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National Capital Astronomers Club

Mongolia Astronomy Mission

August 1, 2008Eclipse


NOTE ABOUT THE TOUR COMPANY:  The Mongol Global Tour Co. has been providing quality, customized travel to Mongoliafor 10 years.  We have very good connections in the government as well as the business community.  We will be glad to use our full resources to minimize the problems and maximize what is accomplished during your time there.  We have offices in Southern California, Beijingand UlaanBaatarand therefore can provide you the needed arrangements in Mongoliawith the ease of communicating your needs here in the USA. 




July 27:Arrive in UlaanBaatar:You will arrive in UlaanBaatar.There your guide/translator will pick up your group.  Depending on what time you arrive  there is time, you will visit the Chingiis Khan Campground on the way into Ulaanbaatar. This interesting Ger hotel has replicas of the old platform Gers, hero’s totems, ancient weapons and costume.  You may also have an opportunity to take a short horse-back ride and enjoy the area.  (meals on flights)


ULAANBAATARANDMONGOLIA:  UlaanBaataris the capital of Mongoliaand by far the largest city in the country. It population is over 600,000. To this day around 50 % of Mongols are nomads living in the countryside. Their lifestyle is essentially unchanged for the last 2,000 years (despite their awareness of many possible modern conveniences).  The Mongol people, once the rulers of the largest empire in the world, are surprisingly gentle and sweet natured.  From the mountains, to the lakes to the deserts to the Steppe, Mongoliais a land of wide open spaces, beautiful nature and with such little rainfall that it has been called "the land of eternal blue skies."  Due to the relatively small population of Mongoliaand the wide open countryside (hence a relatively small number of city lights, etc) Mongoliahas long been a highly favored area for observing astronomical phenomenon.  We are delighted to work with astronomy teams to maximize your observing and recording of major astronomical events.     


July 28: Ulaanbaatar:  Today can either be a free day or we can give you a tour of UlaanBaatar.  B,L


TOUR OPTION IN UB:Morning visit to SukhBaatar Square then to the Gandan Monastery (80 foot tall statue of Buddha, practicing Tibetan Buddhist Lamas) Then we will visit Choijin LamaTempleMuseum. After lunch visit the NationalHistoryMuseum(which has some wonderful exhibits, especially concerning Chingiis Khan and the tribal costumes).  B,L


NOTE:  We can also set up a meeting with you and Mongolian astronomers regarding various aspects of working in Mongolia. 


July 29:  UB: Wewill take you to the Bogd KhanSummerPalace and the ZanabazarArt Museum.  After lunch visit the Natural History Museum, which has many interesting exhibits, most notably the dinosaur and dinosaur eggs exhibits as well as many of the minerals, stones, etc. found in Mongolia.  B, L


NOTE:  We will want to obtain a general list for desired meals for your group well in advance to purchase most of the food for your trek.  However We can also take you to the grocery store to purchase some special foods needed for expedition as well as people can pick up snacks, etc. 


July 30:  Today you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Ulgii.  There your vehicles and local assistants will meet your group and transfer you to your ger camp.  B, L, D


NOTEONPERMITS:  We can obtain the necessary permits needed to enter Mongoliaon an official scientific basis.  It may be possible to do this operation without this official permission, however we submit that it is to your benefit for us to obtain the permission.  This protects you from the possibility of not being allowed to set up your expedition.  Also this way we can more easily obtain information and official support for your trip, which can be VERY VALUABLE. 


NOTEONEQUIPMENT:  Please let us know how much equipment you will need to bring.  We can make arrangements to help you transport the equipment that you need for this work.


NOTEONYOUR CAMP:  We will work with the Mongol astronomers as well as International Astronomers counsel as to determining the best site to set up your camp.  We will set up your camp in advance of your arrival in the Bayan Ulgii Aimag.  We will set up whatever amount of gers are necessary to support your group, including a kitchen/dining ger, several sleeping gers and a temporary bathroom-type facilities for your stay.   We will set up the astonomy site ger camp BEFORE you arrive so that when you arrive you will be ready to work. 


NOTES ON YOUR SUPPORT TEAM:  We will be providing a translator/guide for your expedition to accompany you from UlaanBaatarand to assist you throughout your trip.  We will also provide a cook, drivers, vehicles and a camp manager to keep the operations of your camp fully functional during the expedition. 


July 31:  You can set up and test your equipment this day and evening so that you know that you are ready for the following day’s Eclipse.  B, L, D


OPTION:  You can also meet the Kazakh Mongol Eagle Hunters.  The Eagles do the hunting. 


Aug. 1:  You will accumulate your photos and other scientific data regarding the eclipse. 


Aug. 2:  We will take you back to Ulgii.  Our team will break down the camp.   If there is a flight available on this day we will fly you back to UlaanBaatar. 


Aug. 3:  Today we will fly you out of UlaanBaatarfor your international flight home.   OR we can provide some or all of you additional tours. 




NOTE:  There are OPTIONAL SIDETRIPS IN MONGOLIAWHICH WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND.  Those who want to immediately return to the USAcan do so while others stay in Mongoliaand take these side trips.  This could also be just your own group or it could be that a few of your group will join others. 
There are many, many options. 


Just let us know what other sites that you might want to visit. 


There are several interesting treks which we can offer you: 


GobiDesert– 3-days   (price range:  $490 - $590/person depending on numbers traveling)

Karakhorum - 3-days  (price range:  $390 - $460/person depending on numbers traveling)

LakeHuvsgal  3-days  (price range:  $585 - $675/person depending on numbers traveling)


AltaiMountainTrek:  There is an interesting adventure trek which can begin in Ulgii.  We can drive you over the Altai mountains where you can meet Nomads in the mountains with large herds of cattle, yaks, goats and sheep as well as many camels and horses.  You will also see petroglyphs, deer stones and ancient burial sites.  This trek ends in UlaanGoom.  Then we can fly you back to UlaanBaatar.  This trek is typically 4-5 days long.  (price range:  $755 - $925/person depending on numbers traveling)


Your MongoliaAstronomy Team Journey: 


Land Package and Domestic Asian Air including ger camp setup in west Altai mountain region:  $3,665/person (minimum of 10 people)


We can provide this trip for less than 10 people however, the cost will be higher due to the set up costs for the ger camp in the countryside for the astronomers. 


 (This price could possibly be lowered once we have the total numbers of participants and have other questions answered.  The more people on this trip, generally the lower the price that we can offer.  We still need additional information from you to give you a concrete best price)


Special features of this mission/trip: 

                   Toursin UB

                                Meeting with astronomers in UB

                                Flights and trek to the astronomy site

                                Transportation of people and a certain amount of equipment - #

                                Ger Camp setup at astronomy sites

                                Ger Camp manager, cook, and 2 other general staff at camp

                                Support Drivers and vehicles at campsite

                                Logistical support


                                Optional post journey tours available


Additional General Costs: 

          Permits and official clearance for setup:  $500 - $2,000?

                   # Overweight equipment transport:  ??

 this depends on amount and weight of extra equipment

                Additional expenses:  ????

We need more information about your needs to best determine this. 




 Single Supplement: $445 – (Hotels only - Single Occupancy not guaranteed in ger camps)




International flights:  $1,885 - $2,655?  (We can lock in prices once we know the number of people going.  We can generally beat the prices you will find by at least $200/person. 


USA Beijing UlaanBaatarRT


  • exact price of flights depends on the time of booking and availability
  • We can provide connection flights for reasonable rates
  • The sooner we book the flights, generally the better price we can obtain for you


Business Class on international flights available for excellent rates




Land Tour price includes: Domestic Mongolian flights, buses, jeeps, private transportation, all tours,  guides, drivers, transfers, 4-star hotel (double occupancy) in Beijing, hotels in Mongolia all meals in China (except one), all meals in Mongolian countryside, breakfasts and lunches in UB.

Not included: International airfare, items listed as "optional" Airport exit tax in Mongolia, Chinese visa, tips, dinners in UlaanBaatar (this is to allow those who want to rest in UB to go back to the hotel and rest). 



Note:   We do provide visa services for China

We highly recommend Travel Insurance for All international travel!


We can offer you Travel Guard Travel Insurance





Access America


At excellent rates!  Inquire with Greenbelt Travel




Questions and Answers


1.     Q.   Where exactly will the camp be (latitude and longitude)?

A.       We will work with you and various experts to determine the best site and will set you up there.


          2.  Q.    How are the accommodations set up in a ger camp?

                     A.   Typically 4 can sleep comfortably in a ger.  This depends

                          on your budget.  This can be done a number of ways.


3.     Q.   Will any of the travel be physically difficult?

A.   The hardest part will most likely be driving from Ulgii to the

observation camp, depending on how far you have to go.  You will likely not have good roads (possibly no roads) to where your best site will be.  This is not a problem – just prepare yourself for a bumpy ride. 



We have worked with scientific teams on a number of occasions (including astronomy teams) before and will be glad to provide quality support services for your mission. 


Please let us know how we might best serve you.


We can provide international flights to Mongolia at excellent prices!






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