The golden eagles festival is a traditional annual festival held in the province of Bayan Ölgii. In the eagle festival, Kazakh eagle hunters (Burkitshi) celebrate their heritage and compete to catch small animals such as foxes and hares with specially trained golden eagles, showing off the skills both of the birds and their trainers. Prizes are awarded for speed, agility and accuracy, as well as for the best traditional Kazakh dress, and more.
Note: My itinerary is flexible according to your travel dates. Days of travel can be added or cutted according to your wishes. Feel free to discuss with me.
Day 1. Ulaanbaatar capital city of Mongolia
Arrive in Ulaanbaatar, transfer to hotel. Our guides will meet the group at the International Airport of UB. After transferring to hotel the guide will do tour briefing. Lunch or dinner at the traditional Mongolian restaurant. City tour is possible (depending from your arrival).
Day 2. Flight to Bayan-Ulgii province
Catch a flight to Ulgii city, Bayan-Ulgii province of Western Mongolia. ( put some info about Ulgii city) After lunch we will do city exploring. We will visit local black market, sightseeing place of the city and central mosque of Muslim people. At the evening we drive to “South River Camp” which is situated 30km from city center. Safe and comfortable place! We will stay at the yurts. Camp rooms will be shared by two or three person.
Days 3-4. Hunting with Golden Eagle on horseback
The Mongolian Kazakhs use for hunting female eagles as far they are bigger than mail ones and more aggressive. These eagles are trained to hunt foxes, wolves, rabbit and wild cat. Every day going side by side with eagle-hunter on horseback to hunt mostly fox we learn and enjoy this unique customs of the Mongolian Kazakhs. We have chance to see some wild animals such as wolf, Argal/wild sheep/ and Ibex/wild goat/. You can enjoy seeing spectacular and beautiful landscapes. And you can visit some Kazakh and Uriankhai(one of western Mongolian ethnic groups) families and meeting with the nomads when going through their camps, discovering of their culture and traditional activities. Every evening we stay with the Kazakh Dombro Player (traditional musical instrument with two strings). Overnighst at “South River” camp.
Days 5-6. Get introduced with Nomadic life of Mongolian nomads. Hiking, fishing and nomadic family visits.
Today we drive 100km towards to Altai soum(village) of Bayan-Ulgii province. These days we will stay near to the nomadic families and do camping. Fish and explore amazing mountainous area. Also you can see and learn regular day life of nomads and their tradition. Like horse riding, fishing and hiking around. Also, we see the snowcapped mountains with forest, which make the wall between China and Mongolia. You can do camping or you can also stay at nomadic family.
Day 7. Back to South River camp
Drive back to Ulgii and arrive to South River Camp. Have some rest before the big event! You will be served with traditional meals.
Days 8-9. Golden Eagle Festival 2018
Meet the Kazakh Eagle-hunters. The rodeo of eagle-hunting. A fantastic opportunity for photographers and adventurers alike to see these magnificent birds up close. There are approx 400 eagle-hunters in Bayan-Ulgii province. This means, almost 80% of the eagle-hunters in the world lives here in Mongolia. The eagle-hunters from around regions gather to test their finely trained birds in singular contests of speed and agility in these few days. During the festival we also see some Kazakh Traditional Games such as: Horse racing, Pick up coins on Horseback, Wrestling and others. In the evening we can enjoy a traditional Kazakh Concert.
Day 10. Early flight back to Ulaanbaatar. After lunch, we will do city site seeing tour and shopping. Dinner time in a European restaurant. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 11. Chinggis Khan Equestrian Statue
Drive to Chinggis Khan Equestrian Statue in Tsonjin Boldog. The massive statue made of 250 tons of gleaming stainless steel will take your breath away. Along the way, stop for a picnic lunch. At afternoon return to UB, and dinner time in a typical Mongolian restaurant. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 12. Flight back to home country. End of the trip!