Discover Mongolia: An Epic 10-Day Campervan Road Trip Adventure
Discover Mongolia: An Epic 10-Day Campervan Road Trip Adventure

Discover Mongolia: An Epic 10-Day Campervan Road Trip Adventure

Unveil the breathtaking beauty of Mongolia through an unforgettable 10-day campervan road trip. Explore its rugged landscapes, immerse in nomadic culture, and sleep beneath star-studded skies.

Mongolia, a land of untamed wilderness and nomadic traditions, beckons adventurous souls to embark on a journey like no other. Imagine traversing vast, open steppes, witnessing dramatic landscapes, and camping under a canvas of stars. All of this is possible with a campervan road trip through Mongolia. In this epic adventure, we’ll guide you through a 10-day road trip that will take you through some of the most awe-inspiring and remote parts of this remarkable country. Buckle up and get ready for the road trip of a lifetime!

Day 1: Ulaanbaatar – The Gateway to Mongolia

Your Mongolian adventure begins in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar, a bustling metropolis where ancient traditions meet modern life. After arriving at Chinggis Khaan International Airport, head to a local rental agency to pick up your campervan. Make sure your campervan is equipped with all the essentials, including camping gear, cooking equipment, and navigation tools.

Where to Stay:

  • Ulaanbaatar Hotel & Spa: If you prefer a comfortable night’s rest before hitting the road, this hotel offers a relaxing stay with amenities like a spa and restaurant.

Day 2: Terelj National Park – A Glimpse of Mongolian Wilderness

Depart Ulaanbaatar early, heading east towards the rugged beauty of Terelj National Park, just a few hours away. As you drive, the urban landscape will gradually give way to rolling hills and wide-open spaces.

Key Stops:

  • Turtle Rock: This iconic rock formation, resembling a turtle, is a must-see in Terelj. It’s a perfect spot for a short hike and some fantastic photo opportunities.
  • Aryabal Meditation Temple: Perched on a hill, this Buddhist temple offers not only spiritual insight but also panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Where to Stay:

  • Terelj Lodge Campground: Park your campervan at this picturesque campground nestled in the heart of Terelj National Park. Enjoy a campfire under the stars.

Day 3: Kharkhorin – The Ancient Capital

Today’s journey takes you westward to Kharkhorin, the ancient capital of the Mongol Empire. The drive will introduce you to the vastness of the Mongolian steppe, with its seemingly endless horizons.

Kharkhorin village | Guru Travel Mongolia

Key Stops:

  • Erdene Zuu Monastery: Explore the ruins of this 16th-century monastery, a testament to Mongolia’s rich religious history.
  • Kharkhorin Museum: Delve into Mongolian history at this informative museum, housing artifacts and exhibits related to Genghis Khan and the Mongol Empire.

Where to Stay:

  • Kharkhorin Riverside Campsite: Park your campervan along the picturesque Orkhon River, where you can camp in tranquility.

Day 4: Orkhon Valley – Nomadic Encounters

Continue your journey southward into the pristine Orkhon Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its nomadic traditions and breathtaking landscapes.

Key Stops:

  • Nomadic Family Visit: Immerse yourself in Mongolian culture by visiting a nomadic family. Learn about their way of life, taste traditional dairy products, and even try your hand at milking yaks.
  • Orkhon Waterfall: Hike to this stunning waterfall, where the Orkhon River cascades over volcanic rocks, creating a mesmerizing natural spectacle.

Where to Stay:

  • Orkhon Valley Campsite: Camp along the banks of the Orkhon River and fall asleep to the soothing sounds of nature.

Day 5: Bayanzag – Land of the Dinosaurs

As you head further south into the Gobi Desert, the terrain changes dramatically. You’ll witness the transition from lush grasslands to arid desert landscapes.

Key Stops:

  • Flaming Cliffs (Bayanzag): Explore the iconic Flaming Cliffs, famous for their red-orange hues and rich fossil discoveries, including dinosaur eggs.
  • Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park: If time allows, venture deeper into the Gobi Desert and explore the diverse landscapes of this national park.

Where to Stay:

  • Gobi Desert Campsite: Camp in the heart of the Gobi Desert, surrounded by a surreal lunar-like landscape.

Day 6: Yolyn Am – A Gorge of Ice

Drive north to Yolyn Am, a narrow gorge in the Gobi Desert’s Gurvan Saikhan Mountains. Despite the desert surroundings, this gorge is known for its year-round ice formations.

Where is Canyon of Yolyn Am in Mongolia - Travel Western Mongolia

Key Stops:

  • Yolyn Am Ice Field: Hike through the gorge to reach the ice field, where you can witness the contrast between the scorching desert and the frozen landscape.
  • Museum of Gobi Desert: Learn about the unique flora and fauna of the Gobi Desert at this informative museum.

Where to Stay:

  • Yolyn Am Campground: Camp at the base of the gorge, surrounded by stunning rock formations.

Day 7: Dalanzadgad – Gateway to the Gobi

Return to the town of Dalanzadgad, the gateway to the Gobi Desert, for a chance to restock supplies and enjoy a warm meal in a local restaurant.

Where to Stay:

  • Dalanzadgad Campground: Stay overnight in Dalanzadgad before continuing your adventure.

Day 8: Khongor Sand Dunes – Majestic Sands

Your journey now takes you to one of Mongolia’s most iconic landscapes – the Khongor Sand Dunes. These towering dunes, also known as the “Singing Sands,” offer a surreal experience in the heart of the desert.

Key Stops:

  • Khongor Sand Dunes: Climb to the top of the dunes for a breathtaking view of the desert expanse. You can also try sandboarding down the slopes.
  • Camel Trek: Take a camel ride into the dunes for a unique perspective of this otherworldly landscape.

Where to Stay:

The pale golden dunes of Khongor Els
  • Khongor Dunes Campsite: Camp near the dunes and witness the desert’s transformation as the sun sets and the stars emerge.

Day 9: Ongiin Monastery – A Desert Oasis

Bid farewell to the Gobi Desert and journey north to Ongiin Monastery, an oasis nestled along the banks of the Ongi River.

Key Stops:

  • Ongiin Monastery Ruins: Explore the ruins of this once-thriving monastery, which was tragically destroyed during the communist era.

Where to Stay:

  • Ongiin Monastery Campsite: Camp near the river and soak in the peaceful atmosphere of this historical site.

Day 10: Back to Ulaanbaatar – Memories to Last a Lifetime

Begin your return journey to Ulaanbaatar, taking in the changing landscapes once more. It’s a day for reflection on the incredible experiences and memories you’ve gathered during your 10-day adventure.

Where to Stay:

  • Ulaanbaatar Hotel & Spa: If needed, spend your final night in Ulaanbaatar before departing the next day.

Essential Tips for Your Mongolia Campervan Adventure

  • Fuel and Supplies: Stock up on fuel and supplies in major towns like Ulaanbaatar, Kharkhorin, and Dalanzadgad, as remote areas may have limited options.
  • Navigation: While Mongolia’s vast landscapes are awe-inspiring, they can also be disorienting. Ensure you have a reliable GPS or offline maps to navigate.
  • Permits: Check if any specific permits are required for the areas you plan to visit, especially if you’re heading to protected sites.
  • Weather: Be prepared for extreme weather conditions, from scorching desert heat to chilly mountain nights. Pack accordingly.
  • Respect Nomadic Culture: When visiting nomadic families, be respectful of their customs and seek permission before approaching their ger (traditional dwelling).
  • Leave No Trace: Mongolia’s pristine landscapes are its greatest asset. Dispose of waste responsibly and leave nature untouched.


Embarking on a campervan road trip through Mongolia is an adventure of a lifetime. It’s a journey that will take you through diverse landscapes, from the lush steppes to the arid Gobi Desert, and introduce you to the warm hospitality of Mongolia’s nomadic people. With careful planning and a spirit of adventure, you can create memories that will last a lifetime. So, rev up your campervan, hit the open road, and let Mongolia’s wild beauty unfold before you.

Note: The road conditions and availability of facilities in Mongolia can vary, so it’s essential to check the latest information and be well-prepared for your journey. Safe travels!