Virtuoso Life - January/February 2018 - 80
Undraa Buyannemekh is all for going off the grid in 2018.
My job: President, Nomadic Expeditions - a tour
operator specializing in adventure travel to Mongolia
(1), Nepal, and other destinations in Asia.
Why should Mongolia be on every traveler's list?
It's a place of remarkable beauty, where horses still
outnumber people and wide swaths of pristine
landscapes are home to one of the world's last
remaining truly nomadic cultures.
Where else do you see travelers wanting to
explore? Beyond Mongolia, guests are asking
us about Sri Lanka - a destination we've just
added - as well as Siberia and Bhutan (2).
How does Nomadic support local communities? We train and hire locals, create
scholarships, and support schools and nonprofits
working in conservation and cultural preservation. Travelers tell us that some of their favorite
memories are of visits to our community greenhouse projects and other initiatives we back.
"There's no place like home,
and for me that's my parents' house
in Mongolia where I grew up. I love
going back to the Gobi to unplug
Advice for first-timers to remote destinations? Don't be afraid to break up with your
iPhone for a bit! Many areas in Mongolia don't
have cell-phone reception; nothing resets the
soul quite like disconnecting every now and then.
You travel often between the U.S.
and Mongolia. Any long-haul pro tips? Pack
patience, since flights get delayed and seatmates are unpredictable. As soon as I board, I
change my watch to my destination's time zone
and try not to focus on the sleep I may lose.
Three items always in your suitcase?
A book, headphones for podcasts, and a Mongolian cashmere shawl (4) for warmth. I buy
mine from Gobi Mongolian Cashmere - they
make the best ones.
V I RT U O S O L I F E
(UNDRAA BUYANNEMEKH) KEVIN J. MIYAZAKI/HAIR & MAKEUP BY SONG LOPEZ, (MONGOLIA LANDSCAPE) MICHAEL KLEINBERG,
(ARCHER) ROBERT MICHAEL POOLE, (BHUTAN) NOMADIC EXPEDITIONS, (TIBET) KNIGHTERRANT/GETTY IMAGES
And what about you - where to next? Tibet
(3),, to hike to the Everest Base Camp.