THE NAADAM FESTIVAL- NATIONAL HOLIDAY: The Naadam Festival is a highly anticipated event
and one of the most interesting national holidays, having been celebrated for
centuries. This year’s National Naadam Festival will kick off the official opening
ceremony held on July 11.The festival has its roots in the nomad wedding
assemblies and hunting extravaganzas of the Mongol Army. The opening ceremony
features marches and music from soldiers, monks and athletes before the real
fun begins! In the Naadam Stadium, the three sporting passions of Mongolians,
horse racing, wrestling and archery, are played out over 2 days.
Wrestling: At the start of competition all the wrestlers with
the higher title - holder in front , enter the hall in a line wearing gutuls
(decorated Mongolian boots.) and hats and their wrestling costumes called
"zodog"(an open fronted, long sleeves vest of silk) and “shuudag” (tight
short trunks ). There are many different titles for the wrestlers such as Titan
(avarga), Lion (arslan), Zaan (Elephant) and Nachin (Falcon). All the names
signify strength. Titles are mostly confirmed during the national festival
Naadam. A wrestler who wins five fights in succession one competition has the
right to have the title of Falcon, and if he wins seven fights in succession
Elephant. When a wrestler wins all the fights in a competition during one of
these festivals he will be a Lion. If he wins a subsequent year he merits the
title of titan, the highest rank. There is a variety of throws used to defeat
When a wrestler touches the ground with any part of
his body other than his feet and arms, he is considered to be defeat. The main
difference between Mongolian national wrestling and international free
wrestling is that the weight category of wrestlers is not taken into the consideration.
racing: Mongolian people have loved horse racing since time
immemorial. A whole system for conducting the contests has developed over the
centuries. In the racing held during national festivals, including Naadam,
participants are six age groups and the distances range from 15-30 km. No
special tracks are prepared, the horses covering the distance in the steppe and
jumping over natural barriers. Before they start the riders sing an ancient
war-like song -Giingoo. The competitors start at the finishing line and at the
signal to start and back to the finish line. Thus the distance is actually
doubled. The horse racing can be held on saddled or unsaddled horses. Horses of
two years older take part. The winner is honored with a cup of airag which he
drinks and sprinkles on the head and croup of his horse. After the races,
praise-singer extols the best riders and their horses.
Archery: Third element of the national games is archery. Five
lines engraved on an ancient Mongolian target immortalize the phenomenal record
of Yesuhei-baatar, saying that his arrow hit the target at a distance of 536 m.
The bow is an ancient invention going back to the Mesolithic Period. Ancient
Mongolians made their contribution to the design of the bow as a combat weapon.
Today Mongolian's use less complicated form archery
than in ancient time; the target is 'wall' made of cork cylinders braided
together with leader straps. Mongols are almost born with the archery skills, an
integral part of nomad’s lifestyle. From the very childhood such qualities as
perfect eyesight, measurement, patience and strength are nourished to develop a
good archer. Mongolian bows are very tight ones, so that it requires a pure
strength to stretch it out. As a rule, several teams of archers compete. Each
team of 5-7 archers should hit 33 leather cylinders from a distance of 75 m for
men and 60 m for women.
ONE DAY TOUR: NAADAM TOUR (11th of
July – 13th of July)
Starts at 9:00am.
(Pick up from your hotel)
- Drive to the Stadium (Opening Ceremony on 11th of July)
- Ankle Bone Shooting Competition
- Traditional Archery Competition
- Drive to Khui doloon hudag
- Horse Racing
- Enjoy a cultural
- Arrive in UB at
pax: 250 $ (Per person)
- 2 pax: 160 $
pax: 140 $ (Per person)
- 4 pax:
vehicle, gasoline, interpreter
guide, lunch, road taxes, ticket
for Naadam ceremony & Horse racing.
Excluding: Drinks, emergency
land rescue if required, tips etc ….