The Best of Kamchatka - Volcanoes and the Inhabitants of the Peninsula
Kamchatka is a 780-mile long peninsula located in the Russian Far East across the Pacific Ocean from Alaska. The size of California, Kamchatka is a hundred times less populated with less than one person per square mile.
The most spectacular volcanic region in the world, with a high density and a variety of active volcanoes, the Peninsula contains the Volcanoes of Kamchatka UNESCO World Heritage Site. Glaciers formed with a wide range of volcanic features, creating inimitable landscapes of outstanding beauty. The pristine nature of the area is famous for great species diversity with a high concentration of sea otters, brown bears, and Stellar's sea eagles. Kamchatka produces over a quarter of all wild Pacific salmon, and its river system hosts the greatest diversity of salmonid fish on Earth, including the world's largest species, Chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha).
This summer the IBEX Tour program will offer a rare opportunity for travelers with an adventurous spirit and the desire to be among the privileged few to experience first-hand this unique destination, its history and culture. A world-renowned scientist Dr. Vyacheslav Dushenkov from Rutgers University will lead a selected group on a 15-day exploration of Kamchatka, to discover its unspoiled natural beauty and geological wonders, observe its wildlife in their natural habitats, and meet and learn from its people. We invite you to join Dr. Dushenkov on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to expand your knowledge of the world, nature and cultures.
Your Kamchatka journey of discovery will begin with your arrival at the international airport of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, the capital of the Kamchatka Region, where an IBEX Tours representative will welcome you and escort you to Paratunka, a nearby resort village famous for its thermal springs. In the days that follow, you will travel across the Kamchatka Peninsula; visit the area of the Lake Kuril, the second largest freshwater lake in Kamchatka, located on the territory of the South Kamchatka Nature Sanctuary; have the opportunity to climb the Avacha Volcano and hike the spectacular chain of craters of the Mutnovsky and Gorely volcanoes. You will also discover the history of Kamchatka's colonization and its native traditions as you visit the ethnographic complex at the Itelmens (Kamchadal) village of Pimchakh, meet members of the region's indigenous nomadic tribes that have survived through the centuries.
This is a strenuous expedition. You will mostly overnight in tents and should be able to walk up to 10 miles. Although we will be using specially equipped six-wheel drive vehicles, driving on poorly maintained dirt roads may be uncomfortable.
To get a live glimpse into what you may experience on this tour, view Valley of Geysers' webcam.
Cost per person, double occupancy: $4,985
Next Tour: August 2 - August 16, 2013
Number of participants: 6
Duration: 15 days
Overnight stays: small country style hotels, tent camps and other lodgings
Itinerary:Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Paratunka Valley, Avacha Volcano, Mutnovsky and Gorely Volcanoes, Village of Pimchakh, Lake Kuril.
The closest airport to our destination on the Kamchatka Peninsula is Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, located in the far east of the Russian Federation. Private vehicles will be provided for part of the tour (see below) and for some very remote places a private, chartered helicopter (shown right) will be available.
Tour Leader - Dr. Slavik Dushenkov
Dr. Slavik Dushenkov, Ph.D., a trained field biologist with over 20 years of experience in leading expeditions and guiding natural tours, will be the tour leader. He is the author of several field training course textbooks and guides. Local guides will also be on hand at different locations.
Read more about Slavik Dushenkov