Golden Eagle Festival

Mongolia, the land of endless steppes, rugged mountains, and nomadic traditions, is home to a remarkable cultural event known as the Golden Eagle Festival. In 2023, the Golden Eagle Festival will grace the picturesque city of Ulgii / Olgii, nestled amidst the breathtaking Altai Mountains. The event allows visitors to witness the region's stunning autumn colors, making it an unforgettable experience. The Golden Eagle Festival is an annual festival in Mongolia that celebrates the Kazakh hunting tradition with eagles. The 25th annual Golden Eagle Festival will occur on September 30 and October 1, 2023, in the westernmost province of Mongolia, Bayan-Ulgiy province. It is well renowned for being the center of the Altai Mountains and the residence of nomadic eagle hunters.

There are different locations where the festival takes place. The Eagle Festival Mongolia takes place in three other areas in the Western Part of the country. For this specific Eagle Festival Mongolia tour, you will participate in the Eagle Festival in September. 

The Golden Eagle Festival is a traditional practice of eagle hunting, a centuries-old way of life for the Kazakh people of Mongolia. 

The festival features numerous events, including competitions between eagle hunters, demonstrations of traditional Kazakh culture, and performances by local musicians and dancers. There are also opportunities to learn about the history and practice of eagle hunting from the Kazakh people.

The Golden Eagle Festival is a unique and fascinating event that offers a glimpse into a traditional way of life that is rapidly disappearing. It is a must-see for Mongolian culture or the natural world.

Here are some of the things you can see and do at the Golden Eagle Festival:

Watch eagle hunters compete in various events, such as calling their eagles, flying their eagles, and hunting with their eagles.

  1. History and Origin

The Golden Eagle Festival has its roots in the longstanding tradition of eagle hunting among the Kazakh nomads in Western Mongolia. For centuries, these skilled hunters have relied on golden eagles to assist them in hunting foxes and small mammals in the rugged Altai Mountains. The festival began as a local gathering, where hunters would demonstrate their expertise and pass down their knowledge and techniques to younger generations.

  1. The Festival Celebration 

The Golden Eagle Festival is usually in October against the breathtaking backdrop of Mongolia's pristine wilderness. Held in Ölgii, the event spans two days of exhilarating competitions and cultural exhibitions. Travelers attending the festival can witness the grandeur of the opening ceremony, where eagle hunters parade in traditional attire and perform awe-inspiring demonstrations of horsemanship.

The core event of the festival is the thrilling eagle hunting competition. Participants showcase the remarkable hunting skills of their trained golden eagles, launching them from mountain cliffs to snatch bait on the ground. These magnificent birds' speed, precision, and power are a sight. The festival also includes:

  • A series of traditional games and performances.
  • Ranging from archery and horse racing to traditional singing and dance.
  • Offering a unique insight into Mongolia's vibrant heritage.
  1. Cultural Significance 

The Golden Eagle Festival displays hunting prowess and holds deep cultural significance. The event fosters a strong sense of community and camaraderie among eagle hunters, creating a platform to exchange knowledge, stories, and experiences. Additionally, the festival serves to preserve and pass down the ancient art of eagle hunting to future generations, safeguarding Mongolia's unique intangible cultural heritage.

  1. Immersing in the Experience 

For travelers looking to partake in this extraordinary festival, various tour operators offer packages that provide an authentic and immersive experience. Visitors can stay in traditional nomadic gers, gaining insight into the lifestyle of Mongolian herders. Engaging with the friendly locals and savoring traditional dishes like khorkhog (Mongolian barbecue) adds to the overall cultural Experience.

When attending the Golden Eagle Festival, visitors can actively participate in the festivities. Learning basic archery or horse riding skills and witnessing how golden eagles are trained and cared for can forge lasting memories.

The Golden Eagle Festival in Mongolia is a captivating journey into the country's ancient nomadic culture, where time-honored traditions and breathtaking displays of eagle hunting prowess take center stage. For those seeking an immersive adventure amid awe-inspiring landscapes and warm hospitality, this festival offers an unforgettable lifetime experience.

Things to do 

  1. Learn about the history and practice of eagle hunting from the Kazakh people.
  2. See demonstrations of traditional Kazakh culture, such as horsemanship, archery, and wrestling.
  3. Enjoy performances by local musicians and dancers.
  4. Visit the Eagle Hunter's Museum, which houses a collection of artifacts related to eagle hunting.
  5. Take a hike in the Altai Mountains and see the stunning scenery.
  6. The Golden Eagle Festival is a truly unforgettable experience. 

Tips you must know

Here are some suggestions for planning your trip to the Golden Eagle Festival:

  1. Be sure to book your flights and accommodation well in advance.
  2. The festival takes place in a remote area, so be sure to pack for all types of weather.
  3. There are limited facilities at the festival site, so be sure to bring everything you need, including food, water, and sunscreen.
  4. The festival is famous, so be prepared for crowds.

Visited Month

  • Oct

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