The great loop of Mongolia - Horseback Mongolia
Must see

The great loop of Mongolia

In 3 weeks, this tour will take you from one end of the country to the other: from the lakes of the North, to the sand dunes of the Gobi and the great steppe of the center, you will enjoy all that Mongolia has to offer in terms of landscape and natural wonders. An adventure on a human scale in the heart of Mongolia.

Come to live the greatest of Mongolian adventures!

The strong points

  • A complete circuit from North to South for a full discovery of Mongolia

  • 11 nights at the inhabitant's home for a...

See more

Day 1Arrival at Ulan Bator and visit of the city

Day 1Arrival at Ulan Bator and visit of the city

  • Arrival at the airport, meeting with our driver. Transfer to your hotel, settling in, and rest.

  • Appointment at 12 o'clock at your hotel with your guide. He will take you to the restaurant of your choice.

  • Let's immerse ourselves in the heart of the Mongolian history, in the wonderful National History Museum. Three floors of a rich, glorious, violent and noble past, from prehistory to Soviet period, including the creation of the great Mongolian Empire by Genghis Khan.

  • Walk in the centre of Ulan-Bator. Discovery of Gengis Khan Square and the House of Parliament.

  • At 18 o' clock, Mongolian traditional show at Tumen Ekh: folkloric dances, contortion, and of course khoomi, the overtone singing.

Day 2Going to Amarbayasgalant Monastery

Day 2Going to Amarbayasgalant Monastery

  • Visit of Gandantegchinlen Monastery. In the morning, lamas get together to pray. They will answer your questions at the Mongolian Buddhist Centre.

  • We take the road towards Amarbayasgalant Monastery. It's the most important monastery of Mongolia, it was built in the 18th century in the memory of the first Bogd Gegeen Zanabazar who was at the head of the Mongolian religion. Located North of the province of Selenge, the monastery enjoys exceptional surroundings.

Meal and accommodations

Lunch: Included

Dinner: made by the family

Day 3Going to the natural park of extinct volcanos

Day 3Going to the natural park of extinct volcanos

  • In the morning, we visit the Amarbayasgalant Monastery. This remarkable building stands proudly with its 300 years of history and shows a great architectural unity. The general style is Chinese, with Mongolian and Tibetan influences. The general plan is symmetrical with the main buildings following each other along a north-south axis; the secondary buildings are located on parallel side axes.

    Today, you can admire 28 buildings including a two-story temple with a surface area of 32 m². It is currently open for worship.

  • We cut across wheat fields and large cultures and reach Erdenet. It's one of the most important economic centres of the country. It has one of the largest open-air mines of the world (copper mine).

  • Road to the natural park of volcanoes Uran Togoo National Park. Uran Uul is the most beautiful and the most famous volcano of Mongolia. It was active 20 to 25 million years ago. There is an abundant and exceptional fauna and flora. Indeed, the lava having flowed here several thousands of years ago, left place to a very fertile environment.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Dinner: made by the family

Day 4Arrival at the great blue lake of Mongolia

Day 4Arrival at the great blue lake of Mongolia

  • Hiking on the sleeping giant Uraan Uul, to enjoy the view on the volcanic area.

    Let's hike on a very beautiful path through the woods, mostly made of Siberian larches before reaching the crater. There, numerous insects, species of birds and trees are visible. The inside of the crater itself is covered by a thick vegetation and a small lake at its center.

  • We arrive at Lake Khövsgöl, one of the natural wonders of the world. This mountain covers an area of 2760 square kilometres, and its water is so pure that we can drink it! It's surrounded with many peaks culminating at more than 2000 metres and covered with forests of pines and lush meadows where yaks and horses graze!

  • We go towards East and the green small valleys of Alag Sar, and spend the night in a small yurts camp.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Alag tsar gers camp

Day 5Adventures around the great blue lake of Mongolia

Day 5Adventures around the great blue lake of Mongolia

  • Accompanied by local herders, and their yaks we leave for __ two days of hiking or horseback riding__, in the treed valleys of Alag Tsar. Following the peaceful tempo of the cart, we discover this land of nomadism. In the heart of summer, the area is flowered and we will move literally on a carpet of edelweiss, while at West, we will see on the opposite bank the peaks culminating at 3000 metres that bathe in the crystal water of the lake.

  • In the evening, with the breeders, we will put up the yurt that we carried, in which we will spend the night.

2h 30m-12km

Day 6Relaxation on the banks of Khuvsgul Lake

Day 6Relaxation on the banks of Khuvsgul Lake

  • Wake up and have breakfast in an exceptional setting, the lake at our feet and the mountains enveloping us.
    We take back our horses (or go back on foot for the hikers) and return to the Alag Sar yurt camp. Lunch at the camp and relaxation during the afternoon where you can freely enjoy the lake, walk around and possibly rent canoes on site.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Accommodation: Alag tsar gers camp

3h-130km
3h-130km
Shine Ider

Day 7On the way to the central steppes

Day 7On the way to the central steppes

  • Visit of the site containing several deer stones at Uushigiin Övör.

  • Stop in Mörön to buy fresh supplies at the market.

  • Journey towards centre : the track goes through many passes and sinks into lost valleys where landscapes quickly change. Altitude exceeds 2000 metres (1,24 mile) at the passes.

    Landscapes are more and more beautiful and there are more and more photo opportunities.

Meal and accommodations

Lunch: Included

Dinner: made by the family

Shine Ider

Day 8Lakes and volcanos area

Day 8Lakes and volcanos area

  • Road to Khorgo – Terkhiin Tsagaan Nuur Natural Park that is located 2060 metres (1,28 mile) above sea level. This lake, called "the great white lake", and its whole volcanic surroundings, are the emblematic area of the province of Arkhangai.

  • We will spend 2 nights at a lovely ger camp, on the banks of the Terkhiin Tsagaan lake.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Day 9Hiking on the Khorgo volcano

Day 9Hiking on the Khorgo volcano

  • Hiking along the banks of the lake. We go towards Southeast where Khorgo Volcano reaches its highest point at 2240 metres (1,39 mile). (Easy) ascent of the volcano. From the top, we enjoy a splendid view of the lake and the surrounding hills. Nearby the volcano, stunning lava flows form an original landscape never seen up to now.

Meal and accommodations

Accommodation: Moving yurt

Day 10Let's relax in the hot springs !

Day 10Let's relax in the hot springs !

  • We go deep into the Arkhangai and discover its vast steppes populated by nomadic herders and where yaks and other animals graze. Stop at Tsetserleg, small lovely village nested in mountains of larches. We'll buy fresh supplies at the local market and visit Zayan Gegeen Museum.

  • Arrival at Tsenkher hot springs, where you can lounge in the hot springs of the camp.

Day 11Nomadic life in the Orkhon Valley

Day 11Nomadic life in the Orkhon Valley

  • Journey to Orkhon Valley. Inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, the valley is a land of nomadism and many breeders set their summer camp there.

  • Visit of Tovkhon Monastery. Vehicles can't go until the top of Öndör Ulaan Hill and we will walk until there to discover Tovkhon Ermitage, where Zanabazar, the first religious leader of Mongolia, created the Soyombo alphabet. The monastery is located 2312 metres (1,44 mile) above the sea level and from that place we'll have a wonderful view on the whole Khangai range. We'll picnic in exceptional surroundings, facing Orkhon Valley.

  • We arrive at a family of nomadic herders with whom we stay 2 nights. During your stay, you will discover their way of life and you will be proposed many activities, such as milking, making traditional dairy products, or rounding up the animals with a horse.

    You will also attend the preparation of a Mongolian barbecue that you will enjoy with yours hosts.

Meal and accommodations

Dinner: made by the family Mongolian barbecue "Khorkhog"

Day 12Horseback riding to the Mogoit's hot springs

Day 12Horseback riding to the Mogoit's hot springs

  • We leave for a horse ride to the Mogoit's hot springs. We ride along the Orkhon River before heading south into a beautiful valley surrounded by larch forest.

    Those who wish to do so can, we can take the vehicle the hike 8km to the springs.

  • Bath in the fitted out pools of Mogoit hot springs. The temperature of the springs is contained between 48 and 75°C (118 - 167°F), and they are perfect to recover from the tiredness of the travel.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Dinner: made by the family

1h 30m-8km
Orkhon waterfalls

Day 13Horseback riding to the Orkhon Falls

Day 13Horseback riding to the Orkhon Falls

  • Those who wish will go pony trekking along Orkhon Valley, from the camp until Orkhon waterfalls.

    For the others, it will be possible to go to the falls by making a 6 km walk, or with the vehicle.

  • Visit of Ulan Tsutgalaan falls, white flood flowing on the black stone, transformed in rainbow by a short sunray… These 16-metres (52,49 feet) falls are just magic ! They were formed 20.000 years ago, as a result of a unique combination of earthquakes and volcano eruptions.

  • At the end of the day, you will attend the preparation of a Mongolian barbecue which you will enjoy with your hosts.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Day 14In the old capital of Genghis Khan

Day 14In the old capital of Genghis Khan

  • Journey to Kharkhorin, the former capital of Mongolia. The legendary city of Genghis Khan was founded in 1220 and was one of the stages of the silk road. The Mongolian Empire was governed from this city, until Kubilai Khan set up the capital in Beijing. Today, there are only a few vestiges left of the former capital.

  • Visit of Erdene Zuu Monastery, built in 1586 by a nomad prince. The Chinese and Tibetan-inspired buildings are surrounded with 108 sacred stupas. Visit of the Museum of Kharkhorin.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Anja gers camp

Day 15Let's go for a legendary desert !

Day 15Let's go for a legendary desert !

  • Day of transition between two ecosystems. We leave the green mountains of Khangai to go towards Gobi. We drive across the green steppe and reach Arvaikheer, the capital of province, where we stop to get fresh supplies at the local market.

  • We arrive in the sum of Saikhan Ovoo. West Saikhan Ovoo, some mountains located along the Ongii River, are the perfect place to rest between Northwest of Mongolia and Gobi Desert. In the bends of the river, we can see the ruins of two monasteries, Barlim Monastery on the Northern bank, Khutagt Monastery on the Southern bank.

  • Let's discover this site, best known as Ong lamasery, and the museum. In 1937, the Soviets almost completely destroyed the homes and monasteries where one thousand lamas were living. In 2002, some lamas came back and began to rebuild the monastery, with few resources but much enthusiasm.

Day 16Flaming cliffs and dinosaurs

Day 16Flaming cliffs and dinosaurs

  • Last day of track before reaching Great Gobi and its "Three Beauties", the three highest peaks of this part of the Gobi-Altai range : Baruun Saïhan, "the Western Beauty" ; Dund Saïhan, "the Middle Beauty" ; Züün Saïhan, "the Eastern Beauty", the highest (2846 metres, 1,77 miles).

  • Visit of the cliffs of Bayanzag, today are best known as "flaming cliffs", owing to their ochre red colour, where is located the "cemetery of dragons". The cliffs and the saxaul forests that surround them are the evidence of the time when Earth was still inhabited by huge creatures: dinosaurs. Palaeontologist Roy Andrews Chapman was the first man to discover in 1922 some bones and eggs of dinosaurs that we can see today in the Natural History Museum of Ulan Bator and in other museums in the world.

1h-40km
Khavtsgait

Day 17Riding a camel among the dunes

Day 17Riding a camel among the dunes

  • We wake up early today to hike on the Khavtsgait mountain. After some time on the jeep, we will start our trek. The ascent is quite sportive, but will provide a truly amazing view over the desert. From there it is possible to see numerous petroglyphs representing wild mountain sheep, horses, camels and men in the process of hunting.

  • We ride towards the west of the park to reach Khongor sand dunes, "light bay sand". These dunes extend at the foot of the "Three Beauties".

  • Visit of the dunes of Khongor. These dunes are the most spectacular ones of Mongolia, they extend on more than 180 kilometres (111,85 miles) long and 20 kilometres (12,43 miles) wide, and have an average height of 80 metres (262,47 feet), the highest one being 120 metres (393,70 feet) high. From the top, the view on the desert is quite amazing. From this place, it's also possible to hear the moving masses of sand, hence the name of "singing dunes". Beyond the dunes, the steppe extends for as far as the eye can see.

  • We'll stay with a Bactrian camels' breeder for two nights. It's a unique chance to discover their authentic way of life and their legendary hospitality.

Meal and accommodations

Dinner: Made by the family

Day 18By camel in the dunes

Day 18By camel in the dunes

  • Camelback hike. Camelback hiking in the Gobi Desert is an unforgettable experience. The nonchalant animal will take us with its peaceful gait along the dunes and the Khongor River, "light bay", that flows alternately on the surface and under the ground. We'll go until a small oasis at the foot of the dunes, where some bushes grow, such as saxaul. Camels are very fond of saxaul and Mongolians think it's the most precious wood.

    We will walk until the top of a dune and will have a wonderful view of the desert. Far away, we will see the peaks of the Three Beautiful and, if we listen carefully, we might hear the song of the dunes.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Made by the family

Day 19Hiking in the canyons

Day 19Hiking in the canyons

  • Journey on the track towards the east of "the Three Beauties" to reach the area of canyons. Stop at Dungenee Canyon. We leave the vehicle to start our first magic hike along the river that flows between huge canyons.

  • Hiking in the canyon of Yol, the bearded vultures canyon. We will walk in the bottom of the canyon that is covered with perpetual snow. The canyon is so steep-sided, that sunrays make the ice melt only in August. The rest of the year there's ice everywhere in the canyon.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Made by your team

Lunch: Included

Dinner: made by the family

Day 20Return flight to the Mongolian capital

Day 20Return flight to the Mongolian capital

  • We drive 30 km to Dalanzadgad, the capital of the province, where we board our return flight to Ulan Bator.

  • Arrival in town and transfer to your hotel where you can rest a few moments.

  • Rest of the day free. With our guide, you can go shopping in the centre of the city.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Yurt for guests with a family

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: The Holiday Inn hotel

Flight back

Day 21Have a nice journey and see you soon !

Day 21Have a nice journey and see you soon !

  • Breakfast at the hotel. We go with you to the international airport of Ulan Bator. The transfer can be organized at the time you want, according to the schedule of your flight.

Part of Nomadays
Made locally for you

Hello

I am Daniel from "Horseback Mongolia". Send us your request, and we will answer you within 48 hours.
Call us at
+(976)-11-331 098