Travelled and Written By Veronica Miele Beard
I’ve been going on trips with my mom since the early ‘90s, and then we started taking my kids along with us (I have five children). Every summer, we take them to a new place where they can experience something new and see how another culture lives. The New York Times had an article about Mongolia as the best travel destination, so we started considering it. We quickly realized that Mongolia would have the best mix of culture, art, history, and nature. We wanted to have the Nomadic experience, so we booked our trip with G Adventures. It’s not the vacation for everyone – it’s not pampering. This is where you go to have a truly unique and rich experience.
Where to Stay
We landed in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city, and stayed in the J-Hotel. From there, we spent 10 nights staying in traditional yurts or a gers. We stayed one night with a nomadic family in tents under the stars, which was incredible.
What to Eat
We had this running tag line: mutton or nuthin’! They eat a lot of mutton in Mongolia, along with beef, chicken, and yak. When you visit a family’s ger, you drink their milk which is horse milk. Trying these foods is part of the experience!
What to Do
- Ride a camel!
- Hike in the Gobi Desert – it’s gorgeous.
- The Flaming Cliffs (Bayanzag) is an area that used to be underwater and every hour of the day it changes to different shade of red. It’s an incredible sight!
Most visit in July, when Mongolia is having their Naadam, a festival that includes wrestling, horse racing and archery. We went in August when the weather tends to be a bit milder.
It’s crucial to have a guide when visiting Mongolia. I recommend G Adventures.
Go light when packing – you’re going to be on the move and bringing your bag with you everywhere. Pack jeans, a good sneaker or boot, and lots of light layers.