Mongolia’s road network (including state, local and internal roads) totals approximately 49 000 km’s, connecting 21 major cities and more than 160 villages (soums and bags). There are 11.219 km of state roads and 37.859 km local roads in Mongolia. Most of the roads in Mongolia are poorly maintained gravel or earth roads. As much as 75.6% of state roads and 97.7% local roads are earth roads.
Mongolia has plans to be connected to the road network of South Asia and Europe in the near future through the "Millennium Road". Construction of roads and bridges under the "Millennium Road" project are set to be carried out within 8-10 years. The "Millennium Road" has been planned to be constructed starting from Ulaanbaatar, and directing towards east and west and construction is carried out in accordance with the plan.
Mongolia is not an easy country to explore by selfdriving. As you could read earlier, most Mongolian roads are bumpy earth road, not adequate for fast driving. Most important while driving through Mongolia on a self driving trip, is to take time for stops, relax on the way, and explore on foot ruins of monasteries or picturesque spots.
When estimating driving distances and times, you should always allow extra time for your journey. Count on an average speed of 35 km/hour in north Mongolia and 55 km/hour in the Gobi desert. Driving faster is risky and can badly damage the vehicle.
More and more bridges are build in Mongolia, but depending of your itinerary you will need to cross rivers driving through them or by taking a cable ferry.
Mongolia has a lot of cattle. Unfortunately, cattle have no road sense. Be very careful when driving in the early morning and at dusk. Generally we advice people not to drive at night.
A GPS and good maps are a must as there are no road indications. Many track constantly split making it impossible to know which track to take. Even earth state roads are not easy to follow.
You can rent a GPS from 4X4 Mongolia and 4X4 Mongolia offers the opportunity to its clients to buy Mongolian road map and physical map of Mongolia. We have maps at 1:1.000.000 and 1:500.000. Map of NZ scenic areas. South Island New Zealand map and North Island New Zealand map.
A range of maps is available on this website www.mongoliangpsmaps.info. You can buy all those maps in Mongolia before you leave on our self driving tour.