The Naadam and Gobi Desert of MongoliaNaadam is one of the Mongolian traditional annual festivals that have been celebrated in Mongolia over millennia. The festival have become the cultural sanctity of nomads on the great steppe, keeps tradition and customs alive from ancient times. This cultural & nature sightseeing Mongolia tour with fixed date gives you opportunity to visit the famous Gobi desert, Terelj national park and to see beautiful Naadam festival in Nalaikh town. Book with us and get 10% discount for your direct booking!
No of Days: 8 People: min 4 persons
Naadam Festival and the Gobi Desert of Mongolia
Mongolia is a wonderful country of cultural and natural wonders, where its’ people practice their ancient traditions and cherish the Mother Nature every day. And the Naadam Festival is the biggest celebration of the Mongols, which the nation has been celebrating since the time immemorial. It’s said that nomadic tribes gathered to tell whose men are the best wrestlers, whose archers are the finest and whose horses are the fastest; the winners were acclaimed extensively. Naadam, hence, was named as “Three Manly Games of the Mongols” nevertheless women also can participate in archery and horse racing. During the Great Mongol Empire time Naadam was also an important event for the Golden Horde as the Mongol princes held the Khuraldai (meeting) then.
Since 1921, the Mongols started celebrating Naadam in July to commemorate the People’s Revolution of Mongolia, and the State Naadam in Ulaanbaatar is on 11-12 July fixed, and provincial and regional Naadams taking place on 8-15 July usually (depends on the summer & pasture). Naadam is celebrated nationwide in Mongolia and is a public holiday. Naadam-goers and competitiors from far and near wear their best traditional costumes and head out to Naadam – all happy. And there’s lots of music and dances to complete the jolly atmosphere.
On this exciting 8-day tour you won’t only attend the Naadam Festival but also will visit the highlights of the Gobi Desert. You will admire the sunrise over the Bayanzag – Flaming Cliffs, enjoy a short camel ride at the Khongor sand dunes & oasis and the walk the glacial Yoliin Am Gorge during your stay in the Gobi. Besides, Mongolia’s the home of hearty nomadic people, whose lifestyle has not been changed a lot since the days of Genghis Khan and his empire. You might have heard many stories of travellers being dazed by the sincere hospitality of the nomads. However, if you look deeper into their spirit, you will witness how strong, stern nomadic men can be moved to tears by their race horses rushing to a finish line. Their lifestyle, religion and philosophy are shaped by the Mother Nature to a great degree; and nomadic customs, music, literature and costumes have been passed through centuries. And in this hectic 21st century only Mongolian nomads welcome strangers with unlocked doors. There will be plenty of occassions you will meet real nomadic people and enjoy their heartwarming hospitality during the journey.
Premium Travel Mongolia tour guides are knowledgeable, experienced, and are happy to be the ambassadors of their country. Plus, travelling extensively in remote Mongolia and discovering the wonders doesn’t mean rough travel conditions. We utilize comfortable 4×4 Land Cruisers, clean and deluxe Ger camps (en-suite) to complete your wonderful Mongolia stay with us.
Your international flight/train to Mongolia is on your own arrangement. After custom formalities and baggage claim, you will be met by a Premium Travel driver and taken to the centrally located hotel in Ulaanbaatar.
Accommodation: Hotel 4*; Meals: No meals planned on this day.
Meet with your tour guide at the breakfast and meet with rest of the group and group briefing. Start the Ulaanbaatar city tour leisurely with visits to the most principal sites of Ulaanbaatar including the Gandan monastery – a home to the 26m gilded statue of Megjid Janraisag, and the National Museum of Mongolia. Have welcome lunch at a Mongolian restaurant.
Free time at your leisure before we head for the traditional folk concert at 17.00hrs and an evening stroll at the Main Square viewing Giant Genghis monument and parliament building on the way to your hotel.
Accommodation: Hotel 4*. B, L
Day 3. Jul 07. Ulaanbaatar – the Gobi flight. Visits to Yoliin Am Gorge & Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs (90min flight + 3hr drive)
Morning pick up at 5.00am and transfer to the airport for a flight to the Gobi Desert (scheduled at 07.00-08.20hrs). Upon arrival have breakfast at a local hotel and start your day trip visiting the glacial Yoliin Am Gorge in the beautiful Gobi Gurvan Saikhan Mountains. Eagles overhead scour the desert for prey, while below families of nomads gather for felt-making, or stand in groups beside their livestock at the scattered wells. Enjoy walking in the glacial Yolyn Am Gorge with sights of wildlife.
Drive for 1hr to a deluxe Ger camp, where you will stay for the next 2 nights, and have lunch and rest. In the early evening, we visit the Red Cliffs at Bayanzag, enjoy the wilderness and viewing unique nature formations of the Flaming Cliffs. Explore around for dinosaur remains and walking in the rich saxaul forest. You can even find real dinosaur bones and eggs yourself! Return to the deluxe Ger camp, dinner and rest.
En-suite ger camp. Meals: B, L, D
Today, we will take a day excursion to Khongor sand dunes – Mongolia’s largest and most beautiful sand dunes that stretch over 180km in the arid Gobi Desert. The drive to the dunes at Khongoriin takes about 3 hours one way, passing through vast desert badlands that span out into the furthest distances, where remote mountains line the horizon. Arrive at the Ger camp by the sand dunes and have lunch.
Afterwards, visit the Khongor sand dunes and take a short camel ride along the Khongor springs in the little oasis. You also may want to climb the beautiful sand dunes, some are as high as 300m. Lone Gers and nomads on camelback hang suspended in the mirages, whilst the desert floor is strewn with a range of colorful rocks and unusual minerals. This is the Gobi at its stark best – there are many opportunities to take photographs of the landscapes and people. In the evening drive back to the camp.
En-suite Ger camp. Meals: B, L, D
Day 5. Jul 09. The Gobi Desert – Terelj national park via Giant Genghis Statue. (90min flight, ~2hr drive)
Breakfast, then drive to the small Gobi Desert airport and take the flight to Ulaanbaatar (08.50-10.20hrs). Upon arrival transfer directly to the Terelj national park with a stop at the Giant Genghis monument – an impressive 46m statue of Genghis Khan on horseback, indeed the largest equestrian statue on earth. Afterwards, transfer to a deluxe Ger camp in Terelj National Park and have lunch. Visit the Turtle Rock and the Temple of Meditation. Return to the Ger camp in the evening, dinner and rest.
En-suite ger camp. Meals: B, L, D
This morning, we’ll drive to the Khuin Doloon Hudag, where the Nadaam festival horse racing takes place via Ulaanbaatar. Watch 3-year old horse races and visit a horse trainer’s tent for some Airag (mare’s fermented milk) and some good chats about Mongolian horse culture and nomadic lifestyle. Transfer to Ulaanbaatar in the late afternoon, check in at the hotel. Free time for leisure, and prepare for the Naadam festivals next day.
Hotel 4*, meals: B, L
Naadam is celebrated nationwide in Mongolia and is a public holiday. There will be plenty of activities around the stadium like ankle bone shooting, photographing beautifully dressed locals etc. Naadam-goers and competitors from far and near wear their best traditional costumes and head out to Naadam – all happy.
Hotel 4*, meals: B, L, D
Extend your tour with another tour or transfer to the airport for flight home.
Tour Date & Price
Single Supplement: US$500
- Full-time services of your English speaking local guide (Day 2-7)
- Twin/double share: excellent 4* hotel in Ulaanbaatar for 4 nights, and deluxe Ger camps for 3 nights.
- Meals as listed (B-breakfast, L-lunch, D-dinner)
- Sightseeing and entrance fees according to the itinerary
- Ticket to Genghis monument visit
- Great Naadam Festival opening ceremony tickets
- Private transfers in the city with a minivan/minibus with AC
- Private transfers outside the city with comfortable 4×4 Land Cruisers
- 1 hr camel riding fees in the Gobi
- Gobi – ULN RT flight + Taxes (includes10+5kg free luggage)
- 5 l x 3 bottled water per day
- Visa support invitation letter where applicable
- Exclusive Mongolia tour souvenir!
Not included in the price:
- International Airfare/train ticket
- Travel insurance.
- Items of a personal nature such as laundry, drinks, camera or video fees at any sites etc.
- Tips for your guide and driver (discretionary).
- Optional activities such as camel riding, archery, fishing etc