You’ll start your journey in the capital of Mongolia. More than 1 million people live in the city, so you’ll definitely feel right at the heart of the adventure. Here, you’ll also be able to enjoy the modern side of the country while still remaining in close contact with history. There are many Buddhist temples and monasteries which you can discover from the inside during public tours. You can also visit colorful markets where the locals offer a wide variety of goods, and this will be the perfect occasion to sample the local cuisine. There are many restaurants at various price ranges and small stands right next to the street, so you’ll be able to try out plenty of dishes. Your stay in Ulaanbaatar isn’t only the beginning of your journey, it’s also the perfect chance to acquaint yourself with the local culture and people. Believe us, this will happen faster than you think. You can spend the night in one of the local hostels and get a bed in a 4-person dorm for €6.
Welcome to the second-largest city in the country! Not only does it have a fascinating history, it’s also the trade center of Mongolia. There are many copper mines here, which you can discover through a guided tour through the underground corridors and get a small insight into the daily life of the workers. But that's not all! The major part of the country’s carpet production is also based in Erdenet. You can buy the finished product in one of the many small shops in the city. There’s so much choice that you could spend the whole day admiring them all! While the city is much quieter than the capital, you can still experience the Mongolian flair here. You can sleep in a double room in one of the local hotels for €7 a night.
Terkhiin Tsagaan National Park
Next, make your way to the center of the country, where one of the most beautiful national parks is waiting for you. The highlight of this stop is the Terkhiin Tsagaan Lake, also known as the Great White Lake. The lake has a volcanic origin, which makes it even more enjoyable. You can admire the beauty of Mongolia's nature with your own eyes for the first time. The best way to do this is on a great hike in the national park or just on the shore of the lake. If you really want to go on an adventure, head to the Khorgo Volcano. With a height of 2,240 meters, it is an absolute highlight for hiking fans. Don't worry, it hasn't been active for a long time, and the hike is one of the most beautiful ones in the country: the view alone is already worth the effort. At this stop, you will find accommodation with a nomad family. You cannot get a better insight into the culture of Mongolia.
Want to bathe in hot springs in the middle of nature? You can experience this in Mongolia too. The Tsenkher hot springs form one of the first health resorts in Mongolia, so make sure you visit them. You can relax in the natural springs and just let your mind wander, or take a hike through the surrounding countryside. We recommend doing both, so you don’t miss out on anything!
It’s really one breathtaking landscape after the next. Naiman Nuur National Park has eight different lakes, making the national park one of the most beautiful in the country. All lakes were created by a volcanic eruption several hundred years ago, and today, they’re the perfect sight to admire while hiking through the park. Another highlight is the Orkhon waterfall. Here, you’ll see Mongolia in all its glory, and you’ll be glad you came to the country. Your driver will tell you all about the landscape in front of you – you’ll get all the essential information about Mongolia, and you can be sure that you will not miss any detail. Once again, stay among one of the nomad families. You’ll sleep in a simple tent and will be treated with traditional delicacies.
Off we go on a desert adventure! The Gobi Desert puts you right in the middle of one of the largest desert regions in the world, with just over 2.3 million square kilometers. As far as the eye can see, it’s only red sand and visible heat radiating off the ground. However, there’s so much more than an endless sandy landscape. There are many temples that were built in the dunes over the years, so make sure you visit them. You can visit the Dunhuang Temple or the Hohhot Temple, both representing the religion of Buddhism in Mongolia. You will also encounter many nomads on your journey through the desert. An absolute must-do is spending the night in the desert under the stars. You’ll be able to cross that off your bucket list!
This area of Mongolia is under the protection of UNESCO and for good reason – it’s a real nature paradise, with small waterfalls, a cooling river that winds its way through the landscape, and great views over the fields. The Tövkhön Monastery invites you for a visit, so come get your daily dose of history! In the valley, you will find the former capital of the kingdom of Genghis Khan, known as the Karakorum. You can definitely take it easy here, the area offers excellent activities for nature lovers and history buffs, or you can choose to simply relax and take a short walk.
This mountainous region is far off the beaten tourist track, and that is precisely why it is an absolute highlight for every backpacker. This is where the steppes and the taiga meet, and you will get to see the country’s natural beauty from a brand-new side. You can discover the unique local flora and fauna while hiking through the area. The holy mountain of Khogo Khan is a great place to take pictures, and your driver will be happy to tell you the story of the mountain.
Before heading back to the capital, we’re ending this trip with a visit through the Khustain Nuruu National Park. The park is home to an extremely rare special breed of horse, only found in the wilderness of Mongolia. You can also discover the horses’ natural habitat by going on a hike. Don’t forget your binoculars, so you can admire the horses from a distance.