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Arburd Sands Winter

Introduction

The northernmost and closest sand dune areas to Ulaanbaatar are located at Arburd Sands in Bayan-Onjuul soum. It is a striking area of nomads, steppes and sudden sands dunes. Some 35 km away are also the Zorgol Hairhan Uul, gigantic rock formations rising from the steppe. This is also the habitat of Argali Sheep and sometimes also Siberian Ibex. In all, the Arburd Sands area is a 2 hour drive away from the capital and a natural Gobi escape. We have a low impact ger camp here, Arburd Sands Ger Camp. It is owned and operated by a local family who also regularly operate our Camel Treks and Gobi Steppe Rides. They are also famous horse trainers who participate in the annual Naadam Games. Their herd of horses is large and offers a good selection for both the amateur and the competent rider.
On this short journey we will drive south from Ulaanbaatar with a guide and vehicle until the Gobi steppe starts to emerge. You will stay at a low impact ger (yurt), a fully collapsible “lodge”, built in the nomadic style. We use low-impact indigenous, and thus appropriate, technology to offer lodging and sometimes also transportation, with the assistance of camel carts, riding camels or riding horses. Essentially, it means that we can be hosted by the services of the local people living in the area where we travel.

Trip Details

Itinerary
Tour Dates
Prices
Practicalities
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DAY 1: TO ARBURD SANDS

Pick up at your hotel in the morning. Drive south for about 2 hours to Arburd Sands. We will arrive at the camp before lunch. Afternoon – visit to a nomadic family.

DAY 2: ZORGOL HAIRKHAN

Drive 35 km across the steppe to the Zorgol Hairhan Mountains. These are giant rock formations coming up almost vertically out in the middle of Gobi. En route we will find some secluded petroglyphs of extraordinary quality. We will explore the area and perhaps have a chance to view the rare and elusive Argali Sheep (Ovis Ammon), the largest wild mountain sheep in the world. With some luck, there is also a possibility to see Siberian Ibex (Capra Sibirica) on the ridges at a far distance.

DAY 3: ARBURD SANDS

Explore the immediate area of Arburd Sands – 20 km long sand dunes. We may use camels to ride through these dunes. Strangely enough, a good number of wolves – being wary of man – have taken refuge in these dunes and can sometimes be seen. We will meet other herdsmen who will no doubt invite us into their gers for us to get a glimpse into their traditional nomadic lifestyle.

DAY 4: TO ULAANBAATAR

In the morning, after breakfast transfer back to Ulaanbaatar.

DATES EX ULAANBAATAR:

01st April – 15th May

30th September – 01st November

PRICE EX ULAANBAATAR

2 – 8 members: USD 1050 per person

Single supplement (3n): USD 900

TRANSPORT:
This tour is supported by a jeep or minibus depending on the number of travelers.

ACCOMMODATION:
For this winter trip you will stay a fully collapsible ger camp, including showers and compost toilets. The gers are each equipped with cot beds (including full linen), chairs and a table, and a wood burning stove.

STAFF:
A Mongolian English speaking guide will accompany the group at all times. In addition, the services of local herdsmen will be employed along with their animals.

MEALS:
Our cook will prepare the meals. We pride ourselves in having excellent cooks adept at both western and Mongolian cooking on our trips.

ADDITIONAL:
We can organize hotel accommodation, city tours and transfers in Ulaanbaatar.

INCLUDES:
Guide, all meals outside Ulaanbaatar. All overnights in ger camp. All local transport and entrance fees.

EXCLUDES:
Beverages. Transfers and accommodation in Ulaanbaatar. Air or train tickets in and out Mongolia.