The homestay in East Ujimqin is located in one of the most Mongol areas of Inner Mongolia. While Inner Mongolia itself is less than a fifth Mongol, East Ujimqin is more than 70% – making it one of the most Mongol parts of Inner Mongolia.
It’s located straight at the border to Mongolia and is well known for its beautiful grasslands. The host family here, as most of those who have not moved to the cities, live a semi-nomadic life. During parts of spring and summer they are out herding the animals through the grasslands, but for the colder parts of the year they are stationary.
You will stay in a yurt, which is set up for most of the year. There is no electric grid, so you need to rely on a small wind power plant and a diesel generator for electricity. It is possible to charge the phone, laptop etc.
The yurts are made out of wool fleece and are rain and wind proof. They have one electric lamp each connected to the electricity stations. This will make it possible to for example read, play chess with the father of the family (hard to beat!) or just sit and socialise.
A few minutes walk from the homestay lies a lake. It’s a beautiful spot, often with some migratory birds stopping by. There is cattle and other animals there too. With some luck you can see foxes, weasels or hares. There are plenty of weird plants and insects too for those who are interested in such things.
One of the main activities is to go horseback riding. As the horses are semi-wild, this is not as easy as you might imagine! First your hosts will herd the horses together using mopeds (you can sit on the back – it’s great fun!), then get them into an enclosure and snare one of them. When caught, the horse will calm down and behave as any other horse. They don’t want to get caught, but when they do they stop resisting. Here’s a shaky video of the herding of the horses:
Prices are 300 yuan per night and adult. Small children go for free and youth for half price. Included in the price are meals and a bed in the yurt. Horseback riding costs an additional 50 yuan per person and a Mongol barbeque also costs an additional 50 yuan per person.
A few things to take into consideration before booking:
- The food is not suitable for vegetarians. Most meals will consist of meat and dairy products with some bread on the side.
- There is no wifi and no internet connection on the telephones. It is possible to make phone calls from a small hill close to the homestay.
- If you have any special requests, for example to attend to a festival or try the nomadic existence out, you need to contact us in advance to make sure it is possible.
- The English language skills of the host family is limited!
It is possible to reach Ujimqin by direct busses from several places, including Beijing and Xilinhot. Ujimqin is a night bus ride away from Beijing. From Ujimqin you will need to travel the last stretch by a taxi for 150 RMB.
Contact us at Whatsapp +8615334792931, WeChat grm5943 or through the contact form.
If you need to book accommodation in for example Beijing or Hohhot you can use this link for a 15 euro bonus.