Date
Category
Location

Mongolia

Shamans & Buddhas under the under the Eternal Blue Sky

A unique experience that comes as the fruit of years of personal experience in Siberia and Central Asia.

Mongolia is a place of great magic, history, wilderness, soul and beauty. At the crossroads of Asia, it boasts a heritage of ancient spiritual and cultural traditions that are deeply felt by the entire population. Here, amid deserts, steppes and sacred mountains, the animist power of nomadic shamanism meets the depth of Buddhist thought and civilisation.

Mongolia

During the course of the trip, Michelangelo and Dasha will conduct a mini-seminar focusing on the history and sociology of shamanism and Buddhism in Mongolia, as well as meditations, practices and activities drawn from the school of Imaginal Psychology. They will also share their knowledge and passion for Mongolia throughout the journey.

In this exclusive journey, we will have the unique privilege of meeting and talking to extraordinary shamans – an unmissable adventure from which no one will return without a precious treasure of creative inspirations!

Registration is open until
26/06/2023

Participation in the trip is limited and is subject to a preliminary interview
N.B. The programme may be subject to change
N.B. The participation fee may vary slightly depending on the exchange rate and the number of participants

The programme is a tour of Mongolia which starts with the arrival of the participants in the morning and transfer to a hotel in the city centre. The first day includes a visit to the Gandan Monastery, Zaisan Hill and the Bogd Khan Museum. On the second day, the tour continues to Batshireet, a small village located in the boreal forest in the heart of Buryat Mongolia where there will be an introductory discussion on Mongolian shamanism led by Michelangelo and meditative practices with Dasha. On the third day, there will be a meeting with the local shaman of the Buryat ethnic group and the opportunity to attend a shamanic ceremony. The fourth day includes attending the Naadam festival at Binder, where the three ‘manly’ competitions (horse racing, traditional wrestling, and archery) will be held. The fifth day involves a transfer to Gorkhi-Terelj Nature Park, known for its picturesque mountain scenery, interesting rock formations, and numerous outdoor activities. On the sixth day, the tour continues to Baga Gazriin Chuluu, located in the Dundgov Prefecture. On the seventh day, the participants will reach the ruins of Ongh monastery. On the eighth day, the tour moves to Kharkhorin, the former capital of Genghis Khan’s Mongol Empire. The ninth day is spent in Shank monastery with the monks, and in the evening, the tour moves to the shores of Lake Oghi Nuur. Finally, on the tenth day, the tour ends with a visit to the dunes of Elsiin Tasarkhai.

PROGRAMME 15-29 July 2023

Day 1 (15 July)

Departure for Mongolia

Day 2 (16 July)

Arrival in the morning. Transfer and accommodation at a hotel in the city centre. Meeting with the guides and presentation of the tour programme. Visit to Gandan Monastery, Mongolia’s main monastery built some 300 years ago. Ascent to Zaisan Hill at the base of which stands a huge statue of Buddha and from where there is a beautiful view of the city and surrounding hills. Visit to the Bogd Khan Museum, the winter palace of the last emperor-blama.

Accommodation in a hotel – 120km drive.

Day 3 (17 July)

Today we leave very early for the small village of Batshireet, nestled in the boreal forest in the heart of Buryat Mongolia. The ger camp where we stop is surrounded by nature, and we will stay here for two nights. Introductory discussion on Mongolian shamanism led by Michelangelo and meditative practices with Dasha.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 400km drive.

Day 4 (18 July)

In the morning, meeting with local shaman of the Buryat ethnic group and opportunity to attend a shamanic ceremony. In the afternoon, discussion on shamanism and Buddhism in Mongolia led by Michelangelo and practice in nature with Dasha.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 50km drive.

Day 5 (19 July)

We leave for Binder, a village that contends with Dadal, further north, in being the birthplace of the most important Mongolian in history: Chinggis Khaan. Today we will meet another shaman, also from the Buryat ethnic group. In the evening, meditative practices with Dasha and discussion on Mongolian traditions and folklore led by Michelangelo.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 50km drive.

Day 6 (July 20)

In the morning, we attend the Naadam festival at Binder (a traditional Mongolian festival involving the entire local community), where we’ll have the chance of seeing the three ‘manly’ competitions up close: horse racing, traditional wrestling and archery. We’ll take the opportunity to taste typical dishes and traditional drinks, mingling with the local people and sharing our day with them in the festive atmosphere. In the afternoon – meeting with a shaman. In the evening – meditative practices and discussion on the experiences of the first five days.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 20km drive.

Day 7 (July 21)

Transfer to Gorkhi-Terelj Nature Park. Known for its picturesque mountain scenery, interesting rock formations and numerous outdoor activities, Gorkhi-Terelj National Park is one of Mongolia’s most popular attractions. In the evening, discussion on Mongolian history led by Michelangelo and meditative practices with Dasha.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 320km drive.

Day 8 (July 22)

Departure for Baga Gazriin Chuluu, located in the Dundgov Prefecture (Central Gobi). During this dirt-road transfer we’ll have a first glimpse of the endless landscapes of steppes, desert and amazing colours that only central Mongolia can offer. We visit the Baga Gazriin Chuluu Park, where a granite rock formation is located in the desert plain, a place of pilgrimage for the local people and shamans. The road is almost completely paved.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp – 230km drive.

Day 9 (July 23)

Today we reach the ruins of Ongh monastery. Once a sprawling monastic complex that stood on an important caravan route, marked by the omonimous river, it now hosts a recently reconstructed temple. The natural environment is of particular interest due to the contrast between the dark mountains, which surround the remains of the monastery, and the green banks of the river that runs through the small valley.

Dinner and accommodation in a ger camp near the monastery – 250km drive.

Day 11 (24 July)

In the morning we leave early for Kharkhorin, the former capital of Genghis Khan’s Mongol Empire. Today it is just a village where 2 of the 4 stone turtles that originally marked the city’s boundaries remain; on a scenic hill behind wooden houses, a modern monument has been erected extolling the ancient glories of the Empire, when this place was the centre of the world. We visit the monastery-museum of Erdene Zuu, a place of pilgrimage for the Mongols, which is also striking for its long walls topped by small stupas delimiting the sacred space from the vast grasslands and green hills. Built on the ruins of Kharkhorin, it contains several very interesting temples to visit and a small museum. We then move on to Shank monastery, located 30km from the twon, where we will be welcomed as guests. Shank is a small, ancient monastery located in a small village amidst the vast prairies that once hosted the standards and flags of Genghis Khan. We spend part of the day with the monks and spend the night in the simple guest house inside the monastery. The accommodation will be somewhat spartan, but clean, and it is also an opportunity to provide concrete support to this small monastic community.

Accommodation in the monastery – 300km drive.

Day 12 (25 July)

After attending the morning prayer, which has been held every day for more than three centuries, we’ll have the opportunity to ask the monks questions and discuss Buddhism in Mongolia with Michelangelo. Dasha will lead a Buddhist-style meditation. In the afternoon, departure for the shores of Lake Oghi Nuur, Mongolia’s largest steppe lake and a prime observatory for birdwatching.

Overnight stay in a ger camp – 120km drive.

Day 13 (26 July)

Departure for the dunes of Elsiin Tasarkhai, a peculiar sand complex, on the same latitude as Ulaanbaatar. From here we will head north to reach a small new monastery, which is located at the start of the approximately 30-minute uphill walk to the remains of an ancient monastery. We will then reach Khustai Nuruu National Park, heading east towards the capital. Here we’ll have the chance to see Przewalski’s wild horses, also known as Takhi or Mongolian ponies. This animal is the closest relative of the domestic horse; in the 1960s they had disappeared, but thanks to a rehabilitation programme it is now possible to admire them. An excursion is planned into the park where, in addition to these wild horses, there are various animal species such as Asian red deer, steppe gazelles, manul wild cats and others.

Accommodation in a ger camp within the National Park – 350km drive.

Day 14 (July 27)

Departure from Khustai Park heading towards Ulaanbaatar. We’ll go straight to Mongolia’s largest market, which is located in the eastern part of the city. Many objects related to shamans and shamanism can be found here. At the end of the visit to the market, we head to the city centre where the hotel is located and have free time in the afternoon.

Accommodation at a hotel – 80km drive.

Day 15 (July 28)

Today is dedicated to visiting a famous shaman, who lives and works just outside the capital. A golden opportunity to study the profound differences (and similarities) between contemporary rural and urban shamanism. The shaman will give interested participants the opportunity to have private consultations.

Accommodation in a hotel – 20km drive.

Day 16 (July 29)

Departure from Mongolia

Mongolia

INCLUDES -

  • Italian- and English-speaking interpreter and guide

  • Korean 4X4 off-road vehicle, driver and fuel

  • Hotel stay in Ulaanbaatar in twin room

  • Accommodation in ger camps (two persons per ger)

  • Full board except in Ulaanbaatar

  • Entrance fees to museums, monasteries, national parks if included in the programme

  • Local taxes

  • City transfers as per the itinerary

THE FEE DOES NOT INCLUDE - 

- Additional drinks and snacks not in the itenerary or consumed from the minibar (where present)

- Meals not included in the programme

- Tips and optional excursions

- Horse or camel hire (optional if there is time and opportunity)

- Mongolian visa required for entry into the country (if required)

- Air or rail tickets

- Airport taxes

- Extra weight surcharge on domestic and international flights

- Travel insurance

- Possible gifts to shamans

From
€3’900.00

What they had to say...

See some of our reviews of Mongolia from some of our fellow explorers.

This trip has revolutionised the way I conceive of myself and the world. Having the chance to witness shamanism first hand whilst exploring Mongolia’s wild and unique landscapes is revelatory. Having been able to consult shamans on personal questions and witness them working through ancestral spirits to provide precious answers has been a priceless experience.

Ludovica

The most authentic and profound journey I have done. Everything – from the kindness of the drivers, to the pride of eagle hunters and Dasha’s and Michelangelo’s infinite knowledge and passion was extremely inspiring. Mongolia hit me straight in the heart with its beauty and endless surprise. I wholeheartedly recommend travelling with Dasha and Michelangelo to anybody who is up for questioning everything and going beyond all expectations!

Mary

A voyage of a lifetime. I never could have even imagined that I would be galloping on a horse across a frozen lake, conversing with shamans, taking part in rituals and ceremonies and sleeping in a real yurt. Michelangelo is a true shamanic expert, walking you through the twists, twirls and subtle nuances of Mongolian shamanism. My mind has been opened to a whole new dimension, another world. Dasha, your kindness, generosity and empathy gave me the confidence to go deeper within myself and to start working on the areas that most terrify me. Our daily shamanic yoga sessions, meditations, practices of Shinrin Yoku and mindfulness have transformed my vision and my life, and for that I am ever grateful.

Samuele

This experience WILL transform your life. My children kindly surprised me for my 50th birthday by booking this adventure to Mongolia. I had no idea what awaited me, how I would feel after the completion of this journey, nor of the emotional, spiritual as well as physical development that I would endure. The morning shamanic yoga and meditations with Dasha and Michelangelo always set a positive and empowering tone for the day; I learnt the importance of breath, the principle of letting go and of surrender and the power of consistent practice. I was part of a wonderful group in which I cultivated meaningful and intimate friendships in which to this day we stay in contact. This experience left me stronger than ever, it gave me the tools I was searching for. It gave me a breath of new life. It made me realise how much more the world has to offer; genuine and kind people, stories of empowering individuals, beautiful rituals, nature to wonder in. Say YES to life and it will start saying YES back to you.

Bianca.F