This Mongolian classic photography tour gives you a chance to experience the Mongolian nomadic lifestyle and take pictures of the colorful Naadam Festival and the Gobi desert of Mongolia. We are sure that, this special tour will give you a grand pack with exciting adventures and amazing shootings. The landscapes are a perfect challenge to your creative photo interests. The target of the tour Mongolian traditional holiday Naadam festival which is one of the two biggest and the most important holidays of Mongolia. Plus we are offering you the chance to get thousands of amazing photos in the magnificent Gobi Desert. This is a great wilderness adventure that targetted landscapes with beautiful dunes and cliffs, canyon, and nomads.
- Capture images of wonderful sand dunes and mysterious camel caravans
- Set off on photo hikes amid nearby gorges and dunes
- Fill your cameras with the vibrant pageantry of the Naadam festival
- Photo shooting of wrestling, archery, and horse racing competitions in off-target
- Add your photo pack in historical sites of Orkhon Valley
From the airport or train station, drive to Chinggis Khan Statue Complex in Tsonjinboldog, the place where Chinggis Khaan had found a golden whip which was explained in the history. The statue complex is 40m high and built by steel. The main gate and the Statue has a beautiful combination of photographing. Visitors can take an elevator to the viewing deck on the horse’s head and look magnificent Mongolian steppe. After photographing we drive to Terelj National Park, one of the most beautiful destinations close to Ulaanbaatar. Travelers can take a leisurely stroll on meadows carpeted with a variety of wildflowers, view fascinating rock formations against a backdrop of pine-covered mountains and wander along the wooded banks of a mountain stream. Possibility to take hiking to Ariyabal temple in the beautiful rocky mountain and capturing Turtle Rock from that mountain is another angle. (L/D)
Drive back to Ulaanbaatar and transfer to the hotel. City tour including the Gandan Monastery, the National Museum of Mongolia, which represents Mongolian Culture starting from Stone Age to the 21st century and Buddhism, Sukhbaatar Square (also known as Chingis Khaan Square). In Gandan Monastery, you can take local prayers, monks, the biggest standing indoor Buddha statue, and temples' own figure. (B/L/D)
Today we head to Tsagaan Suvarga / White Stupa early in the morning. Tsagaan Suvarga was formed over time due to the erosion of a sedimentary mud in the sea bottom and looks like a stupa from a far distance. From the Far East, it looks like a city ruin or a settlement. After lunch, you will hike around the area to photograph. (B/L/D)
Drive to Yoliin am /Eagle Valley/ in Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park. Yoliin am valley is formatted by two high rock walls a big glacier on the ground kept frozen during hot summer days. It has breathtaking dramatic scenery and without a doubt is one of the beautiful places in the country. Hiking along the valley and reach up the icy glacier. If you have a zoom lens it has the opportunity to capture Wild Ibex and Lammergeier in the gorge. Visit the local museum. (B/L/D)
Drive to Khongor sand dunes. The sand dunes of Khongor are known as the «singing sands » and they extend for 180 km and at some places they are 350m high. These spectacular dunes are bordered by lush green vegetation supported by a small river Khongoriin gol. It is a great opportunity to take photos of a combination of Rocky Mountain, Gobi Oasis, Sand Dunes, and the symbol of Gobi- Camel. Also sunset and sunrise from the top of the Dunes is a highlight. Walking and Sliding at the dunes. Visit camel breeding family and experience 1-hour camel riding. (B/L/D)
Arrive at Bayanzag or Flaming Cliffs, site of dinosaurs findings were found in the 1920s by American explorer Roy Chapman Andrews. In some places still chance to see a piece of dinosaurs bones, millions of years ago. Before sunset, the cliffs look so red and you can take stunning photos before sunset. (B/L/D)
Drive to Ongiin khiid monastery and Saikhan-Ovoo area of Middle Gobi province. Ongiin Khiid monastery, a small mountainous area with the sites of remains of ruined old monasteries. Once the monastery has served as a midway point for Buddhist pilgrimages going to holy Tibet. (B/L/D)
Today we keep on going to 24 m high Orkhon Waterfall. When it rains a lot, the waterfall has more waterfalls. Here you can take photos of the waterfall and nomadic lifestyle. (B/L/D)
Drive to Kharkhorin, Ancient capital city Kharkhorin was founded in 1220 in the legendary Orkhon River Valley. It was from there that the Mongol Empire governed, until Khubilai Khaan, the grandson of Chinggis Khaan, moved the city to Beijing. On the ruins of Kharkhorin, in 1586, was built Erdene Zuu Monastery which is surrounded by monumental walls with 108 stupas. The monastery is kept till nowadays and it is considered as one of the leading religious centers of Mongolia. Visit Erdene Zuu Monastery and the local market of art crafts and antique items. Take photos of monks, Orkhon Valley, and local pilgrims and local market of antique. (B/L/D)
Arrive at Hustai National Park to watch wild horse- Takhi, widely known as “Przevalski horse”. Przewalski horses are the only wild horse to survive in modern times. The species were returned to Mongolia from world zoos and reserves within Hustai National Park in 100 km west of Ulaanbaatar. Hustain Nuruu has good vegetation, springs, birch forest and rocks which are suitable for many wild animals including 46 species of mammals and 172 species of birds. (B/L/D)
Visit Chinggis square in and take shots of the National Flag Raising festival and the Deeltei Mongol festival. (B/L/D)
Naadam festival, biggest national holiday Mongolia. Enjoy festival colors and tradition: famed wrestlers, horse racers, and archery athletes will compete for best titles. Naadam festival brings together the country’s sporting men and women from the remotest regions to compete at the national level in the capital city. It is also a celebration of common people - herders who ride into town and urbanities who leave their flats and offices to watch the games- gathering where they have the opportunity to participate in the events, to barter, mix, sing and enjoy life to the full.
Horse racing: The most impressive spectacle is surely the horse racing. The horses cover different distances according to their age. Azarga (stallions) 28km, Ikh nas (horses more than 5 years old) 30km, Soyolon (5-year olds) 25km, Khyazaalan (4-year olds) 22km, Shudlen (3-year olds) 20km and Daaga (colts to 2 years old) 15km.
There are no limits on the number of horses participating; usually 200-600 horses in each race. The five winning horses are honored with a cup of mare’s milk (airag) on their neck, a khadag (respectful blue scarf), and a medal.
Wrestling: The 512 wrestlers fight in the stadium, for the prestigious title “State Titan”. Both the “Titan” himself and the trainers have the opportunity to choose partners during the first few rounds, thus reducing the number of less experienced wrestlers early on and creating more excitement for the final matches on the second day. The rules are very simple: The wrestling area is unrestricted; there are no weight-classes and the one who touches the ground any part of the body, other than the feet, has lost. The winner continues to the next round. The loser has to stand under the wings of the proud winner. The wrestlers wear tight pants and a small vest with arms across the shoulders, which barely cover their well-trained bodies.
Archery: Mongols are almost born with archery skills, an integral part of the nomad’s lifestyle. From very childhood, such qualities as perfect eyesight, measurement, patience, and strength are nourished to develop a good archer. Mongolian bows are very tight ones so that it requires pure strength to stretch it out. As a rule, several teams of archers compete. Each team of 5-7 archers should hit 33 leather cylinders from a distance of 75 meters. (B/L/D)
Transfer to Chingis Khaan International Airport or Train station and depart Mongolia. (B)
Prices & Inclusions
|Group size||Price/Per person|
Accommodation: Hotel****,* ger camp
Guiding and interpreting service
Full board meals
Transport: 4x4 vehicle or minivan
Entrance fees to protected areas and national parks
Tickets to Naadam Festival (opening ceremony & horse racing)
Museums and cultural performance
Horseback riding (optional)
Optional activity cost
Excess baggage charges
Single room supplement
The extra cost for photography in museums
Tip for a tour guide, driver, etc