The Reindeer People Adventure

Adventures in the Khuvsgul Region

The Reindeer People Adventure

Khuvsgul Region

  • Outdoor Activities
  • Home Stay
11 Days
2 Flights
Not Child Friendly

One of the most interesting ethnic groups living near the lake is the Tsaatan or as they are better known – ‘The Reindeer People’. A small tribe of Tsaatan consisting of about 40 families lives with its herds of reindeer in the forests around the lake. These graceful animals provide the tribe with all its basic needs - milk, transportation, meat, skins and bones and antlers used as building materials and for tools.

Next Departures

Itinerary

Day 1. Arrival in Ulaanbaatar

  • Dinner

Arrival in Ulaanbaatar, the Mongolian capital city. At 14:00 we meet our guide at the airport, and head to the city center. The short drive passes through the shanty town inhabited by those who were once nomads, but have neglected their traditional lifestyle in the hope of finding a little fortune in the city, which not too long ago has seen some rapid development. The urban landscape quickly changes into expansive shopping malls and brand new residential complexes, shifting again to the scenes of the city center, where modern high-rises are quickly built amidst soviet-era buildings. After checking into our hotel, and if time permits, we will have an orientation tour of the city center through the central square, which was recently renamed after Ghengis Khan, the nation’s forefather. Right at the heart of the square we see the figure of D. Sukhbaatar, one of the heroes of the communist revolution of 1920’s, boldly raising his arm towards the statue of the Great Khan, whose name wasn’t allowed to be mentioned during the 70 year communist reign. We then visit the National History Museum, which holds a permanent exhibition on the different civilizations that have inhabited the territory of Mongolia from prehistoric times to the present. This exhibition includes a significant display of objects from the era of the Great Mongol Empire. From here we take a short walk to the drama theater where we attend an impressive folk concert, featuring some traditional Mongolian art forms. After a welcome dinner, we drive back to our hotel for a good night’s sleep.

Day 2. Ulaanbaatar ✈ Murun – Belch River

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

This morning we take the first available flight to Murun, the capital city of Khuvsgul Province. Upon arrival in Murun we drive north to Belkh river. On our way we stop by an ancient burial site featuring Mongolia’s mysterious deerstones, memorial stones representing important leaders and warriors, carved with deer motifs. In the evening we break camp by the riverbank. Overnight bush camping.

Day 3. Belch River – Soyo Village

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Today we drive through Darkhadyn Khotgor (depression), a wide valley of lakes and rivers, nestled some 1500 meters above sea level at the heart of the Khoridol Saridag Mountain Range, the highest mountain range at the Sayan Mountains. The area is inhabited by various minorities, among them Darkhad, Khogoid, Buriyats and Durvud. Late in the afternoon we arrive in the small village of Soyo, where we meet our local support team. We join one of our horsemen, and spend the evening with him and his family- a rare opportunity for an up-close encounter with the local culture. We will join the family for a traditional dinner, and a time for a talk about their unique way of life and ancient traditions. We spend the night with the family.

Days 4-7. Horseback riding through the Taiga

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

For the coming four days we will be riding through the famous Taiga - the stretch of forests that cover the high northern latitudes around the globe, from Alaska and Canada in the west, through northern Europe, across Siberia, and all the way to the island of Hokkaido in Japan. This part of the Taiga is home to the Tsataan People, commonly known to the west as the Reindeer People. A small comunity of Tsaatan consisting of about 40 families lives with their herds of reindeer in northern Mongolia. These graceful animals provide the tribe with all its basic needs - milk, transportation, meat, skins and bones and antlers used as building materials and for tools. Overnight with a Reindeer people. As the reindeer require very special type of moss, the Tsaatan people are constantly on the move, and thus, the search for them might take anything from half a day to two days throughout the Taiga. Once we have found one such family, we would spend the remaining time with them, and experience their way of life up close. At the morning of the fourth day we would mount our horses again and ride back to the village of Soyo. Here we say farewell to the local support team, board or vehicle, and embark on a drive across Darkhad Depression to the village of Renchilumbe, where we finally enjoy a nice hot shower and night in a stable bed in a simple yet cozy guesthouse. The nights out in the Taiga, with the reindeer people would be bush camping.

Day 8. Renchinlumbe Village – Hike through Jigleg Pass – Lake Khuvsgul

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

We leave Renchilumbe by car, as we drive into the Khoridol Saridag Mountain Range. We drive over a mountain pass, and on to the Northern Arsain River basin. After some 2-3 hours’ drive, we arrive the trailhead, from which we embark on a 13 km hike over Jigleg Mountain Pass. As we arrive in the pass, we get the first brief glimpse over Lake Khuvsgul. Our hike would take us to the shores of Lake Khuvsgul. Here, we hop onboard a small motor boat, for a private cruise over the lake. Late in the evening we arrive at our destination for the day. Overnight in a ger camp- the cozy yet simple, Mongolian version of a lodge, consisting of traditional felt-made dwellings the nomads of Central Asia often refer to as yurt.

Day 9. By lake Khuvsgul

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

Today we will take a hike around the forests and meadows near the lake. Lying at about 1650 meters above sea level, surrounded by mountains rising above 3100 meters, the waters of Khuvsgul are deep and spectacularly clear and pure. We will hike through thick pine forests carpeted with flowers and explore the setting of Mongolia’s ‘Blue Pearl’. Overnight in ger camp.

Day 10. Lake Kuvsgul – Murun ✈ Ulaanbaatar

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

After an early breakfast in our ger camp by the lake shores, we drive back to Murun. Taking the first available flight, we return to Ulaanbaatar. After check-in the hotel, we go for few hours exploring the Black Market. This huge market contains every single item that Mongolians might need, whether they are nomads or urban apartment dwellers. Goods brought from all corners of Mongolia are on sale here. A visit to the market is a colorful experience which gives the visitor an insight into the everyday life of the people of Ulaanbaatar. From here we continue to the Bogd Khan Palace museum, the palace of the last Mongolian king, who was considered a living god. In the evening we enjoy a farewell dinner, followed by a visit to the Zaisan Hill, for a view over the city at night. Overnight in Ulaanbaatar.

Day 11. Departure from Ulaanbaatar

  • Breakfast

After breakfast at the hotel, we drive to Chinggis Khan International Airport for our international departure flight.

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Dates & Pricing

Discounted rates:  

4 travelers – 5% discount
6 or more travelers – 25% discount

  • Prices are based on twin share occupancy.
  • Applicable only for travel groups of 4 people or more booking their trip together.
  • The discounted price is the price for 2 people (below) less the discount.
  • Mongolian Ways Ltd. reserves the right to change tour prices and programs due to changes in flight schedule, changes in airfares, and other local circumstances.

24th August, 2017–3rd September, 2017

  • $3,205 Per Person (From 2 people)
  • $255 Single Room Supplement

6th June, 2018–16th June, 2018

  • $3,205 Per Person (From 2 people)
  • $255 Single Room Supplement

23rd July, 2018–2nd August, 2018

  • $3,205 Per Person (From 2 people)
  • $255 Single Room Supplement

Additional Information


Inclusions
  • Domestic flights to Murun and back
  • 2 nights in a 4-star hotel in Ulaanbaatar
  • 2 nights in a ger camp (tourist camp) by Lake Khuvsgul
  • 1 night in a simple guesthouse in Renchilumbe
  • 5 night bush campin
  • All camping equipment except sleeping bag and mattress
  • Meals as indicated in the program
  • 4WD vehicle
  • Drinking water
  • Local English speaking guide
  • Local support team including pack animals
  • Horse riding as per program
  • All entrance fees

Exclusions
  • International airfare to/from Ulaanbaatar
  • Travel insurance
  • Mongolian Visa
  • Excess luggage
  • Gratuities
  • Expenses of personal nature (food and drinks beyond those provided, laundry, etc.)
  • Anything not mentioned in the program

Accomodation
  • Ulaanbaatar: Chinggis Khan Hotel 4-stars

Note: the above listed hotels are tentative, and shall be confirmed only upon confirmation of the trip.


Testimonials

John Alexander

With such short notice and the special requirements we asked for, everything was perfectly organized. Our request for highly specialized tour was accomplished with ease and excellent in every way. Click here to read Victoria and John's visit to the reindeer shamans.

Victoria and John Alexander, USA

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