Birding in Mongol Daguur grassland and Gobi desert

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    The Mongol Daguur is designated as in the list of Wetlands of International Importance, Important Birds Area (MNO66), East Asian Crane Site, UNESCO-MAB, UNESCO World Heritage, Daurian International Protected Area, WWF ECO 200, Mongolian Strictly Protected Area and EAAF [024] network site. It is a flat plain with rolling hills lying in the Ulz river basin. It is an area made up of moist Daurian steppe with lakes and ponds of different sizes, rivers, streams and wetland areas including reed beds. The larger lakes support tens of thousands of molting water birds in summer. Congregatory waterbirds occurring at the site in numbers exceeding 1% of their flyway populations include Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus, Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus, Bean Goose Anser fabalis, Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea, White-naped Crane Grus vipio, Common Crane Grus grus, Hooded Crane Grus monacha, Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo and Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus. Hundreds of Demoiselle Crane and White-naped Crane can be seen in many locations in Mongol Daguur. Because of the large number of cranes occurring there, the site was designated as an Important Crane Site in North-East Asia. The site also supports an assemblage of species restricted to the Eurasian steppe and desert biome.

    Map of Mongolia

    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. Fly to the eastern steppes

    In the morning, fly over the vast eastern grassland to Choibalsan city. We will traverse through world’s last remaining untouched steppe ecosystem. Upon arrival, we will transfer to a local hotel for the day

    Day 3-7. Eastern Lakes and Mongol Daguur Ecosystem

    Spend these days exploring many of the important habitat areas and the unique Mongol Daguur ecosystem.

    Day 8. Ulaanbaatar

    We will fly back to Ulaanbaatar and overnight at hotel. Upon arrival, we will directly drive to Songino Khairkhan Mountain and pond located outside the city. Dinner and stayovernight hotel

    Day 9-13. Gobi Desert

    During these days we will explore the unique Gobi Desert, its vast Gobi basins and Hongoryn Els Sand dunes. Many important steppe species will be seen. Contrary to what many think, the Gobi flora and fauna is surprisingly diverse and rich.

    Day 14-15. Ulaanbaatar

    We return back to Ulaanbaatar, enjoy last minute shopping and sightseeing opportunities and depart Mongolia.

    Trip Highlights:

    • Travel through Mongolia’s vast eastern grassland and the steppe, learning about their ecosystem and searching for the wildlife
    • Explore the Mongol Daguur ecosystem and its many important bird habitat areas
    • Visit the Gobi desert and ride two-humped Mongolain camels on the sand dunes
    • Enjoy meeting with nomads and exploring the nomadic culture of Mongolia


    Trip Date:

    June 2 – 16, 2023

    2 travelers:

    $4,590 per person, standard twin occupancy

    3-5 travelers:

    $4,370 per person, standard twin occupancy

    6-9 travelers:

    $4,150 per person, standard twin occupancy

    10 and more travelers:

    $3,850 per person, standard twin occupancy

    Domestic flight:

    $480 per person

    Optional single supplement:

    $650 per person


    Ulaanbaatar hotel

    Hotel Ulaanbaatar

    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.

    camping night view mongolia

    Field camps

    In the Gobi mountains, 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!


    Ger camps

    Throughout the rest of the program, you will be staying at cozy and authentic 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

    Land transportation is provided by Toyota Land Cruisers, seating up to  3 passangers per vehicle. Some roads can be bumby and hard but our drivers are some of the most experienced and reliable in Mongolia.