ger yurt nomad dwelling mongolia

Yurts, known in Mongolia as gers

Portable and warmed by wood stoves, Mongolian gers make convenient and comfortable homes for nomad families as they travel with their herds of camels and yaks. About 40 percent of Mongolians live as nomads.

Photo by Bill Abbott

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Mongolia Private Journey route-map

Trip Details at-a-Glance

Cost From: $6295  
Length: 11 days
Arrive: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Depart: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Lodging: 4 nights hotels, 4 nights ger camps, 2 nights Three Camel Lodge
Meals: All meals included except 2 lunches and 1 dinner
Activity: Walking, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level: Overland travel, light day hikes, altitudes between 5,000-7,000 feet


  • Visit Mongolian families in their traditional gers
  • See a remote and still intact horse-based nomadic culture
  • Erdenezuu and Gandan monasteries
  • Optional mid-trip camel trek in the Gobi Desert

Choosing the Right Trip

We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please contact us.


We are proud to have an exceptionally high rate of repeat travelers. For more information, we would be happy to put you in touch with a client who has traveled with us.

Discover the inspiring landscapes of Mongolia, from the legendary Gobi to the high altitude grasslands from which Genghis Khan created the largest land empire ever. In this heart of Mongolia, visit families in their gers, ride horses (and camels!), and experience the traditional hospitality of one of the world’s last nomadic cultures. We also offer an optional Gobi Desert Camel Trek extension to experience the scenic wonder of this epic desert, along with an extension to Mongolia’s sacred Lake Hovsgol.

Itinerary at a Glance

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Days 1-4
Ulaanbaatar, Hogno Han Mountains, the Cultural Heart of Mongolia

In Ulaanbaatar, visit Gandan Monastery, the most important monastery-temple complex in the country, and the National History Museum, with its displays of Mongolian nomadic life. Head into the high steppe, an amazing vast landscape of open plains and rolling hills sprawled beneath the revered “Great Blue Sky” and dotted everywhere with horses and gers (nomadic dwellings). Below the Hogno Han Mountains, enter a world incredibly different from your own as you visit a nomadic horse-breeding family, experience their warm hospitality, taste airag (fermented mare’s milk), and ride horses with our Mongolian wranglers.

Days 5-6
Erdenezuu and Hustain Nuruu National Park

Head through the open grasslands of the Orkhon Valley, the cradle of Mongolian civilization, to Erdenezuu Monastery, the oldest in Mongolia, built in the 16th century when Tibetan Buddhism was introduced to Mongolia. Constructed from the stone ruins of Kharakhorum, the ancient capital of Genghis Khan, it is surrounded by a wall of 108 stupas and is a strong symbol of Buddhism’s resurgence in Mongolia. Head to Hustain Nuruu National Park, home to the only remaining species of wild horse, the takhi, known as Przewalski’s horse, and search for these beautiful horses in their natural habitat.

Days 7-11
Gobi Desert and Yol Valley

Visit Ulaanbaatar’s Natural History Museum, showcasing the spectacular fossil finds of the Gobi desert, then head to the Gobi itself. Explore the Flaming Cliffs, where in 1922, Roy Chapman Andrews discovered a nest of perfectly preserved dinosaur eggs, the first ever to be found. Visit local families, ride Bactrian camels, and walk in the Yol Valley, nestled in the mountains of Gurvan Saikhan National Park. (Our optional camel trek extension begins on Day 9.) Return to Ulaanbaatar on Day 10 and depart on Day 11.

For a more complete description, Download Full Detailed Itinerary

Optional Extensions

If you would like to continue your adventure, we offer the following extensions:

What the Trip is Like

The trip is Level 2, Easy to Moderate, due to the light hiking as well as the remote locations of our camps, simple accommodations in ger and tent camps, and rough roads. The trip is an overland journey by 4WD vehicle with some long drives across the historic heart of the country. It is expected that each participant be in excellent health and physical condition. We recommend that you make a special effort to get in good shape for the trip. Daily walking or hiking, jogging, stair-climbing, etc., are excellent preparatory exercises.

A Special Note on Travel to Mongolia
Mongolia is an exciting destination, and while tourism is growing rapidly, the infrastructure remains limited. The country is modernizing quickly from its Soviet-era standards, but they are not yet up to the level of many countries (particularly felt by travelers on the bumpy roads!). Roads outside Ulaanbaatar are unpaved and often very bumpy and dusty. Travel on these roads might be done in Russian four-wheel drive vans, which are not up to western SUV standards, but are reasonably comfortable. Essential requirements for travel in Mongolia are flexibility, a sense of humor, curiosity, enthusiasm about new peoples and places, and an openness to the unexpected.

Explanation of Trip Levels


When to go

May to October

For our Private Journey trips, you choose your own group and your preferred dates—there are no set departure dates. Private Journeys are available to groups as few as two people or as large as you like. Contact us for availability, questions, or to book your adventure!

Trip Cost

Prices are for 2016
$6295 per person, double occupancy
Single supplement: $995
Internal airfare: $350 (subject to change)

Prices are not guaranteed until services are confirmed.
more on pricing

Extension Costs
Lake Hovsgol Extension
   from: $2755
Beijing Extension
   from: $1195
Xi'an Extension
   from: $1215
Gobi Desert Camel Trek Mid-Trip Extension
   from: $1485

Trip Payment Schedule

At time of reservation: $600
90 days prior to departure: Balance

Cancellation and Transfer Fee Schedule*

Minimum fee: $250 per person
61-90 days prior to departure: 25% of trip cost
46-60 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost
45 days or less: 100% of trip cost

*Please note that this differs from our regular catalog departures.

Trip Cost Includes:

  • Expert leadership of a local guide
  • Accommodations in Mongolia as noted
  • All meals included except 2 lunches and 1 dinner
  • Entrance to museums and sites as noted
  • Land transportation and airport transfers as noted in the Full Trip Brochure

Trip Cost Does Not Include:

International airfare, any meals not specified after each itinerary day in the Full Trip Brochure, any activities described as optional, airport departure taxes, optional tipping or gratuities to staff, additional hotel nights made necessary by airline schedule changes or other factors, pre-trip expenses such as medical immunizations (if any), travel insurance, or passports and visas; and other expenses of a personal nature.

Arrival & Departure Information

Our Private Journeys can be tailored to your group so arrival and departure cities and dates may vary. Below are suggested airports to reference during your booking process. Please note: you are responsible for your own transportation to and from the arrival and departure cities of your Private Journey. For more detailed information, including transfers, please download the Detailed Itinerary.

Please do not purchase your tickets until you are confirmed on the trip. Once your tickets have been purchased, please send us a copy of your airline schedule.

2016 Departures

Meeting Place:
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Date: Day 1

Suggested Airport for Arrival:
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia (airport code ULN)
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Date: Day 11

Suggested Airport for Departure:
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia (airport code ULN)

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar

Days 1 to 2 (2 nights), Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

The newly-opened Shangri-La Hotel in Ulaanbaatar is set within walking distance of the Genghis Khan Square and the famous Government House, and is ...
Click here for full description and more photos

Mongolian Ger Camps

Mongolian Ger Camps

Days 3 to 4 (2 nights), Hogno Han Mountains,
Day 5 (1 night), Kharakhorum,
Day 6 (1 night), Hustain Nuruu National Park, Mongolia

Gers are the traditional yurt-like tents used by Mongolian nomads for centuries, and these simple fixed camps are specially built and ...
Click here for full description and more photos

Ulaanbaatar Hotel

Ulaanbaatar Hotel

Day 7 (1 night),
Day 10 (1 night), Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

The Ulaanbaatar Hotel has an ideal location within walking distance of the city’s great museums, restaurants, and shopping. Although ...
Click here for full description and more photos

Three Camel Lodge

Three Camel Lodge

Days 8 to 9 (2 nights), The Gobi Desert, Mongolia

This premier expedition camp of 20 gers, set in a peaceful hillside spot in the Gobi Desert, offers great comfort and is strategically close to ...
Click here for full description and more photos

Extension Accommodations

If you would like to view the accommodations offered with our extensions options:

Note: Listed above are our signature accommodations for this trip. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.

Optional Extensions

If you would like to continue your adventure, we offer the following extensions:


great wall china

Beijing Extension

The Great Wall, Forbidden City, and Summer Palace

Cultural Adventures
4 days  -  Level 1

terra cotta warriors xian china

Xi'an Extension

Explore the Cradle of Chinese Civilization

Cultural Adventures
3 days  -  Level 1


Gobi Desert Camel Trek Mid-Trip Extension

Camel Supported Trek in the Sand Dunes of the Gobi

Cultural Adventures, Hiking / Trekking
5 days  -  Level 3

hovsgol lake mongolia

Lake Hovsgol Extension

Exploring Mongolia’s “Dark Blue Pearl”

Cultural Adventures, Walking
5 days  -  Level 2