Kamchatka's Critters and Craters

Written by 56th Parallel on 22nd May 2017
Kamchatka tour volcanoes bears reindeer herders Russia

This Kamchatka nature and wildlife tour will take place in the prime summer wildlife viewing season, allowing you to experience the incredibly rich flora, fauna, and geology of the region. This compressive 15 day tour gives us time to take in many of the most spectacular volcanic landscapes and prime wildlife spotting locations on the peninsula, despite the challenges of travelling in a largely undeveloped region defined by vast distances and the virtual absence of sealed roads. We’ll also visit remote Koryak and Evens settlements in Central Kamchatka and be welcomed into the summer camps where they graze their reindeer herds in the tundra. At times exhausting and frequently exhilarating, these unforgettable two weeks in Russia’s Eastern frontier will send you home with a newfound appreciation of the raw power and beauty of Mother Nature and the importance of preserving these last remaining tracts of untouched wilderness.

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Take a breathtakingly scenic flight on an Mi-8 helicopter to Kurilskoye Lake, with a bonus flyover of the summit of Kusdach volcano. With a bit of luck, we’ll land near the summit and walk to the deep blue lake in the crater of the volcano, where’s its actually possible to swim for short periods in the lake’s ‘hot beach’
  • Spend 2 incredible days among the brown bears of Kuril Lake. As the bears’ only interest is in gorging themselves on the salmon swimming upstream to breed, visitors can observe wild bear families at unbelievably close proximity. We’ll observe the bears both from boats and from a special viewing platform overlooking prime fishing grounds 
  • A Russian Mi-8 helicopter will drop us off at the banks of the Khodutka River to bathe in thermal hot springs. After a relaxing soak, our joy flight continues with a breathtaking pass over the crater of the active Mutnovsky volcano.
  • Camp for a night under a star-studded sky along the banks of the Kamchatka River. Our campsite is located within the Klyuchevskoy Nature Park,  containing 13 of Eurasia’s largest and most spectacular volcanoes
  • Visit the eerily beautiful Dead Forest and lava fields beneath Tolbachik volcano. The result of an enormous eruption between 1975 and 1976, the larch trees at the volcano’s foothill have become petrified ghosts of their former selves
  • Travel to Central Kamchatka, home of the Even and Koryak, the “people of the reindeer”, who set up their summer camps near the village of Esso. You’ll be granted the extraordinary privilege of experiencing traditional nomad life, spending a night camped out with the herders in their tents

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Kamchatka - Kingdom of the Brown Bears

Written by Anna Schneider on 8th Dec 2015
Kamchatka Bears

Perhaps the most potent symbols of Kamchatka’s untamed nature are its towering volcanoes and its most famous furry resident, the mighty Kamchatka brown bear, ancestor of the Alaskan Kodiak bear and equally as imposing in size. These two iconic natural emblems are the main subjects of this tour, an adventure into the wilds of Russia’s Far East that’s equal parts thrilling and humbling. Including three nights staying in a forest cabin on Kuril Lake at the height of the bear’s salmon hunting season, this Kamchatka wildlife tour will get you closer than you ever imagined to the animal inhabitants of the peninsula.

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Kuril Lake during the summer salmon run is one of only a few places where visitors can observe hunting brown bears in their natural habitat at close proximity. To get the best chances of adrenaline-pumping close encounters and amazing photos ops, we’ll watch bears feed and frolick along the shore from a motorboat, as well as on-land from a special viewing platform overlooking prime fishing grounds.
  • Take off in a Russian Mi-8 helicopter for a breathtaking flight to the Khodutka River hot springs, nestled in a forested valley where we’ll bathe, relax and camp for the evening. The largest collection of hot springs in Kamchatka, water temperatures in the various spring pools range from 40 and 60°C.

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Kamchatka Discovery

Written by 56th Parallel on 20th Feb 2014
Valley of the geysers Kamchatka, Kamchatka discovery

There are adventure travel destinations. And then there’s Kamchatka. If you crave transformative travel experiences, communion with nature and wilderness that is still truly “wild”, Kamchatka is a bucket list destination that will fulfil your frontier travel fantasies. The remoteness and sheer size of the Kamchatka Peninsula don’t always make for a leisurely vacation, but our Kamchatka Discovery tour with private transport makes seeing many of the Siberian territory’s most spectacular sights possible over eight enthralling days.

To make the most of your time in Kamchatka, you’ll tour the peninsula by 4WD, on foot and on board a boutique cruising yacht. Perhaps the most ideal way to travel Kamchatka’s great distances is by helicopter. On one of our optional helicopter excursion, land next to Kurilskoye Lake to observe the famous fish brown bears, or take a fly-over across the Valley of Geysers for an incredible bird’s eye view of the kind of bizarre and beautiful primitive landscapes that make Kamchatka so alluringly otherworldly.

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Avachinskaya Bay cruise: Spend half a day tracing the twisting coastline from tranquil Avacha Bay out to Starichkov Island, a nature reserve renowned for its seabird population
  • Volcano trekking around Mount Vachkazhets: Discover the surprising beauty of the peninsula’s volcanic landscapes on a circuit of the Vachkazhets volcano, an easy four-hour hike passing flower-filled meadows, waterfalls and panoramic mountain viewpoints

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Kamchatka Heli Skiing Adventure

Written by 56th Parallel on 24th Feb 2013
Kamchatka Heli skiing, Kamchatka skiing tour

Kamchatka heli skiing adventure take takes you to soaring ridges blanketed in untouched deep powder snow, and the majestic volcanoes of the Pacific Ring of Fire in all their white winter splendour. Your helicopter touches down in the middle of nowhere – the summit of a towering and very-much-alive volcano. The Mi-8 helicopter is the ultimate chairlift, and the volcanic slopes of Kamchatka are the ultimate free ride. As the chopper disappears from view, the sense of isolation and the sheer silence of the mountains is profound. Take a moment to meditate on exactly where you are – one of the wildest, most remote places on Earth – then take a deep breath and away you go. This Kamchatka skiing tour is a winter wonderland! READ MORE

About 56th Parallel

56th Parallel is a travel company specialising in providing packaged tours and travel services in Russia.

Our goal is to redefine travel to Russia, focusing on creating the most rewarding experiences, which help travellers unfolds the soul of this exciting destination.

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