The Trails of Lake Hovsgol and Gobi Desert
Overland driving, horseback riding, hiking, camping and camel trekking – this is our ultimate Mongolian multi-sport event designed for thrill and action seekers!
Mongolia is a National Park itself with a commitment to protect up to 30% of its territory. It is an ideal destination for mountain trekking, horseback and camelback riding. “National Parks of Mongolia” is one of our series of “Active Quests,” which include trekking and riding in some of the most beautiful national parks in country. Traveling in Mongolia on a trip that combines two or more of existing 99 National Parks will be an unforgettable travel experience.
Our trip begins with a flight north to Lake Khovsgol (Hovsgol / Khuvsgul ), Mongolia’s “Mother Sea” which contains 1% of the world’s fresh water. The lake is headwaters to famous Lake Baikal, which is located not far in Siberia and is one of the oldest lakes in the world. Here, we will enjoy a two-day horseback riding tour, trekking through some of the most scenic places along the lakeshore. Later, we will drive south to the Gobi Desert, exploring habitat areas of Argali wild sheep, gazelle, grey wolf and snow leopard. We will enjoy camel trekking at Hongoryn Els Sand dunes, in Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park, the largest in the park system.
Brief Daily Itinerary
Day 1. Arrival in Ulaanbaatar
Enjoy a short city tour followed by a welcome dinner at a fine local restaurant
Day 2. Ulaanbaatar / Darhad valley
In the morning, board a flight to Hovsgol province. Continue driving overland to the Darhad valley and overnight in tents.
Darhad valley – Horseback riding and hiking
In the morning, we will have the opportunity to ride Mongolian horses and explore the park wilderness area with a picnic lunch along the way. In the afternoon, enjoy hiking in the nearby hills.
Day 4-5. Lake Khovsgol
Travel to Lake Khovsgol (Hovsgol) and enjoy exploring the park’s flora and fauna on foot, on hoseback and kayaks! Overnight in gers.
Day 6. Muron, Ulaanbaatar
In the morning, drive back to Muron and fly back to Ulaanbaatar for our next part of the adventure.
Day 7-8. Ulaanbaatar / Ikh Nart National Park
Begin our overland journey across the vast Gobi desert, by driving to Ikh Nart, where extensive scientific research has been going on to study the argali wild sheep. Enjoy full day hiking at this park. Stay in a ger camp.
Day 9. Ikh Gazriin Chuluu
Travel to another lesser known national park in the Gobi desert, Ikh Gazryyn Chuluu, ranges of granite outcrops and mountains. Stay in a ger camp.
Day 10. Tsagaan Suvraga / Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park
In the morning, we will visit Tsagaan Suvraga, ancient-city look a like sand cliffs. In the afternoon, arrive at a ger camp in the Gobi’s Three Beautiful mountains park.
Day 11. Yol and Ayaldai Valley
In the morning, explore the magnificent Yol Valley, named after the bearded vulture lammergeyer. Next, continue driving to Ayalday Valley, one of the most beautiful areas in the mountain. Here, we will meet our camel wrangers and enjoy a dinner with them.
Day 12. Khongoryn Els Sand Dunes
In the morning, explore the magnificent Khongoryn Els, the largest of the sand dunes in the Gobi. Then, transfer back to a ger camp at Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park.
Day 13. Havtsgait Petroglyphs, Flaming Cliffs
In the morning, explore the pre-historic Havtsgait petroglyphs site. Hundreds of ancient rock drawings are found on the top of a mountain. In the afternoon, explore the legendary Flaming Cliffs where the first dinosaur eggs the world had ever seen were found.
Day 14. Ulaanbaatar
In the morning, we will fly back to Ulaanbaatar and enjoy a last minute shopping and sightseeing. Enjoy a traditional cultural performance in the evening.
Day 15. Departure
Farewell and transfer to the airport for departure.
- Travel to Darhad Valley, one of Mongolia’s most beautiful areas
- Enjoy hiking in some of the most scenic trails in Mongolia along the breathtaking Lake Hovsgol
- Drive across the vast Gobi desert and explore the country as one ecosystem changes to another
- Enjoy riding camels along the largest sand dunes in the Gobi
- Enjoy meeting local Mongolian and join them over dinners at their homes
- Meet Mongolian individuals of various background and professions and hear their prespectives on Mongolia’s challanges and the future it holds
- Minimum number of participants required for this trip: 2
- Minimum horse riding experience is an advantage to enjoy the horseback riding and camel trekking portions of the trip
- In the Gobi section, extensive overland driving over unpaved, dirt roads is involved
- All camping equipments are provided during the trip
- Plenty of hiking opportunities are provided each day
- Photography lovers might appreciate bringing a light tri-pod and tele-photo lenses for wildlife viewing excursions
DATES & PRICING
June 10 – 24 & Aug 24 – Sep 7, 2023
$3,950 per person, twin occupancy
$3,780 per person, twin occupancy
$3,530 per person, twin occupancy
10 and more travelers:
$3,350 per person, twin occupancy
Optional single supplement:
$510 per person
$340 per person
Post-Trip Altai Mountains Extension
Why not extend your journey and visit Altai Tavan Bogd National Park? On this western Mongolian journey, we will visit Mongolia’s highest peaks and trek amidst stunningly beautiful peaks. We will visit local Kazakh hunters’ camps to learn how golden eagles are trained and meet talented Kazakh women who are renowned for their skill of making colorful embroideries.
ACCOMMODATIONS & TRANSPORTATION
Hotel Ulaanbaatar is conveniently located in downtown Ulaanbaatar and is a very well established hotel with a friendly staff. All major atractions of UB are located with a walking distance of the hotel.
In the Darhad Valley, we will be staying expedition style tents. It is one of the best camping grounds in the entire country and be sure to watch for the northern stars and the entire Milkyway spanning over us!
During the rest of the expedition in Mongolia, we will be staying at tourist class, cozy ger camps with western bathroom and restaurant facilities. Most visitors find staying in gers as one of the highlights of their trip to Mongolia.
Land transportation is provided by Toyota Land Cruiser jeeps seating 3 passangers per vehicle. Some roads can be bumby and hard but our drivers are some of the most experienced and reliable in the country.