She's infatuated with Roman Ruins, Road Trips, and Railway Journeys and she's crackers about cheese! I saw children as young as the age of 3, who could barely walk, jump on the horse and ride along our jeep. They fired up the lights of all the trucks in the camp and the old man of the tribe, played his “morin khuur”, translated as a horse headed fiddle, an authentic instrument of Mongolia. Another time, I rode on the plains of Hustai National Park. Check my post on 10 things to do in Mongolia in 2 weeks. I love how positive you are even about getting sick in Mongolia! But that’s just to get the capital of Ulaanbaatar. Not the end of the world. One of the things to experience in Mongolia is the desolate landscape. Usually, I doze off when travelling in a moving vehicle, but not in Mongolia. When you click an affiliate link and purchase a product or service via the link,  I will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. Mongolia offers a wide variety of landscapes. During our tour in an old Russian 4×4, we encountered many religious shrines along the way. The sunsets were astonishing and after every hill came another one. Of the three million people living in Mongolia, between 25 and 40 percent of them are nomadic and make their living from herding. There were potholes and little hills, which we took with seaming less effort. Check this funny post from Longest bus rides about toilets in Mongolia. Save my name, email, and site URL in my browser for next time I post a comment. Required fields are marked *. Every year, dozens of travellers jump in worn-out junker cars to drive across Europe to a remote part of Siberia in the name of adventure and helping to stop climate change. When I travelled to Mongolia on the Trans-Mongolian Railway, I didn’t know much about the country or its people. THANKS! But, as the good, the bad is also part of the unique travel experiences. During our stay with a nomad family, deep in the south of the Gobi desert, I tried some of their famous dried cheese, which was alright. I had the chane to be part of a great group and the experience surpassed my expectations. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. In UB though there were ethnic restaurants, for example I really loved the Hazara restaurant called Mughul! Does Blackbeard's Treasure Actually Exist, Or Is It Just A Legend Seen Only In Movies? It’s one of the main things to experience in Mongolia and I recommend it to everyone. A ger is a Mongolian circular teepee that houses a group of people. Mongolia is definitely an underrated Asian country that should be on everyone’s bucket list. After diner, the family called us into the main tent. I felt really blessed to be welcomed into the lives of this nomadic family, who opened up their home to me. The roads through the grass lands and steppe of Mongolia are nothing more than a dirt road or sometimes not even that. Considered a great hero in Mongolia, Genghis Khan was the founder and first emperor of the Mongolian Empire. But when we were visiting Mongolian restaurants and local people in ger, those meal were.. quite interesting. Don’t think they run in wintertimes. I had to go outside and run to the hole in the ground that served as a toilet. We saw numerous valleys, mountains, lakes, streams and even some wild animals. I think it should be on everyone’s bucket list because Mongolia is nothing like any other country you have experienced before. I truly experienced the bare and harsh conditions of the Mongolian nomad people, when I got sick during our tour. When you say Mongolia, you say horse riding. But I’m glad of that experience still. An awesome thing that every visitor to Mongolia has to do is visit the Genghis Khan Equestrian Statue, which is part of the Genghis Khan Complex by the Tuul River. Your email address will not be published. We were so remote from any kind of civilization; it was not an option to go back. And with the locals I mean: we ate local food. mi) and it is the fifth-largest desert in the world and Asia’s largest. We endured 1 sandstorm, sat out 3 thunderstorms, were cut out in 2 downpours but we mostly saw bright blue skies as far as the eye could see. How to make do with the things provided by nature. Please use my blog as inspiration for your next trip but follow guidelines on staying at home and indoors. Travel to Cinque Terre: 15 Surprising Things you did, Iceland Winter Packing List for Plus-Sized Women, Final Stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path – Wales, 10 Mistakes to Avoid Driving in Iceland in Winter. Hi i am curious to know how you arranged the tour off to the desert and what you think we can do if we going to be there in high winter? You can buy tickets to the opening and closing ceremonies online, while tour companies can also arrange your attendance at the festival, along with accommodation and transportation. I experienced first-hand what basic conditions actually mean. Traveling to Mongolia is sure to be a once in a lifetime experience, full of adventures that simply can't be found anywhere else, such as these. Our tour in Mongolia, covering 1,700 km (1,057 miles). There’s also the authentic local food and drink to look forward to, normally consisting of Mongolian barbecue and vodka. Have you ever been to Mongolia? Read about these unique Mongolian travel experiences below! The complex is located just to the east of the capital city, Ulaanbaatar. If you happen to be in Mongolia during midsummer, then attending the Naadam festival is a must. Almost 25% of Mongolians still live a nomadic or semi nomadic life. This is such a cool travel blog! Mongolia took a piece of my health, but mainly a huge chunk of my heart. Chris Sheldrick spent a decade in the music business, promoting bands and producing big events all over the world. I knew it was a secluded country with harsh winters and hot summers. We were also served another popular Mongolian dish: “lapsha”, this is a simple noodle dish. They live off the land and herd their goats, sheep and camels. The Mongolian cuisine is not known for its sublime recipes. Aside from being one of the prettiest places in Asia, Mongolia also offers visitors several distinct experiences that they can’t have anywhere else. Mongolians are born in the saddle and one or more of these short little horses is a must have for many nomadic families as it’s their only means of transportation. Try to find the softest Kashmir sweater or phone home from a “phone booth” on the sidewalk. We were all on our own. The dough was cold and the whole thing felt like a big lump of fat inside my stomach. The land changed colour every few miles, rocks turned from red, to pink, to orange, to yellow and back to red. I travelled over a week through the country from its capital Ulaanbaatar to the very south of the Gobi desert, I experienced some things I didn’t expect before I travelled to Mongolia. 9 Mistakes to Avoid Travel from Barcelona to Montserrat by Train, Thalys Train from Amsterdam to Paris: 12 Things No One Tells You, Travel to Cinque Terre: 15 Surprising Things you did NOT expect. You walk around it 3 times, counter clockwise, and normally you add something to the cairn, like a rock or a soda can. Have a look on Google Maps to find a river that seems easy to follow, has a good starting & finishing point, and is popular with local nomads. It was such a liberating feeling to let go and let the horse take me away. Your email address will not be published. It is a city with roughly 1,4 million people, almost 45% of the country’s population lives in this urban environment. Past trips: Lebanon, Wales, Argentina, and Iceland. © 2020 Lonely Planet. There is no Wi-Fi or even cell phone services in the Gobi desert, although things might change over the years. The main celebrations of the festival are held in Ulaanbaatar, but locals all over the country hold their own festivities. Additionally, there are gers to rent on Airbnb. The National Museum of Mongolia houses an interesting collection of artifacts about the history of Mongolia as well as some dinosaur fossils and meteorites found in Mongolia. Fruit and vegetables are sparse, because the climate is harsh and not many things will grow. Many Mongolian nomads depend on their herds and people in the city depend on the import from countries like Russia and China. The city  quickly expands because new roads and huge apartment buildings are built everywhere. For many, the highlight of a visit to Mongolia is to spend time … This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Most only operate during summer due to the low levels of tourism in Mongolia in the winter, when it can get quite cold in the desert. Here Are The Best Future Travel Destinations For You, Love French Toast? During our stay in the Gobi desert, I stayed 2 nights in the ger camp with a local nomad family. Our epic 8 day independent trek through central Mongolia was not only our favourite experience while traveling Mongolia, it was one of the best things we’ve done in travel. So we continued our journey across the Gobi Desert. She writes content for The Travel, The Things, The Talko, The Richest, and Screen Rant. I feel that those astonishing experiences hold the key to the beauty of the country therefor I share my experiences with you. We got gas from a man standing in the middle of nowhere who had a big oil drum. I want emails from Lonely Planet with travel and product information, promotions, advertisements, third-party offers, and surveys. You can arrange to stay with a nomadic family by booking a tour through several online tour companies. Although the city of Ulaanbaatar is nice, the main things to experience in Mongolia lay outside the borders of the city and deep into the country side of Mongolia. Website for moms seeking advice, community, and entertainment. A Classic Journey of Mongolia with Naadam Festival (15 days / 14 nights) "Travel All Mongolia was superb in making the tour memorable. 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