(14 days) Camel Trek: Through the Wild Gobi Desert
- Trekking and camelback ride at the Gobi Desert, the cradle of dinosaurs
- Assistance of professional camel handlers and guide
Our Gobi Camel Trek is designed to take for unforgettable travel through mysterious paths of the Gobi Desert, a land of vast empty spaces, towering sand dunes, remote oasis, and steep mountainous gorges covered with ancient rock art and inhabited by ibex and Argali sheep.
The Gobi seems to stretch almost limitlessly. There are very few roads there and many areas cannot be reached by a car. Camel is often the only means of transportation that allows travelling from one place to another. And while travelling without a vehicle might be difficult it gives a great opportunity to reach pristine isolated areas inhabited by numerous wild animals such as gazelles and wolves.
Trip Duration: 14 days
Group Size: 6-12 people
The Gobi is a great place to try some camelback riding. Many find Mongolian Bactrian camels more comfortable to ride than horses. They are slower, walk gently and you are seated safely between their two humps. Not to mention an amazing landscape you can admire from their tall backs. This 8 day long camel trek will give you an opportunity not only to enjoy the company of those kind, extremely cute animals but also to get a full taste of the Gobi charms. There is nothing more amazing then a night in a tent pitched among golden sand dunes under limitless starry sky after a day spent in a camel caravan!
During the trek you will be assisted by several experienced camel handlers, who will not only help you with getting acquainted with the animals but will also take care of your baggage, which will be transported on camel carts, traditionally used by nomads to carry their belongings during seasonal migrations.
Physical Rating: Strong
The trip is suitable for: Advanced riders
Riding Style: Long distance endurance rides
Let us take you away from the noise and stress of a modern urban life and help you embrace the mystery and serenity of the Gobi Desert. Explore magical landscapes of Mongolia from a camel’s back.
Please let us know should you have further inquiries! We are looking forward to assist you with organizing your stay in Mongolia and answering any questions you might have about this tour. We want your holiday experience in Mongolia to be as amazing as it is possible.
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Day1. Fly to Dalanzadgad town.
Day2. Khongor Sand Dune
Day3. Nemegt Ar Khongor Valley
Day4. Naran Daats Oasis
Day5. Zulganai Oasis
Day6. Khermen Tsav
Day7. Ekhiin Gol Oasis
Day8. Zuun Mod Oasis
Day9. Ulziit River & Bugiin Tsav
Day10. On the way
Day11. Naran Daats Oasis
Day12. Toli Rock
Day13. Yol Valley
Day14. Fly back to Ulaanbaatar
Day 1. Arrival to Ulaanbaatar
Upon your arrival to Ulaanbaatar you will be picked up from the airport and transferred to a 3 star hotel, where you will be given time to rest and relax. After lunch your guide will take you for a sightseeing program including a visit at the Bogd Khan’s Winter Palace, and the Fine Arts Museum of Zanabazar. You will also have time to do some shopping. You will eat your first dinner in Ulaanbaatar at a local restaurant.
Day2. A Flight to Dalanzadgad
In the morning our representative will pick you up from your hotel and take you to the airport for a local flight to Dalanzadgad, the center of Omnogovi province. Upon arrival you will be picked up by our local personnel and driven to Khongor Sand Dunes, one of the biggest dunes in the country. You will be given an opportunity to climb the dunes and enjoy magnificent sunset. You will stay overnight in a traditional Mongolian ger (yurt) in a local tourist ger camp.
Day3. Sevrei Rock Painting & Nemegt Ar Valley
On that day you will cross Khongor Sand Dunes and drive through Sevrei village to the Khatan Sevrei Mountain, where you will visit one of the most famous rock art sites of Mongolia. After lunch you will drive to the Nemegt Ar Valley. The valley is famous for its discovery of a skull of the Nemegtosaurus, a sauropod dinosaur from Late Cretaceous Period in the 1970s. You will spend the night in tents.
Day4. The Beginning of the Camel Trek
In the morning we will drive to Naran Daats, a beautiful oasis, where you will have a chance to take some rest before the most challenging part of the tour. Next, you will meet a team of camel handlers and their animals. Upon loading your luggage on camel carts you will climb the camels and start your ride heading towards the Zulganai Oasis, where once again you will stay overnight in tents.
Day 5. At Khermen Tsav
On that day you will reach KhermenTsav, a spectacular red-colored canyon stretching for 15-20 km in the middle of the Gobi Desert. At its entrance the canyon is 10 km wide and 100-200 m deep. Try exploring its steep ravines and fairy shaped boulders as well as towering slopes. That day you will enjoy another night by a campfire, under the cloudless Mongolian blue sky this country is famous for.
Day6. Ekhiin Gol Oasis
There is no direct vehicle road connecting Khermen Tsav and the Ekhiin Gol Oasis, the biggest oasis of the Gobi Desert. The palaces are approximately 50 km away from each other, thus you will spend the whole day riding/trekking between them, reaching the oasis in the late evening. Be prepared for a challenging day! Overnight in tents.
Day 7. A Day of Rest in the Ekhiin Gol Oasis
On that day you will just rest. Those of you who wish to simply relax may stay at the campsite, while those who wish to do some hiking and sightseeing may take a walk through the oasis. During the Communist Period (1921/24-1990) the oasis was used to grow fruit and vegetables, and although the regime collapsed years ago local herders still continue planting and growing tomatoes, melons, apples, grapes etc. We will spend the night at a camp site in the oasis.
Day 8. Nogoon Tsav
On that day we will ride to Nogoon Tsav, another unique rock formation, whose strata date back to the Late Cretaceous. Dinosaur remains are among the fossils that have been recovered from the formation. Nogoon Tsav which means “green rock” in Mongolian and got its name owing to a beautiful greenish color of the rocks in the area. The total size of the place is 4 ha. Overnight in tents.
Day 9-10. Ride back to Khermen Tsav
For the next two days you will be riding back towards Khermen Tsav. Those are going to be your last days with your camels, so make sure to enjoy them. You will continue staying in tents.
Day 11. Back to the Vehicles
On that day you will meet with your drivers and vehicles and bid farewell to the camel handlers and their animals. Tips for them are at your discretion. Upon switching from camelbacks to cars you will drive to Gurvantes village and set a camp in the area.
Day 12. The Mirror Rock
After breakfast time, we will drive to the Noyon Mountain. The area is famous for the so called Mirror Rock, a 10 m wide, 3 m high flat black boulder, so smooth that you can see your reflection in it. You will also visit, the Saran Spring, the only local open water source. The area is isolated and rarely visited thus you may have a chance to spot some rare wild animals such as ibex and Argali sheep. This will be also your last night in tents.
Day 13. The Yolin Am Valley
On that day we will drive to the Yolin Am Valley. The name of the place means “vulture’s throat” in Mongolian and was given to this place due to its specific geological shape. The valley located in Zuun Saikhan, a range belonging to the Gurvan Saikhan Mountain Range, is over 10 km long and in its narrowest part only 2, 3 people can pass each other at the same time. The valley is well shaded from the sun by its high, steep walls and is covered with a thick ice field for most of the year. In the evening, we will drive to Dalanzadgad, where you will stay at a local hotel.
Day 14. A Flight back to Ulaanbaatar
After breakfast you will be transferred to a local airport for a flight back to Ulaanbaatar. In Ulaanbaatar you will be picked up by our representative and transferred to a 3 star hotel. The rest of the time is at your disposal. You can explore the city and buy some souvenirs if you have not purchased them yet.
Day 15. Departure from Ulaanbaatar
We will transfer you to the airport or train station for you international departure.
2016 TRIP DATES & PRICING OPTIONS
|Trip Dates:||This trip has 2 departures.Start Date End Date
26 Jul 16 11 Aug 16
13 Aug 16 28 Aug 16
|Pricing Options:||Solo traveler: 3970 usd p.p
2 people: 3700 usd p.pSingle Supplement: 560 usdRide price is set, guaranteed and final at the time deposit is paid.
Minimum fee (non-refundable) 20 usd
Essential information on Bactrian camels:
The Bactrian camel is an animal endemic to the steppes of Central Asia. Unlike his cousin, the dromedary living in the North Africa and in the Middle East, the Bactrian has two humps and a rider sits comfortably between them. The Bactrian is also much rarer than the dromedary; currently there are around 2-3 millions of those animals. Apart from a very small number of approximately 950 camels living in the Gobi Desert and the North China, almost all of them are domesticated.
The Bactrian camel rivals the dromedary as the largest living camel. Its shoulder height reaches from 180 to 230 cm (5.9 to 7.5 ft) with head-and-body length of 225–350 cm (7.38–11.48 ft). At the top of the humps, the average height of the Bactrian reaches 213 cm (6.99 ft). Body mass of the camels can range from 300 to 1,000 kg (660 to 2,200 lb), with males often being much larger and heavier than females.
During winter the camels grow long, wooly coats which vary in color from dark brown to sandy beige. When summer starts the coat is shed extremely rapidly, with huge sections peeling off at once, appearing as if sloppily shorn off.
Riding a camel is a must-do, while visiting the Gobi Desert. This unique experience allows the visitor to see the area in the same way Mongolian camel herders have seen it for centuries and explore places normally unreachable for travelers using cars or motorbikes. Be aware, however, that a long ride, even though it is slow-paced, can turn out to be very tiring. Here are several pieces of advice how to minimize any discomfort:
- Wear comfortable long trousers, socks and closed shoes. Take also with you a hat, a scarf, and sunglasses. Use solar cream !
- When a rider mounts or dismounts a camel the animal must kneel on the ground. When it gets up the animal extends first its back legs, which makes the rider overbalance forward. It is not a dangerous position since you are stack between two, fat-filled humps, but remember to hold tight and watch your belongings (especially camera). The moment is short lasted and soon you will sit straight once again so do not worry about it.
- The saddle is made of a thick blanket (or several layers of it) and stirrups put between the camels’ humps. During summer camels gain a lot of weight, getting bigger and wider, which is sometimes the cause of having riders stretch their legs in an uncomfortably posture. Creams, gels and rubs for muscle pain are very useful to help you relief some aches after a long ride.
- You will travel in a slow pace, and if you feel uncomfortable handling a camel on your own, your local guide may help you by leading it on a long lash. The Bactrian camels are calm animals and it is difficult to make them trot. However, it may happen that something will scare the animal and you will be carried away. That is why remember to stay attentive during the trek and stop any behavior that could frighten your mount. If for some reason you get carried away, try to stay calm. You are assisted by a group of very experienced camel handlers who will catch your camel in no time.
- Remember to hold the reins firmly and try not to show your animal that you feel nervous. Be self-confident. It will help your camel to stay calm. Sit properly, in a way your guide will show you. In this way you will avoid falling down from the back of your camel!
Follow the above pieces of advice and you will be able to handle a ride on a camelback without any problems. Join us for our camel trek. It is a once in a lifetime experience you will never regret to have!
Here is some pictures from our trips.