Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

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Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

Postby jen_in_toronto » Tue May 21, 2013 4:08 pm

I'm doing trip AMNF (Naadam Festival) in June/July so I'm wondering about appropriate clothing. It sounds like cool'ish summer weather but I'm concerned about being cold at night as well as rain. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

Also, on the way home, I have an overnight layover in Beijing. First question - recommendation for an airport hotel? I don't want to spend $200 on a Hilton or Crowne Plaza but the other ones seems sketchy. I read reviews that mentioned lost reservations and language barriers, plus my plane is landing at 1am, so I need a dependable place to stay. Second question - I would like to arrange a tour for my day there. I found some companies online that will pick you up and drop you off at the airport. Any personal recs would be appreciated there too. Thanks and happy travels, everyone!
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Re: Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

Postby puttyland » Mon Jun 03, 2013 6:58 am

I went to Naadam in 2008...did a 3-week tour of Mongolia. I brought a little of everything clothing-wise: layers! A few tshirts, a thin fleece, a thick fleece, travel pants, a rain poncho. It got hot and cold. I used everything I brought. It only rained once that I recall...during Naadam, unfortunately...we missed the archery (we were at a "local" festival in Kharakhorum rather than the huge one in UB. It was like going to a local high school football game...the wrestling and horseback riding were great fun to watch...everyone in traditional dress, all the pageantry...loved it).

One thing I would advise for women: bring a long skirt or big towel for the long drive days. There is nowhere to pee privately!! Many 8 hour drives with no hills, no trees, and no big rocks or anything to hide behind. I got a terrible UTI from holding it so long--no fun! Oh yeah...make sure you bring all kinds of medicine you might need. Not a bad idea to have some Cipro or other antibiotic...an Epipen for severe allergies (I had an allergic reaction to some food there...not severe (someone had Benadryl), but again, it can be an 8-hour BUMPY ride to the nearest doctor) or an airlift (travel insurance is also a must, of course).

Oh, and bring games and books for the down time. I was only able to upload to my travel blog twice--from UB and Kharakhorum...no internet anywhere else. But the folks at the ger camps will teach you how to play a few games with the sheep's ankle bones. A few beers and I was beating our van driver at it--best way to get past the language barrier! Awesome trip. It is OUT there. Have a great time!

--Patty
(If you want to check out my blog for the trip: http://www.travbuddy.com/travel-blogs/35617/)
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Re: Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

Postby puttyland » Mon Jun 03, 2013 7:12 am

Wow, my memory stinks...just reread my blog and I guess it rained often but not for long. I guess it's only a bother when you miss something (like the archery) due to it! :roll:
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Re: Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

Postby jen_in_toronto » Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:04 pm

Thanks, Patty! A friend of mine said the same thing about the lack of roadside bathrooms. ;)
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Re: Mongolia in June/July and Beijing questions

Postby la_tapada » Fri Jul 19, 2013 9:57 pm

In addition to the Naadam Festival checklist, I would recommend the following:

-Sleeping bag (a must if you get cold at night, since the ones they provide aren't that warm)
-Wooly hat/tuque and gloves (again, for the occasional cold night)
-Steripen (to clean water, otherwise you have to buy water)
-Laundry line (most of the ger camps don't allow you to do laundry, but they are handy for drying things over ger fires)
-Locks: small ones for your pack and big ones for the doors of the ger (combination are better, since you will be sharing the ger and keys can get complicated). Some ger camps don't provide locks, or provide really shoddy ones.
-Tissue packets and/or toilet paper
-Umbrella (for rain and sun--there isn't much shade)

You don't need to bring a mug or cutlery.

Also, bring food if you have restrictions, but there are plenty of stops at convenience stores to get water, and the usual array of drinks and snacks.

Finally, consider bringing different gifts from the ones they list, since how many toothbrushes, postcards, or pencils can one nomadic family need?
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