Mongolia's Naadam Festival

15 Days | Travel to Mongolia and discover the iconic Naadam Festival.

5 out of 5 based on 6 reviews submitted.
Explorer
Festivals and Events
From
EUR 3.380 €
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The ancient Greeks may have the Olympics but the Mongols have Naadam. Mongolia’s annual circus-like Naadam Festival is a centuries-old tradition that dates back to the era of the great Khans and their dynasties. Wrestling, archery and horse racing — the three skills that Genghis Khan considered essential for any Mongol warrior — are showcased at the country’s largest celebration of the “three manly sports”. Come behind the scenes as we meet the competitors in the lead up to the festival and discover some of Mongolia’s wild outback, visiting ruined monasteries, flaming cliffs and historic cities.

Trip overview

Map of Mongolia's Naadam Festival including Mongolia
Start
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Finish
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Theme
Explorer, Festivals and Events
Destinations
Mongolia
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Style
Original
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 - Max 16
Trip code
CBSOS
We’re in the process of figuring out how much CO2-e this trip generates. In the meantime, find out more about our climate commitments and carbon reduction target.

Why you'll love this trip
  • Go behind the scenes of Mongolia's Naadam Festival and visit the athlete's training camps as they prepare to compete in the Naadam Festival.
  • Live the nomad life with a family stay at a horse breeder's camp.
  • Experience the phenomenal landscapes of central Mongolia.
  • Attend the Naadam Opening Ceremony and watch athletes compete for glory in wrestling, horse racing and archery.
  • Encounter Mongolia's stunning natural landscape with visits to places such as the Flaming Cliffs and sand dunes of Khongor.

Is this trip right for you?
  • Staying in various tourist ger camps, you will experience basic conditions which may take some getting used to. Most gers sleep up to 3 to 4 people, with comfortable beds and plenty of blankets.
  • You will have an overnight family stay at a horse breeder's camp and will need a sleeping bag for this night. This is an authentic local experience, so be prepared for basic, but very real conditions.
  • This trip involves long drives across some rough terrain and to remote areas, away from modern facilities and conveniences. As you'll spend a lot of time on the road, it is important to realise that the emphasis on this trip is on the journey. You'll travel through amazing landscapes and stay in some stunning locations.
  • Depending on group size, you may be split into multiple vehicles throughout this trip. The leader will make an effort to rotate travellers through the vehicles so that everyone spends some time together on the drives.
  • Vegetarians can be catered for, though choices may be limited. Please let us know if you have any specific dietary requirements when you book your trip. Some food will be traditional Mongolian style, but as the traditional diet consists solely of meat and dairy products, most meals are less challenging and based more on Russian or Western cuisine, which is now also common in the Mongolian diet.

Itinerary

Map of Mongolia's Naadam Festival including Mongolia

Inclusions

Meals

14 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 9 dinners

Transport

Private Vehicle

Accommodation

Hotel (5 nights), Tourist Ger Camp (8 nights), Family Ger Camp (1 night)

Activities
  • Archery Training Camp
  • Wrestling Training Camp
  • Horse Racing Training Camp
  • Baga Gazriin Chuluu - Hike
  • Tsagaan Suvarga - Hike
  • Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs - Hike
  • Vulture Canyon - Hike
  • Khongor Sand Dunes - Dune Hike & Camel Ride
  • Ongiin Khiid - Ruins
  • Karakorum - Erdenezuu Monastery
  • Naadam Festival - Opening Ceremony
  • Naadam Festival - Archery events
  • Naadam Festival - Wrestling events
  • Naadam Festival - Horse Racing events

Dates and availability

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Important notes

1. A Single Supplement is available on this trip for hotel nights in Ulaanbaatar only.
2. A sleeping bag is required for the family ger camp stays. You can bring your own, or hire one in Ulaanbaatar for 5 USD per day. Please let your booking agent know if you would like to hire one.
3. Please provide your full passport details to your booking agent no later than 40 day prior to departure. This is required for booking Nadaam festival tickets.
4. Please note that if you are booked on the 2nd departure starting on 29 Jun 2024 (departure code: CBSOS2406292), the order of destinations on the itinerary will be adjusted as below ( the included activities in each destination will remain the unchanged):
1. Ulaanbaatar: Group meeting
2. Ulaanbaatar: Horse Racing Camp
3. Ulaanbaartar: Archery & Wrestling Camp
4. Ulaanbaartar
5. Karakorum
6. Ongiin Khiid
7. Khongor Sand Dunes
8. Khongor Sand Dunes
9. Vulture Canyon/ Bayanzag Flaming Cliffs
10. Tsagaan Suvarga
11. Baga Gazriin Chuluu
12. Ulaanbaatar
13. Ulaanbaatar - Nadaam Openning Ceremony & Archery events
14. Ulaanbaatar - Wrestling & Horse Racing events
15. Trip finish
For departure CBSOS240629 and CBSOS2406293, the itinerary will be as per the normal itinerary displayed.
However, the visit to training camps heavily depend on the schedule set up by different teams which tend to change last minute. So the order of the visit to different training camps may change between Day 2 and Day 4. Your tour leader will be able to give you the exact details at the group meeting but we will visit the training camps of the three sports to give you the chance of observing and interacting with the athletes in preparation for their games.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information

Reviews

5 out of 5 based on 6 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

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Stuart · Traveled June 2023
Mongolia during Naadam is like nowhere on Earth- the noise, colour and atmosphere needs to be seen to be believed!
Review submitted 17 Jul 2023

Nigel · Traveled June 2023
Truly amazing experience. The people, culture and history of Mongolia is very unique, and this tour explores it all.
Review submitted 23 Jul 2023

Sandra · Traveled June 2023
Mongolia offers adventure, great landscapes and wonderful people unlike any other place. The festival was an amazing experience, a bit like an Olympic event, and the opening ceremony was really surprising, integrating both historic, current and future influences. Having been to the archers, wrestlers and horse camps at the start of the trip, they gave us an added insight into their cultural roots and current nomadic existence.
Review submitted 24 Jul 2023

Choong Wah · Traveled June 2023
Amazing trip. It showcases a country & culture that's unique, fun and deserves to be better known. Mongolians are big friendly people. Our enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide made sure we were immersed in the best possible way to appreciate the culture and share the best time with the people. A bit of rough travel, vegans come well-prepared. 5* and when done, you'll want more!
Review submitted 10 Aug 2023

Sandra · Traveled June 2023
The Mongolia trip is an amazing experience. If you love huge landscapes, amazing scenery, wonderful people and a rich culture, then you need to see it to believe it. Our guide, who was local, was not only very knowledgeable and helpful, but also fun and his enthusiasm infectious. I only wished I'd had time to continue and join the Wild Mongolia trip after the amazing Nadam festival.
Review submitted 11 Aug 2023
Mongolia's Naadam Festival
From
EUR 3.380 €