Food of the Nomads – Tsuivan – Mongolian Noodles
May 26, 2015
Focus On Mongolia – May News
June 5, 2015

What are you doing towards the end of July? Looking for something just that little bit different? Have you thought about Mongolia?!

Those of you who read my blog and newsletter know that I don’t typically use them as selling tools. I use them to write about Mongolia and a small amount about Eternal Landscapes. Well. For once, I have decided to go against my own rule.

Khovsgol – Image by our guest Zeynep

It’s called Untamed Mongolia and it’s our 23-day June and July departure. For those of you with a taste for adventure and the desire to really immerse yourselves in the country and culture this is the perfect active itinerary with a mix of wild camping out under the stars,  family provided ger accommodation and a homestay. Not a tourist ger camp in sight. If you’re trying to work out how many hot showers that results in – minimal – but we do use the local town shower houses en-route.

(In the words of the author Jack Weatherford – ‘Compared to the difficulty of daily life for the herders living permanently in those areas, ours were only the smallest of irritations.’)

Image by our guest photographer Nick Rains 

If you’re able to take the rough with the smooth – give it a week or so after your return and you won’t remember what you missed from your everyday life. What you will remember are the essential ingredients of Mongolia – the vast landscapes, the way the locals make their life in this harsh terrain, the solitude, the impromptu friendships and the impact they have made on your daily life.

Celebrating their grandson’s first birthday with Batbold and Jargaa – Image by our guest Susan Macleod

Vegetarian? Pescetarian? Lactose intolerant? Gluten free? We can cater for all. We prepare all the meals ourselves so you will be eating breakfast as the sun rises over the steppe, sharing your picnic lunch with a view of Mongolian White-Tailed Gazelles or eating a traditional Mongolian barbecue (vegetarian options provided) with the Batbold family. Yep, sometimes it rains or sand gets in your sandwich – but we have a kitchen tent and the vehicle has a sunshade which comes in very useful for those damp picnic lunches!

Not a bad location for lunch! – Image by our guest John Holman

Our group size is a maximum of 6 which provides  you with a more individual style of trip. We operate all aspects of the holidays we offer – there are no outside agencies or suppliers apart from the rural families that provide accommodation. This leads to a more personal style of trip  where you experience  a more local way of travel.  

Your neighbours in the Gobi – Siberian Ibex by our guest Marian Herz
Time to explore and discover for yourselves – Image by our guest Marian Herz
No need to wear a watch – just sit and watch the world pass by – Image by our guest Marian Herz

What is Untamed Mongolia?

I have chosen some of our favourite places from our 12 years of offering adventures through Mongolia and put them into a three-week itinerary.  Explore, discover and hike (optional!) the striking landscapes of the Gobi Desert, the high open steppe and the spectacular lakeland and northern regions of Mongolia, including Lake Khovsgol and the interior region of the Khoridol Saridag Mountains. 

Solitude at sunrise at Khongoryn Els – Image by our guest Leslie

Our Untamed Mongolia provides variety, is flexible and provides a genuine introduction that will enable you to get under the surface and experience the real local Mongolia. 

The itineraries I create are fluid not rigid. Each one is designed to provide you with a more individual style of travel – time to explore and discover each location for yourself. We’re on hand but my itineraries are tailored to give you a feeling of freedom and a sense of independence.

We set up lunch at the finish line! – Image by our guest Lynn McCaw 

Not comfortable with the idea of a group trip? Completely understandable. A majority of our travellers are those who typically travel independently (or have done in the past) but want the best out of their Mongolian experience and so are looking to do an organised trip but have trouble with the ethos of an organised trip. 

Getting away from it all at Khustain Nuruu – Image by me (that’s why it’s hazy!!)

To put it simply, if you’re looking for the style of trip where you want to tick off the sights of Mongolia in a ‘tick-it-off-the-list-job-done’  kind of way then this trip won’t suit you.  But, if you’re looking for a slower paced more immersive experience and are open and flexible as to what you do experience then this definitely for you. 

Sunrise over Gobi Gurvan Saikhan 

 If you’re reading this and wondering why you should choose us against all our competitors (and I know there is an overwhelming number to choose from) then hopefully this quote by one of our past Untamed Mongolia guests Sarah Cutler may help:

The thing I needed most and the thing I got out of my trip to Mongolia is/was the refreshment of my soul and spirit.  Living such a simple life and camping, the extreme natural beauty and the wonderful company allowed me to do that.’ 

Up in the clouds at Terkhiin Tsagaan Nuur – Image by our guest Lynn McCaw
Waiting for lunch to be prepared at Dungene Am – Gobi Gurvan Saikhan – Image by our guest Violaine Coard

I’ll leave you with the words of two of our previousUntamed Mongolia guests – Marian Herz and Violaine Coard. 

‘The trip was flexible and took advantage of situations that presented themselves. I liked that we could go at our own pace while exploring – no group hikes with pressure to keep up. I really felt that I got to know the rhythms of the country. Nothing was contrived. We truly experienced Mongolia. You really  delivered on what you promised.’ (Marian)

‘Thank you for keeping a good, respectful and strong relationship with the locals in order t o allow us to experience/interact with them and their lives in a genuine way. We got exactly what we e x p e c t e d a n d wished for: a beautiful overview of a very large, magnificent and wild country, the real genuine and ‘raw’ way. The true story.’ (Violaine)

Mongolia is a country of spectacular raw natural beauty and sublime space that inspires adventure and exploration.  The wide open ‘eternal landscapes’ (now you understand our name!) will awaken a sense of possibility in you and make you feel free. Even better there is now a 15% discount per person. 

I look forward to hearing from you!

Taking time to learn about the traditions in the Khangai – Image by our guest John Holman

Your home with a view – Image by our guest Mandy Wong

The view above our campsite at the Selenge Gol – Image by our guest Violaine Coard
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