Reliable Travel Experts
“My wife and I were based in Mongolia for a three-year work tour. Over the course of our stay MonTrails Tours organized over a dozen in-country journeys for us and our visitors. The company worked closely with us to develop fairly-priced itineraries that exactly suited our requirements. Whether the tours were accompanied by a guide — or whether they were self drive — we can attest that MonTrails put out a maximum effort to ensure a safe and interesting journey every time. It should be noted that during self-drive journeys we maintained close communication with the company in Ulaanbaatar in the person of Mr. Erdene. What really impressed us was that, on occasion, critical changes to the itinerary were made on the fly as the result of changing conditions in the countryside. We can heartily recommend Montrails Tours without reservation. One could do no better.”
Experienced Mongolia Tour Professionals
We started planning our trip to Mongolia with Erdene Sedjav of Montrails Tours and it was such a pleasure to work with him. We started in Ulaanbaatar and spent 5 days in the Gobi desert. The trip was excellent, especially with our guide Dulguun, who was so knowledgeable and always attentive and full of information. Our group consisted of 4 adults ranging in age from 23 to 80 years. Erdene and his guide were able to accommodate all our needs and we enjoyed every place we visited. My particular diet (no red meat and restricted in dairy, yes in Mongolia right) was met everywhere we went. I did carry couple of jars of my own dry spice mixes to flavor every meal, which all of us enjoyed it. We also found that many places stock up on some type of sauces for people who want to add more flavor to their dishes.
We had read a lot about travels within Mongolia and we were prepared for the adventure with an open mind. Since the terrain is rough with unpaved roads, be prepared to experience some rough driving with lots of excitement, which we enjoyed. Gobi adventure was something that we really enjoyed. On our Camel ride near the sand dunes, we met a group of young school girls singing and dancing for a video shoot. They were so excited to see us that they came, talked and took pictures with us. This was a memorable moment for all of us. Dulguun and the driver were very accommodating and helpful throughout our journey.
Upon returning to Ulaanbaatar, I had planned a special activity for all of us – Throat Singing Class. Erdene had arranged with Davaasuren (aka Davaa), a well know local throat singer and a teacher to give us two 3 hour lessons in his studio. Well, what a wonderful experience we all had. Davaa introduced himself and gave us his background and his talent. Then we all took turns where he taught us (one on one)how to throat sing through our vocal chords. We repeated the class the next day and we seemed to have gotten a little better, I think. This was one of the highlights of our trip to Mongolia and I would highly recommend it for any one. By the way, we enjoyed it so much that we are going to see the Hu Band (Mongolian rock band with throat singing) touring in the US.
The following week we flew north to Murun and then to Lake Hovsgol. We spent a few days horse riding, hiking, and seeing the crystal clear water of the lake. The accommodations were very good; right on the lake with a beautiful sunrise every day. Make sure to visit the Tsaatan people who raise the reindeer, very fascinating in the wilderness.
We also stopped by on our way to visit a Nomad herd family. Boy, what an experience that was. We were humbly welcomed in their Ger and offered Yak milk and some cookies while they shared their family history and their herd business. Another must to do on the list.
In Ulaanbaatar, Erdene and Dulguun gave us a grand tour of the city highlights that we all really enjoyed. He had arranged a special tour of the Gandantegchinen Monastery with one of the resident monks who was so pleasant and took the time to give us history and show us around. This was also very special for us.
And of course do not forget to visit outside Ulaanbaatar the Tereji National Park, Genkhis Khan statue and the Buddhist monastery there.
Overall, Erdene was exceptional in providing and accommodating all our needs and such a pleasure to work with. I would highly recommend Montrails Tours to arrange and customize all your trip requirements. Keep an open mind and absorb all the culture. By the end of our trip, we had become like extended family, and are still in touch today.
Gobi Desert Tours led by Montrail Tours
Erdene and his staff took excellent care of us. My husband and I joined his son for a four day guided tour in the Gobi desert.
Each day we drove to a different part of the desert experiencing wildlife, a camel ranch, herds of goats and horses, sand dunes and mountains, and National Parklands.
It was during the annual festival of Naadam, during which families enjoy horseback riding, wrestling and archery competitions and the entire country celebrates.
Our guide and driver treated us to descriptions and anecdotes about each site. We spent nights in three ‘ger camps’
sleeping in traditional Mongolian gers (yurts to us) and dining with tour groups from Germany, Korea and other parts of Asia.
Mongolia is not for the faint of heart! That said, there is much culture, history and eye opening nature. Summer was very hot and muggy, but rain and wind storms offered respite from the heat.
Paved roads through the desert are nonexistent, as are (to a large degree) western toilets. The stunning sights and warm welcomes from the nomadic families we visited more than made up for minor physical inconvenience.
We came away thinking that more Americans would enjoy Mongolia if they new about it. Air transit there is long and somewhat pricey: once you are there, however, the budget traveler can do well. Whether camping or staying in a yer camp, the atmosphere is tranquil and the sights dramatic.
If you choose a guided or self led tour, Montrail Tours will make your trip memorable.
The customization by Erdene was great. He emailed back and forth with me quite a bit to get everything just right for the amount of time we had in Mongolia. He was always quick to respond. We got to see everything we wanted to see and it was a nice experience.
Just FYI though, when you are out in the Gobi, you have quite a bit of down time, due to the driving time between locations, so bring something else to do with you, electricity is sparse. English translations are also not great in all of Mongolia, so be aware that even though people speak English, it does not mean it is easy to ask questions. Also, since there is no easy access to healthcare, many things are discouraged as far as adventure to prevent injury. I think Erdene and Montrails did a great job of showing Mongolia and what it was about. I would highly recommend them!
Superb self-drive tour through the Gobi.
Montrail Tours worked very closely with me to design a custom tour through the Gobi. Mr. Erdene very carefully listened to my needs as he crafted a custom route through the glorious attractions of the South and Middle Gobi.
My wife and I are based here so we do have our own car. We had four friends visiting from overseas and wanted to take them on a trip. I am familiar with the Gobi so I had a very clear idea of where I wanted to go.
What was so great about working with Mr. Erdene is that he listened carefully as we fine tuned what turned out to be a spectacular Odyssey through the Three Beauties National Park.
I wanted my friends to experience various levels of accommodation and comfort. And this was their wish as well. So we divided our time between the relatively comfortable high-end camps with European toilets and shower stations and home stays with herder families with very basic facilities. We visited the glacier at Yolin Am, the sand dunes at Khongor Els, the red cliffs at Bayanzag and the ruined monastery at Baga Gazriin Chuuluu. Some of us even managed to milk a few goats.
We were in contact with Mr Erdene throughout our trip as communications permitted. And he in turn remained in contact with our accommodations to appraise them of arrival times and meal times etc.. Mr. Erdene has booked several tours for us to various parts of the country and he has always been thoughtful, flexible, honest and reasonable in all our dealings. We can recommend Montrails Tours and his services without any reservation whatsoever.
This was the most amazing trip. Having been to Mongolia a couple of times before to do some charity work I wanted to see some of Mongolia and this trip was just great from start to finish. From start to finish the way it was organised and I was looked after was fantastic and with my driver Damdin I could not have wished for a better guide. He was great and even his cooking skills are not bad. I wanted to have an adventure and that is what I got. From sleeping in a tent in the Gobi to sleeping in a luxury her we covered it all. The sights that had been picked for my tour where just unbelievable and no picture will do some of the places justice you just have to see it to believe it. Mongolia is a truly magic place and has left a mark on me that is for sure. I found nothing but kind and friendly people there who are happy to share with you whatever they have.This really is a place for adventure and back to nature if that is what you are looking for and the guys at Montrails did a fab job.
Great adventure tour of Gobi desert highlights.
Montrail Tours organized an economical and well-thought out five-day trip to the Gobi. We visited provincial capitals in the South Gobi, among others, and took in the natural wonder of this unique environment. Three Beauty Mountains. The Dunes at Hongor Els and the fossil site where dinosaur eggs were first discovered in the 20s. But the entire journey was the destination.
We were accommodated in guest yurts (gers in Mongolian) and treated to an authentic cultural experience by the host families. Our guide doubled as translator and cook and proved knowledgeable and resourceful. Our driver was expert and cautious. We are currently using Montrail Tours to book further adventures in this glorious land. Thumbs up on this outfit.
Great 3 day/2 night customized tour
We had an absolutely wonderful experience with Erdene and Montrails Tours. Erdene was very responsive, helping us confirm our plans well before arriving. We had our own 4WD and driver, Batzorig, who was outstanding. He took great care of us and also served as a fantastic guide throughout our time. We have already recommended Montrails to several colleagues and would strongly encourage you to contact Erdene for a great tour in Mongolia.
Awesome adventure for city girls thanks to Montrails Tours
Montrails Tours made it so easy for us to enjoy ourselves in Mongolia!
The boss Erdene had been a great help right from the start. He was very prompt in answering questions and facilitating the booking process. He also kindly helped us booked the train tickets to our next destination after our trip and included free transport to the train station. Besides he surprised us when he prepared a souvenir package with different Mongolian notes, paper ger and local map for each one of us. He also readily became our money changer when we couldn’t get any!
We also had awesome guide (Nara) and driver (Tugsu) who took such good care of us throughout our 9 days trip! They made sure our needs (little or big) were all taken care of. When I had a bout of food poisoning, they offered loads of care and some local remedies to make me better. They also helped to give us uniquely Mongolian experiences such as having campfires and singalong with other Mongolian guides/drivers. We also had a lovely horse guide (Baida) with us for 3 days. Besides equipping us with basic skills for horse-riding, he also gave us a little party on our last day together.
Last but not least, Mongolia is magnificent. The lush greenery, the vastness, the friendly locals who generously housed us even when it is unplanned due to bad weather, the horses and many other things contributed to the raw beauty of this place. We will definitely be back. And if anyone is thinking of going Mongolia, I strongly recommend Montrails Tours.
Great tour, comfortable car, Erdene organised us well. We opted not to take a guide, only a driver who was extremely kind but did not have much English so conversation and explanation was limited. He rather left us to get on with it. The danger in Mongolia is you feel you are driving the same circuit as everyone else, and it is hard to have a very individual trip – particularly if you cannot really communicate. All in all, a great experience, good value for money, and a glorious break from the intensity of SE Asia.
Amazing trip to the Gobi desert & Golden Eagle festival
Erdene and his team at MonTrails are amazing hosts and tour guides who organised a simply amazing and not to be missed trip to the Gobi desert. Since we live in Ulaanbaatar, we reached out to a few tour groups to compare offerings for this trip and Erdene was by far, the most responsive and most open to our changes and suggestions. He met every need, provided excellent drivers and vehicles and never missed a beat to add more fun and see more sights. Erdene speaks excellent English and has grown to be a friend during this trip. Upon our return home, we asked him to book us (at the last minute) a trip to the Golden Eagle Festival in the West of the country where he again, excelled at providing a great and amazing trip. If you’re in need for anything travel-related in Mongolia – you cannot go wrong with Erdene and his amazing team at MonTrails!
Montrails provide amazing views of Mongolia!
We’ve used Montrails for trips to the Mongolian Gobi, historic tours, Hustai National Park, 13th century park and they were all wonderful. Excellent communication, easy arrangements and all comforts provided. This is an outstanding tour company. I highly recommend working with them for unique and personally tailored peeks at an amazing country!
A great tour operator for personal attention in Mongolia
We traveled with Montrails on a 16 day program that began and ended in Ulaanbaatur. It was a unique travel experience, mostly in wilderness areas with few facilities separated by great distances. It’s the kind of trip that would be virtually impossible to organize on one’s own but Montrails handled all of our arrangements (there were 4 of us) and were exceptionally flexible in doing so.
We had an outstanding guide, whose English was superb, and a very competent, secure driver. Accommodation outside of the capital was in gers (yurts) which were surprisingly comfortable and commodious. The gers are organized in camps that are situated relatively near to the major attractions of the country. The camps each had a dining ger, larger than the individual sleeping gers, where the food surpassed any reasonable expectations of dining in such remote areas, with the nearest supplies hours away by vehicle. Two in our group were vegetarians and they were very satisfied with the food that was prepared especially for them, which was arranged by our guide when we arrived in each camp.
The country has spectacular landscapes unlike any place I’ve ever been. The vast panoramas seemed to follow one after another. Highlights included the Gobi Desert, particularly the Hongoryn Els, the flaming cliffs of Bayanzag, and the colorful mounds of Tsagaan Suvarga; Lake Hovsgol in the north; and the very beautiful White Lake in central Mongolia.
I made all arrangements through the company’s founder, Erdene Sedgav, and he was a delight to work with, patiently adjusting to our changing requests, as we began with just 2 of us, then added a 3rd, and finally a 4th, each time requiring a complete recalculation of the costs. Those costs, by the way, were lower than those quoted by other companies, as well as Exodus and Explore, for shorter programs, so value-wise, Montrails is an excellent choice for what is a rather expensive destination to visit.
The questions below seem to be evaluating a particular place visited for one day, which is not relevant to this review. This review is evaluating an excellent tour operator who can organize your multi-day trip.
I had the opportunity to travel in Mongolia with several friends by Montrails Tour Company. I arrived in the middle of the night and there was Zolboo Mashbat waiting with a smile and lots of enthusiasm even though it was a time when he would normally be asleep. He escorted me to my hotel and waited to ensure I was checked in without any problems before leaving. The next morning, he arrived on time and conducted a terrific tour of Ulaanbaatar. Zolboo’s English is excellent and he even knows American slang and colloquialisms. During the tour, he provided extensive information and histories of each place that we visited. He was personable and humorous and my friends and I enjoyed not just the information that he gave, but also his charm and personality. He was open about himself as a Mongolian and about his family and his upbringing.
Zolboo seemed to know what we needed before we did. At the end of the tour, we went back to our hotel and asked for an early breakfast since we had an early flight to Bayan-Ulgii the next day. Zolboo had already called the hotel and let them know what we needed. I was very impressed. On return to Ulanbaatar, I had one free day before going home, so I called Zolboo and asked if he was free for a tour of the Chinggis Khan monument. He again gave us a very interesting tour and waited patiently while we shopped. He even helped us with our shopping!
Bay Area (California) meant a professional, well organized experience. After an unfortunate tour with another outfitter, we felt SO take care of by Erdene and his gracious, warm staff! I urge tourists to visit Mongolia with MonTrails.”
” I was lucky enough to be on a two week trip with Erdene to Mongolia. Along with the beautiful and spectacular scenery and friendly reception from the locals, he proved to be an invaluable companion and organiser, always cheerful and positive whatever the situation. Many thanks to him for making a good trip into a great one. If anyone is thinking of taking a trip to Mongolia, you would be hard pressed to find a better guide to acompany you than Erdene!”
I had the most amazing trip of 16 days to Mongolia. Traveled every night to a different part of Gobi Desert starting in North from the Capital Ulaan Baatar to Central Gobi, then Southern Gobi and then back to Northern Mongolia. Stayed in a GER (Mongolian tent) in national parks, steppe, mountains, sand dunes and ancient sea bed!! Had beautifully plated vegetarian food throughout. The amazing terrains, its historical and geographical heritage has left me mesmerized!! I love Mongolia!! And all the arrangements done by Erdene of Motrails tours were just superb!!
Out of this world
We had one of the best trips of our lives with Montrails Tours. The planning was simple and straightforward, and Erdene was meticulous in his attention to detail. We travelled from UB to the Gobi desert over 8 nights with car, guide and driver, both of whom were experts in their field, and wonderful company. Mongolia is an amazing country and during this trip we had the opportunity to see a small part of it. We travelled across what seemed to be oceans of wilderness, often on roads which seemed non-existent to our untrained eye. We visited nomad families, we overnighted in gers, tried our luck on the camels over the most spectacular sand dunes, visited ancient historical and magical places linked back to the time of Chingis Khan. I will never forget this spectacular country or its amazing people. Thanks to Montrails tours for organising everything so perfectly. I highly recommend Erdene and his team.
I visited Mongolia for 8 days last October. For such a few days, I experienced the contrasting weather of Mongolia. On the first 2 days, I was fascinated by the autumn color of the forest. But after 2nd night, I was so shocked that the whole yellow grassland was covered by the pure white snow. It is so amazing! Above all, I am so impressed by Erdene’s hospitality. I will say he is more than a professional tour guide. He treats me just like his old friend or even his son. At least, during 8 days of travelling, I feel I am not away from home because Erdene just like Papa takes care of me. He serves me with his sincere heart. That’s so true!
Definitely, I’ll go to Mongolia again. Mongolia is too big! 8 days are not enough! I will go there again with Erdene.
The 4 of us adventerous guys from Switzerland have visited this vast and beautiful country in early October 2012. We must really admit that we were lucky to be travelling with Erdene who proved to be an expert tour guide. He is a kind of person who knows an answer to any question you ask him about Mongolia or even about life in general – both east and west on our planet since he is one of the few Mongolians that really travelled and had lived in the western world too. From the beginning to the end we were astonished by wonderful scenery and wide open space almost everywhere. Erdene proved to not forget about even small details that prove to be important while professionally organizing a road trip for us sometimes ‚spoilt‘ and highly expecting western travellers. It doesn’t matter if you want to visit cultural or historical sites, ride horses or camels, meet with local people, enjoy real Mongolian food, spend money at the country markets – you name it – the guys who organizes everything with precision like a Swiss watch is Erdene ! Even several months after our very interesting trip with him we can say that this was a trip that is not just forgotten a few weeks after returning home – which happens, unfortunately, with many other travels we did elsewhere.
“Mongolia is big…Mongolia is beautiful. To get around, even in the city, it’s best to have the company of a guide. The language is very difficult if not impossible to understand. No matter which direction you go, north to the Russian border, south to the China border or east or west, the country is breathtaking and the people friendly. In the city of Ulan Baatar getting around is easy enough but for a trip outside the city hire a man by the name of Erdene. Erdene spent time in the U.S. and speaks good English and knows the culture. He has all the connections and very accommodating. My trip was mainly for Taimen (a very large fish) but I could have easily made it a good birding trip. The variety of birds in the Northeast area are staggering. My trip was in mid September and the color was changing, the rivers running slower and the weather unpredictable. We had tents and provisions for any type of stay”.