Wrangel Island and Chukotka
World Capital of Polar Bears
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06 - 25 August, 2020


20 Days
18 Days at the sea
white polar bears, walruses, whales
Medium level difficulty
8999 EUR
What to expect from the trip?
Wrangel Island is a place of much significance for those in love with the Arctic and wildlife. This extremely remote island is the world's capital of polar bears, it is the largest habitat of these magnificent animals. There were years when up to 300 bears have been spotted in one place here. This is the real Far North, the High Arctic. In summer, when the sun never sets, walruses lay here in the sun, getting warm; polar bears prey on seals, Arctic foxes steal eggs from under birds, giant rookeries of which are situated on sheer cliffs. In the center of the island, there's a population of muskoxen introduced here from Greenland.
On our way to Wrangel Island we'll visit the most important places of Chukotka: Cape Chaplin, where gray whales swim right near the shore; Lorino, a rural settlement engaged in the whaling industry; Yttygran Island with its worldwide known Whale Bone Alley; Cape Dezhnev, the eastmost mainland point of Asia; Cape Kenisken, a place where up to a hundred thousand walruses lay; and Kolyuchin Island, where we'll pay a visit to Anatoly Kochnev, a famous polar scientist who studies polar bears and walruses.Mysterious bowhead whales, gray whales and humpback whales, sometimes even narwhals, prowl the waters around Wrangel Island. As usual, whales are going to be one of the most important parts of our program.If you're a romantic person, a dreamer, or simply like wildlife, welcome aboard of our oceanic yacht Aurora, which will allow us to spend two and a half weeks out in the ocean, reach Wrangel Island and return to the port safe and sound.Traditionally, the better part of our journey is going to be about interaction with animals. We're going to have the necessary diving equipment on our yacht. We'll try to dive with polar bears and, if possible, walruses, as well as with whales and seals; and we'll do our best to take truly rare and unique pictures of animals, under water or on land. We'll dive into the icy waters of Chukotka and feel like real pioneers. Although, it's important to understand that diving is not the main goal of our expedition.
1
A little group and a flexible schedule.
It's a common practice that tourists go to Wrangel Island on a big vessel with more than a hundred men aboard, which goes according to its strict schedule.
What's special about our expedition is that we go on our own vessel in a small group of people which allows us to fully control the route and adjust it to the guests' needs and wishes. You can always swim with passing whales or spend more time taking pictures of walruses and their rookeries if you want to.
Our yacht Aurora can take aboard 14 people including the crew and the guides which means that we're going to have a small group of 7 guests, so that everyone can spend enough time alone with nature, have plenty of time for taking pictures of animals and landscapes and get individual approach in anything.
2
What animals are we going to see?
- The rock stars of our program are, naturally, polar bears and walruses. Probably, we'll try to dive with them and take underwater pictures of them.
- Seals: earless seals, bearded seals, harp seals, Steller sea lions.
- Bowhead whales, gray whales, humpback whales, and narwhals if we get lucky. There's also a possibility that we'll come across fin whales and beluga whales.
- Arctic foxes.- More than 15 species of seabirds.
Itinerary
Day 1 (06 August)
Arriving to Anadyr and walking around the town. Besides the local tourist attractions, we'll also pay attention to the animal world. We are going to take a look at beluga whales at a landing stage, which is a mere five-minute away ride from the airport.

In the evening, we accommodate at our vessel.
Day 2 (07 August)
Exit to the sea. Day of transition.
Days 3-4 (08-09 August)
Sailing across the sea.
Days 5-7 (10-12 August)

Providensky District. Grey whales near Cape Chaplin. Arakamchchen Island and walruses. Thermal springs at the cordon of the Beringia National Park. Yttygran Island and Whale Bone Alley. Bird rookeries and humpback whales in the Pinkegnei Gulf.
Day 8 (13 августа)

Lorino, a whaling industry settlement. A close encounter with the culture of the Chukchi and the Inuits.
Day 9 (14 August)

Sailing.
Day 10 (15 August)
Dezhnev Cape, the eastmost mainland point of Asia. Whale Bone Alley.
Day 11 (16 August)
Cape Kenisken, which is also called Cape Serdtse-Kamen (literally translated as Cape Heart-Stone) The largest rookery of walruses in the world - up to 100 000 individuals.
Day 12 (17 August)
Kolyuchin Island, where we'll pay a visit to Anatoly Kochnev, a famous polar scientist and a hermit. Here we'll see a lot of walruses and polar bears.
Day 13-14 (18 - 19 August)
Sailing to Wrangel Island.
Day 15-17 (20-22 August)

Wrangel Island. The ending point of our route and our main goal. It's the largest habitat of polar bears in the world. Also we'll see walruses, Arctic foxes, muskoxen and snow geese at the island. Those who wish can purchase an additional National Park's off-road vehicle tour around the island (the tour is not included into the price of this program).
Day 18 (23 August)
Sailing to Pevek.
Day 19 (24 August)
Arriving to Pevek.
Day 20 (25 August)
Flight back home.
Rusarc Aurora Yacht
A gorgeous oceanic yacht, which has already been sailed many times into the high latitudes of the Northern and Southern hemispheres, will become our home. The captain and the crew of the yacht are seasoned and experienced people that we have absolute confidence in. They will make our journey totally safe and comfortable.
Cost: 8999 EUR per person
Dates:
06 - 25 August, 2020
Included:
  • Accommodation and meals on the vessel
  • Landing on islands and polar diving
  • Tanks and weight belts
  • Transfer to and from the airport
  • Assistance in receiving the necessary documents to enter the border area, the National Park's permits , etc.
Not included:
  • Airplane ticket to the port of departure and back
  • Accommodation in the hotels
  • Any additional expenses
  • Your personal gear, including diving equipment
  • Diving insurance
Our Tour Leaders
Mike Korostelev
Underwater Wildlife Photographer
Mike Korostelev - the founder of the Team Trip project. Having tons of experience under his belt both in photography and group leading, Mike will make this tour a real gateway into the mesmerizing world of the Okhotsk sea wildlife
Stas Zakharov
Biologist, diver, freediver
Biologist of the Team Trip project. PADI diving instructor. Stas will tell all about the animals we have met, and in the evenings he will give interesting lectures about marine mammals!
Additional information:
Our journey is going to be in the Arctic summer, the so called ice gap period. In this time of year, the air temperature varies from -5 C (23 F) to +15 C (59 F). When you're at sea and exposed to winds, the air temperature may seem to be lower than it really is.
Your Personal Gear
  • Warm fleece clothes and thermal underwear.
  • Several pairs of warm socks.
  • Rubber boots (for landing).
  • Shoes to wear on board of the yacht
  • A storm coat and waterproof clothes: gloves (it's better to take 2 pairs of them), a hat (it's also better to take 2 hats).
  • Swimsuits, shorts and swimming trunks.
  • Sunshades (with a rope, otherwise you might drop them in the sea).
  • Personal hygiene items.
  • Sunscreen and hand cream.
  • Waterproof cases for your photo devices.
  • Your aid kit with your personal medications.
  • It's better to pack your things in soft bags and backpacks.
  • Motion sickness pills (Dramina).
Diving Equipment
We have tanks, a compressor and weight belts on board. Every diver must have their personal equipment, which is the following:

  • A scuba mask, a scuba tube, paddles
  • A dry diving suit with a hood
  • A weather-appropriate set of thermal underwear (it would be a sound idea to take 2 sets of those)
  • 2 independent DIN regulators for cold-water diving
  • A buoyancy compensator
  • Gloves (we recommend 7mm wet gloves), a buoy, a knife, a dive computer, a flashlight, a compass.
  • A repair-kit for your equipment.
Diving
It should be said, that diving is not the main goal of our expedition. We are not going to dive every day. Whether we dive or not, depends only on situation.
Polar diving isn't the hardest, but also isn't the easiest kind of diving. The water temperature can fall to -2 C (28.4 F) which is why it's extremely important that you're entirely sure that you can do it and that you can rely on your equipment. A cold-water diving experience is a must. We don't go for records, so it's going to be no more than two dives a day at the depth of up to 20 meters (65.6 ft). The snorkeling equipment is enough for diving with some animals, but diving with other animals requires a tank.
The Port of Departure and Flight Specifics
The starting point of our expedition is Anadyr, the capital of Chukotka. There are direct flights from Moscow to Anadyr. The ending point of our expedition is Pevek, from where you can also take a direct flight to Moscow, provided by Yakutia Airlines.
Can I go if i am not a diver?
Sure, you can go. More than that, you should go. Our expedition is suitable for everyone, and you don't have to be a diver to enjoy and savor the incredible beauty of the High Arctic.
The cost of the tour is the same for divers and non-divers.
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Contacts
Phone: +7 999 721 01 84
E-mail: info@team-trip.ru