Three Camel Lodge
- Be the first to Review
Top Pick for:
c/o Nomadic Expeditions, LLC, Building 76, Suite 28,1-40 000, Peace Avenue
Comfort and the Gobi Desert may not be synonymous in most travelers' minds, but Three Camel Lodge is one notable exception. The 50-acre wilderness outpost is nestled in the foothills of the Gobi-Altai Mountains on the edge of the Gobi Desert. Its location inside Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park makes it an opportune place to roam Mongolia's diverse terrain like one of the country's half-million nomadic herders. Here the Gobi Desert is a vast and fascinating landscape of verdant mountain(+) More
Comfort and the Gobi Desert may not be synonymous in most travelers' minds, but Three Camel Lodge is one notable exception. The 50-acre wilderness outpost is nestled in the foothills of the Gobi-Altai Mountains on the edge of the Gobi Desert. Its location inside Gobi Gurvan Saikhan National Park makes it an opportune place to roam Mongolia's diverse terrain like one of the country's half-million nomadic herders. Here the Gobi Desert is a vast and fascinating landscape of verdant mountain valleys, lofty sand dunes, and red-rock cliffs.
At first glance the lodge looks like a migratory camp of some of those roving herders. The 30 traditional yurt-like gers were handmade by local artisans with latticed wood supports, canvas, and heavy felt made from sheep's wool. Defying their simple exteriors, open the huge, boldly-painted wooden door of a ger to find that it's outfitted with creature comforts including a wood-burning stove and hand-painted furniture. The wide beds (complete with cashmere blankets) are a memorably plush way to end a day on camelback or one spent trekking in the desert.
With Nomadic Expeditions, the eco-outfitter that owns Three Camel, the options for exploration are superb. On its "From Yak to Kayak" expedition, guests paddle ancient Lake Hovsgol encircled by mountains and camel trek through the wild Gobi along the great tea-trade routes that once stretched from China to Russia. As if that's not enough, they also horseback-ride through Gorkhi-Terelj National Park to the Gunjin Buddhist temple, with the endless blue sky, broad desert, and grassy plains as constant companions. The park is in the shadow of the southern Khentii Mountains, at the confluence of the Terelj and Tuul rivers, and is frequented by brown bears and over 250 kinds of birds.
Closer to camp, ancient petroglyphs are a short walk away. Etchings of ibex, wolves, wild sheep, and antelope evoke the early humans who trod this gritty latitude thousands of years ago. Other nearby sights include the windswept "singing" Hongor Sand Dunes and the Flaming Cliffs, a riot of red rock where dinosaur fossils abound. Desert wildlife, like hares and long-eared hedgehogs, traverse the camp itself, as do herding nomads who often stop to visit with lodge guests.
Meals at Three Camel are traditional Mongolian fare, often beef and mutton, and are made with ingredients acquired from local farmers (as well as from the lodge's own vegetable garden). Food is served in the immense main lodge building, a 12-sided ger built with stone and felt and, as required by tenets of Buddhist architecture, without a single nail. Following dinner, the ger pulses with the energy of local dancers and musicians who perform by the light of the glowing fireplace each evening.
Heather Hansen is co-author of Disappearing Destinations: 37 Places in Peril and What Can Be Done to Help Save Them and has written for publications including Men's Journal, Outside, and Mother Jones.(-) Close
Nomadic Expeditions will host you at Mongolia's premier luxury expedition camp, built in the magical Gobi using environmentally and culturally sustainable development guidelines. The camp offers an extraordinary combination of adventure and sophistication, intertwining traditional style and superb service, resulting in the ultimate expedition experience.
Discover the soul of Mongolia in the legendary Gobi Desert. Sheltered by a 47-million-year-old volcanic outcrop, the Three Camel Lodge is situated amidst the stunning landscape of the Gobi's Gurvansaikhan National Park within view of the Gobi-Altai Mountain Range. This beautiful camp serves as a convenient base to explore the mysteries of the desert, whether hiking, camel trekking, or photographing indigenous wildlife.
The lodge was built with the participation of the local community and from the beginning was supported by the local county government. Three Camel Lodge is an integral part of our on-going commitment to ecotourism and sustainable development.