Untouched by the wonders of modern civilization until very recently, Mongolia promises to take you into the heart of wilderness. With a surprisingly low population density, you end up driving for miles and yet with no human contact. And we bet, you begin to appreciate that! But when you come across a local, they won't let you return without giving you the taste of Mongolian hospitality. Vast steppes, breathtaking landscapes, herds of healthy livestock, vibrant culture sum up the whole experience. There's more to it though and that's exactly why our tour features road which can't be located on the map. Because when instincts are there to guide you, compass can take a backseat.
Arrive by plane in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar which is a complete contrast from the countryside you'll be exploring in the next two weeks.
Fly from Ulaanbaatar to the town of Dalanzadgad. Recharge for a while to proceed towards Gobi Desert, which spans the part of Southern Mongolia. Drive to the magical Flaming Cliffs which gained fame owing to discoveries of dinosaur fossils. Throwing an interesting trivia your way: these cliffs were named so because of the fiery red appearance they assume during the sunset. Drive some more from here to reach the White Stupa site and then camp overnight.
Drive to Ikh Gazriin Chuluu, lovely granite rock formation in the Gobi desert. With over 40 caves in the area, this mystical piece of land is a favourite retreat for hikers. After exploring the area, camp and retire for the night.
Head towards Gorkhi Terelj National Park afHead towards Gorkhi Terelj National Park after driving for over 200 kms. Be stunned by the beautiful, lush green scenery or get lost in the local folklore and legends. Followed by a stay at the resort.ter driving for over 200 kms. Be stunned by the beautiful, lush green scenery or get lost in the local folklore and legends. Followed by a stay at the resort.
Here comes the part without which any Mongolian experience is incomplete. Meet the locals who will charm you with their nomadic hospitality, get up, close and personal with the culture, have a tete-a-tete with them over food, see the Gers- herder's hut. Drive back to Ulaanbaatar and stay overnight in a hotel.
Next destination: Amarbayasgalant Monastery, after driving for 560 kms. The drive is easy with nicely paved roads to accompany you. The monastery has been accorded a special status and is a UNESCO-guarded site. Inspired by Manchu-style spatial architectural planning, perfect symmetry and imperial influences are evident in this strikingly beautiful construction. Stay in comfortable tents.
Head towards Khuvsgul Lake, the largest freshwater body in Mongolia by volume. Also known as the blue pearl of Mongolia, you won't ever fall short of things to do here. After arriving, camp on the banks of the lake and enjoy the view of the great Sayan mountain range soaring high against the tranquil waters of the lake. Stay in the Ger camps.
Drive for 260 kms to reach Zuu Nuur Lake which is situated 13 km north of Shine-Ider village. Enjoy glamping, a curated camping experience with luxury amenities.
Move to Tsertserleg which is placed on the northeastern slopes of the Khangai ranges. An ancient cultural and commercial centre, it has a temple overlooking the town. Stay in a hotel in the town before proceeding towards Kharkhorin.
Kharkhorin is the site of the old capital of Karakorum. Once replete with glorious structures from the middle ages, this is now an unassuming town famous for its remains of the 16th-century monastery, Erdene Zuu Khiid, and the museum. They both offer a peek into the area's majestic past. Stay in a hotel.
Touch base again in Ulaanbaatar by driving for some 350+ kms. Stay in a hotel. Take some time to consolidate, recollect, absorb the unforgettable odyssey that this trip was. No rush!