$5441 AUD per person
$307 AUD single supplement
- Day 1 - Arrival in Ulaanbaatar
- Day 2 - Northwest Mongolia
- Day 3 - Trek to the Kharkhiraa River source
- Day 4 - Continue trekking
- Day 5 - Trekking
- Day 6 - Climb Mount Turgen
- Day 7 - Optional trekking, climbing or rest day
- Day 8 - Descent
- Day 9 - Trek downstream along a canyon
- Day 10 - End of Trek
- Day 11 - Bayan Olgii
- Day 12 - Ulaanbataar
- Day 13 - Departure
- Return airport transfers
- 12 nights accommodation
- Camping equipment
- 12 Breakfasts, 10 Lunches, 11 Dinners
- Services of an English speaking local guide
- Transportation in an air conditioned vehicle
- National Park fees
- Domestic flights as per the itinerary
- International flights
- Travel and medical insurance
- All services, meals other than those indicated above
- Any changes to the proposed and confirmed program.
- All items of a personal nature e.g. drinks, laundry, telephone calls, tips etc
- Any additional flights needed in Afghanistan that may be necessary
due to security concerns
Trek through some of Mongolia's lesser explored regions - its wild, rugged, remote, beautiful. With Bactrain camels and horses as your trusty steeds, you will follow the migration path of the ethnic Khoton people when they migrate from their winter settlement to their summer pastures high in the mountains. With towering snow capped mountains overhead, witness nomads relocating with their animals or hard at work living off the land. Engage with local minority groups and learn about their way of life and how their traditional lifestyle is maintained. Some of the nomads you may encounter have not seen western travellers before! Enjoy local meals prepared fresh daily as you camp under the stars in one of the worlds most remote frontiers.
Day 1 - Arrival in Ulaanbaatar
Welcome to Mongolia! Upon arrival in Ulaanbaatar, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Tonight, you will enjoy dinner at a local restaurant where your guide will give you a brief tour orientation, and you can toast your arrival in Mongolia! (D)
Overnight Hotel Bayangol or similar
Day 2 - Northwest Mongolia
Today you will fly to Uvs Province in northwestern Mongolia, a rugged, remote region of the country. Make sure you are awake just before you touch down to catch a glimpse of Khyargas Lake, one of the country’s largest bodies of water.
Uvs Province is inhabited by several ethnic minority groups, the largest of which are the Durvud people who speak a slightly different dialect from the common Mongolian language. They are also famous for having some of the nation’s most legendary wrestlers. Mongolian wrestling is a revered sport, and good wrestlers are considered not only strong but also honorable.
After lunch, drive approx 1.5hrs to the mouth of the canyon carved out by the Kharkhiraa River, where you will set up your first camp. It is here you will be joined by your local guides – a group of nomadic Khoton people, and their Bactrain camels that will transport your baggage and camp equipment for the rest of your trekking journey. (B,L,D)
9 nights Camping
Day 3 - Trek to the Kharkhiraa River source
Today after breakfast you will begin walking upstream in the canyon of the Kharkhiraa River towards the snow-capped mountains on the horizon. Surrounded by spectacular rocky edges, steep cliffs and the occasional poplar grove, you will cross the river several times, the deepest crossings on the back of your guides’ horses. This same route is used by the Khoton when migrating from their winter quarters to their summer pastures high up in the mountains. With some luck you may see a real migration, a few camels laden with unpretentious belongings led by horsemen moving quickly along the riverside. There are still about 10,000 Khoton people living in Mongolia today, and although they are of Turkic origin, their language and lifestyle nowadays is Mongolian.
This afternoon you will exit the canyon and make camp in a wide valley surrounded by a scattering of Bronze Age burial grounds. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 6hrs, 13km.
Altitude gain: 300m
Day 4 - Continue trekking
Today trek further upstream to where open views of snow capped mountains, including the peak of Kharkhiraa, await. En route you will pass numerous ancient burial mounds with their rounded or square borders and see the yurts of local nomads, along with their herds of animals grazing on rich mountain pastures. You will also have the opportunity to stop and visit a nomadic family, sip milk tea and gain some insight into nomadic living.
Continue on to set up camp in the evening. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 6hrs, 17km
Altitude gain: 600m
Day 5 - Trekking
This morning you may have the chance to stop at a local herder’s yurt to see how homemade milk vodka is distilled, where you’ll certainly be invited to try a cup!
Back on the trail, the valley suddenly bends and once you’ve turned the corner, you’ll be treated to an impressive view of the snow-crowned Kharkhiraa massif, its glacier-covered summit rising 4,037m above sea level. Having taken in its granduer and beauty, continue on the main pass that divides Kharkhiraa from the neighbouring Turgen massifs.
Tonight, your campsite will be within hiking distance of the glaciers that feed the river’s headspring. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 6hrs, 17km
Altitude gain: 400m
Day 6 - Climb Mount Turgen
Today make your assault on Mount Turgen, starting with a short but steep climb that will bring you atop a flat pass. Depending on the weather you may find yourselves at the same level as the clouds, but you’ll still be a good 1,000m below the summit of Kharkhiraa. The scale of the view from this pass is immense with snow-capped mountains, distant desert plains and turquoise lakes glittering in the valleys below. On clear days, you will even spy the Sayan Mountain Range in Russia.
From here, continue to climb a lateral ridge of the Turgen Range up to an elevation of 3,600m to enjoy the cascading ice that surrounds you. Although physically strenuous, this climb is safe with a well established trail. Return to camp late in the evening. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 7.5hrs, 15km
Altitude gain: 1,000m
Day 7 - Optional trekking, climbing or rest day
Today, you have the freedom to choose your adventure! You could climb the Turgen Ridge again, or if the weather didn’t allow you do it yesterday. Or you could trek around some of the sparkling alpine lakes that lie at an elevation of 3,000m in the inner bend of the Turgen Range. Or, if you feel you’ve earned a well deserved break, you could just spend the day lazing, relaxing and enjoying the spectacular scenery from your camp as you rest and restore your energy. (B,L,D)
Day 8 - Descent
Begin your descent today with a route that lies across a high mountain plateau dotted with lakes and mossy green hills. Be sure to look back as you go, as you’ll be able to see the western face of the Kharkhiraa Mountain. As you descend, you will start to pass nomadic homes, though still sparse, this is a sign that you hvae reached relatively low altitudes.
Tonight you’ll make camp by a small stream, the peacful sound of the babbling water will surely lull you to sleep. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 6 hrs, 19km
Altitude loss: 600m
Day 9 - Trek downstream along a canyon
Today after breakfast hike along the top of a deep canyon, the trail taking you across open country and following the seasonal migration route of local nomads. Arrive at the bottom of a wooded gorge where the river has a section of rapids, the spray from the water will refresh and rejuvenate you after your long trek. Tonight you will camp among the trees near the river.
Trekking distance approx. 6 hrs, 17km
Day 10 - End of Trek
The final day of your trek will be an exceptionally scenic day. Emerging from the gorge, step onto a highland that soon gives way to mountainous semi-desert with open, distant views of boundless deserts, pasturelands and rolling hills.
Upon reaching your rendezvous point, make camp for the evening which brings the trekking portion of your adventure to an end. (B,L,D)
Trekking distance approx. 6 hrs, 18km
Day 11 - Bayan Olgii
Bid farewell to your Khoton guides and their camels before driving to the capital city of the Bayan-Olgii Province, Olgii (approx. 5 – 6 hrs). This province, which borders Kazakhstan is Mongolia’s western-most province, with 90% of the local population being Muslim Kazakh.
Upon arriving in Olgii, check into your hotel for some well earned rest and relaxation before preparing for your flight back to Ulaanbataar.
Tonight you will be invited into the home of a local Kazakh family for dinner, where you will enjoy the traditional delicacies and songs of this unique region. (B,L,D)
Overnight Eagle Nest Hotel or similar
Day 12 - Ulaanbataar
Today you will be transferred to Olgii Airport for the 3hr flight back to Ulaanbaatar. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel and given some free time to explore the capital, do some shopping or just relax. In the evening, gather for one last dinner together. (B,D)
Overnight Hotel Bayangol or similar
Day 13 - Departure
This morning after breakfast you will be transferred to Chinggis Khan International Airport for your onward journey. (B)