Best time to visit Kamchatka

temperature & rainfall

Kamchatka averages:
Notable for its long, bitterly cold winters and short, warm summers, the best time to visit Kamchatka is from May-Sep when the temperature is comfortable. May-early June is peak bird-watching season and a brilliant time to kayak the shoreline, often joined by curious orcas. In September the autumnal colours are phenomenal and brown bears, well-fed on summer salmon, can be seen lazing around the coastline. July-August is the prime time to explore Kamchatka’s incredible volcanic landscape and camp under the stars.

When to visit Kamchatka

a month by month guide

Winter in Kamchatka is long and brutally cold and temperatures can plummet to below -25°C – not fun.

The regions beautiful brown bears snuggle down for their six-month hibernation in November, right the way through December, January, February and early March. Visit outside this time if they're one of the key species you want to observe.

That said, spring – particularly April, and the autumn months of October and early November are a wonderful time for photographing Kamchatka’s otherworldly landscapes and bring a lot more colour and life than people may presume!

For polar bears, you'll need to head to Wrangel Island. This is only accessible during July and August, so if you want any chance of seeing them you’ll need to book a summer trip!

All travelers to Kamchatka require a Russian visa; you’ll need to start the application process at least four months before departure. Russia also has a number of public vacations in early May and embassies and consulates commonly close for two weeks – so factor this in when applying for your visa.

What happens when in Kamchatka

Our recommendations

Cassia Jackson, from our supplier Heritage Expeditions, shares her advice on the best time to visit Kamchatka:

“The far east of Russia is best visited between the months of May and September. Explore the Kamchatka Peninsula in May and early June to make the most of the peak bird watching season and in July see brown bears feasting on salmon, smoking volcanoes and the landscape dotted with delicate summer wildflowers.”

Festivals & events

Our NATURAL pick from the kamchatka calendar

Did you know about...?

Steller’s sea eagles

Steller’s sea eagles are a sight to behold – they’re enormous. On a zodiac cruise through their river habitat on the Zhupanova River you can spot them nesting in the trees along the banks; they are simply majestic and in May and June it’s possible to see upwards of 10, quietly surveying you from their riverside standpoint.
Photo credits: [Zodiac ride: J E Ross (Heritage Expeditions)] [Bears: M Kelly (Heritage Expeditions)] [Steller sea eagle: S Blanc (Heritage Expeditions)]
Written by Polly Humphris
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Photo credits: [Page banner: Harald Deischinger]
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