Top Mongolia Tours & Vacations 2024/2025 [reviews & photos]

Mongolia Tours & Travel Packages 2024/2025

19 Mongolia trips. Compare tour itineraries from 11 tour companies. 131 reviews. 4.7/5 avg rating.

Small Group Mongolia Tours

See all 12 Mongolia trips
See all 19 Mongolia trips

Top Mongolia Attractions

    • Bouncing through Gobi National Park in a van, taking in spectacular desert landscapes, especially the amazing Flaming Cliffs.
    • Taking a guided tour of the National History Museum
    • Hearing the strange sound that is khoomi throat singing.
    • Walking around the ancient Buddhist monastery of Erdene Zuu
    • Dinosaur hunting in Ikh Bogd Mountain!
    • Seeing famous archaeological sites at Altai Tavan Bogd National Park
    • Attending the annual Eagle Festival in Ulgii, and watching eagle hunters and archers compete in a variety of contests.
    • Trekking at the beautiful Naiman Nuur lake, naturally formed from years of volcanic eruptions
    • Riding a horse along mountain trails in Terelj National Park.
    • Seeing the majestic Singing Dunes from the back of a camel, before making the long, hard climb to the top to watch the sunset.
    • Staying a night in an authentic Mongolian home, called a "Ger"

Mongolia Tours & Travel Guide

Mongolia Attractions & Landmarks Guide

Mongolia is one of those countries that stirs the imagination of adventurous travelers. Landlocked, sparsely populated, and one of the few places left where nomadic lifestyles still thrive, Mongolia is truly a place to get away from it all -- unless you visit during one of its colorful festivals (the spirit of Genghis Khan and Kublai Khan -- featured in the recent Netflix series Marco Polo -- lives on at Naadam, a festival featuring traditional sports like horse-riding, wrestling, and archery).

The Gobi Desert is here, along with huge lakes, hot springs, mountains, and marshes. Ready for an adventure with yaks and yurts? We're here to help.

Read more about the Gobi Desert and the most beautiful deserts around the world >>

Mongolia in a Nutshell 

The land that Ghengis Khan made famous, where the nomadic lifestyle thrives, and one of the countries least touched by the spread of the modern world. Mongolia brings you back to the days before large cities and roads. Where people lived off the land and horses and eagles were key to survival. 

Mongolia is the place adventure travelers dream about. This vast and varied country is sparsely populated with the landscape largely unchanged for thousands of years. When visiting you’ll be able to see the impact of Khan, the nomadic life, and the many festivals that highlight the traditions of Mongolian life.

Staying in a Ger in Mongolia

One of the highlights of visiting Mongolia is staying in a ger. Many tours include a couple of nights of staying in traditional gers (tents) that are used by the pastoral people of Mongolia. These tents were designed to be easily taken down and transported when the herds moved. 

Travelers often stay in large ger camps where the tents are shared by multiple people or one family. In some, there is little running water, no electricity, and outside bathrooms. However, there are some larger ger camps with restrooms and large dining halls. Other tours may also take you to gers that are run by locals and resemble more of homestays

These gers are a chance to experience how the nomadic people of Mongolia lived, albeit a little more luxuriously. Staying in a ger is a common practice when touring the steppe as there are no cities or hotels. 

If you are visiting a ger that is run by local families, make sure to call out Nokhoigoo! Dogs are used to protect and herd in the grasslands and shouting this is asking them to “Call off your dog!” This will protect you from any potential misunderstandings and dog bites.

Adventure Travel in Mongolia

Pack your adventurous spirit when visiting Mongolia! With mountains, vast grasslands, lakes, and an awe-inspiring desert, Mongolia calls to the explorer in all of us. 

Adventure travel in Mongolia covers a wide variety of activities. Tours offer camel riding, camping with a local tribe, hiking the Mongolia Blue Trail, and 4-wheeling through the Gobi Desert. 

Adventure travel in Mongolia is not always luxurious. Often times you will be camping without running water or staying in homestays. Some places you visit are very remote without the means of getting to hospitals or clinics easily. If you are planning on an adventure tour to Mongolia, make sure to plan and do research ahead by packing any medications and additional supplies you may need.

Ulaanbaatar

Seen by some as a scar on the beautiful landscape, and others as a haven in which to relax and recharge after touring the wilderness, Mongolia's capital city of Ulaanbaatar divides opinion. This once run-down city has undergone a recent spring cleaning, particularly in the center, where broad boulevards are lined by sparkling glass buildings and immaculate squares. The surrounding areas give more of an indication of the Ulaanbaatar of years past, with streets lined with run down buildings and traditional gers.

Visitors to Mongolia are likely to be more interested in the great outdoors than in the capital city, but if you do have some time to kill in Ulaanbaatar (or UB, as it's known locally), there are a few sights worth checking out. As well as its many squares and statues, UB boasts its fair share of markets and museums.

Try the National Museum of Mongolia to explore the country's history, or the Museum of National History to see sculptures and religious exhibits. Or try the newly opened Museum of Dinosaurs to see some impressive dinosaur remains that have been unearthed in the Gobi. And don't forget to visit the karaoke bars!

The best time to visit UB is in July, where the city celebrates Naadam festival. Try to avoid visiting in winter (November to January), when temperatures plummet and the city becomes covered in a black cloud of pollution from the burning of coal in the nearby gers.

Natural Wonders

There is no shortage of natural wonders in Mongolia Though one may envision harsh landscapes, there is actually a lot of variety. A convenient weekend getaway for tourists and locals, Terelj National Park is located just a short journey to the east of UB. This scenic area offers treks along mountain trails with sights of massive stone structures, stays in local ger camps, and the option to rent horses.

The vast Gobi desert stretches throughout most of southern Mongolia as well as a large part of China. It's impossible to travel throughout this region without your own car or hiring a van and driver. Or better yet, a guided tour will take care of transport, accommodation, food and translation.

Sights on a Gobi tour in Mongolia include the Ice Canyon, a deep canyon filled with ice throughout much of the year, the Singing Dunes, massive sand dunes that "sing" when the wind blows, and the Flaming Cliffs, colorful cliffs where large amounts of dinosaur fossils have been found. Other highlights include home stays with families in local gers, and a ride on a Bactrian camel.

Wildlife in Mongolia

Like Mongolia’s climate, Mongolia’s wildlife is also varied and diverse. Many of the animals of this Asian country have to be hearty has Mongolia’s climate drastically changes throughout the year. 

Mongolia’s two most recognizable animals are birds and horses. Mongolia has over 400 different bird species including eagle, vulture, falcon, and snowcock. Horses are also common throughout the country. Eagles and horses have been a constant companion for nomads for hunting and living. 

You’ll also find plenty of camels, fish, and some reptiles. Mongolia also is home to some endangered species such as the snow leopard and the tarbagan marmot (Mongolia’s version of a groundhog). 

The country also has a large stray and wild dog population. In the city and amongst the gers of nomadic camps you’ll find many dogs. Be careful, however. These dogs should not be petted as some are wild or trained as protection and watchdogs.

Horseback Riding in Mongolia 

As many Mongolians survive because of horses and the country was largely developed on the back of horses, horseback riding in Mongolia is a common tour activity. 

When traveling to Mongolia you can either pick tours that include a day of horseback riding in the national parks or horseback riding tours. You can experience the Mongolian steppe as the nomadic tribesmen still does to this day. 

Mongolian horseback riding tours can be multiple days long covering the grassland. You’ll often be riding for 3-4 hours a day and making camp at night on this untouched landscape.

Festivals in Mongolia

Mongolia has one of the richest festival cultures in the world. Each season is dotted with different festivals celebrating the changing of the seasons, traditional way of life, and local wildlife. While there are dozens you could choose from, these ones are the cream of the crop and the most popular. 

1. Naadam Festival: The most famous of Mongolia’s festivals, the Naadam Festival is like the Olympic Games for Mongolia. Competitions in archery, horseback riding, and wrestling all highlight the traditional customs and dress of Mongolia. 

2. Tsagaan Sar: Mongolia’s Lunar New Year Festival is characterized by bringing families together over large amounts of cookies, mutton, and piles of buuz (dumplings) and is the best time to experience Mongolian hospitality. 

3. Khovsgol Ice Festival: While taking place in March, this time of year is still well below freezing and where sled rides, tug-of-war games, and wrestling all take place atop the think ice on the lakes. 

4. Gobi Camel Festival: Also called the 1000 Camel Festival, this festival celebrates the Bactrian camel that has played a major role for the tribes living in the Gobi Desert. Polo games, races, and performances highlight this colorful celebration. 

5. Nauryz Festival: Welcoming the spring, the Nauryz Festival is meant to bring new life. Old debts, rivalries, and conflicts are settled around the Spring Equinox with people sharing milk and yogurt to bring good fortune.  

6. The Golden Eagle Festival: Held in the fall, the festival pays homage to the art of falconry that has a long history with the Kazakhs in Mongolia.

Western Mongolia

The west of Mongolia has a large Kazakh population, and so the culture and language differ from the rest of the country. Often called the "Wild West", this off-the-beaten track region is home to the eagle hunters of Mongolia. The best time to see them in action is at the annual Eagle Festival in the city of Olgii, held in the first weekend of October.

Western Mongolia is also a good place to observe traditional khoomi throat singing, especially in the city of Khovd and the town of Chandimani. Getting from central to western Mongolia by local transport is a long and painful process.

Cramped local buses run the two-day journey from Khovd to Ulaanbaatar, and rarely allow passengers to buy tickets to destinations in between the two. An internal flight is a much easier option, and a private car and driver is the only way to see sights in between Khovd and UB.

Northern Mongolia

The Siberian region of Northern Mongolia sees freezing winters and lush green summers. When the weather is right, visitors can enjoy horse riding, kayaking, mountain biking, and trekking. Major attractions in this region are the picturesque Lake Khovsgol and the Buddhist monastery of Amarbayasgalant.

Harder to get to, but worth the journey, is the land of the Tsaatan reindeer herders. Accessible by several days in a van and a few more days on horseback, this region along the Russian border is truly remote. But those who make the journey are rewarded with experiencing the traditional lifestyle of the reindeer herders, as well as the spiritual traditions of local shamans.

Eastern Mongolia

One of the most remote areas of Mongolia, and, arguably, the world, Eastern Mongolia is an untamed stretch of grassland. Aside from the occasional gazelle or marmot, it's possible to feel completely alone. The few visitors who venture into this region do so to follow in the footsteps of Genghis Khan, who was born in the eastern Khan Khentii Mountains.

Revered as a great leader in Mongolia, visitors to the east can take a jeep tour to various places associated with the Mongol conqueror. Or better yet, grab a horse and explore the area in the way of Genghis Khan himself.

Mongolian Cuisine

Let’s just say vegetarians and vegans may have a difficult time in Mongolia. Traditional Mongolian fare is based around meat, dairy products, and hearty grains. Mongolia began as many nomadic tribes, thus the cuisine was based on the animals they herded and were able to hunt. Beef, sheep, camels, horses, and goats were and are seen on Mongolian tables.

Milk is also a mainstay in Mongolian cuisine. Salted milk, yogurt, and cheese are eaten along with meat and bread. Barley can also be seen, along with porridge and steamed dumplings. 

Vegetables are few and far between because of the climate of Mongolia. As Mongolia is sandwiched between Russia and China, you can find some influences from both of these countries in the local cuisine.

Top Natural Wonders in Mongolia

Two times the size of the state of Texas, Mongolia has some of the most diverse and photo-worthy landscapes in the world. Covering all types of climates and features, Mongolia has natural wonders that will take you back to ancient times. 

1. Gobi Desert: Mongolia’s most famous natural wonder, the Gobi Desert is a vast and unforgiving landscape that played a major role in the development of the Silk Road. 

2. Orkhon Valley: Orkhon Valley is a large area in central Mongolia full of archeological finds, green pastures, and held the capital city of Genghis Khan. 

3. Sayan Mountains: Once the boundary mountains between Russia and Mongolia/China, the Sayan Mountains are known for their towering mountains and hanging rocks. 

4. Altai Tavan Bogd National Park: The national park is located in eastern Mongolia and is home to 5 of the 10 tallest mountains in Mongolia, waterfalls, and archeological ruins. 

5. Dornod Mongolia Steppe: Similar to the Savanna in Africa, the Dornod Mongolia Steppe is protected grassland in eastern Mongolia where thousands of gazelle migrate. 

6. Lake Khovsgol: This large lake is a photographer’s dream with sprawling banks and colossal mountains surrounding this freshwater lake. 

7. Gun-Galuut National Reserve: The reserve is a combination of Mongolia’s climates in a small area where travelers can visit on camel or horseback.  

8. Flaming Cliffs: A unique feature in the Gobi Desert, the Flaming Cliffs glow alight with oranges and reds at sunset and where the first dinosaur eggs were discovered.  

9. Yolyn Am: Located in southern Mongolia, this deep gorge is famous for its large ice field that forms during the winter.

Mongolia Reviews & Ratings

4.7/5  Excellent
131  Reviews
See all Mongolia tour reviews
Excellent
101
Great
41
Average
0
Disappointing
0
Terrible
1
A

Anonymous

Oct 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

A memorable trip

The tour was well organised and covered everything promised in the brochure. The knowledgeable local guide enabled us to learn about Mongolia. Even the cancellati...

A

Anonymous

Oct 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Being prepared

This trip was a real adventure. Mongolia is a stunning country and we saw breath-taking and different landscapes during our visit, as well as animals galore. Howe...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Amazing Mongolia

We saw only a small portion of such a huge country , within days we’d seen Steppe, desert ,mountains and cliffs , perfect sunrises and sunsets and the never ending...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

This trip had everything

We loved Mongolia! This was our first holiday as part of a guided group trip, and it really worked for us. We found the itinerary to be just right, long days wit...

A

Anonymous

Jan 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Wow! What an amazing adventure!

Mongolia is a stunningly beautiful country. Miles and miles of vast open vistas, dotted with the occasional ger and nomad herds of animals. The Gobi desert was fas...

Write a Review

Traveling to Mongolia, an FAQ

1. Does Travelstride have all the tour operators?

Travelstride has the widest selection of tours and tour companies. All the largest companies are on the site and most smaller local operators though we are adding new operators daily. Unlike other websites and agencies, we show you all the options, regardless of whether or not we are paid by the company.

2. How does the Member Savings program save me money?

Travelstride membership is absolutely free. You receive special benefits including saving up to $700 on select tours with top tour operators. The main requirement is to write a review after your trip to access the savings.

3. Can I trust the tour operator and trip reviews on Travelstride?

Yes. Travelstride has both expert reviews, written by Travelstride staff and local experts as well as traveler reviews written by people like you who have used the company and traveled to that destination.

4. What does ‘Stride Preferred’ mean?

Stride Preferred and Stride Premier are status categories to help you sort quickly through known and reliable travel companies. Since there are thousands of tour operators around the globe, Preferred or Premier badges are awarded to companies that Travelstride has determined meet the highest standards of professionalism, customer satisfaction, and quality.