July 21, 2015 In Natasha's Picks
MONGOLIA’S GOLDEN EAGLE FESTIVAL
Once a year unforgettable journey takes place – The the Golden Eagle Festival in Bayan-Ulgii Province, located in the Altai Mountains of Western Mongolia. Each year Kazakh hunters from near and far attend the festival with their Golden Eagles, known as Berkut, to enter them into competitions testing speed, agility, and accuracy. Ceremonies, dance performances, a parade in the provincial capital’s city square, and a Kazakh play in honor of the hunters and their eagles. The Golden Eagle Festival is one of the many unique experiences you will have while touring Mongolia.
This annual Mongolian festival, which celebrates the Golden Eagle as well as the hunters’ traditional culture, is arranged by the local Kazakh community and members of the Berkut Association, a community-based conservation organization. Historically, nomadic Kazakhs have depended on Golden Eagles for hunting; both the Berkut Association and the Golden Eagle Festival were founded by Nomadic Expeditions CEO Jalsa Urubshurow in 1999 to preserve their proud tradition and protect the Golden Eagle, known in Mongolian as the berkut. All proceeds from the festival’s ticket sales ($30 per person for two days of competitions) will benefit the Berkut Association, which will use these funds to further the organization’s goals, including arranging the Golden Eagle Festival each year. This expedition into the rugged Altai Mountains also includes opportunities to ride on horseback alongside the hunters, as well as visits to a local mosque, town market, provincial museum, and archaeological site.
Natasha Recommends: To complete the experience, we’ll arrange a post stay at the Three Camel Lodge, located in the Gobi Desert and one of National Geographic’s Unique Lodges of the World.
Attend the spectacular Golden Eagle Festival, with up to 60 Kazakh hunters and their Golden Eagles
Spend a morning riding through the mountains with the hunters and their eagles
Visit Kazakh families in their traditional gers, felt tents decorated in a dazzling mosaic of colors
9 DAYS – HELD ANNUALLY IN SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER
PRICING – $5295 USD PER PERSON, DOUBLE OCCUPANCY
INTERNAL AIRFARE – $485 USD PER PERSON
Click HERE for an in depth look at Mongolia, and learn more about the origin of the Golden Eagle Festival, as well as one of the driving passions behind it: Jalsa Urubshurow, eco-warrior and Founder of Nomadic Expeditions – Departures Magazine
For more information on this journey, or other programs that we can create for you to Mongolia, drop us a line