MONGOLIA FAMILY TRAVEL PLANNING ADVICE
Mongolia is fascinating, beautiful, wide open, empty country of steppes and endless blue sky where you and your kids can discover much starting from unique life of the pastoral nomads to natural beauty, cultural and historical evidences of ancient monasteries, pre-historical remains of deer stones, rock drawing, ride horses and the world rare two humped camels. As well as stay in circular shaped, 1 room nomadic dwelling ger of ger camps, of nomads with parents or stay in tents.
For many travelers, traveling least developed, remote country Mongolia with kids is a big consideration.
Mongolia is a children friendly country where we also have our children living and growing well. There are plenty of things children and adults can do and enjoy together.
Here in Mongolia, we have enough space your children can play, run, jump and scream at their hearts’ desire and your little people open their eyes and explore another world. It is a destination all about nature, nomadic life and impressive history, but not about Disney games, big shopping malls, luxury beaches or artificially developed tourism packages.
On the contrary, traveling Mongolia with kids can be a challenge due to the wilderness attractions, nonexistent roads driving, living standard of the steppe people, variation of food available in Mongolian countryside and some sanitary issues.
Either you travel with your baby, child or teen, we can customize and tailor any kind of short and long trips.
Below are some information may help you plan your family holiday in Mongolia and some issues may arise during the journey.
♦ To prevent lack of understanding we suggest you inform and inquire well during the tour planning phase and before your arrival in Mongolia.
♦ Due to wide open territory driving, food transportation in long distances within the country, gasoline and consumer goods imports, Mongolia is not a budget destination. There are more back packers and some people wish to travel around lifted in public transportation. However, the public transports serve between bigger towns, not so confortable and not an idea for people traveling with kids. Therefore, take package tours arranged by tour agents.
♦ Child car seats are a concern most tour companies not provide and as well as the parents do not bring with them. Having child seat is confortable either for parents and children as they can see the window views while sitting in the same level except it is safe. So, you should inquire and make sure the cars will have child seats.
♦ Many hotels and ger camps have no baby cots. If your child needs one, bring a travel cot with you or ask the travel agency. For our little clients, we have travel cots.
♦ Long drives over nonexistent roads could cause motion sickness. Consider your kids’ sensitivity to motion.
♦ Babysitter is not a part of your travel package. Even though, our guides are kids friendly and will be your best assistant to take care the children and play mates of the kids. If you wish flexibility to make your own adventure or see the sights at an adult pace, the babysitters are available at some additional payment.
♦ During cold times, ger camps are heated by fire making stoves during your stay or to welcome you in warm accommodation just before your arrival. Therefore, be careful to put your luggage near the stove or be burnt.
♦ Another highlight of Mongolian tour is nomad family visit and either nomad family stays. Upon visit, your nomadic hosts definitely offer you hot and salty milk tea in a bowl. Therefore, carefully handle the hot tea and be careful to sip it hot. The nomads process dairy product even in summer hot of over 30 degrees making fire.
♦ Camping out in tents may in an interest of adults and teens alike. Your kids definitely like put their own tents and be brave sleeping alone nearby you. Tented camping under countless bright skies and evening bon fires can leave long lasting memory for you and your children. Any of our family packages not included tented camping and we arrange it upon your request.
♦ Bring variety of clothes suitable for Mongolian inflexible weather. For the idea of packing list, visit www.viewmongolia.com/Mongolia_Packing_list.html
♦ Not all restaurants and ger camps have pushchairs for kids.
♦ Stocking up on fruit and other food your kids may like in Ulaanbataar. In the countryside, food variation is not abundant, especially fruits, vegetables and snacks which westerners use.
As well as jar baby-food. The country side food will be more of beef, mutton, simple vegetables, rice, pastas, bready products, milk and yogurt.
♦ In UB there is very little for toddlers and children to do. Therefore, not spend much time in Ulaanbaatar. On the contrary, spend more time in Ulaanbaatar if you prefer variety of meals available in restaurants and stay at confortable hotels.
♦ Visiting nomads and learning about this unique culture is an inseparable and experiential part of our tours. Expressing thanks for your sudden and uninformed visits to nomads on your way and their hospitality to host any visitor is nice feeling. Giving little gifts to the nomads are not must, but you may like to give little more happiness to the people and children live in the middle of nowhere. The best gift ideas are: any of small toys, kites, hair ribbons, children’s books, educational materials, paper, pencils, crayons, sweets or chocolates for children, sewing kits, face or hand cream, cigarettes, cigar related items or snuff tobacco for adults. Mongolian children like their photos to be taken. If you take a Polaroid instant camera with you, the pictures give them a lot of happiness.
♦ Carry the used nappies out with you, and not just leave them for the locals to deal with.
♦ Be careful from dogs. In Mongolia, dogs are guards, not pets. Therefore, warn your kids not to approach the dogs to close or try to play with the dogs.
♦ Visit your GP or travel clinics at least 6-8 weeks before departure to ensure you have all the necessary vaccinations and that they are up to date.
♦ Taking exclusive travel and health insurance is highly recommended. For a health check and vaccinations may needed, visit wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list
♦ The standard of healthcare in Mongolia is variable, especially outside Ulaanbaatar and even in Ulaanbaatar only basic health care is available and western medicine can be in short supply. So bring whatever you think you might need from home. Medical bills can be high and upfront payment is often expected – make sure you have comprehensive travel insurance that includes medical evacuation.