Russian Far East & The Aleutian Isles (Otaru to Seward (for Anchorage))
Crystal River Cruises entered the European River Cruise market and quickly gained the status of being the truly luxurious river cruise company. Crystal European river cruises feature a butler for every suite on their all inclusive river cruises. Amenities include shore excursions, bicycles complimentary Wi-Fi and perhaps the best dining experience with fine wines and beverages. Pavlus Travel is one of the largest retailers of Crystal River Cruises and has the Crystal river cruise deals available for all 2021 Crystal boat cruises.

Russian Far East & The Aleutian Isles (Otaru to Seward (for Anchorage))

Starting at $17,449


Destinations & Sightseeing
Itinerary and Meals
Accomodations

telephone icon
800.528.9300

Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, volcanic islands, bays and myriad wildlife begin this breathtaking journey that carries into the Aleutian Islands’ birding paradises and fascinating vestiges of World War II before culminating in Alaska.

Click for larger view.
Map for Russian Far East & The Aleutian Isles (Otaru to Seward (for Anchorage))


Destination & Sightseeing

ITINERARY

Otaru, Japan
A small harbor city, Otaru once played a pivotal role as a fishing and trade port, its main canal still a beautifully preserved representation of that era. Today, the canal district is illuminated with character by old-fashioned gas lamps, lined with warehouses that have been transformed into museums, shops and restaurants. Adventure seekers have an easy quest from Otaru to Mount Yotei, the active stratovolcano that offers challenging hikes and extreme crater skiing.

Korsakov, Russian Federation
The Russian city of Korsakov is nestled on the southern end of Sakhalin Island in the Sea of Okhotsk, just north of Japan’s Hokkaido Island. Korsakov is a gateway to the capital of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, where the architectural style recalls an earlier Japanese presence. The Sakhalin Regional Museum, with elements of European and Japanese design, is the best example of this east-meets-west atmosphere and worth a visit. Other attractions include the Church of St. Nicholas, Lenin Square, and more.

Tyuleniy, Russian Federation
A nature lover’s wonderland in the sparkling Sea of Okhotsk, little Tyuleniy Island is a breeding ground for northern fur seals and Steller sea lions. Not surprisingly, its name translates to “seal” in Russian. During the summer months, the rocky island is virtually blanketed in sea mammals barking, bellowing and jostling for the best locations. Other wildlife species literally flock to the island as well, including common murres and kittiwakes.

Yankicha & Srednego Islands, Russian Federation
An island of jaw-dropping beauty, tiny Yankicha is the tip of an extinct volcano and one of two islets that form Ushishir Island in the middle of the Russian Kurils. The centerpiece of this lush, green gem of an island is its steep-walled caldera that becomes a glistening lagoon during high tide. Its cliffs and grassy slopes attract scores of birds and a few foxes. Srednego, a speck of an island to the north, is known as a breeding ground for northern fur seals.

Paramushir and Atlasova Island, Russian Federation
Off the southern tip of Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, in the Sea of Okhotsk, are Paramushir and Atlasov islands, part of the volcanic Kuril chain. Paramushir, the largest of the northern Kurils, exudes a natural beauty partly blemished by the presence of abandoned whaling stations. Sea otters are often spotted in its pristine waters. Also visible from its shores is nearby Atlasov, a speck of an island majestically crowned by the Alaid Volcano, the tallest volcano in the Kuril Islands.

Russkaya/Thirka Bay & Cape Kek, Russian Federation
The breathtaking southeastern coast of Russia’s lush, volcanic Kamchatka Peninsula is dotted with several cozy inlets of the Pacific Ocean. One of the most stunning is Russkaya, a pristine fjord-like bay known for its rookery of Steller sea lions and occasional visits from orca whales. Nearby tiny Tikhirka Bay, to the north, and Cape Kekurnyy, to the south, are magnets for an array of wildlife, including sea otters, spotted seals, Steller’s sea eagles, and more.

Russkaya/Thirka Bay & Cape Kek, Russian Federation
The breathtaking southeastern coast of Russia’s lush, volcanic Kamchatka Peninsula is dotted with several cozy inlets of the Pacific Ocean. One of the most stunning is Russkaya, a pristine fjord-like bay known for its rookery of Steller sea lions and occasional visits from orca whales. Nearby tiny Tikhirka Bay, to the north, and Cape Kekurnyy, to the south, are magnets for an array of wildlife, including sea otters, spotted seals, Steller’s sea eagles, and more.

Kamchatka Peninsula/Petropavlo, Russian Federation
The Kamchatsky Peninsula, a mountainous region in northeastern Russia on the Bering Sea, is part of the Ring of Fire, the string of volcanoes that encircle the Pacific. Sixty-eight active volcanoes provide outstanding opportunities for exploration and adventure. Visitors might soak in the hot springs, soar over the volcanoes via helicopter, see the Valley of the Geysers or discover Nalichevsky Nature Park. Petropavlovsk offers trekkers a comfortable place from which to launch their expeditions.

Attu Island, Aleutian Islands, United States of America
The westernmost point of the United States is the site of the only WWII battle fought on North American soil. Over 2,000 Japanese soldiers lost their lives at the aptly named Massacre Bay. Today this ornithologist’s paradise hosts an array of birds migrating between Asia and the US, including a number of avian rarities rarely seen in North America. In fact Doctor/Birder John Fitchen called Attu "the Holy Grail of North American birding.”

Alaid Island, Aleutian Islands, United States of America
The westernmost of the Semidi Islands, Alaid was named by the Russians for its resemblance to their own Alaid Island in the Kurils, just 650 miles to the east. For ornithologist, birding in these remote volcanic Aleutian islands is unrivaled. Along with species migrating between the US and Asia, you may also find Asian vagrants, and the islands are an important nesting area for red-faced cormorants and glaucous-winged gulls, and a habitat for waterfowl such as cackling goose, common eider and emperor goose.

(At Sea)

Kiska Harbor, Aleutian Islands, United States of America
Along with Attu Island, Kiska Island was occupied by the Japanese army during World War II and remnants of their encampments can be found among the rye grass and wildflowers. Sirius Point is home to one of the most important marine bird colonies in the Aleutians, including the world’s largest Crested and Least Auklet populations, numbering over 1.4 million.

Adak Island, Aleutian Islands, United States of America
Although the census indicates 326 residents, a mere 80 brave souls remain year round, living among the ruins of a more prosperous time while braving some of the most wild weather on the planet. A thriving WWII military base and Cold War stronghold, the town was one of Alaska’s largest cities during its heyday. Still, the stunning landscape, decaying infrastructure and resilient people are a shutterbug’s dream, and the winds blow in many vagrants from Asia — a blessing for birders.

Umak Island, Aleutian Islands, United States of America
Snowcapped volcanoes, thick, green grasslands, hot springs, fumaroles, mud baths and the only geysers in Alaska assault the senses on this magical Island, the largest of the Fox Islands and third largest island in the Aleutian archipelago. Yet few come to experience its beauty and sparse human habitation consists of a small cattle ranch and one Aleut settlement, the single surviving village of twenty-two Aleut villages herein the mid-1600s at the beginning of the fur trade.

Seguam Island,Aleutian Islands, United States of America
There are two calderas but only a single resident on this mountainous oval-shaped island located in the Andreanof group. There have been ten recorded eruptions since the late 18th century, the most recent in 1993 at Pyre Peak, the highest mountain on the island. After the eradication of the predatory Arctic fox in 1996, birds have been slowly returning including the rare Whiskered Auklet.

Chagulak Island,Aleutian Islan, United States of America
The hoarse cackling of nearly 1 million fulmars fill the sea, sky and cliffs on this uninhabited island in the Islands of the Four Mountains. Chagulak also plays host to some of the world’s most active volcanoes including the Cleveland Volcano, at 5,675 feet one of the highest in the Aleutians. Along the steep cliffs and shoreline, unique geologic formations provide homes to fulmars, gulls, eagles and horned puffins as well, an unbelievable biomass of birds.

Dutch Harbor, United States of America
The port of Dutch Harbor, on tiny Amaknak Island, is connected by a bridge to the city of Unalaska, a onetime ancient Aleut Village. It lies 800 miles southwest of Anchorage in the heart of the Aleutian Islands along the "Ring of Fire," so named for the frequent volcanic activity along the Pacific Rim. These islands were the stepping-stones that lured Russian explorers to Alaska during the 1700s. Sea lions, whales, seals, sea otters, porpoises and rare seabirds are among the area’s wildlife.

Baby Islands, United States of America
Some of the most valuable seabird habitat in the Aleutian Islands is located about 16 miles from Unalaska. Baby Islands, a group of five small, flat-topped outcrops are important nesting grounds for several species that are rarely seen elsewhere, and it’s worth maneuvering through the challenging waters, especially to see Whiskered Auklets. The islands are one of the few places where these tiny birds nest. Baby Islands also teem with puffins, and are home to petrels, murrelets and guillemots.

Unga Spit, United States of America
Unga is the largest of the 20 Shumagin Islands. Step ashore to view a ghost town and the petrified remains of a metasequoia forest that existed some 25-million years ago. The ghost town is site of the lucrative Apollo Gold Mine that operated at the turn of the last century. Living attractions include Bald Eagles, foxes and otters, while beaches are home to the Stellar sea lion and pelagic birds are abundant.

Unga Island, Aleutian Islands, United States of America

Chignik, United States of America
About 200 miles west of Kodiak Island, Chignik (meaning Big Wind) is the first notable settlement on the lower Alaska Peninsula. There are only about 60 year-round residents, but that number can double during the summer months. Large canneries have operated here for over a century, and fishing enthusiasts come to toss their line for king salmon, Coho salmon and halibut.

Semidi Islands, United States of America
The Cackling Goose is almost unknown — even by the most avid birders — unless they’ve made it to Semidi Islands where the once critically endangered Aleutian Cackling Goose has made a comeback. More than 2.4 million birds, almost half the breeding seabirds of the Alaska Peninsula, nest in the nine islands and numerous islets that were combined to form the Semidi Islands National Wildlife Refuge in 1932.There are over a million murres alone, as well as huge colonies of Horned Puffins.

Katmai National Park, United States of America
Katmai National Park is on the top of many “Best of Alaska” lists because of its otherworldly landscape, including 15 active volcanos. Here you can get up close and personal to abundant wildlife. Brown bears are ubiquitous. You can spot them digging for clams on the low tide, munching on berries, roots and grasses ashore and fishing for salmon. Not only bears enjoy fishing in Geographic Harbor – keen anglers come here to catch halibut, cod and rockfish in the bay, and the waters around the harbor are also known to be fishing grounds for seals, otters, whales and countless seabirds.

Katmai National Park, United States of America
Katmai National Park is on the top of many “Best of Alaska” lists because of its otherworldly landscape, including 15 active volcanos. Here you can get up close and personal to abundant wildlife. Brown bears are ubiquitous. You can spot them digging for clams on the low tide, munching on berries, roots and grasses ashore and fishing for salmon. Not only bears enjoy fishing in Geographic Harbor – keen anglers come here to catch halibut, cod and rockfish in the bay, and the waters around the harbor are also known to be fishing grounds for seals, otters, whales and countless seabirds.

Kodiak, United States of America
Often called "Alaska's Emerald Isle," Kodiak Island is indeed magnificently green thanks to plentiful summer rains. It is also one of North America’s largest commercial fishing ports; both fish and wildlife are abundant in the area. Hikers will find the area a paradise as well, with a choice of splendid trails inside Kodiak's National Wildlife Refuge. Several fascinating museums exist here, including the Alutiiq Museum, which illuminates the cultural traditions of the indigenous Alutiiq people.

Homer, United States of America
Snow-capped mountains reaching thousands of feet skyward and glistening glaciers combine to create a dramatic backdrop for Homer on the southern Kenai Peninsula. Take a cruise to one of Alaska’s largest marine sanctuaries where thousands of seabirds come to nest. Paddle among the sea otters at Otter Cove. There’s halibut fishing, of course, along with galleries of local artists, interpretive hiking with a naturalist … even a world-famous Alaskan cooking school. Name your flavor, it’s all here in Homer.

Kenai Fjords National Park, United States of America
Nearly 40 glaciers including 5 tidewater glaciers flow from the immense Harding Ice field, carving mile-deep fjords surrounded by caverns of rock and ice. Forests extend between the ice field and the sea. Meadows bloom spectacularly in summer. And the abundance of wildlife is equally spectacular — black bears, coyotes and moose. Eagles and falcons soar overhead, seals, otters and sea lions sun on rocky shores, whales cavort, and the stark, shimmering beauty stretches endlessly toward the horizon.

Seward (for Anchorage), United States of America
Kenai Fjords National Park, Resurrection Bay, the SeaLife Center research aquarium, not to mention the charm of the town itself, all conspire to make Seward one of the most appealing destinations in Alaska. You might paddle a kayak on the lookout for sea otters, hike one of the many beautiful hiking trails near town, embark on a fishing expedition or ride a wheeled sled pulled by a team of 12 spry and intelligent dogs.

Check Mark Disclaimer: Prices listed are per person, based on double occupancy, and in USD. All promotions are valid for new bookings only, capacity controlled and valid on select dates and departures. Individual Terms and Conditions will apply to all promotions. Any promotion can be withdrawn at any time without notice. Please speak with your Pavlus Travel Planner for complete vendor terms and conditions, including eligible tour and cruise dates.

REDEEM POINTS FOR TRAVEL WITH PAVLUS TRAVEL. Book with Pavlus Travel and use Membership Rewards® points from American Express for all or part of a cruise, vacation package, flight or prepaid hotel. Terms & Conditions Apply. We’re Cruise Specialists with Great Cruise Deals, European River Cruise Experts & Europe Tour Packages retailers.

Travel Leaders IATA CLIA ASTA