About Mongolia

Why Mongolia?

Mongolia is truly one of the world's last undiscovered travel destinations. It is a land to experience wide open spaces, cobalt blue skies, forests, deserts, crystal clear rivers and lakes, and the traditional hospitality of the country's nomadic herders. Permanent dwellings are few and far between, fences even fewer, the land is owned by the people - it is like one large National Park. A tremendous destination to experience the outdoors and a unique history dating back to the Mongol Empire of Genghis Khan. Simply put: a land of adventure.

Is it safe to travel in Mongolia?
Security is not possible to guarantee but Mongolia is not experiencing the lawlessness of other former Soviet Republics. A number of factors contribute to this, including: a democratically elected government, large Police force (one officer per 100 persons), and the mellow social environment that is often associated with Buddhist countries. However, violent crime is on the rise in Ulaanbaatar so it pays to be cautious as in other developing countries.

Is Mongolia easy to get to?
As easy as getting to Beijing! Gateways to Mongolia are Beijing, Frankfurt, Moscow, Osaka and Seoul. Mongolian International Airlines (MIAT) and Air China both operate Boeing and Airbus planes on flights to Ulaanbaatar. The trans-Mongolian train from Moscow or Beijing makes a particularly exhilarating entry into the country.

What is the climate like?
It is fair to say that Mongolia is a land of extremes: winter temperatures drop to minus 40 degrees C in many parts of the country and climb to over 40 degrees in the summer in the Gobi desert. In the summer months from May to September temperatures reach a pleasant 25-30degrees C and the countryside springs to life in a sea of greenery. Summer is also the wet season and rainy days are not uncommon.

Are Visas easy to get?
One month tourist visas can be obtained on-the-spot at arrival in Mongolia (airport and railway customs clearance), although Mongolia has consulates in many countries so it is preferable to obtain a visa in advance. We will advise you how to obtain necessary visas at the time of booking, the visa situation is subject to change from time-to-time.

What are the health issues?
Consult you doctor for recommended health precautions before travelling, similar precautions to other Asian are most likely. However, general hygein is far better than in many neighbouring countries due to the lack of population pressure and extensive potable water and sewerage systems in Ulaanbaatar. The usual tummy upsets from a change of diet can be expected. Serious health issues are dealt with by medical evacuation; a travel insurance policy with evacuation cover is mandatory for our trips.

Is tourism damaging a fragile culture?
Mongolia and Mongolians have endured a lot in the last 300 years: From Manchu rule in the 18th and 19th centuries to domination by Russia for 70 years this century. The population is used to Westerners, outward looking and eager to embrace modern technologies. Whilst the lifestyle of nomadic herdspeople has change little over the centuries, its application has: aluminium canisters have replaced wooden buckets, and ornate copper tea pots were long replaced by vacuum flasks - why? Because the these traditional means were superced by new technologies that did the job better. Even satellite TV is not unheard of in the countryside! (however extremely rare).

Life is lonely out on the steppes, the neighbours may be 5km away, local herders generally embrace the opportunity to meet new people, the opportunity to learn about lands far away is a bonus.

About Karakorum Expeditions

What is a Karakorum Expedition?
It is a unique experience of Mongolia. Our expeditions aim to match activity and location to produce a great experience.

Review our program for this year, then please: