Practical advice for Mongolian Photography
When I have camera on my hand, I know no FEAR. Alfred Eisenstaedt.
Are you looking for a new but unique and untouched place to your memory card and share it to the world?
Here is the practical advice for all travelers particularly for photo and adventure lovers, on behalf of photo addict who likes to capture beautiful nature, tradition, and culture. Mongolia-it sounds unfamiliar but unique to all the people. I prove that everybody, who knows this country dreamed to visit once in their life. But how many of them intend to arrive?
Take a photo tour to Mongolia to capture images of Mongolian beautiful nature, ethnic people’s portraits, authentic nomadic lifestyle, colorful festivals, ancient historical sights and amazing wildlife.
Landscape Photography in Mongolia
Mongolia is one of the most photogenic and mysterious countries in the world. Not only Mongolian stunning nature and diverse landscapes, nomadic culture, ethnic groups, great history, and cultural heritage, but also people are attracting photographers and videographers. Here you need to understand 5 different regions to all over Mongolia for instance: Northern- fresh watered Khuvsgul Lake, Taiga- Reindeer Herders, Southern part is Gobi Desert, Camel, Dinosaur fossils, wild and rare animals, bird watching photography tour is developed, Western Mongolia- Landscape, Kazakh Tradition, High Mountain range, Special interest such us climbing, trekking tour is popular and Eagle Hunting festival is famous for photographers, Central Mongolia-ancestry’s path, historical places and riding tours, hidden places for trekking and 5th region is Eastern Mongolia- Birding tours, Great Steppe, Chinggis Khaan’s birth Place etc. Because of the air pressure, some of the picture didn’t look so pure. So you need to choose the right time and bring useful filters to capture perfect photos.
Portrait Photos Mongolia
Batkhuu, one of the Tsaatan minority group gives us a photogenic smile. Photo credit: Batzaya Choijiljav
Mongolian photography tour is increasing due to retaining this shrinking authentic nomadic culture and sensitive and less populated nationality in the world. Mongolia is huge country located in central Asia and Mongolians figure, the face is totally different than our Asian countries, with the short body but broad chest, the nose is taller than other Asian nationalities, cheekbones are very round and big, good white teeth etc. Mongolia has 2 different nationalities and more than 20 ethnic groups. That means they have their own traditional clothes elements, photogenic, climate feature etc… Mongolian people are very shy and some of the elders believe that to be taken their photos reduce the age. Even it is superstition, clients need to respect it and guides can translate positively.
Mongolian Wildlife and Birding photography
The expectation of photographers and special interest tourists such as bird watchers is Mongolian animals, birds are like in Serengeti or African wild animals, but the reality is different. To see them in the wild in our country is truly related to “LUCK”. If you are lucky you will see them. But local experts are knowing when and where it is possible to see and capture them. So, my tip to my friends and clients is please contact the local agency- Mongolia photo guide. For many years of experience, Photography point is the most important thing. If you are coming with short duration, your best way to take good photos in short time contacts with local photo expert who can give you the tips and recommendation of a right angle, best timing and suggest you best photo tour guide and driver. Driver must be very sensitive and feel the photographers, where to stop and where they need to drive quickly.
Whooper Swans (Cygnus cygnus). Photo credit: Batzaya Choijiljav
The last thing about my advice is packing advice. Mongolian road is mostly off, so even you have a good and new car dust comes in every corner to your valuable things. So, please bring extra plastic bags to your camera equipment to protect it just in case. Preparation is always important, never ever forget it.
Ayan Travel at Genghis Khan Statue Complex
Ayan Travel is an experienced adventure tour operator and specialized in photography tours and workshops in Mongolia, arranges photo journeys to some of the most amazing corners of Mongolia, such as Western Mongolia to capture magnificent Altai Mountain above 4000 meters, Eagle Hunters, Southern Mongolia to take mysterious Gobi Desert, Camel caravan, sand dunes and Northern Mongolia to explore the mystical Reindeer herders, hidden treasures, and in central Mongolia to attend Naadam Festival and to know more about nomadic lifestyle way of living etc.
Happy photographer with Golden Eagle Hunters in Altai Mountains. Photo credit: Batzaya Choijiljav
Young eagle hunter during the eagle training. Photo credit: Batzaya Choijiljav
Before you coming and planning to photograph Mongolia please read our advice when is possible to arrive and what to photograph. Every season has own specialty and beauties. If you avoid touristic destination and season this article will help you to choose the right season.
What to photograph in Mongolia and when to go?
Mongolia photography travel tips and advice
Every photographer has their own opinion of how they like their images to be exposed
- Ask people before you photograph their portraits
- Please prepare small gifts or candies to children and elders
- Some people might ask money
- Prepare your personal things such as sun protect cream, mosquito spray, good walking boots etc…
- Of course camera equipment, lens both prime lens for portrait photos and wide angle, zoom lens for photographing landscape.
- Stay one place at least 1 full day, because Mongolian territory is huge and sparsely density population.
- Be ready at unexpected climate changing
- Choose right car and guide, if available find good photo guide
- Learn to predict weather forecast like locals
- Contact local photo expert who can give you the advice and any updated news.
- Ask from your local expert about the domestic flight baggage limit and excess baggage fee.
Complete Guide to Winter Photography in Mongolia
Extreme Winter Photography Tours to Northern Taiga Mountains of Mongolia- Ayan Travel Photo Tour Group on reindeer back. Photo credit: Batzaya Choijiljav
if you take a trip to Mongolia in winter you need to know the following things before you go. Ayan Travel organizes annual winter photography tour to reindeer herders in remote Taiga Mountains. As an experienced traveler and initiator, we put some useful tips including preparation of personal items, weather and road condition, environment, reindeer herders and their culture.
“Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.” — Aaron Siskind