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Marco Polo Journeys

Mongolia: Naadam Festival & the Khan Legacy 2018


12 Days from $11,795

Limited to 18 guests

Retrace the footsteps of the Khan legacy as you take in the vivid spectacle of a centuries-old festival, explore the far-flung wilds of the Gobi Desert, and follow Kublai Khan's influence to the winding lanes of Beijing.

A&K Advantages

Explore the legacies of Genghis and Kublai Khan as you witness a deeply rooted festival, ride a camel through the Gobi Desert, and reveal the Khan heritage in Beijing

Witness one of the continent's oldest spectacles of skill, strength and daring at the annual Naadam Festival

Walk a section of the Great Wall and trace Kublai Khan's footsteps through the hutongs of Beijing

Share perspectives with a Buddhist lama at a monastery

Ride a camel through the dunes of Moltsog Els

Explore the badlands of the fossil-rich Flaming Cliffs, a site of groundbreaking paleontological discovery

Itinerary at a Glance

DAY 1
Arrive Beijing, China
DAY 2
Beijing | Atop the Great Wall
DAY 3
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia | Introduction to an Empire
DAY 4
Ulaanbaatar | Life of Genghis Khan
DAY 5
Gobi Desert | Dunes, Canyons & Wide Open Skies
DAY 6
Gobi Desert | Valley of the Eagles
DAY 7
Gobi Desert | Camel Ride & the Flaming Cliffs
DAY 8
Ulaanbaatar | Past Meets Present
DAYS 9–10
Ulaanbaatar | Naadam Festival
DAY 11
Beijing, China | Yuan Legacy of Kublai Khan
DAY 12
Depart Beijing
DAY 1
Arrive Beijing, China

Arrive in Beijing, where you are transferred to your hotel.

Four Seasons Hotel Beijing
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DAY 2
Beijing | Atop the Great Wall

Travel to the well-preserved Mutianyu section of the Great Wall of China, a vast fortification erected to protect the region from Mongol hordes. Walk or ride a cable car to the top of the wall to take in sweeping views of the surrounding mountains. Return to Beijing to take in the sweep of history at Tiananmen Square and explore the imperial grandeur of the Temple of Heaven. Tonight, gather for a special welcome dinner at your hotel.

Four Seasons Hotel Beijing
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 3
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia | Introduction to an Empire

This morning, fly to Ulaanbaatar and transfer your hotel. After you settle in, stroll Sukhbaatar Square, exploring the Great Khan’s Memorial and the National Museum of Mongolian History. Here, a local historian delves into the saga of Genghis Khan and his Mongol Empire.

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 4
Ulaanbaatar | Life of Genghis Khan

Visit Gandan Khiid Monastery with its 75-foot statue made of copper, gold and precious stones, accompanied by a top-ranking lama who discusses monastery life. In the afternoon, travel out into the steppe to Tsonjin Boldog to see the 131-foot statue of Genghis Khan.

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 5
Gobi Desert | Dunes, Canyons & Wide Open Skies

Fly to the Gobi Desert, home to Bactrian (two-humped) camels, mountain sheep, golden eagles and many endemic reptiles. In the late afternoon, drive to Hoorhon Devseg Valley to see the Bulgan Temple. Climb atop a mountain to visit a monastery and take in the spectacular view. After twilight fades, marvel as the starlit desert sky comes alive.

Three Camel Lodge
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 6
Gobi Desert | Valley of the Eagles

Journey overland to the Yol Valley, a narrow, craggy chasm. Hike the valley for a chance to spot vulture-like Lammergeiers, Altai snowcocks, ibex, yaks and Argali mountain sheep. Later, witness the construction of a ger, a traditional Mongolian home. In the afternoon, you may opt to hike through the Havsagit Valley to discover ancient petroglyphs atop a mountain.

Three Camel Lodge
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 7
Gobi Desert | Camel Ride & the Flaming Cliffs

Set off on the back of a Bactrian (two-humped) camel through the dunes of Moltsog Els for insight into a way of life that has endured for centuries. Visit with a local camel herding family in their home. Afterward, visit the Flaming Cliffs, a place rich with dinosaur fossils and the site where dinosaur eggs were first found.

Three Camel Lodge
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 8
Ulaanbaatar | Past Meets Present

Fly to Ulaanbaatar, where you see an exhibit of Buddhist artifacts at the Fine Arts Museum and browse the stalls of a local market. This evening, join fellow guests for a performance featuring traditional Mongolian dancers and khoomi throat singers.

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAYS 9–10
Ulaanbaatar | Naadam Festival

Attend the annual Naadam Festival, where the nation’s best athletes compete in archery, horse racing and Mongolian wrestling. Watch the elaborate opening ceremony that features dancers, athletes, horse riders and musicians. Enjoy a traditional performance with folk dancing.

Shangri-La Hotel Ulaanbaatar
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Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
DAY 11
Beijing, China | Yuan Legacy of Kublai Khan

Fly back to Beijing. After settling in, Ride Like a Local on a pedicab through a hutong, a vast, yet intimate neighborhood of small winding alleyways. Beijing’s hutongs (and the term itself) trace their roots back to Kublai Khan’s Yuan Dynasty, an extension of his grandfather, Genghis’ Mongol Empire. This evening, gather with your fellow travellers to celebrate your journey with a farewell dinner.

Four Seasons Hotel Beijing
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Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
DAY 12
Depart Beijing

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight.

Meals: Breakfast

Program Note: Travel in this remote region entails extended, scenic drives over unpaved roads; limited access to Western cuisine; and an unpredictable climate.


Prices are in USD, per person, based on double occupancy.

  • Jul 03 - Jul 14
    Call for Availability
    Price
    Single Supplement
    Internal Air From
    Availability
    Price
    $11,795
    Single Supplement
    $3,595
    Internal Air From
    $1,570
    Availability
    Call for Availability

    Price shown is guaranteed for 7 or more guests. For 2-6 guests, the price will be $13,795 per person double occupancy.

  • Jul 08 - Jul 19
    Call for Availability
    Price
    Single Supplement
    Internal Air From
    Availability
    Price
    $11,795
    Single Supplement
    $3,595
    Internal Air From
    $1,570
    Availability
    Call for Availability

    Price shown is guaranteed for 7 or more guests. For 2-6 guests, the price will be $13,795 per person double occupancy.

    Departure has slightly altered itinerary to accommodate the Naadam Festival dates.

Journey Details

Internal Air: Economy class from $1,570

Beijing/Ulaanbaatar/Dalanzadgad/Ulaanbaatar/Beijing

This journey contains some active elements.

Minimum age is 10 years.

First group event: welcome briefing at 8:30 a.m. on Day 2.

Last group event: farewell dinner at 7:00 p.m. on Day 11.

Departures are guaranteed to operate with a minimum of 2 guests.

Program Note: Travel in this remote region entails extended, scenic drives over unpaved roads; limited access to Western cuisine; and an unpredictable climate.


Destination Information

Download all the information you need to prepare for your journey, from visa requirements to packing recommendations.

Download PDF

Visas & Passports

Visit our partner Visa Central for convenient, one-stop visa and passport processing.

Visit Visa Central

Climate

See the average temperature and rainfall for your destination.

CDC Information

Familiarize yourself with health and immunization requirements for your destination at the Center for Disease Control’s website.

Visit CDC

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