Mongolian Naadam is a three-day festival celebrating Mongolian tradition with games, parades, and celebrations. The highlights are the ‘three manly games’ of wrestling, archery, and horseracing. Naadam is a truly amazing spectacle not to be missed.
Wrestling: 512 wrestlers come together to fight in the stadium for the prestigious title of “State Titan”. Both the “Titan” himself and the trainers have the opportunity to choose partners during the first few rounds, thus reducing the number of less experienced wrestlers early on and creating more excitement for the final matches on the second day. The rules are very simple: the wrestling area is unrestricted, there are no weight classes and the one who touches the ground with any part of the body, other than their feet, has lost. The winner continues to the next round. The loser has to pass under the wings (arms) of the proud winner as he conducts his eagle dance in celebration. The wrestlers wear tight pants and a small vest which covers the arms & shoulders but not the chest. The unique wrestling top was brought in, according to legend, to prevent women entering the competition after a woman managed to enter the competition and win!
Archery: It has been said that Mongols are almost born with archery skills, once an integral part of a nomadic lifestyle. From childhood, such qualities such as excellent eyesight, judging of distance, patience, and strength are nourished to develop a good archer. Mongolian bows are very tightly strung so that it requires a great deal of strength to use them. Several teams of 5-7 archers compete, with each attempting to hit 33 leather cylinders from a distance of 75 meters, in a true test of skill.
Welcome to our very clean, convenient and cozy Meg’s Guesthouse with friendly staff. We are perfectly located centrally within the city area, with a variety of attractions moments from our doorstep. Your two nights’ accommodation will be in our bunk beds in the guesthouse.
| Horse riding
| Historical Sites
| Cultural Experiences
| Archaeological sites
|Total people in Group||Cost per Person|
|4 or more people||US$ 320
|Transport (Tour Distance covered – 250 km)||Travel Insurance|
| Tour Guide
|Meg’s Guesthouse (2 nights Dorm room)||Alcoholic & soft drinks|
|Meals (Breakfast – 3, Lunch – 3)||Any other personal expenses|
|Naadam Festival Tickets||Additional services|
|Entrance Fees/ Local Taxes|
| Horse Riding 1 Hour
|Mineral Water / Tea / coffee|
Like all great festivities, it all begins with an opening ceremony. Dancers and musicians delight the watching crowds’ athletes and horse riders march across the National Sports Stadium in UB. And after the spectacular ceremony, the competitions begin.
Most of the day will be spent at the horseracing course after driving about 30km out of the city to see the amazing races. Later in the afternoon watch the Mongolian traditional Song and Dance Ensemble.
Horseracing: The most impressive spectacle of the Naadam festival is surely the horseracing competitions. The horses cover different distances according to their age. Azarga (stallions) 28km, Ikh Nas (horses more than 5 years old) 30km, Soyolon (5-year olds) 25km, Khyazaalan (4-year olds) 22km, Shudlen (3-year olds) 20km and Daaga (colts to 2 years old) 15km. There are no limits on the number of horses participating; usually 200-600 horses in each race. The five winning horses are honored with a cup of mare’s milk (airag) poured on their necks, a khadag (respectful blue silk scarf) and a medal.
The day trip will start at 8am driving to the impressive Chinggis Statue, which dominates the landscape. Spend an hour marveling at the largest statue of Chinggis Khan you will ever see. It is a jaw dropping scene among the beautiful hills and plains. For the daredevil inside there is also gliding available to witness this spectacular monument from the air. Terelj is a picturesque place of high cliffs of granite, rivers and forests. Terelj is famous for its distinctive rock formations including the ever-popular ‘Turtle Rock’.
National Park activities including horse riding, eat lunch in a local family ger and hike to Ariyabal Meditation Temple.
Your 3 Day Naadam Festival adventure will finish in Ulaanbaatar around 6 pm.