In Search of Nomads & Mountains: Kyrgyzstan & Tajikistan

In Search of Nomads & Mountains: Kyrgyzstan & Tajikistan

On this adventurous journey, discover the unspoiled mountain landscapes and remarkable living traditions of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, two of Central Asia's least-known countries. Range from alpine Lake Issyk-Kul in the Kyrgyz outback, where the exciting World Nomad Games presents contests in eagle hunting, stick wrestling, and intense Central Asian horse games, to the high, jagged mountains of the remote Pamir Highway in Tajikistan. Read More


Mongolia’s Golden Eagle Festival

Mongolia’s Golden Eagle Festival

On the rocky ridges overlooking Mongolia’s westernmost province, remote Bayan-Ulgii, a dwindling number of ethnic Kazakhs carry on a 6,000-year-old tradition — hunting with magnificent Golden Eagles, one of the world’s largest predatory birds. Attend the annual Golden Eagle Festival, where the eagle hunters display their birds’ speed, skill and training, as well as the deep bond that forms between bird and human. Along the way, explore Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar, with its Buddhist and nomadic heritage, and the fabled Gobi Desert. Read More


Trans-Siberian BAM Explorer with Naadam Festival

Trans-Siberian BAM Explorer with Naadam Festival

The seldom-traveled Baikal-Amur Magistral (BAM for short) rolls through some of the most remote, roadless taiga in the country, through dramatic mountains and over miles of tundra. The train stops at crumbling little towns thrown together in the 1970s for railroad workers, where the few who remain stay for the beauty of the Siberian outback. Then head south to Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia, to celebrate the “three skills of man” – archery, horse racing and wrestling – at the country’s favorite festival, Naadam. Read More


China’s Silk Road & Tibet: Route of Monks & Merchants

China’s Silk Road & Tibet: Route of Monks & Merchants

Retrace the path of ancient traders and adventurers on this comprehensive overland journey across Western China. Experience the legendary Kashgar Sunday Animal Market, where merchants sell everything from ducks to sheep. Make your way east to visit Turpan’s lush Grape Valley, watered by a 2,000-year-old irrigation system, and Dunhuang’s UNESCO-listed Mogao Caves, frescoed and carved with a thousand images of the Buddha. Ride the high-altitude train from Xining to Tibet, and explore the Tibetan Plateau on a splendid route that embraces the sacred cities of Gyantse and Shigatse, as well as Lhasa, “City of the Sun.”Read More


The Trans-Siberian Ulaanbaatar Express Route

The Trans-Siberian Ulaanbaatar Express Route

Glide from the metropolis of Moscow, where Red Square and St. Basil’s have become the symbols of Russia, all the way to Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. Travel the fabled Trans-Siberian Railway aboard the luxury Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express private train. Experience the vastness of Siberia’s taiga forest, fields and grasslands and explore some of its singular cities. Disembark in Ulaanbaatar, a burgeoning city populated by former nomads.Read More


The Trans-Siberian Mongolian Route with Naadam Festival: Eastbound

The Trans-Siberian Mongolian Route with Naadam Festival: Eastbound

From the Moscow Kremlin and the Siberian taiga to the Mongolian steppe, this private train journey celebrates three different cultures: that of the modern Muscovite, hailing a taxi in front of an 800-year-old palace; the Baikal Siberian, proud heir of Cossacks, indigenous Buryats and czarist political exiles; and the Mongolian nomad, drawn to the capital, Ulaanbaatar, for the celebrated Naadam Festival. Visit four UNESCO World Heritage Sites along the rail line and join the crowd singing the praises of the country’s best in wrestling, archery and horse-racing. 

A westbound Ulaanbaatar to Moscow departure is available in 2018.Read More


The Trans-Siberian Mongolian Route with Naadam Festival: Westbound

The Trans-Siberian Mongolian Route with Naadam Festival: Westbound

From the Mongolian steppe to the Siberian taiga to the Moscow Kremlin, this private train journey celebrates three different cultures – that of the Mongolian nomad, drawn to the capital, Ulaanbaatar, for the celebrated Naadam Festival; the Baikal Siberian, proud heir of Cossacks, indigenous Buryats and czarist political exiles; and the modern Muscovite, hailing a taxi in front of an 800-year-old palace. Visit four UNESCO World Heritage Sites along the rail line and join the crowd in Ulaanbaatar singing the praises of the country’s best in wrestling, archery and horse racing. Read More


Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival

Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival

Mongolia: The name conjures up images of vast grasslands, wind-swept steppe and endless sky. Here an empire built on horseback galloped across two continents, leaving behind the names Genghis and Kublai Khan. Follow their lead, using the horsepower of modern vehicles to cover the incredible distances at the heart of Mongolia. End in the capital, where the ancient skills of that nomadic army are preserved at the extraordinary Naadam Festival.Read More


Mongolia & Tibet: Steppes to the Roof of the World

Mongolia & Tibet: Steppes to the Roof of the World

The peoples of the Mongolian steppe and of the Tibetan Plateau have much in common. Both espouse Tibetan Buddhism and unfurl painted silk thangkas on festival days. Both were originally nomads, the Mongolians relying on the horse and the Tibetans on the yak for sustenance. From the “Roof of the World” to the Gobi Desert, dive deep into both enduring cultures.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival.Read More


Mongolia & Kyrgyzstan: Lands of the Last Nomads

Mongolia & Kyrgyzstan: Lands of the Last Nomads

On this search for Mongolian and Kyrgyz nomads, travel from the vast Mongolian steppe to the jailoo, the Kyrgyz summer pastures, visiting nomadic families in their gers and yurts and getting a feel for a way of life that is rapidly disappearing. Learn about the trusted folkways, traditional methods of grazing animals and hunting game, familiar music, epic poetry and dance, the hospitality of the steppe and the close-knit life of families on the edge – some of the things that don’t change in this precarious, and inexorably changing, way of life.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival.Read More