No single supplement
Minimum 5 / maximum 6 photographers
5 night specialist 'nocturnal' Finland photography safari, focussing on European Brown Bear mothers with cubs; bears swimming and playing around a lake with a possibility of reflections; and bear encounters in open swamp areas, where we also have a good chance of photographing Golden & White Tailed Eagles.
Wolf and wolverine share these forests and swamps too, and are often seen up close from these hides, making them a versatile and exciting prospect for any wildlife photographer!
And if that isn't enough you'll also find red squirrel, and plenty of woodland birds to photograph during the day
Fitness level required:
Easy: mostly short (400-900m) walks from the vehicles to the hides.
You may of course walk around the lodge grounds in your free time too!
Tour leader: Trai Anfield - award winning wildlife photographer, film maker, travel writer and broadcaster.
We will be photographing bears from overnight hides to make the most of the extended dawn and dusk golden and blue hours and twilight conditions during which cute cubs and charismatic adult bears are mostly active.
This means our days are a bit different to the usual safari schedule: after an early dinner we leave around 4pm and stay overnight in the hides (which are equipped with bunks and bucket loos) so we are in prime position around dusk and dawn and the almost endless summer light in between. We return to our lodge each morning for a hearty breakfast and a snoozy day, before dinner and out to the hides once again around 4pm. Please find more details of our daily schedule below.
Your Finland Photography Safari Highlights
Close to home for UK and European residents - cheaper and better for the planet than going elsewhere for bears - why would you???!
Small group size - min 5 /max 6 guests
Individual 1 person hides with bunk and bucket toilet
Single rooms with no single supplement
Exciting range of iconic European predators in the wild
Brown bear mothers with cubs
Wolf also very possible from these hides
Wolverine also often photographed here
Birds of prey in the area include golden eagle, white tailed eagle, great grey owl and eagle owl
Red squirrel and many small birds of the taiga may also be spotted, plus moose, reindeer, beaver and otter
Glorious forest and lake landscapes of northeastern Finland
Safari scheduled to ensure best timing for bear cubs photography
Great for intermediate/experienced photographers looking for new species and experience
Interested and patient non-photographer partners/friends also welcome
1-2-1 technical tuition and creative inspiration with award-winning photographer and tutor Trai Anfield
Expert local wildlife guides
Our Accommodation & Meals In Finland
This safari is a little different to our usual departures as we are going "nocturnal" for this one!
Our active shooting time will mostly be in overnight hides. These are mostly one person hides which include basic facilities such as a bunk to have a snooze and a compost/bucket toilet. I have also booked a two-person hide for anyone who wishes to have 1-2-1 overnight tuition.
During the day we will reside in single occupancy accommodation, to catch up on the sleep we lost during our exciting night shoots!
As a result of keeping to the same sleep schedule as the bears, wolves and wolverines, our meal times will be slightly different too: we will be served a well-earned hearty breakfast each morning as soon as we return from the overnight hide. Most of us will then want to catch up on some sleep, so lunch is not served here. When we wake up we will have a substantial early dinner at around 3.30 which will set us up for our next overnight stay in the hides. We also take a packed 'lunch' and drinks with us into the hide for overnight snacking.
YOUR FINLAND PHOTOGRAPHY SAFARI ITINERARY
06 JULY: Guests are advised to travel outwards to Helsinki, where we recommend staying in an airport hotel overnight.
The group will travel from Helsinki to Kajaani /Kuusamo on a morning flight.
On arrival we will be met at the airport and transferred by road for approximately 2 hours to Martinselkonen Wildlife Centre, deep in the heart of bear habitat, and our base for the next 5 nights.
After checking in to our rooms we will have an early dinner and gather our gear in time to head off at 4pm to the first of our overnight hides, in the forested area favoured by brown bear mothers with small playful cubs. This is also a prime area for photographing the bear cubs in trees.
08-11 JULY: We will soon adapt to our new daily routine:
At around 7.30am our guides will pick us up from the hides and we will return to our base.
A full breakfast will be waiting, and afterwards there will be plenty of free time during the day for rest / sleep / editing images / exploring the local area / taking part in a daytime activity or photography session.
Around 3pm we will have our customary early dinner
At 4pm we depart for our overnight hides once again, spending each of the following four nights photographing bears - and hopefully wolf, wolverine and birds of prey too - from the wide range of hides here. You will be able to choose from a range of forest, lakeside and swamp wilderness locations depending on the type of photographs you would like to try for.
12 JULY: After breakfast on our final morning we will be transferred by road back to Kaajani / Kuusamo airport for our return flights to Helsinki and our connecting flights back home.
Alternatively you may wish to consider booking an extension to this trip, which I am happy to help with booking. Recommended combinations include Boreal Wildlife Centre and Base Camp Kuikka for more dedicated wolf and wolverine photography, along with bears and birds of prey.
Finland Bear Cubs Summer Special Photography Safari 2024
DATES: 07 - 12 July 2024
RATES: £2650 per person
No single supplement
YOUR FINLAND PHOTOGRAPHY SAFARI INCLUDES:
1 night hotel accomodation in Helsinki (room only), return flights Helsinki - Kajaani/Kuusamo on 7 and 12 July 2024, 5 nights lodge accommodation, all meals and soft drinks at lodge; airport - lodge road transfers, all hide rental, local expert wildlife advisors, expert photographic and post production tuition with Trai
EXCLUDES: international flights to/from Helsinki; visa if necessary; gratuities, personal insurances, alcoholic beverages, any additional daytime activities.
We are happy to assist with booking international flights on request.
Additional photography on this page by Gledriius & Byrdjak - thanks guys!