Volcanoes, Geysers, Hot Springs and Reindeer of Russia’s Far East

This uncommon journey focuses on the wild Kamchatka Peninsula of Russia’s east coast, a wide volcanic promontory thrusting upward from the Pacific Ring of Fire. Spend nine days exploring this spectacular region by cross-country vehicle and helicopter, meeting its diverse people and experiencing its ruggedly beautiful landscapes en route. Admire the magnificent UNESCO-listed Valley of the Geysers.

9 Day Trip

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Overview Itinerary

MIR Signature Experiences on this Tour
  • Hop a Helicopter to the Valley of the Geysers
    Helicopter over smoking volcanoes on your way to Kamchatka’s UNESCO-listed Valley of the Geysers in some of the world’s wildest landscapes...
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  • Enjoy a cultural performance of Koryak song and dance
    Enjoy a cultural performance of indigenous Koryak song and dance in a remote settlement of about 700 people...
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  • Visit an encampment of semi-nomadic reindeer breeders
    Fly to a summer encampment of semi-nomadic reindeer breeders and their herds, visiting their chums, the cone shaped, portable tents they call home, and...
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  • Enjoy splendid views of Avachinsky and Koryaksky volcanoes
    Enjoy views of Avachinsky and Koryaksky volcanoes, looming over the city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky...
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Why Travel with MIR on this Tour
  • Over 25 years of Russia travel experience
  • Travel programs such as Princeton and the Harvard Museum of Natural History have chosen MIR to guide them to Russia
  • Twice named one of National Geographic Adventure’s “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth”
  • On-the-ground support and quality you can trust
  • MIR affiliate offices in the Siberian cities of Irkutsk and Ulan Ude
  • Personalized travel planning from start to finish
  • Guides and tour managers who clients rave about
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Itinerary & Highlights at a Glance

Days 1-3: Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Valley of the Geysers

Arrive in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, a remote seaside town surrounded by three soaring volcanoes. Founded by Vitus Bering, the city is named after the two ships he sailed into Avacha Bay in 1740, the St. Peter and the St. Paul. Enjoy a boat ride around the bay, where colonies of seabirds nest on the cliffs. Board a helicopter for a ride up Kamchatka’s backbone of volcanic peaks to the Valley of the Geysers, hidden in a canyon 125 miles from Petropavlovsk. A natural preserve only discovered in 1941, this area seethes with geysers, steaming hot springs, mud kettles and aromatic sulfur pools. The only place with more geysers is Yellowstone National Park. In recognition of its great biodiversity, the valley was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Highlights

  • Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, capital of Kamchatka Peninsula and home to the Russian Pacific submarine fleet
  • Museum of Volcanology
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Days 4-6: Esso, Reindeer Breeders’ Camp

Venture north of Petropavlovsk, past the settlement of Milkovo, to the rarely visited region around the small town of Esso, located in the middle of the peninsula. Esso is home to many Koryak and Even indigenous people. The name Koryak comes from the native word khora, meaning reindeer; learn more about the lives of these semi-nomads during a helicopter visit to a reindeer camp. Visit the Koryak and Even ethnographic museum and art gallery and enjoy an authentic folk performance of traditional song and dance in the nearby settlement of Anavgay.

Highlights

  • Helicopter journey with exceptional scenery
  • Reindeer breeders’ camp
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Days 7-9: Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Avacha volcano

Drive back to Petropavlovsk and spend a day hiking at the foot of Avacha volcano, seeking out fantastic views of the nearby peaks. Gather back in town for a festive dinner to toast the conclusion of the adventure.

Highlights

  • Hiking on Avacha volcano
  • Picnic on Camel Mountain

See Dates & Prices for more details or to see suggested extensions.

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Tour Dates & Prices
Trip Length: 9 Days

Land Tour Price, Per Person
based on double occupancy

  • 6-16 Travelers $6,495
  • Plus Internal Air $1,200
  • Partial Single Supplement $795

2015 Dates

  • August 21-29
  • $6,495
  • Max 16 Travelers
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Group Size

Small Groups – Never more than 16 travelers. Guaranteed!

What’s Included

On Your Tour

  • Shared accommodations in best available hotels and guesthouses throughout.
  • Three meals daily (except for arrival and departure day) per the itinerary: 8 breakfasts, 7 lunches, and 8 dinners.
  • Restaurant tips for included meals.
  • Services of an experienced, English-speaking MIR Tour Manager with local guides at specific sites.
  • Arrival/departure transfers. MIR will arrange for all travelers to be met on arrival and seen off on departure whether we make your airfare arrangements or not, provided you arrive and depart on the tour start/end dates in the tour start/end cities.
  • Transportation throughout the itinerary by van or minibus, and truck on Day 8 (type of vehicle depends on group size and terrain).
  • Guided sightseeing tours and entrance fees as outlined in itinerary.
  • Special events, excursions and cultural performances per the itinerary.
  • Ecological permit to visit the Valley of the Geysers.
  • Baggage handling where available.
  • Gratuities to local guides and drivers.

Before Your Tour

  • Complete pre-departure information including detailed packing list, reading list, insurance information.
  • Touring with MIR handbook with country-specific information, maps, and travel tips.
  • Customized visa application and instruction kit (please note, visa fees are not included in the tour price).
  • Assistance booking your custom flight arrangements (on request; please note that international airfare is not included in the land tour cost).
  • Final document packet including luggage tags, final updates, and more.
Download Detailed Itinerary
Prepare for Your Trip

International Airfare

MIR's in-house, full-service air department will gladly assist with your air travel needs.

More Info

Reading List

MIR recommends reading up before you leave home. So settle back in your armchair with some of our favorite books about our favorite places.

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Visas

Most MIR programs require one or more visas, and each visa requires a completely blank page in your passport. Visa information for this particular tour is listed in the Detailed Descriptive Itinerary.

More Info

Travel Insurance

Stay a Little Longer…

MIR can arrange guided touring, excursions and more as you make your way to and from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. We suggest you spend an extra day or two in Vladivostok, with extensions to Western Russia, Siberia, Mongolia, and beyond. Please contact MIR for more details about exciting options for extended travel.

Or, choose from one of our suggested itineraries:

Is this Trip Right for You?

While the accommodations are as comfortable as possible, they will vary from a moderate three star hotel in Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky to a much simpler small private guesthouse in Esso. It is important to keep in mind that Kamchatka is, in general, not up to the standards North American travelers expect.

A full list of details about the rigors of this tour are explained in the Detailed Descriptive Itinerary.

Read our Travel Journals

MIR's Travel Journals offer first hand accounts of MIR's fascinating destinations.

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