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Home  >  Russia. Shantar Islands  >  SHANTAR ISLANDS


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Programm managers

Nadezhda Novikova
Nadezhda Novikova
Telephone: +7 (495) 229-50-70 . 167
E-mail: chief@alpindustria-tour.ru
Skype: nnovikova74

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Tourism types: Adventures, Mixed tours, Rafting
Region: Russia » Shantar Islands
Length of Tour: 12 days, 11 nights

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There is a spot in the world unique in its beauty.
It is a spot where whales swim among icebergs, rapacious killer whales chase dolphins, bears roam the shores, waterfalls cascade from the mountains, marble and jasper rocks raise like bizarre castles, rivers swarm with fish, and birds twitter in many voices.

This place, half real, half fantasy, lies in the western part of the Sea of Okhotsk and is called the Shantar Archipelago.
The Shantar Archipelago occupies the water area of 10,000 square kilometers and consists of 15 major and minor islands plus many rocks and stacks. The largest isle is the Bolshoy Shantar, its area being about 2,000 square kilometers; the second largest is the Feklistova Island (400 sq. km). Then there come the Maly Shantar, the Belichiy, the Prokofieva, the Kusova, the Ptichiy, the Utichiy and other islands. People used to live in the Shantar Islands long ago, but now their only residents are the weather station workers and the old hand hunter.

The look of the Shantar Islands is amazingly beautiful. The isles are covered with countless rocks and stacks, waterfalls rush down the steep Shantar shores. Unique are rivers and lakes, the largest being Lake Bolshoye with the Olenya River flowing into it. Rivers and lakes are rich with fish, bears roam the riverbanks, bird colonies make a rumpus, and near the shores, there are whales, killer whales and numerous seals.

The geology of the islands is also interesting. The shores are a true open-air geological museum. In many places one can see rocks tinged with a great variety of colors – pink, red, green and white. This is where jasper, marble and other formations come out to the day.





Itinerary (show)
Arrival in Khabarovsk. Ride to Briakan. Day 1. Arrival in Khabarovsk. Ride to Briakan.
Arrival in Khabarovsk by air, ride (at night) to the airfield in the settlement of Briakan by the large, 45-seat bus. Travel time: 12-14 hours. Distance: 700 km, of which 400 km is over the asphalt road up to Komsomolsk and 300 km over the earth-road along the Baikal-Amur Mainline.

Flight between the settlement of Briakan and Bay of Ongachan. Day 2. Flight between the settlement of Briakan and Bay of Ongachan.
Flight by helicopter to the Ongachan Base (1.5 hours). Accommodation in the tourist camp, in cottages (beds, bedclothes). Dinner. Getting acquainted with the camp: special room for eating, bar and mess room. There is a kitchen, gas stoves, freezers, a power supply unit, and a laundry. A sauna is prepared every day. In the evening, a festive supper and sauna.

* The Bay of Ongachan lies along the Tugur Peninsula and is very picturesque, for there is a great lake there with the river flowing out of it. Salmon comes to this river for spawning. There are no midges there, but the bay is often visited by whales and killer whales. One can see a bear or a fox here. The Bay of Ongachan is safe prom the prevailing winds and usually still. The bay is beyond the National Park, and the Shantar Islands themselves are quite close it takes just five minutes to reach the nearest isle by motor-boat.

Bolshoy Shantar Island. Day 3. Bolshoy Shantar Island.
The exploration of the Shantar Islands begins.
A trip to the Nasha Bay of the Bolshoy Shantar. On the way, there are stops and the dinner on the Maly Shantar Island. While traveling along the island coast, one can meet bears which come to the shore to fish. From this bay, the best view of the sunset can be photographed. Dinner at the Nasha Bay. Return to the base camp at the Bay of Ongachan.

Bolshoy Shantar Island. Topaznaya Bay. Day 4. Bolshoy Shantar Island. Topaznaya Bay.
Today we shall visit the weather station on the Bolshoy Shantar Island. This is where the only residents of the whole Shantar Archipelago live its population is just four men. These four men record the weather and rainfall, transmit the data and so on. Not far from here, there used to be a mini-plant for processing whale fat into oil. Nowadays the plant is ruined, and the remaining structures naturally rusted all through.

Utichiy Island. Day 5. Utichiy Island.
A trip to the Utichiy Island. The length of the island is about 2.5 km, the width no larger than 500 m. Visiting the rookery of ringed seals and the bird colonies.
The island harbors the largest spectacled guillemot colonies on the archipelago. For example, in 1991 1992 17,500 bird couples nestled on the Utichiy Island. There also are seal rookeries there.

Bays of the Tugur Peninsula. Day 6. Bays of the Tugur Peninsula.
Exploring the bays of the Tugur Peninsula, the Academy Bay and the Bay of Konstantin.

* The Tugur Peninsula lies at the western coast of the Sea of Okhotsk (in the Shantar Sea), separating the Tugur Bay (in the west) and the Ulban and the Academy Bays (in the east). The relief of the peninsula is mostly mountainous.
The Academy Bay is a bay in the Sea of Okhotsk; its length is 110 km, width at the mouth 61 km, and depth up to 45 m. It is frozen in winter. Before the bay mouth, the Shantar Islands are situated.
The Academy Bay itself is divided into the Bay of Konstantin, the Bay of Nicholas and the Ulban Bay. The western coast is formed by the Tugur Peninsula. The bay was named after the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences by the Russian traveler and geographer A.F. Middendorf during his expedition to this part of the world in the years 1844 1845.

The Belichiy Island. Day 7. The Belichiy Island.
A trip to the Belichiy Island. The area of the isle comprises about 70 sq. km, the width is between 1.5 and 7 km. It is separated from the mainland by the Strait of Lindholm, and from the nearby Maly Shantar Island, by the Opasny Strait. The island is covered by larch woods.
The Belichiy Island, together with the neighboring isles, belongs to the Federal State Natural Area The Shantar Islands.

The Ptichiy Island. Day 8. The Ptichiy Island.
The coast is covered with drift wood, and there are picturesque rocks along the shore. But the true pearl of the bay is the snowfield! The island is small, 2.5 km long and 1.5 km wide. Birds, birds and more birds, as the isle name means the Bird Island. There are large colonies of spectacled guillemots on this isle.

The Bay of Ongachan. Day 9. The Bay of Ongachan.
A day of rest: sauna, fishing, watching whales, seals, bears and foxes at the Ongachan Bay.

The Bay of Ongachan. Day 10. The Bay of Ongachan.
This is also a margin day. Stellers sea eagle, ermine and sable may be photographed.

Return from the Bay of Ongachan. Day 11. Return from the Bay of Ongachan.
Departure for Briakan by air and then a bus trip to Khabarovsk.

Arrival in Khabarovsk and the journey home. Day 12. Arrival in Khabarovsk and the journey home.
Departure for Moscow.
Price includes (show)
The program cost includes all the services from Khabarovsk and back again, except for exclusive alcoholic drinks and satellite phone: transfer, food, accommodation at the base camp and tours.
Price does not include (show)
air trip to Khabarovsk and back again and medical insurance.

As to the equipment, tourists need only to take clothes, water boots or waders, a personal medical kit, photo and video equipment and fishing tackles.
In the base camp, there are dishes and bed things (mattresses, blankets, sheets and pillowslips).
Weather (show)
The climate of the Shantar Islands is much more severe than that in the extreme north of the Sea of Okhotsk. It is caused by the prevailing northeastern winds of the sea which drive all the ice from the Sea of Okhotsk to the straits of Shantar. The coast waters are free from ice only for two or three months. Even in July, huge icebergs float here like white swans, and the snow falls already in October, though the place lies at the same latitude as Moscow.
Frequent fogs and rare but violent storms take turns on the isles. The rise of the tide here reaches 5 to 8 meters, and the flood currents are among the swiftest in the World Ocean.
We cannot guarantee good (flight) weather, for the North is the North. A cyclone may come on, or the fog may thicken, so we recommend having a margin day when buying the return air tickets, or getting open-ended tickets. Youd better spend this day in Khabarovsk.

Food in the base camp: We shall have a cook and a kitchen hand. The food is delivered beforehand, and perishable foods fresh meat in a cooler, fruit and vegetables are brought together with the tourists (by helicopter).
Alcohol: The main drink (vodka) is included into the menu, while all the exclusive drinks (whiskey, brandy, wine) are bought by the tourists themselves, for which purpose the bus stops at the supermarket.

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Address: 105037, Moscow, Russia, 18, Pervomayskaya str.
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