Trip Type: Cross-Border Journeys
From Mystical Tibet to Nomadic Mongolia, Ancient Empires of the Khans, Explorer's Mongolia and Siberia, The Gobi and North to Siberia
Lying at the heart of Central Asia, Mongolia shares its northern border with Russia and its southern border with China, with Tibet and Bhutan just a few hours away. While traveling in the region, why not take the opportunity to expand your explorations? Our cross-border journeys combine the highlights of two regions in one itinerary, making the logistics easier for you, and leaving more time to enjoy the wonders of these fascinating destinations.
Almost a century has passed since Roy Chapman Andrews led his Central Asiatic Expeditions through the vast plains of Mongolia, but Mongolia still remains one of the last true wilderness lands, with its well-preserved nomadic way of life and rich history beckoning the adventurous spirits in for a generous treat of the extraordinary and unforgettable.
One of the most celebrated explorers of the 20st century, Roy Chapman Andrews had an uncommon hunger for adventure and a gift for storytelling. Named after his book “Across Mongolian Plains” and inspired by his love of exploring, this journey follows in the footsteps of his Central Asiatic Expeditions on a beguiling blend of history, unique culture, scenic wilderness and active adventures.
We will trace the historic Beijing-Kalgan-Urga trail where camel caravans, - some carrying the Central Asiatic Expeditions’ supplies and fossil finds, - traversed back and forth between China and Mongolia for centuries. After exploring the ancient cities of Beijing and Kalgan, the modern day Zhangjiakou, we will travel on the historic trail on train and on car, stopping by places like the dinosaur park of the border town Erlian, or a famous Buddhist temple of Hamriin Hiid. Once we reach Ulaanbaatar, we will first drive northward to the “strangely restful valleys and rounded hills” of Gorkhi Terelj region, today a beloved National Park. Continuing on to the Gobi, for our very own camel caravan in the magnificent sand dunes and bonfire cocktails under the starry Gobi sky, we will re-discover the scenic Flaming Cliffs where Roy Chapman Andrews found the first ever dinosaur eggs world had ever seen.
During a great tribal meeting held in the Khan Khentii Mountains in 1206, a man from poor nomadic origins was proclaimed Chinggis Khan, ruler of the Great Mongolian Nation. This was the birth of what would become the modern nation of Mongolia, and began the Mongol rule that dominated half of the world for the next few centuries. During this time, the Mongols initiated unsurpassed world trade and interaction between cultures that shaped the futures of Asia and Europe. Later, during the 89 years of the Yuan Dynasty – established by Chinggis Khan’s grandson, Khubalai Khan—the mingling of Mongolian arts and culture with those of China had an influence on the entire region that remains to this day.
This extraordinary journey will visit sites marking the rich and turbulent histories of Mongolia and China, where the great Khans once ruled their vast empire. Begin in Beijing, exploring the Forbidden City and Ming Tombs, before setting off to see Mongolia’s historic sights, including beautiful Khentii Province, the region where Chinggis Khan was enthroned eight centuries ago.
From China’s Great Wall to Kharakhorum, the ancient Mongolian capital, this trip is perfect for those who wish to explore the culture, natural beauty, and historical highlights of these two great cultures. There will also be opportunities to meet with local scholars in Mongolia, and all trip participants will be sent a copy of Dr. Jack Weatherford’s bestselling “Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World,” in their first pre-departure package.
Explore some of the most magnificent and pristine wilderness regions of Central Asia on this active outdoor adventure. Traveling by road, foot and kayak, discover the historical treasures, vast steppe, and sand dunes of Mongolia before visiting Siberia and the shores of Baikal, the world's deepest lake.
Trek through Mongolia's rolling grasslands and forested mountains, with stops along the way to relax in hot springs, visit centuries-old monasteries, and share tea with nomads. Nights will be spent camping in tents or ger camps beneath a breathtaking canopy of stars. Hike beside Lake Baikal, cruise on a boat on the eastern shore of the Lake Baikal and discover the fascinating museums and charming wooden architecture of Siberia's historic towns.
Join one of Nomadic Expeditions' most exclusive trips and explore Tibet and Mongolia, the "Roof of the World" and the "Land of Blue Sky." These fascinating countries, inaccessible to the world's travelers until only recently, share a direct spiritual bond through their Buddhist heritage, and reward visitors with a wealth of artistic and cultural riches, unforgettable vistas, and warm hospitality.
The journey begins in Beijing with a tour of the Forbidden City, the legendary Imperial Palace dating back to the Ming Dynasty of the 15th century. Continuing with a flight to Lhasa, one of the world's most spiritual and breathtakingly scenic cities, explore splendid palaces and Buddhist monasteries, including historic Samye, built in the 8th century as the first monastery in Tibet.
The adventure continues in Mongolia, where the "Singing Sands" and Flaming Cliffs of the Gobi Desert await. Hike through Yol Valley National Park, an area rich in unusual flora and fauna, explore the towering sand dunes of Hongoryn Els, and spend an afternoon at the Flaming Cliffs, where the first nest of dinosaur eggs was unearthed in 1923.
Experience the grandeur of two of Central Asia's most remarkable regions, as you discover the biodiversity of the Gobi Desert and Siberia's Lake Baikal, with stops along the way to explore the cultural riches of Mongolia and Russia.
Spin the prayer wheels at the Gandan Monastery, travel to the legendary fossil sites of the Gobi, and stand on the shores of the world's deepest lake. The Gobi Desert's Gurvansaikhan National Park encompasses the foothills of the Gobi Altai Mountains and contains two million hectares of dramatic rock formations, vast sand dunes, and the legendary Flaming Cliffs. Explore this awe-inspiring landscape, as well as the amazing Yol Valley, before continuing north to Siberia. Visit Lake Baikal and Siberia's many historic sights, such as Irkutsk's 18th-century cathedral, the Museum of Wooden Architecture, and the picturesque village of Listvyanka.