT
Western Standard Time + 0700 GMT

BUDGET AND MONEY

Tugrik (MNT; symbol ₮). Notes are in denominations of ₮20,000, 10,000, 5,000, 1,000, 500, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5 and 1. Coins are in denominations of ₮500, 200, 100, 50 and 20, but are not widely used.
Credit cards:
Accepted by main commercial banks, large hotels and a few shops and restaurants in Ulaanbaatar. ATMs are available in Ulaanbaatar and most Mongolian province (aimag) capitals. Both Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted.
ATM:
ATMs are available in Ulaanbaatar and most Mongolian province (aimag) capitals.

VOLTAGE

220 volts AC, 50Hz. Round two-pin plugs are used

ACTIVITY :Trail Riding

LEVEL :Help

COMFORT :Help

A horseback trail ride from Karakorum to the shores of Lake Khuvsgul on the border of Siberia. Ride off the beaten track on mountain steppes and stay with a nomadic family. One of the most beautiful equestrian adventures in Mongolia!

  • Cantering at the side of Lake Khuvsgul
    Cantering in the mongolian steppe
  • Trail riding across the wild steppes of Mongolia
    Mongolian green landscape
  • Ride the courageous horses of Mongolia
    Horseback trail ride in Mongolia
  • Experience the real, authentic Mongolia
    Yurts in Mongolia at Khuvsgul lake
  • Selecting your horse in Mongolia
    Trail riding on horseback across  Mongolia
  • Immerse yourself in the lives of nomads
    Yurt camp and horseback trail in Mongolia
  • Ride authentic Mongolian horses across Mongolia
    Mongolian horse in Mongolia
  • Stay in authentic Yurts
    Yurts in Mongolia
  • Camping under the stars in Mongolia
    Mongol horses in evening light

STRENGTHS

- A 100% Mongolian Team
- Horse riding in three of the most beautiful regions of Mongolia - Khuvsgul lake, Orkhon valley and the wild steppes of Arkhangai North
- Visit the reputed sites of the Orkhon valley: the city of Karakorum, Orkhon falls, Tsenkher hot springs and Tovkhon monastery
- Spend 4 days and 3 nights in a yurt with a nomadic family near Lake Khuvsgul
- Immerse yourself in the life of nomadic families and farmers in each region
- Possibility to visit Naadam games on certain departures

ITINERARY

Day 1: LONDON - ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation :

Flight from London to Ulaanbaatar - it is likely that you will have to change planes at least once.

Day 2: ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTE ALAG SAR

Arrive in Ulaanbaatar during the morning and be transferred to your comfortable ger camp to rest. During the afternoon you can visit this capital city on the banks of the Tula and perhaps take a tour of one of the museums to immerse yourself in the rich and glorious history of Mongolia, from pre-history to the Soviet rule.

Day 3: ULAANBAATAR - KHOGNO KHAN - KHARKHORIN - +/- 8 hours in the vehicle

Accommodation : TENTE

During the morning you visit the Buddhist Gandan monastery, one of the largest in Mongolia. You are then transferred west by road to the beautiful rock formations at Khogno Khan. You can walk through this national park to view the steppes, semi-desert, taiga and monastery Ovgon Khiid. This monastery dates from the 17th century and was built into the mountain by Zanabazar in honour of his teacher.

Your night is spent in a touristic ger camp "Munkhtenger" where there are hot showers available - a small pleasure which will not be available for most of the trip!

Day 4: KHARKHORIN - ORKHON VALLEY - No riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Today, visit the legendary Silk Road city of Genghis Khan, founded in 1220. It was from there that the Mongol Empire was governed until Kublai Khan decided to set up the capital of the Mongol EMpire in Beijing. Visit the important monastery Erdene Zuu ("Hundred Treasures") which was built in 1586 on the ruins of the ancient imperial city.

You are then transferred to the Orkhon Valley (c. 5-6 hours) for the start of your riding adventure. You will spend the rest of the day with a nomadic family where you may be offered your first bowl of airag (fermented mares milk) as a welcome.

Dinner will be taken alfresco amidst the vast expanses of steppes where yaks and horses graze peacefully. You will meet your equestrian guides and horses.

Day 5: ORKHON VALLEY - ULAAN TSUTGALAN - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After saying goodbye to the family it's time to head out on your riding adventure. Your destination is the waterfall at Ulaan Tsutgalan. This is a touristy place but it is worth it - the waterfall is 20m high and 10m wide and falls into a bottomless pit. Walk down the cliff to the bottom of the falls where you can swim in the river.

After a picnic lunch by the falls, re-mount and ride on to your first camp.

Day 6:ORKHON VALLEY - TOVKHON - 5-6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Ride in a north-easterly direction toward the Thovkhon mountain. Along the way, meet the nomads who live in this area and visit their yurt. Continue towards the summit of the mountain - you will need to leave your horse behind in order to complete the ascent on foot.

Visit the monastery Tovkhon where Zanabazar, the first religious leader of Mongolia, wrote the Soyombo alphabet, the first letter of which has become a symbol for the country. There are several temples which have been built as this place, known as the "Land of happy solicitude". This monastery is located at 2,312m and so the view of Khangai and the valley is beautiful.

Day 7: TOVKHON - ORKHON RIVER - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

The mornings ride is an adventurous one as you cross the green steppes and many rivers, past the homes of many families.

The ride alternates between narrow crooked trails and open grassland, ideal for long canters. Many small rivers allow for breaks to let the horses have a drink.

Day 8: ORKHON RIVER - 6-7 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Another long, exhilarating day of riding through the steppe, interspersed with streams and long trails.

This is still a very remote and wild area, covered in flowers. Keep an eye out for the birds of prey that often fly over the vast steppes of Mongolia.

Day 9 - ORKHON RIVER - TSENKHER HOT SPRINGS - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Your ride takes you towards Tsenkher hot springs. You ride through lush green plains and past herds of horses or a Mongolian horseman with his herd of yaks. You reach Tsenkher in the afternoon - there are several camps with pools and you can relax in the warm water (c. 25c) which is rich in minerals and known for its benefits against back pain, skin diseases and fatigue. Massages are available if you wish (payable locally). Showers are also available on-site.

Camp is set up close to the source, but far enough away from the crowds.

There is a small fee ($10 togrog) to access the hot springs. Please make sure to have some cash with you to pay for it.

Day 10: TSENKHER - TAMIR RIVER - 5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After the moning ride, lunch is taken beside the Tsenkher river where you can swim if you wish.

In the afternoon, ride towards the city of Tsetserleg ("beautiful garden") - the capital of Arkhangai and a place where all roads meet. It may be possible to stop at the monastery of Zaya Geggenii Khiid which is now an interesting museum the chronicles nomadic Mongolian life.

Your camp is next to the Tamir river in the middle of the steppes.

Day 11: TAMIR RIVER - CHULUUT RIVER - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

After a road transfer up to the camp where the second nomadic team awaits, on the Chuluut River. You might stop for a break to visit a Monastery and take a look at the Taikhar Rock, subject of many local legends.

You will meet your new horses tonight. In the evening, enjoy a warm dinner by the campfire and share a few traditional Mongolian songs.

Day 12: CHULUUT RIVER - RIVIERE SUMAN - 6 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Wake up in a truly magical place. You ride out with your new team and horse, starting with the crossing of a river across a bridge.

You ride along the Chuluut Cliffs before enjoying a well-deserved lunch.

This afternoon will offer plenty of opportunities for exhilarating gallops across the steppe. As you get closer to your camp for the night, note the presence of volcanic rock and ancient lava flows.

Day 13: SUMAN RIVER - TARIAT - KHORGO - TERKHIIN TSAGAAN LAKE - 5 hours riding

Accommodation :

Continue riding along the gorge formed by the river Chuluut, past the village of Tariat and on to Khorgo volcano which rises to 2,965m. Around the volcano the impressive lava flows have formed a unique landscape which is very different to the ones you have crossed previously. After climbing Khorgo, set up camp near the lake, one of the most beautiful in the country.

Day 14: TERKHIIN TSAGAAN LAKE - SHINE IDER - SANGIYN DALA LAKE - no riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Transfer by road from Terkhin Tsagaan to Sangiyn Dalay lake which is in the Shine-Ider region. The road twists and turns so the journey takes 6-7 hours, but the scenery is beautiful. The afternoon is free to rest and relax.

Day 15: SANGIYN DALAY LAKE - KHUVSGUL LAKE - no riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

A second day in the vehicle. Today you cross several passes over 2,000m before entering hidden valleys where landscapes are changing rapidly. In the afternoon you finally reach Khuvsgul lake. This lake is rightly regarded as one of the natural wonders of the world. At 1,700m high, this huge mountain lake is surrounded by hills and mountains covered with pine forests and lush meadows where yaks and horses graze. The water is so pure you can drink it and many nomadic families set up camp here. You cross Khatgal and spend the night with a family located on the eastern shores of the lake.

Day 16: LAC KHUVSGUL - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : TENTE

For the next two days you stay with your host family and share the simple moments of daily life with them. Ride on horseback to discover the area around Lake Khuvsgul, where the scenery is as wild as it is beautiful.

Day 17: KHUVSGUL LAKE - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation :

A second day riding with families near Lake Khuvsgul. The pace of life is peaceful and the landscape is full of flowers - you may canter across fields of edelweiss! To the west, on the opposite shore of the lake, the peaks rise to over 3,000m and reflect in the crystal clear water.

Day 18: KHUVSGUL LAKE - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation :

Today, you ride out around the lake again, although every day and every scenery is different and alternate between banks and forest.

Day 19: LAKE KHUVSGUL - 4-5 hours riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Your last day riding is spent around Khuvsgul Lake. Today should be a nice, relaxing ride with a few canters across fields in full bloom. To the west, on the opposite side of the lake, the peaks can reach 3000m.

Day 20: LAKE KHUVSGUL - LAKE ERKHEL - No riding

Accommodation : TENTE

Spend the morning with the family, perhaps making cheese or helping with the herds. In the afternoon you are transferred in the direction of Moron. The final camp is set up next to Lake Erkhel.

Day 21: LAKE ERKHEL - MORON - ULAANBAATAR - No riding

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Transfer to Moron where you can look around the local market. Moron is the capital of the Khuvsgul province: situated on the northern side of the mountains alongside the Ertchim Delgermoron river, this city was founded on the site of an ancient monastery which, before the revolution was considered to be the religious centre of northern Mongolia.

In the afternoon you fly (1.5 hours) to Ulaanbaatar and spend the night in a ger camp on the outskirts of the city.

Day 22: ULAANBAATAR -

Accommodation : CAMP DE YOURTES

Transfer to the city centre, where you will get a guided tour of the black market before settling in your yurt camp.

You are free to do as you please for lunch and the afternoon, then a map will be given to you so that you can meet your guide in the evening for a traditional show of theatre, music and dances followed by a final dinner in town.

Day 23: ULAANBAATAR - LONDON -

Accommodation :

After breakfast you will be transferred to Ulaanbaatar in time for your flight back to the UK.

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Did you know ?

The warrior's heart

The nomadic modern pastors still perpetuate the old way of life and traditions, moving cattle in search of new pastures at least twice a year, within a 50 to 100 km radius. These migrations happen at the pace of the horse, with which they still maintain a very close relationship. It is, after all, the key to the survival of this people.  

The "urga", the traditional lasso, long and stiff, is made of wood and leather. It is used to drive and catch horses. The scrapers, made of wood, remove the sweat of the horse which is then tasted !

It is said that it probably was in the Mongolian grasslands that the horse was domesticated for the first time. Standing up in the saddle with short stirrups, Mongolian-style, is the most suitable technique for long hours in the saddle. Four riders are enough to guide a thousand animals.