NEW Trip – Kyrgyzstan & the Tian Shan MountainsJoin 19 August 2024 Departure

18 Days$6399USD

  • 16 days Adventure touring
  • 4 days trekking
  • 1 day hike
  • 3 days camel riding
  • 2 nights hotel
  • 1 night ger
  • 1 night basic hotel
  • 13 nights camping
  • 17 Dinners
  • 16 Lunches
  • 17 Breakfasts

Traveller Rating



Trip highlights

  • Discover the diverse nomadic cultures of remote Western Mongolia & their ancient heritage by foot, camel, & 4WD vehicle
  • Exploratory-style, off the beaten path journey through diverse landscapes from deserts to vast lakes, steppe & glacier capped peaks
  • Journey with renowned adventurer and author Tim Cope, & Mongolian professor of biology, Khayankhyarvaa Terbish
  • Trek for three days through the high Gobi Altai together with nomads & their camel caravan (horse riding optional)
  • Ride camels, horse, or trek with nomads near the border of Siberia through the most northerly sandy desert in the world
  • Visit rock art, standing stones, & ancient burial sites
  • Visit the spiritual centre of some Mongolia’s rich throat singing tradition and learn about their techniques and heritage
  • Explore the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar

Journey with Tim Cope into the heart of the oldest horseback nomad culture in the world on a tour that will take you from remote desert landscapes, to high glacier capped peaks and into the heart of Mongolia's most ethnically diverse region. Highlights of the journey include a three day trek accompanied by nomads and their animals through the Gobi Altai mountains,a trek through the most northern desert in the world on the border with Siberia, and visiting nomad families to learn of their rich history, culture and traditional lifestyles. We will be visiting ancient rock art sites, lakes rich in wild bird life, and even have the opportunity to learn the basics of throat singing from a people who have mastered the art through millennia.

Tim, who has become an expert on the history and heritage of the Mongols and nomads more broadly will provide a unique, exploratory style journey with a focus on cultural encounters. Tim will be accompanied by experienced Mongolian tour leader- professor of biology, Terbish.

Integral to this tour, is also supporting a local Mongolian charity, Autism Mongolia, a cause close to Tim's heart. $100 of your tour price will be donated to this charity in Ulaanbaatar at a special presentation when we arrive. There will be the opportunity to meet with representatives from the charity and make additional donations.

Join Tim for the trip of a lifetime.

Trip Code: TRM

On arrival you will be met and transferred from the airport to the group hotel. Following an orientation tour of the city, including a visit to the National Museum and a traditional Mongolian concert, we will meet in the evening for a group dinner and briefing. Included in the tour price is a $100 donation for Autism Mongolia. We will be joined at dinner by a representative of this organisation. Overnight: Best Western Premier Tuushin Hotel or similar

Meals:  D

Today we fly from Ulaanbaatar to Ölgii (Ulgii) in remote western Mongolia. Ölgii is the capital of Bayan-Olgii Aimag, Mongolia's most western province, and lies on the banks of the Khovd River. It is the gateway to Tsast Bogd National Park. We will drive out of the provincial centre to stay with a Kazakh nomad family and spend the night camped with them. This will be an opportunity to learn a little about Kazakhs, who have lived in Western Mongolia since the 1850s, but whose Turkic nomad ancestors trace their history on the steppe untold millennia. Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, we will drive by edge of Khar Us lake which is a renowned habitat for migratory birds at this time of year. We will stop along the way for bird watching before continuing on through desert, and rocky mountains towards the so called ‘North Tsenkher cave.’ The North Tsenkher cave is known for its ancient rock art of wild sheep (Argali), Ibex , ostrich, rhinoceros, and of different human figures on its orange walls and roof. According to archaeologists humans inhabited the cave around 40,000–12,000BC, during the Stone Age. The rock art is thought to be 3000-4000 years old. Camp this night will be in a ger camp nearby to the cave. Drive: 150km, 2-3hrs Overnight: Ger camp

Meals:  B,L,D

In the afternoon we will be driving into the so called ‘Baatar’ mountains which are part of the greater Gobi Altai range. These peaks rise up from the arid steppe and sands to glacier capped peaks nearly 4000 metres. This particular part of the mountains is home to an ethnic minority called the Uriankhai, as well as Oirat tribes. These people shift between the high mountains in the summer, to the wide valleys in the autumns and spring, and the foothills in the winter. We will camp in the shadow of the ice capped peak of Tsaast Bogd Moutain. Drive: 150km, 2-3hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today there will be a day hike to the edge of the ice cap on the broad summit of Tsast Bogd Mountain, which rises to around 3900m. The nomads who will accompany us with their camels for the trek will arrive in the evening. There will be earlier turn around points during the trek for those people who would like a less strenuous hike. Trekking: 18km, 7-8hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

We leave our vehicles behind this morning and hike along the main ridgeline of the Baatar mountain range. Together with us will be our camel caravan and nomads, who will be guiding us along ancient migratory trails. Views to the north and south extend into arid plains, deserts and mountains. There may be the opportunity to see wild ibex. Snow leopards are also known to inhabit these mountains. We will camp in high alpine pastureland. Trekking: 14km, 6-7hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we will be trekking down the valley of Shiliin Gol river until we cross a high pass Baatar Mountain and begin to enter the northern side of the range. Camp will once again be made in alpine pastureland. Trekking: 15km, 6-7hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today our trek continues toward the banks of Khuduu Nuur (lake) near Zereg village – the central village for the ‘Zagchin’ nomads. The Zagchin are part of the Oirat tribes of Western Mongolia who have their own unique history. They formed their own empire (known as the Zhungar Empire) in the wake of the Mongol Empre collapse. When, in turn, the Zhungar Empire collapsed the Oirats travelled west to the Caspian Sea, before returning to Asia in the 18th century due to Russian oppression. Today the Oirats have their own unique identity and in the Gobi Altai Mountains many of them carry on an ancient way of life using camels for migration. Near Khuudu lake we meet the drivers and farewell our camels, horses and nomad companions. Trekking: 18km, 7-8hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

From Zereg village we will cross a broad valley, and drive beyond the spectacular ‘Jargalant’ mountains to the village of Chandmani village – a community renowned world wide for its rich tradition of throat singing. Here we will camp near a local nomad family. Drive: 200km, 5hrs Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

This day, we visit a nomad family to experience their lives, traditions and the art of 'khöömei', or throat singing. Khöömei is a form of singing originating in western Mongolia, in the Altai mountains. The performer imitates sounds of nature, simultaneously emitting two distinct vocal sounds along with a continuous drone, the singer produces a melody of harmonics. This singing style is believed to have been learned from birds, whose spirits are central to shamanic practices. Khöömei is performed by Mongolian nomads in a variety of social occasions, from grand state ceremonies to festive household events. It is also sung during herding, and inside the yurt to lull babies to sleep. Traditionally, the art is transmitted orally from bearer to learner, or via master-to-apprentice. Those who want to learn will have the opportunity to receive a short training session. Overnight: Tented tent

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we drive to Gun Nuur Lake in Gobi Altai province. The lake located just on the fringe of the Mongol Els sand dunes is one of Mongolia's most picturesque lakes which we can explore on foot. We will pack a picnic lunch to enjoy whilst we explore the area. Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we will undertake a full day walking excursion in the nearby sand dunes before returning to our camp site in the late afternoon. Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

We will spend the next few days exploring the Mongol Els sand dunes by camel. We plan to cover between 8-16kms per day stopping for a packed lunch along the route. Our evenings will be spent enjoying the night skies from our campsites. Day 15 is a contingency day to allow for uncontrollable changes in the itinerary due to local flight schedule, weather conditions and other unforeseeable changes that may be required. Overnight: Tented camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we will drive to Khovd. There will be time for some sightseeing in the town before gathering for a farewell dinner for local staff at the hotel. Overnight: Local hotel .

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we catch a flight to Ulaanbaatar. The afternoon is free to relax in one of the capital’s sidewalk cafes, do some last minute shopping, or visit other sights such as the Winter Palace of Bogd Khaan. Tonight we will have a special group dinner to celebrate the end of our journey. Overnight: Best Western Premier Tuushin Hotel or similar

Meals:  B,L,D

Trip concludes after breakfast. Transfers will be organised to take you to the airport.

Meals:  B


  • 17 breakfasts, 16 lunches and 17 dinners
  • Accompanied by Tim Cope, Australian Geographic Adventurer of the Year
  • Expert bilingual local guide
  • 2 nights 5 star hotel accommodation in Ulaanbaatar
  • 13 nights fully supported camping on a twinshare basis
  • 2 nights ger accommodation on a multi share basis or basic hotel
  • Airport transfers (day 1 and 18 only)
  • Internal flights Ulaanbaatar/Olgiy and Ulaangom/Ulaanbaatar
  • Souvenir World Expeditions 50l kit bag
  • Pack animal support during trek with 20kg allowance
  • AUD$100 donation to Autism Mongolia
  • Private transportation in quality 4WD vehicles
  • Sightseeing and entry fees as listed in itinerary
  • Medical kit

  • Aerated and alcoholic drinks
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, etc.
  • Tips and gratuities
  • International airfares & departure taxes
  • Visa costs
  • Travel Insurance (compulsory)

About Your Leader

Tim and Tigon&#160;-&#160;<i>Photo:&#160;Cam Cope</i>

In 2004, Tim Cope embarked on an ambitious journey to ride his horse from Mongolia to Hungary along the trail of nomads, a route that was travelled by Genghis Khan in the 13th century. His epic expedition took three years to complete, and during this time he developed an intimate knowledge of the Mongolian steppe and its nomadic population.

With a 10,000km cycle ride across Russia to Mongolia, an award winning book and film about his odyssey across the steppe, and numerous return trips to the place that has won his heart, Tim’s deep knowledge of nomad life and the wilder landscapes of Mongolia has made him one of our most popular leaders.

Tim has been a passionate advocate for travellers to visit Mongolia. In 2015 the Mongolia Government made him an honorary ambassador for tourism and in 2016 he was awarded the nairamdal (friendship medal) from the president of Mongolia in recognition for his work celebrating Mongolian nomad culture.

Tim’s vast experiences have offered him valuable and rare insights into Mongolia which he shares with our travellers on his unique journeys to this fascinating country.

Departure dates


Please note, due to a regularly changing local flight schedule the group might fly to the nearest province and drive to the tour start point on day 2.

Dates don't fit?
Create a Private Trip

If you have your own group, talk to us about turning this itinerary into your own private adventure.

Priceper person from


Options & Supplements*
  • Mongolia Nomad Explorer - Complete Single SupplementUSD$340
*Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Mongolia Nomad Explorer with Tim Cope trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.

Trip reviews

Other Tim Cope trip reviews

Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Our vision is to leave the world a better place by following our sustainable active outdoor travel charter. All our adventures are 100% carbon offset and our Regenerative 2030 Project aims to integrate ‘regenerative’ projects into every one of our global operations by 2030.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.


Tim Cope's Mongolia

Suggested extensions

Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions Schools"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions Schools</div>
World Expeditions Schools is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips