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Mongolia - Orkhon Valley
The Orkhon Valley rides take you through some diverse landscapes of Mongolia; from the cliffs of the Mini-Gobi through semi-desert steppes to Orkhon Falls where the river falls into a canyon formed after an earthquake and volcanic eruption more than 20,000 years ago.
Classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2004 as the cradle of nomadic Mongolia, the Orkhon Valley covers an extensive area of pasture that stretches for 80 km along the banks of the Orkhon river. On these trails you also spend time with a nomadic family as they go about their daily lives and visit various cultural sites, including Karakorum the ancient capital of the Mongol Empire founded in 1235 by Ogödei the son of Genghis Khan.
Orkhon Valley Camping Trail
The beauty of Mongolia is its landscape, in the heart of which nestle white gers and colourful Buddhist temples. This trail takes you to the most remote sites of the Orkhon Valley. The trail is vehicle supported except for three days when you ride into Naiman Nuur Park with pack yaks. Accommodation on the trail is in two person dome tents, with one night in a ger close to a nomadic family and one night in a semi-permanent ger camp.
Orkhon Valley Ger Trail
Enjoy the best of Mongolia in the comfort of gers the practical and typical Mongolian dwelling. Following the river along the Orkhon Valley you stay in comfortable semi-permanent ger camps each night (two to five guests per ger). One night is spent in a ger close to a nomadic family. This trail is vehicle supported. The trail ends with a visit to Hustai National Park, best known for hosting the conservation project to protect the endangered Takhi (Przewalski’s horse) which had completely disappeared from its natural habitat. The Ger Trail would be suitable for accompanying non-riders or guests who do not wish to ride all day every day. Non-riders will stay with the driver (who will likely not speak any English) and join the riders for lunch and at the end of the day.
Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia
This trail combines the dunes and the steppes of central Mongolia, offering riding in the Bayan Gobi Desert and the diverse landscape of the Orkhon Valley. The trail is vehicle supported. Accommodation on the trail is in two person dome tents, with one night in a ger close to a nomadic family and one night in a semi-permanent ger camp.
Hiking & Riding Tour
This adventure tour is ideal for groups of mixed ability or less experienced riders. After five days hiking through the mountains of Khangai you then spend four days on horseback in the Orkhon Valley. The trail is vehicle supported. Accommodation on the trail is in two person dome tents, with one night in a ger close to a nomadic family and two nights in a semi-permanent ger camp.
For the Orkhon Valley Camping Trail, Ger Trail and Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia trails, you should be a fit and competent rider capable of riding spirited, forward going horses over varying terrain, for up to seven hours a day. The riding includes long trots and canters.
[video width="1280" height="720" mp4="https://www.inthesaddle.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/mongolia-gallop-inthesaddle.mp4"][/video]
The Mongolian horses are small in stature from 12 hh - 14 hh but strong in character, sure-footed and willing. Mongolians stand in the stirrups at all paces and so the horses are not used to riders sitting in the saddle. You should be fit enough to stand in the stirrups at trot and canter for periods of up to twenty minutes.
The Hiking & Riding Tour is suitable for novice riders who have had a few lessons and are happy at trot.
The saddles used are tailor made, adapted to both the Mongolian horse and the European rider.
Hard hats are mandatory.
On the Orkhon Valley Camping Trail, the Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia, and the Hiking & Riding Tour you will stay in two-person tents. A loo screen and washing tent will be erected each evening (except for the wild camping nights on the Orkhon Valley Camping Trail), but washing facilities are limited and you are asked to bring only biodegradable toiletries. There is no supplement for a single tent on the trail (except for the nights spent in gers where single accommodation is not possible). A communal tent is erected for meals and evenings should the weather turn bad.
Whilst on the Orkhon Valley Camping trail three nights are spent in a guest ger next to the nomad family and another night in a semi-permanent ger camp with shower facilities (two nights on the Hiking & Riding Tour).
On the Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia one night is spent in a guest ger next to the nomad family and two nights in a semi-permanent ger camp with shower facilities.
On the Orkhon Valley Ger Trail you will stay in comfortable semi-permanent ger camps (two to five guests per ger) in proper beds. Showers are available on most nights. A central stove is lit for warmth on cold nights particularly welcome early and late in the season. There is no single accommodation available on the trail (except in Ulaanbaatar). On each trail the first and last nights are spent in a hotel in Ulaanbaatar.
|Holiday||Experience LevelExp Lvl||Arrive - DepartArr - Dep||Price||Itinerary||Availability|
|Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia||
||27 Jul 2019 - 8 Aug 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,516.80||Book|
|Hiking & Riding Tour||
||3 Aug 2019 - 15 Aug 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,516.80||Book|
||3 Aug 2019 - 15 Aug 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,470.70||Book|
||10 Aug 2019 - 22 Aug 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,904.07||Book|
||10 Aug 2019 - 22 Aug 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,470.70||Book|
||24 Aug 2019 - 5 Sep 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,904.07||Book|
||4 Sep 2019 - 13 Sep 2019||9 nights 9 ngts||£1,198.69||Book|
||7 Sep 2019 - 19 Sep 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,904.07||Book|
||14 Sep 2019 - 26 Sep 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,470.70||Book|
|Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia||
||14 Sep 2019 - 26 Sep 2019||12 nights 12 ngts||£1,516.80||Book|
INCLUDES Interpreter; horses and all riding; full board (except dinner on the last night); accommodation; camping equipment if required (except sleeping bags); local transport; tours and visits as per the itinerary including camel ride (apart from Hiking & Riding Tour); transfers to and from airport at set times.
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT There is no single supplement if you are willing to share. Single hotel rooms in Ulaanbaatar are available at a supplement - Orkhon Valley Ger Trail £110.65; Orkhon Valley Camping Trail Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia and Hiking & Riding Tour £73.77 . There is no single supplement for a single tent for the camping nights on the Orkhon Valley Camping Trail Dunes & Steppes of Mongolia and Hiking & Riding Trail but you must be willing to share for the nights spent in gers. Single accommodation is not available on the Ger Trail (except in Ulaanbaatar).
SMALL GROUP SUPPLEMENT This applies for 2-3 people in a group £242.65
PAYABLE LOCALLY Wine beer and canned drinks; one dinner; tips.
NEAREST AIRPORT Ulaanbaatar. Due to flight arrival and departure times you may require additional nights in Ulaanbaatar and we can arrange these for you.
TRANSFERS: Return airport transfers are included on the first and last days of the ride at set times. For the shared transfers, flights should arrive before 10:05 and depart after 07:10. For flights arriving/departing outside these set times you will need to make your own way from/to the airport by taxi.
NOT INCLUDED International flights to Ulaanbaatar.
In the Orkhon Valley, 320km west of Ulaanbaatar.
The riding was excellent, the gallops were as long as I'd hoped for and my pony was great. They are obedient, safe and very sure footed but still retain cheeky streaks which is wonderful. We had all the information we needed, we particularly appreciated seeing where we would be riding every day and staying every night on the map. A wonderful experience, I enjoyed it so much.
Zoe ,LondonOverall rating: 5/5
To spend a full day and night with a nomad family will leave you amazed at their humble existence.
Don't forget to bring your spirit of adventure with you on this fast paced trail ride.