Gorkhi Terelj National Park Ride

About the Experience

Ride through the sweeping landscapes of Gorkhi Terelj National Park, travelling through open grasslands, crossing rivers and traversing the wilderness of the forested alpine mountains.

Visit the ancient ruins in the countryside and stay in Ger Camps, where you’ll experience the nomadic herder lifestyle, a highlight of any trip to Mongolia. We’ll explore the hills and rest below rock formations arising from the steppe.

Our ride will cover some spectacular terrain, intriguing ancient and historical sites, with exposure to the local culture and how they live.

Connect with your horse in nature on an other-worldly adventure.

Click here to see the full itinerary!
Gorkhi Terelj National Park Ride

About the Experience

Ride through the sweeping landscapes of Gorkhi Terelj National Park, travelling through open grasslands, crossing rivers and traversing the wilderness of the forested alpine mountains.

Visit the ancient ruins in the countryside and stay in Ger Camps, where you’ll experience the nomadic herder lifestyle, a highlight of any trip to Mongolia. We’ll explore the hills and rest below rock formations arising from the steppe.

Our ride will cover some spectacular terrain, intriguing ancient and historical sites, with exposure to the local culture and how they live.

Connect with your horse in nature on an other-worldly adventure.


Arrive at Chinggis Khaan National Airport (or at train station via Trans-Siberian Railway). We’ll transfer to the hotel in Ulaanbaatar City. Meet your Wild Women guide and group at noon for an orientation. We’ll have lunch and in the afternoon have free time to explore the city center.

Tonight, dinner with the group at The Ayanchin Restaurant near the hotel with Mongolian and International cuisine.

Meals Included: Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Springs Hotel



This morning we’ll travel by vehicle to the horse trek staging area in the Darkhid Valley approx 1.5 hours travelling northeast of the City (via a rough countryside track for the last 30 – 45 minutes.) There, we will re-pack for horse trekking, matching horses and rider, and conduct familiarization with horses and tack.

After lunch, we depart on our horse trek adventure! About an hour ride through this rural area, before reaching the high pass and entering Gorkhi Terelj National Park, descending into the Terelj River valley.

We set up camp near the Terelj river or one of its tributaries a little downstream, depending on water levels and on how fast we are moving. This day’s ride is about 15 km and mostly walking.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 4 hours
Driving Time: 1.5 hours



After breakfast, we set out for today’s ride traversing the high mountain tops to reach the scenic setting of the Princess Camp. Having traversed a forested ridge, we make our way up the mountain. If the weather is conducive, we ascend to a small high plateau at 2300 m altitude for a great view of the Khentii mountains, and the area we will explore on horseback over the next 6 days. The highlands are covered in forest, interspersed with rocky outcrops and high altitude ponds that we need to make our way around. This is an area still rich in wildlife that is rarely visited! Bear, elk and capercaillie are among the species we have encountered here.

This area may involve a bit of bushwhacking with no trail (except wildlife trails) and is a true wilderness experience. The descent on the other side is down a forested slope where we will pick a good route for pack and saddle horses. Once down, it’s a short ride out of the forest, grassland valleys open and the Princess Camp is close. We’ll discover it hidden behind a towering rock formation.

Our ger camp is comfortable, and the owners are careful to operate eco-friendly. Solar water heaters make for great hot showers, and the whole camp team is friendly. They will be looking out for our horse trek to ride in!

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 6 hours



We’ll stay at Princess Camp and go out for a day ride. The landscape here offers great opportunities for rides and hikes, a bit of bouldering, or to simply take in the view from one of the highpoints formed by granite rock formations, the hallmark of Gorkhi Terelj National Park.

Along the valleys, the gers of herder camps can be seen as small white spots from the heights. We’ll choose a route according to the weather and to fit the riders’ abilities. We’ll visit a herder family along the ride.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 5-6 hours



Today the pack team and riders split. The packers take the pack horses to the campsite via a shorter route, while the riders head out for a visit to the ruins of the Princess Temple, and then take a ride across the hills before hitting the main trail again.

This day is a bit longer, and the riding is varied – following a track to the ruins deep in the forest, later riding up to highpoints, exploring canyons, and resting in the shade of the rock walls. The final stretch is faster riding, for those who wish.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 6 hours



The first day of two at a campsite that’s a favourite amongst the horses and the guests! Set back into the forest for shade and shelter, surrounded by meadows of wildflowers with a view onto forest-clad slopes, the rock formations rise and the high mountains are our backdrop.

After yesterday’s long ride, we take it easy today. Breakfast is a bit later and longer before we take a day ride in the area – either back into the wild forests, up to the high pass to catch a glimpse of the Khentii Mountain ranges from the barren tops. Alternatively, we may drop over a small pass and explore the undulating grasslands and rock formations, and see the hidden winter camps of the nomadic families and herders.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 5 hours



The camp is packed up again, and the day’s ride is down towards the valley of the Tuul River, through a true park-like landscape of grasslands with larch forests.

We take a lunch break near a rock formation, or in a shady forest, and the afternoon sees us crossing over the hills again. We’ll ride down a winding valley until we reach the course of a river on the bank of which we set up camp. The river is nice for a refreshing bath, and it’s a good spot for our tents, with lots of grazing for the herd.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 5 hours



Today you can ride for a faster pace if you wish – trotting or cantering up a broad valley, at times through forest, often in open grasslands.

In the afternoon, the trek makes its way over two small passes, before the final drop into the valley where we camped the first night of the trip. Our campsite in this valley is near a nice creek and below shady trees.

Tonight we have a relaxing dinner as its the last one together on our trek!

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Gorkhi-Terelj National Park (tented camp)
Time in the Saddle: 6 hours



Today’s ride will take us into the upper valley of the Terelj River. Easy riding along well-established tracks and in mostly even terrain, with several river crossings. The last picnic lunch will be near the river under old larch trees before we head up to cross one more pass. From the top of this pass, marked by a colourful traditional ovoo, adorned with many “hadags”, the ceremonial, blue silk scarfs, it is only about an hour ride to the Darkhid valley, home of the herd, and the location of the cabins where snacks and drinks will be waiting.

While the packhorses are unpacked and all gear gets sorted out by the crew, we’ll gather and receive our left-behind luggage and re-pack our belongings. The horses, after a quick check-up, are set loose –down the valley to join the rest of the herd that stayed behind. It is always amazing to watch them roll around and take off for their week’s break. Once we finish some farewell drinks and light refreshments, our transport will be ready for us. Arrival back to the hotel in the city is typically between 8 and 9 pm, in time for dinner.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Tonight’s Sweet Sleep: Springs Hotel
Time in the Saddle: 5 hours
Driving Time: 1.5 hours



Transfer to Chinggis Khaan International Airport, or for those who have another day in the city you may explore guided tours or visits to museums, sites and souvenir shops.

Meals Included: Breakfast



Click here to see upcoming trip dates to book your spot!

Wild Women Expeditions and our local partners intend to adhere to the described itinerary. This is only a general guide to follow on your tour of the region. Our itineraries are subject to change, as we cannot predict the weather or other environmental conditions. We are continually striving to make improvements to all our trips based on feedback from Wild Women members, guides, partners, and other research. We reserve the right to alter itineraries based on the above at any time.

Arrival into UlaanbaatarArrival is at Chinggis Khaan International Airport (UBN) in Ulaanbaatar. It’s a small airport that is straight forward to navigate.

Immigration procedures and customs should be fairly easy as well. They might ask for your hotel/address in Ulaanbaatar. It can be a bit crowded around luggage pick-up and once they come out having passed customs.

You will be picked up by a driver and female guide holding a Wild Women Expeditions and/or Stonehorse Mongolia sign. Don’t accept any taxi offers, and watch your pockets.

The drive from the airport to the hotel downtown is about 15 km, and it depends on the day of the week and time of day how long it takes. In the early morning and weekends, it may be 30 minutes, at rush hours it may be 90 minutes.

Group Rendezvous Point (Main Riding Tour)

  • Date: July 16, 2023
  • Time: 5:00 PM
  • Location: Front lobby of the Springs Hotel, Ulaanbaatar

Group Rendezvous Point (if you are joining Naadam Festival and Pre-trip Extension)

  • Date: July 10, 2023
  • Time: Early evening, exact time tba
  • Location: Front lobby of the Springs Hotel, Ulaanbaatar

Recommended Hotels in Sandspit If you’re planning on arriving early, here are our recommended accommodations:

Departure from UlaanbaatarDeparture times vary depending on your airline reservations. Transportation will be provided from your hotel to the airport.

Drop-Off Point:

  • Date: July 25, 2023
  • Time: In conjunction with your flight schedule
  • Location: Chinggis Khaan International Airport (UBN)

If you plan to stay longer, here are our recommended accommodations:

You are responsible for booking your own flights or other transport arrangements to the trip start location. These arrangements and any other independent arrangements that you may make are not a part of the trip booked with Wild Women Expeditions and are entirely at your own risk. Wild Women Expeditions accepts no responsibility, directly or indirectly, for any loss, damage or injury to property or person in connection with such arrangements.

Should you require assistance with your travel arrangements, please contact:


Megan and Zale | Now Boarding Travel Travel Specialist


Email: wildwomen@nowboarding.travel


Note: Now Boarding Travel only provides services of 3-star quality or greater. For budget alternatives, please refer to the Lonely Planet guide for your destination.


Important: For international and remote destinations, there is always the risk of flight delays, baggage delays and flight schedule changes which may cause late arrivals, which may, in return, result in you missing the group tour departure. For these reasons, we encourage you to consider arriving a day early, which will also help you overcome any jet lag from traveling!

You are fully responsible for your own visa requirements, permits, and certificates for your trip. It is the sole prerogative of each country or region to determine who is allowed to enter. It is your responsibility to check with the country’s Consulate and your country’s travel website such as Canada’s for up-to-date information about traveling internationally.

  • Passport

Most countries and airlines recommend passports be valid for at least six months beyond the date of your expected return to your home country. Before you leave, ask your transportation company about its requirements related to passport validity, which may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.


Important: A copy of your passport must be submitted to the Wild Women Expeditions office as soon as possible.

  • Visa

U.S citizens (and a few other countries) can obtain a 90-day tourist visa upon arrival.

Canadian citizens do not need a visa for a tourist visit under 30 days.

Most other countries’ citizens need to apply for a visa. You can find online information on your visa requirements at sites like Visa HQ but double-check with the Mongolian Embassy or Consul in your country for the current regulations that pertain to your visa requirements. Addresses of Mongolian Embassies and Consulates are provided at The Embassy Page or other sites. Visas can be issued within a few days if necessary, for an extra fee, but it’s better to apply early!


Note: As fees and policies can change, we highly recommend that you contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent.

There is no obligation to tip your guides, drivers, and cook, but many participants do when they feel they were provided great service. The following amounts are in Turgik for consistency but USD is also acceptable to tip with.

Recommended amounts are below and come from the GROUP. Take these amounts and divide by the number of women in the group. More or less is still acceptable!

  • Lead Guide / Translator (1): ₮440,000 MNT
  • Drivers (max 3):₮240,000 per driver or ₮720,000 MNT all 3
  • Cook (1): ₮240,000 MNT
  • Horse/Camel or Other Activity Guides (max 3): ₮20,000 MNT per guide per day

  • Rooming Arrangements

Our trip prices are based on shared accommodations (minimum of two women per room/yurt), so we’ll team you up with another solo wild woman to share with if you’re on your own, or of course, you can share with your travel partner.

  • Potable Water

If you would like to join Wild Women Expeditions in its commitment to reducing single-use plastic, you can travel prepared with your own water treatment system!


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Travelers Against Plastic | Take the TAP pledge

This is a modern, mid-sized, 4-star hotel in a very convenient location downtown, with good breakfast and restaurant, WiFi, and comfortable rooms. This hotel is a long term partner of WWE’s ground operator (Stonehorse) with consistently good, reliable and friendly service.

  • Tented Camps

Nights are spent in tented camps at scenic campsites near watercourses or forests. The trek depends on packhorses for all supplies and equipment, allowing us to access routes off the beaten track, and the scenic backcountry of the park.

The tented camps entail sleeping tents, individual or two people as preferred by guest riders; a group tent to set up meal time tables and chairs on cooler nights; and the camp kitchen tent. On hot days, or on request when no water source for bathing is available, a secluded camp shower is set up. The camp always has a hand wash station, and safe drinking water is available.

No phone reception or WiFi once beyond the high pass on Day 1. A camp shower is available on days 5 and 6 and upon request at campsites. Also, bathing in rivers/creeks on days 7 and 8 is an option.

The tour leader carries a satellite phone, for emergencies only. If guests need to stay in contact with family or office, they may want to rent or buy a satellite phone. However, it is recommended to go offline for the duration of the ride. It’s really good – and part of the backcountry travel adventure experience!

A simple ger camp in a beautiful location in the more remote part of Gorkhi Terelj National Park. Comfortable gers, shared, with 3 or 4 beds, or twin/double beds for couples. Heated in the evenings and mornings if/when nights are chilly. Princess Lodge has a wifi/router, and for a small fee, guests can use wifi. However, it does not seem to work all the time.

  • Sleeping Bags

Sleeping bags are provided. It is recommended that you bring your own lightweight liner (cotton or silk are the most common) to use inside the sleeping bag.

Mongolia has a varied landscape that is composed of mountains, hilly plateaux, and desert areas. The country has one of the biggest freshwater lakes of Asia (Lake Khovsgol), many salt-water lakes, marshes, sand dunes, meadows, alpine forests, and permanent glaciers. North and West of Mongolia are seismically active areas, so we can find many thermal springs and volcanoes.

Mongolia has a number of large mammals, including grey wolves and Siberian ibex (Capra sibirica), as well as more endangered species such as the wild Bactrian camel (Camelus ferus), the snow leopard (Uncia uncia), the Gobi bear, (rarest and unique to the desert region), the takhi (both wild and domestic types of horses) and the Asiatic wild ass. Other species of mammals reported include: argali (Ovis ammon) (in the rocky mountains of the Gobi desert), common wolf, Mongolian saiga (Saiga tatarica mongolica), musk deer (Moschus moschiferus), Pallas’s cat (Felis manul) or manul, black tailed gazelle (Gazelle subgutturosa), stone martin (Martes foina), and wild cats in the Altai ecoregion; wild boar (Sus scrofa nigipes), red deer (Cervus elaphus), roe deer in the forest areas and muskrat, red fox, steppe fox, and sable in the forest and steppe margin areas.

Wildlife of Mongolia – Wikipedia

Most days in Mongolia during the riding seasons are sunny with pleasant daytime temperatures and somewhat cooler evenings, especially in the higher elevations where we will travel. However, riding in the mountains of Mongolia can turn wet and cold for short periods at any time during the riding season between May and October so it’s best to be prepared. It can also be very hot, especially for the months of June, July and August, but turn chilly in just a few hours if a cold front moves down from Siberia. Mongolia is a place where you can experience all 4 seasons in one day. Generally, inclement weather only lasts a short while during this time of year.

  • Women of Mongolia by Martha Avery
  • The Secret History of the Mongol Queens by Jack Weatherford
  • Wolf Totem by Jiang Rong
  • All this belongs to me by Czech writer, Petra Hulova

Wild Women Expeditions recommends that each participant should bring enough cash in local currency or available credit/debit funds to cover their meals during travel to and from their destination. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, meals not included in the trip package, shopping, etc., and we also suggest you have access to emergency funds.

The currency is the tugrik (MNT) or the tögrög (₮), often spelled tugrik because it reflects the more accurate pronunciation. It comes in notes of T5, T10, T20, T50, T100, T500, T1000, T5000, T10,000 and T20,000. (T1 notes are basically souvenirs.) The highest-value note is worth around $12 USD.

  • Currency Exchange Offices & Banks

Banks and exchange offices in Ulaanbaatar will change money with relative efficiency. Banks in provincial centres are also fine; they change dollars and give cash advances against debit and credit cards. Remember to change all your tögrög when leaving the country, as it’s worthless elsewhere.

Please check online for current exchange rates. Wild Women Expeditions likes XE Currency Converter

We highly suggest you read this article: Where to Exchange Currency Without Paying Huge Fees for more information about this for your trip.

  • Credit Cards

U.S. dollars and credit cards are accepted in hotels and some restaurants, mainly in Ulaanbaatar.

If you have a credit card, you can use the ATM to purchase currency directly. Your monthly balance usually shows the exchange rate you received on purchases made with the credit card.

  • Cash

This is the best way to pay for items throughout your trip. Carry local currency, especially in rural areas.

Please be sure to provide complete, accurate, and up-to-date information about your health & fitness level and keep us updated if there are changes. Wild Women Expeditions trips travel to remote areas where limited or no sophisticated medical facilities exist.

A medical emergency situation is extremely unlikely; however, should it arise we need to be prepared with the necessary information to help you.

Important Note: If you choose not to disclose a condition, infirmity, injury, or ailment herein and are subsequently deemed to be unfit for expedition travel due in whole or in part to such condition, infirmity, injury or ailment, Wild Women Expeditions guides, and partners shall have the right to remove you from the trip with no refund or compensation payable. Any evacuation expenses incurred are payable by the evacuee via their medical travel insurance or personal expense.
Getting Fit

You don’t have to be a professional athlete to enjoy your Wild Women expedition. Not by a long shot! You’ll be surprised at what you can achieve with our experienced guides at your side and a little camaraderie.

That said, you’ll definitely enjoy yourself far more if you do some preparation so your body is conditioned and ready to enjoy and make the most of the outdoors.

This trip is mostly conducted at a walk, as we have pack horses. Therefore, it is accessible to novice riders. However, to get ready for long days in the saddle you must ride! We suggest riding regularly for three months before your adventure. Western riding lessons would be most appropriate. You must be comfortable and balanced in the saddle at a trot and canter and to cross rivers.


Here are a few ideas to help you get ready:

  • Ride!

You will be spending many hours each day with your bum in a saddle, so please ensure you get some riding in before this trip. You will need to be able to mount and dismount (without a mounting block), ride and lead horses over hilly, uneven terrain, keep a steady trot and canter as required and be ready to ride for 7+ days, covering 12 – 40 km per day usually riding 3 – 8 hours each day.

  • Work your Core.

Keeping good posture and balance on a horse requires a strong core, especially when going up and down steep trails. Doing pilates, or a balanced (focused on strength as well as flexibility) yoga program, can be a great way to prepare for this trip.

  • Take every opportunity you can to be active.

You can improve your fitness a lot just by adopting some new habits; take the stairs at work, go for a walk at lunchtime, park your car away from work and walk. Aim for 30 minutes a day and keep a diary so you can look back on it and feel proud. These may sound trivial but they’re all building blocks!

  • Rev up your ticker!

Think ‘interval training’, which means doing short bursts of high-intensity work with recovery time in between. Depending on how fit you are this can mean strolling with bursts of power walking, or jogging with sprints. Either way, the aim is to get your heart rate up.

  • Join a local walking or running group.

This is a great way to get fit and you’ll also see new places, meet great people… and make them all jealous when they find out what you’re about to go on your travels.

  • Warm up, cool down and stretch.

If you’re doing a workout then make sure you start and finish gently and stretch any tight muscles – this will help you avoid any aches, pains and pulled muscles. If you’re a member of a gym try some yoga, tai chi or pilates classes to build up your flexibility, stability and balance.

  • Hydration.

When you suddenly ask your body to walk or be active, it needs a bit more fuel than it needs when, say, sitting at a desk all day! The main thing your body needs is water, so stay hydrated and practice sipping water often. Getting a water bottle or hydration bladder is a great way to make sure you have it on hand at all times. Make a habit out of taking a bottle of water with you wherever you go.

  • Nutrition.

Eating little and often will keep your body well fuelled for outdoor exercise, especially food like nuts, dried fruit and bread. The odd bit of chocolate and a few boiled lollies are good for keeping your blood sugar levels up while you’re hiking as well!

  • Have fun!

The most important point of all! You are about to embark on the trip of a lifetime. You’re going to meet some amazing people, see some wonderful places and create memories that will stay with you for life. The more prepared you are to tackle the various challenges, the more fun you will have. Also, with all the endorphins you create from all this training, you’ll be smiling from ear to ear! It’s a great way to boost your happy vibes.

  • For more information on getting fit

Check out our blog, Getting Fit: For a Horseback Riding Trip, which includes a 20 minute workout video specifically aimed at preparing the muscles you’ll need for riding.

For general Wild Women Expeditions FAQs please click here.