Summary : Covering more than 3,800 nautical miles, and nearly circumnavigating the Bering Sea, this wide-ranging Arctic voyage explores one of the most rugged and wildlife-rich regions of the planet. Spot coastal brown bears from Katmai National Park to the Kamchatka Peninsula, search for Steller’s sea eagles along the scenically stunning Zhupanova River and be awed by the abundance and variety of marine mammals and seabirds from the Aleutians to the Commander Islands.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Dedicated Solo Cabins, Triple/Quad Cabins
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Arrive in Anchorage and transfer to Seward to embark National Geographic Orion in the late afternoon.
Spend two days exploring the shorelines and waters of coastal Katmai National Park & Preserve, observing and photographing its abundant brown bear population. Explore Geographic or Hidden Harbors and Kukak Bay by ship, Zodiac, or, conditions permitting, kayak.
Watch from deck as Orion transits Baby Pass en route to the Baby Islands, just to the east of Unalaska. Dynamic tides here offer exciting potential to spot sea otters and fur seals, as well as rare seabirds. Arrive at Dutch Harbor, site of a fierce WWII battle and now one of the world’s most important fishing ports.
These rugged and remote volcanic islands, which separate the North Pacific from the Bering Sea, support vast colonies of seabirds, and marine mammals such as northern fur seals, Steller sea lions, and a variety of whales. WWII history buffs will recognize names like Attu and Kiska, islands you’ll explore during these days.
After crossing the international date line, sail into the protected waters of Avacha Bay, and dock at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, the gateway to Kamchatka. Be on deck for the approach, as Koryaksky, Avachinsky, and Kozelsky volcanoes provide a stunning backdrop to this port city.
This 100-mile long immaculate waterway in Kamchatka is teeming with enormous rainbow trout, salmon and char. Explore the lower river by Zodiac, in search of one of the world’s largest raptors, plus numerous wading birds, other waterfowl, and spotted seals hauled out on sandbars.
Watch for whales, large rafts of sea otters, and countless nesting seabirds who inhabit the rich waters surrounding the Commander Islands. On land, visit the gravesite of Danish explorer Vitus Bering. Weather permitting, take Zodiacs to the fur seal rookery at Cape Severo-Zapadnyi.
There’s much to explore as you make your way up the seldom-visited east coasts of Kamchatka and Chukotka, in far eastern Siberia. Hike from one bay to the next, surrounded by volcanic mountains and tundra plants. Photograph brown bears, walruses feeding, and three species of seals in rookeries onshore. Learn about Koryak reindeer-herding culture in either Tymlat or Ossora village.
At the western limit of the rich transboundary area known as Beringia, Provideniya is often called “The Gateway to the Arctic”. It’s also the administrative center for outbound clearance from Russia. Visit the excellent museum, and witness a traditional Yupik dance performance.
Spend the final day at sea, crossing one of the most iconic bodies of water on the planet. Linger on deck with binoculars in hand—the chances are high to spot whales and rare seabirds.
Arrive in Nome this morning, transfer to the airport for flights to Anchorage and onward.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.
Lindblad-National Geographic Certified Photo Instructor:
On all departures, a certified photo instructor will be at your side and at your service to inspire and assist you. Take advantage of talks, presentations, slideshows and “laptop gallery” sharing events. All skill and interest levels are welcome; the instructors can meet you wherever you are on your journey. All you need to participate is a camera— point-and-shoot, smartphone, DSLR, whatever—and a sense of adventure. And you’re sure to return home with amazing photos.
Transfers between airport and ship if booked on group flights; shipboard accommodations; kayaking; certified photo instructor; video chronicle of your trip; all meals onboard ship; most beverages onboard ship; crew gratuities. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; passport and visa expenses; immigration fees; travel insurance; items of a personal nature such as Internet and laundry; optional extensions; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photos ©: Wolfgang Kaehler (mountain, eagles, flowers); Laure Patricot (otter)