Mongolia Photography Workshop to Capture Culture and History of this Ancient Land.

Introduction: If you take a martini shaker and add a dash of vast landscapes that are breathtaking and the ancient Olympic style festival of Naadam, add a twist of the snow capped mountains of Bayan-Ölgi with Eagle Hunters performing the ancient art of eagle falconry in the foreground and then top it off with dramatic gorges and lakes of Khovsgol to serve as a backdrop to the millennium old tradition of reindeer herding; not to mention the Ger tents of the nomad and the cry of a soaring golden eagle.

Shake it all up and top it off with some of the oldest Buddhist temples and ruins, abundant wildlife and legendary hospitality… you come up with a recipe for one of the most inviting and beautiful countries in the world.

Dates: July 1, 2018 to July 14, 2018

Instructor(s): Kevin Pepper who will be leading his eighth trip to Mongolia

Tuition: $9995USD for a maximum of 6 people. Single supplement is $550USD

Deposit Information: A $2000USD deposit is due to secure you're spot and the balance is due 90 days before we depart for Mongolia

Tour includes: 

  • Transfers on arrival and departure 
  • English speaking guide at all time. 
  • All lodging: Twin share in Hotel-9 in Ulaanbaatar; triple/quadruple in Ger camp/local hotel and shared Ger (men in 1 Ger and women in 1 Ger) at Kazakh nomadic family Gers. 
  • All meals are provided as mentioned in the itinerary. 
  • 4x4 Russian vehicles in Western Mongolia and at Lake Huvsgul, comfortable minivan/minibus in and around Ulaanbaatar
  • Photography session with Monks at Gandan Monastery
  • Park Entrance Fees 
  • Sightseeing as per itinerary (traditional folk concert in Ulaanbaatar included) 
  • Ticket for Naadam Festival 
  • Two domestic flights included - Ulaanbaatar – Olgii – Ulaanbaatar flight tickets + Tax (15kg free luggage) and Ulaanbaatar – Moren – Ulaanbaatar flight tickets + Tax (15kg free luggage)
  • 1L of drinking water per day per person 

Does Not Include: International air/train + tax, Travel insurance, medical insurance, Fee for Visa, Drinks, Additional services, camera fees, Personal expenses, Items of a personal nature, gratuity to local guides etc. 

Itinerary of our trip to Mongolia

Day 1. Jul 5. ARRIVAL DAY.

Travelers arrive on your different flights and be picked up at the airport and transferred to our hotel in downtown Ulaanbaatar

Accommodations at Hotel-9 in the city center

Day 2. Jul 6. Tour of the city, including Gandan Monastery

We will gather in the morning at 9am to enjoy a leisurely tour of Ulaanbaatar city. Today is a day to acclimate to the time change and give you a city tour of Ulaanbaatar.

This easy tour takes you through some of the principal sights of this unique city. You visit the Gandan Monastery, housing a 26 meter high gilded statue of the Buddha. Here you will be able to photograph the Monks as they go about their daily activities and photograph inside and around the temple. 

Today we also have an exclusive photo session with Monks from the Gandan Monastery.

While out taking photos we will work on such things as using natural light for portraits and taking street style photography of the locals and monks going about their daily lives and chores.

After our excursion into Mongolian culture and history, we will gather back at the hotel and discuss the weeks activities. Now is a chance to find out your expectations of the week and give you the itinerary for the workshop.

At night we have arranged for the group to go visit a local musical performance including throat singing and Mongolian contortionists.

Accommodations at Hotel-9 in the city center

B, L, D included

Day 3-5. Jul 7-9. Ulaanbaatar - Bayan Ulgii

Day three we will travel day to Bayan-Ogli (flight MO-97 scheduled to leave Ulaanbaatar at 06.20am and arrive in Ulgii at 08.20 local time: flight times TBA), the western most province of Mongolia.

We will get picked up at the airport and transported to our accommodations with a local family, our hosts the the next two nights. Here, you will immerse yourself in the Kazakh traditions and live and sleep in our own Ger tents with a nomadic family.

During our time here we will live in a valley surrounded by mountains, the fields dotted with sheep, yak, horses, and local families that will invite you into their homes, engage in conversation with us and allow us to take photos of them as they live as they did for generations.

We will also have four private photo shoots with traditional eagle hunters in mountain settings as they put their eagles and horses through their traditional hunting practice.

You will witness eagles flying from mountains and landing on eagle hunters arms as they ride on horseback. You will photograph eagles hunting prey and be able to photograph these hunters running and riding horses with the eagles on their arms. This truly is a once in a lifetime experience.

Shared accommodation in Ger tents for two nights, (Men in one Ger tent, women in another)

Shared accommodation at Eagles Nest on third night.

B,D included

DAY 6. Jul 10. Bayan Ulgii – Ulaanbaatar, Naadam activities.

Take the return flight from Ulgii to Ulaanbaatar (MO-98 scheduled to leave Ulgii at 08.20 local time and arrive in Ulaanbaatar at 12.20pm; exact flight times TBA), upon arrival transfer to a restaurant for lunch.

After lunch we will visit the Naadam Festival fields to photograph some of the sporting events such as horse races, archery and ankle bone shooting competitions.

An optional editing session has been scheduled for those that want me to go through their images with them.

Accommodation at Hotel-9.

B, L, D included

DAY 7. Jul 11. Naadam in Ulaanbaatar

Today we will enjoy a full day at the Naadam Festivals activities such as wrestling, more archery competitions and horse races. There will also be thousands of local dressed traditionally as well as lots of music and dances around the Naadam fields.

You may also want to photograph the Naadam fireworks at the Central Square at night at around 10pm. This is the largest and most intense fireworks display I have ever seen. The fireworks are just steps away from our hotel. You will be positioned to photograph the fireworks above the main square and the parliament buildings.

Accommodation at Hotel-9.

B, L, D included

Day 8-9. Jul 12-13. Hustai National Park - Elsen Tasarkhai Sand Dunes - Ulaanbaatar

After an early breakfast drive to the Hustai National Park. Just 100 km away from the capital, it is the nest of the Mongolian Przewalski horses which can be seen roaming wildly in this beautiful national park.

From there we will head to our ger camp near the beautiful Elsen Tasarkhai Sand Dunes. After dinner you will be taken to the Sand Dunes for your chance to photograph the sun as it descends over the dunes.

Elsen Tasarkhai is one of the most picturesque places of Mongolia and is part of the 80 km long Mongol Els Sand Dunes. This place is a wonderful combination of pretty sand dunes, majestic granite mountains, grassy green land, a clear fresh spring and a tiny lake. Indeed, here you can enjoy seeing the combination of Gobi and Khangai Natural Zones.

Together we will visit the Elsen Tasarkhai Sand Dunes and Erdene Khamba Temple in picturesque Khugnu Khan Mountain Return to Ulaanbaatar and transfer to the hotel on the night of day 10.

Accommodation: Night 8 at Ger Camp near Elsen Tasarkhai Sand Dunes

Meals: BLD

Accommodation: Night 9 at Hotel 9

Meals: BLD

Day 10. Jul 14. Ulaanbaatar to Moren via an internal country flight, further drive to the Lake Huvsgul.

Today we travel north to Lake Huvsgal once we arrive in Moren. A day of traveling through the northern part of Mongolia to the most photogenic lake in Mongolia.

An optional editing session has been scheduled for those that want me to go through their images with them.

Transfer to tourist Ger camp

Meals: BLD

Day 11-12. Jul 15-16. Days to visit a summer camp of the Tsaatan Reindeer family or two, who have come down from the Taiga to the shores of the Lake Huvsgul to earn some money from tourists showcasing their huts & reindeers.

During our time here we will live in a valley surrounded by mountains, the fields dotted with sheep, yak, horses, and local families that will invite you into their homes, engage in conversation with us and allow us to take photos of them as they live as they did for generations.

We will also have private photo shoots with traditional some of the last Reindeer herders in Mongolia.

Tourist Ger camp by the Lake Huvsgul.

Meals: BLD

Day 13. Jul 17. Flight back to Ulaanbaatar. Upon our arrival back in Ulaanbaatar we can visit the local cashmere outlets so you have a chance to take advantage of the very inexpensive cashmere prices in Mongolia.

An optional editing session is scheduled to have me help you go through your photos from the trip.

Accommodations at Hotel-9 in the city center

B, D included

Day 14. Jul 18. Flight home as your schedule dictates. You will be transferred back to the hotel by our staff.  

 

If you would like to experience some of the worlds oldest cultures, in a land still unchanged by tourism, click on the button below and I am here to answer your questions and put you in touch with the booking agent.