Small Group Safari

Volcanoes of Kamchatka Photographic Safari

Join your expert photographic guide on an adventurous journey to Russia’s Far East, traversing hundreds of miles of seldom-visited and untamed tundra pockmarked by the scars of intense thermal activity, including active volcanoes, geysers and thermal hot springs.

Duration 15 days
Price From $5,593
When Aug
Destination Russia

Safari Overview

For all those interested in frontier travel, Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula is a must-see destination. Despite covering more surface area than Great Britain, there are less than 200 miles of paved roads here, making any travel across its rugged tundra an adventure in itself. This safari takes you to three separate locations that allow you to immerse yourself in primal wilderness, and which offer fantastic photographic opportunities. Precipitous mountains, active volcanoes, hardened lava fields, magical ice caves and skeletal forests all await you on this remarkable expedition.

What makes this trip extraordinary

  • Traverse hundreds of miles of rugged terrain here in Russia’s wild and untamed Far East.
  • Embark on intrepid excursions into three different areas of Kamchatka’s wilderness, hiking mountains and exploring volcanic terrain.
  • Receive expert photographic advice from Russian landscape photographers Anton Agarkov.
  • Experience the natural wonders produced by Kamchatka’s hotbed of thermal activity, from craters and fumaroles to geysers and ice caves.

Discover the raw beauty of Kamchatka that reveals itself only to those with the drive and ambition to seek it out.

Day by day

Day 1

Arrive Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Arriving into Kamchatka’s largest city, you’ll be met at the airport by our representative and transferred to your hotel on the banks of the Paratunka River, just a stone’s throw from the local hot springs. After a relaxing dip in the springs you’ll join the rest of the group for dinner with your expert guide, Anton Agarkov. As a professional photographer and expert in this region, Anton will be able to discuss the upcoming photography opportunities as well as what adventures the safari holds for all involved.

Day 2

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky – Village Refuge

Today you’ll begin your safari into the wilds of Kamchatka in earnest. A sturdy 6WD Kamaz truck has been equipped for just this purpose: 25 comfortable seats, compartments for food and luggage, a water supply and electrical sockets to charge your devices. Russia’s Far East is vast and largely untamed; an overland journey of some 300 miles lies between Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and your first destination, a remote village refuge located close to the Tolbachik Volcanoes. Upon your arrival you can rest after a long day on the road and immerse yourself in the life of a typical Russian village here in Kamchatka.

Day 3

Tolbachik Volcanoes

Your first stop here in this mountainous region is Leningradskaya Station, located on the southern side of the twin volcanoes Ostry Tolbachik and Plosky Tolbachik. Here in this wild and rugged landscape you’ll find volcanic cones, lava fields, fumaroles, and even caves carved out of the earth by the heat and force of flowing lava. Your camp will include a huge kitchen-tent along with tables, chairs, a generator, water supply and other amenities, making this the perfect place from which to explore the surrounding terrain.

Day 4

Tolbachik Volcanoes

An early start will ensure you’re in the right place at the right time for some incredible photographic opportunities. Ascending a volcanic cone near your camp before sunrise, you’ll be treated to a magnificent 360° view of the valleys below and Tolbachik volcanoes beyond. After descending back down to the camp for breakfast, you’ll spend the day on excursions across the volcanic landscape before heading to the “dead forest” on the slopes of the Tolbachik massif in time for sunset. A large eruption in 1975 buried this once verdant forest under layers of ash, killing every tree but leaving a few skeletal trunks standing. Under a star-studded sky, these eerie sentinels make for great night photography subjects!

Day 5

Tolbachik Volcanoes

Another day, another sunrise, this time viewed from the peak of a different volcanic cone. An evening photography session with your expert guide will help you to adapt to Kamchatka’s unpredictable weather conditions. Sunlight, rain, mist and fog will allow you to capture its vistas from different perspectives.

Day 6

Village Refuge

After another sunrise photoshoot and a hearty breakfast, you’ll board the Kamaz once more and drive back to the village you stayed in a few days ago. Rest, relax and enjoy a traditional banya, or Russian steam sauna. Take the opportunity to prepare for your next excursion and treat yourself to a hot shower and trip to the laundry.

Days 7-9

Klyuchevskaya

Your next campsite will be made near “The Hoof”, an area close to Klyuchevskaya, the highest mountain on the Kamchatka Peninsula. You’ll have the opportunity to partake in sunrise and sunset photography sessions, embark on a radial hike through the mountains and try your hand at astrophotography when night sets in. Depending on light and weather conditions, you’ll also camp at the Podkova seismic station, which offers a northerly perspective on Klyuchevskaya.

Day 10

Village Refuge

It’s time to relocate once again to the village refuge on the outskirts of the volcano area, where you can enjoy some creature comforts before the third and final section of your expedition.

Day 11

Village Refuge – Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

After leaving the Valley of Giants behind, most of today will be taken up by the return journey to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, where you’ll spend another night in the city’s hotel and have another soak in the Paratunka hot springs.

Day 12

Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky – Mutnovsky Volcano

Today’ll you’ll head south for the campground close to Mutnovsky Volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in southern Kamchatka (and part of the Volcanoes of Kamchatka UNESCO World Heritage Site) which also has at its feet a field of geysers.

Day 13

Mutnovsky Volcano

A two-hour drive from the campground to Mutnovsky allows you to then explore the natural wonders of this volcano, including the nearby craters and fumaroles. Pools of fluorescent-green acid and smoking bright yellow sulphur deposits make this landscape look almost alien in nature – a wonderful opportunity to capture eye-catching images.

Day 14

Mutnovsky Volcano – Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Depending on safety conditions, you’ll also be able to spend today discovering the ice caves underneath Mutnovsky volcano, which make for stunning photographic backdrops. Sunlight filters through the glacial ice that forms the ceilings of these otherworldly labyrinths, while the stream that runs along the ground is fed by volcanic hot springs. You’ll then depart for Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky for your final night in Kamchatka.

Day 15

Depart Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Before your departure from Russia’s wild Far East you can take in the sights of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, including the bustling fish market, picturesque Avacha Bay, and the Vulcanarium, a museum dedicated to educating the public about the volcanoes of Kamchatka.

Trip Details

Trip Dates & Prices

This is an exclusive small group safari for up to 14 guests departing on a single set date, in the company of expert photographic guide Anton Agarkov.

 2018 Departure  Price
 Aug 12-26  From £3,995 per person

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