Kamchatka: Photo tour to the Kurile Lake
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July 24 - 30, 2023
  • 7 days
  • Brown bears, nerka, foxes, volcanoes
  • Easy level
  • 320 000 Rub
How does the tour take its course?
This tour is sure for you, if your goal is to see a lot of wild bears and be close to them!

Kurile Lake is a unique place. It has the highest density of bears per square kilometer in the world. Bears here are very tolerant of people and do not show any aggression, because they do not feel threatened by humans and have enough food to eat. You can walk up to them at a distance of a few meters and watch the bear fishing for a long time.

Most tourists get to Kurile Lake on a helicopter tour for just a few hours. On this tour we will spend a full 3,5 days surrounded by bears. Not only will we be able to explore the bears that live near the cordon, but we will also be able to make several outings on foot and by boat to the spawning rivers where hundreds of thousands of salmon go to spawn.

In addition to the photo tour bear program you can go on our famous sea cruise to the Pacific Ocean along the Kamchatka coast in search of whales and killer whales (availability limited - details on request). We will swim with sea lions, meet sea otters, and observe northern seabirds, Beringian gophers and black-eared marmots. You can also climb Mutnovsky and Gorely volcanoes.

    Day 1. Arrival
    to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, transfer to the hotel. Briefing.
    Day 2. Jeep ride to Kurile lake

    We meet early in the morning and taking a jeep ride to Kurile Lake on the shore of the Sea of Okhotsk. There are no roads here, so our transport will be a specially prepared jeep, a vehicle of high cross-country ability, which easily overcomes mountain passes and mountain rivers. The route goes along the coast of the Sea of Okhotsk. We will make stops along the seashore, in the river mouths and other beautiful places to have a rest, take pictures, have a snack and watch the animals.

    At the crossing on Ozernaya river we will be met by the inspectors of the South Kamchatka Federal Reserve named after Tikhon Shpilenka. It is forbidden for the cars to enter the territory, so we will load our luggage into the boats and walk the remaining 13 km to the Kuril Lake, on our way we will see the famous pumice stone rocks of Kutkha Baty and learn the legend about the god Kutkha. (those who don't want to walk can go by boat all the way to the ranger station).

    After settling into a cozy cabin at the Travyanoy ranger station and the obligatory briefing, we go to observe the bears that roam the trails just outside the stationfence.

    Day 3-5. Photo tour. Ranger station at Kurile lake. Watching wild bears on the unequipped shores without any fences. Boat trips and trekking.

    We will spend three days on the lake watching bears. We will look both from the water, and from the shore. Boat trips to the spawning rivers and trekking around the lake. All trips outside the ranger station are accompanied by an inspector, who not only watches the safety, but also tells us a lot of stories about the bears' life and behavior.

    On the final day, after lunch, we'll drive to the small village of Pauzhetka, where we'll spend the night in a cabin with a hot thermal pool before the long drive back to town.

    Day 6. Way back to the city
    In the morning we leave Pauzhetka and go to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. In the evening we arrive back to the city. Transfer to the hotel.
    Day 7. Flight back home
    Transfer to the hotel and fright back home or continuing the programme.

    Cost: 320 000 Rubles
    Dates: 24 - 30 july, 2023
      • Included:
        • Permit to stay on the territory of the Kurile Lake preserve
        • Accommodation and meals at the ranger station at Kurile lake, use of electricity
        • Accommodation in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky or Paratunka (twin)
        • An armed inspector in the reserve
        • Excursions on Kurile lake, including boat trips
        • Accommodation and meals in Pauzhetka
        • All transfers according to the programme (including jeep trips to Kurile lake and back)
        • Team Trip guides on land, in the water and underwater.
      • Not included:
        • Air tickets to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and back.
        • Meals in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky or Paratunka
        • Medical insurance covering emergency evacuation.
        • Expenses caused by bad weather conditions, changes in flight schedules, breakdown of personal equipment and public equipment due to guests' fault, illness, or other unforeseen circumstances.
      • Disclaimer
        The tour is designed for favorable weather conditions. Depending on weather conditions and other unforeseen factors, the itinerary may be altered. The specified order of days and the schedule inside are approximate. In the case of inability to perform part of the program for reasons beyond the control of the organizer, this part of the program will be replaced by an alternative.
      It's easy to book with us!
      The process of booking becomes easy with Whale Watching Expeditions.
      • 1
        Contact us
        However you like: email info@whale-expeditions.com, using Facebook/Instagram or fill the application form below
      • 2
        We will call you back
        Or write a message. We will answer all your questions, explain all the details and discuss your personal wishes
      • 3
        Deposit payment
        When you are ready to book expedition, we would ask you to pay the deposit, usually it's 50% of the price. You can pay the rest later, the last payment day is 60 days before expedition start.
      • 4
        You got your space on the trip, it's time to buy plane tickets! By the way, we can help you with tickets and visas if needed.
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