Ethnic expedition with Mzungu to the last traditional Nenets reindeer herders' camp


March 9 to 15, 2025
Yamal peninsula, Russia
tour to
* This expedition is recommended by Russian Geographical Society

tour to Yamal, expedition to Nenets, Far North of Russia, explore Russia Yamal expedition Tour to Salekhard Nenets tribe people Aurora Borealis

Have you ever dreamed of going to the world's edge? But every people has its own one. Nenets nomad tribe calls it Yamal peninsula, where they migrate year in year out with their countless reindeer herds, and where further there is only cold Kara Sea and ice of the Arctic Ocean. Here, at the world's edge, you will experience fascinating "chum life" of Nenets people, who live practicing reindeer breeding and fishing despite the weather, migrating to new pasture areas and setting their chums as easy as if it was a tourist tent.

A winter photo expedition involves complete immersion into the life and culture of reindeer herders in remote camps of the Yamal Peninsula, with an expanded program, included activities and an emphasis on photography.

The expedition was recommended by the Russian Geographical Society. The leader is Mzungu, an ethnographer and photographer, a specialist in Yamal.

Tour to Yamal Nenets. Have you ever dreamed of going to the world's edge? But every nation has its own one. Nenets nomad tribe calls it Yamal peninsula, where they migrate year in year out with their countless reindeer herds, and where further there is only cold Kara Sea and ice of the Arctic Ocean. Here, at the world's edge, you will experience fascinating "chum life" of Nenets people, who live their life practicing reindeer breeding and fishing despite the weather, migrating to new pasture areas and setting their chums as easy as if it was a tourist tent.

©️ MZUNGU EXPEDITIONS / Alexey Kolbov, 2020 - 2023
©️ МЗУНГУ ЭКСПЕДИШЕНС / Алексей Кольбов, 2020 - 2023


- March 9 – 15, 2025

Duration: 6 days / 5 nights

All inclusive (including full board meals and additional activities), except:
- 129 900 rubles subject to 10 participants,
- 137 900 rubles subject to 8 – 9 participants,
- 149 900 rubles subject to 5 – 7 participants.

Everything included except for:
- Flight to Salekhard roundtrip,
- Medical insurance,
- Russian visa (if needed).

Estimated cost of flight Moscow – Salekhard – Moscow: 26 000 rubles. Usually bought on your own.

Single supplement: 5500 rubles (single accommodation isn't provided in chum).



At 8:00 AM, we'll gather at Salekhard Airport, ready for our adventure into the heart of the Yamal Peninsula's tundra. Our destination: a nomadic camp nestled near the serene Lake Landikato and the winding Enzor Yaha River. We'll embark on our journey aboard a rugged TREKOL all-terrain vehicle, traversing the wild landscape for approximately 8-12 hours, depending on Mother Nature's mood and the road conditions.

As we make our way, we'll enjoy a packed lunch to keep our energy up. By evening, we'll arrive at a traditional Nenets chum, where a warm welcome from a local family awaits us. Dinner will feature an authentic Nenets cuisine served inside the chum. We'll spend the night under the same roof as our hosts, sharing stories and embracing their way of life.

Recommended flight:
  • Direct flight from Moscow to Salekhard with Yamal Airlines, departing at 3:15 AM and arriving in Salekhard at 8:00 AM.

Meals included: Lunch, Dinner
Accommodation: Chum (traditional Nenets dwelling)


After breakfast, we dive into the age-old tradition of ice fishing with the Nenets. We'll head out to the lake to either set up or check the fishing nets. A reindeer herder knows every river and lake by heart, always eager to bring home the freshest catch. As soon as the new camp is set up near a promising spot, it's time to prepare the nets and await the haul. Cutting through ice up to a meter thick is no easy task, but the reward of fresh fish makes it all worthwhile.

Our day will be filled with the daily rhythms of the Nenets nomads: chopping wood, cutting ice, and more. We will enjoy meals featuring traditional Nenets cuisine, and spend the night in chums (authentic Nenets tents), sharing in the warmth and hospitality of Nenets families.

In the afternoon, we will capture the magic of the landscape with a photoshoot in the soft natural light, followed by an indoor session in the cozy glow of the traditional dwelling.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: chum (traditional Nenets dwelling)


After breakfast, we will reach the main reindeer herd, traveling by snowmobile or reindeer-drawn sleds. This journey is a gentle dive into the nomadic lifestyle of the Nenets, more precisely, into the world of their reindeer. Life here pulses to the rhythm of the herd. Nearly every day, rain or shine, the Nenets train their reindeer. They set up a corral using sleds in the morning as the herd gathers. The thunder of hooves serves as a natural alarm clock. The sleds are arranged in a semicircle, tied with a rope to form a corral where reindeer are herded, caught, and prepped for work. Men step over the rope to leave the corral, while women gracefully duck underneath.

We will dive into the action by helping to catch reindeer, enjoying sled rides, feeding the animals, and capturing unforgettable moments on camera.

Should the weather gods smile upon us, we'll witness the incredible migration – the entire nomadic camp moving to a new location in the tundra. The Nenets dismantle their chums (traditional tents) and load them onto sleds, along with all their gear. They gather the herd, hitch the reindeer to the sleds, and embark on a journey, often covering many kilometers.

Upon reaching the new site, they set up chums and settle in. This migration is a vital aspect of the Nenets’ life, as they traverse hundreds of kilometers north each year and back again.

Dismantling, migrating, and setting up usually take the whole day. You'll have the chance to see the entire process. You can choose either to travel in TREKOL all-terrain vehicles (included in the package) or opt for a more traditional ride on specially prepared guest sleds drawn by horses (available at an additional cost).

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner (featuring traditional cuisine)
Accommodation: Chum (traditional Nenets dwelling)

Day 4. March 12, 2025 (Wednesday). TRADITIONAL SPORTS AND THE NENETS LIFE

After breakfast we get acquainted with everyday life of Yamal chum-keeper. It is women who build house for the whole family. To build a house is to curry, adapt, foul reindeer coat with smoke, than to sew niuk, cover for chum. Women are also in charge of sewing dress and footwear for the whole family. In terms of -40c it is very important to make warm and comfortable malitsa (reindeer parka) for men and yagushka for women.

Master classes on reatment of reindeer skins, bead weaving, making special natural ropes of reindeer veins or sewing and fitting of national dress, taking pictures.

Today, we also acquaint ourselves with traditional Nenets sports, such as wrestling, stick pulling, lasso throwing, and many others. Weather permitting, we may witness reindeer sled races too!

Evening conversation around fire about culture and religion.
Lunch, dinner (incl.national cuisine), night in chum.

OPTIONALLY (to be additionally paid): ritual reindeer slaughter ceremony

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: chum (traditional Nenets dwelling)


Today, we will experience the age-old traditions of the Nenets people. During this season, the Nenets typically hunt hare or ptarmigan. Hare hunting involves driving the prey along the Yerkuta River. The best hunting time is midday, under bright sunlight.

We will have ample time for additional photoshoots to capture the best shots. Both genre and portrait photography will be done outdoors and inside the dwelling.

OPTIONALLY (to be additionally paid): ritual reindeer slaughter ceremony.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Chum (traditional Nenets dwelling)


After breakfast, a series of workshops will take place: making poles for the chum (selecting the wood, preparing the tree trunks, processing, and finishing), repairing freight sledges, or throwing a tyngyan (lasso) at a khorei (a unique tool for steering a reindeer sled).

Around 10 AM, we will depart for Salekhard using a TREKOL off-road vehicle or snowmobile, with a travel time of approximately 8-12 hours, depending on weather and road conditions. A quick lunch will be provided en route. Upon arrival in Salekhard, we will dine at the restaurant "Okhota," which offers traditional cuisine of the Russian North. We will spend the night at a hotel.

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Hotel "Parallel" or similar

Day 7: March 15, 2025 (Saturday). SALEKHARD – RETURN FLIGHT

Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer from the hotel to Salekhard airport. Flight to Moscow or another city.

Recommended Flight:
  • Direct flight from Salekhard to Moscow with YAMAL Airlines, departing at 9:10 AM and arriving in Moscow at 10:10 AM.

Included Meals: Breakfast
Accommodation: no

* Activities schedule on days 1 - 6 may be changed depending the weather conditions or subject to chum owners.
Cost includes:

  • All airport transfers (by minibus or taxi)
  • Transportation services as per the program (TREKOL off-road vehicles, guides for all six days in the tundra, snowmobiles as needed)
  • Accommodation in Salekhard (comfortable double rooms)
  • Accommodation in a traditional Nenets camp, living with Nenets families
  • Three meals a day in the chum (including traditional cuisine) and full board, including a farewell dinner in Salekhard
  • Russian-speaking driver-guide
  • Russian and English-speaking expedition leader
  • All activities and workshops as per the program, including migration, traditional fishing, hunting, and demonstrations of traditional sports (except those listed as optional in the program)
  • Photography and videography
  • Services of a Mzungu guide and team leader, ethnographer and photographer, English translation
  • Visa support
  • Arrangement of permits for entry into the border zone

Cost excludes:

  • Airfare to Salekhard
  • Medical insurance
  • Purchase of souvenirs
  • Ritual deer slaughter and other additional activities (listed as optional in the program)
  • Single occupancy in the hotel

To take with:

- very warm winter feather coat with windstopper
- wear sets up to the weather (warm wool socks, cotton socks, wool sweater, thermal underwear, warm winter jacket)
- warm boots, warm and waterproof high boots
- buff / balaclava
- sleeping bag for -5/-10 degrees Celsius comfort temperature (can be minus 7 in the morning in chum)
- inflating tourist mattress
- personal hygiene products (incl. towel, hygiene tissues, soap)
- minimum set of favorite snacks and drinks (nowhere to buy)
- personal medical kit (analgetic, antiseptic, antibiotic, antiviral, intestinal, multivitamins, rehydron, court plaster, your personal medications)
- thermos
- gifts to locals
- sunglasses (alpine skiing glasses)
- sun and wind protection
- head torch
- cameras, spare batteries, tripod


  • Stefano Ci
    see reco on Facebook
    We went to Siberia (Nenets people) with Aleksey. It has been one of the best trips I have done so far. Amazing landscapes, snowy and desolated, that give you the feeling of infinite and you understand what it really means when nature takes over. Aleksey really supported us in everything including nespresso coffee in the morning since we are italians :) organization was very good, really suggested!
  • Дима Пупин
    отзыв опубликован на Facebook
    Главное в поездках с Алексеем - не только возможность увидеть далекие места и экзотические ландшафты - но и уникальная возможность пообщаться с людьми у которых в голове зашиты программы очень сильно отличающиеся от наших, собираюсь уже в третий раз в этом году с ним поехать - был в Нигере и на Ямале теперь мечтаю об Амазонии
  • Giacomo Carlini
    see reco on Facebook
    I really really recommend Mzungu Expeditions!! I've been in Siberia with him to take pictures to Nenets People. It is a hard trip, because of the weather and the cold, but Alexey organized everything very well, and we could travel and move as we wanted with no problem at all. Alexey works with local professionals, so the experience is rich, full and safe. I loved my trip with him!!
  • Sara Bianci
    see reco on Facebook
    I had an absolutely amazing trip to Yamal. Alex is a great tour leader and an exceptional person as well. The expedition bringhed me into the authentic nenets's life. Thank you mzungu expeditions! :-)
  • Marco Marcone
    отзыв опубликован на Facebook
    Traveling in an authentic way, respecting people. Alex is reliable, experienced, a gentleman.
  • Dmitriy Shin
    отзыв опубликован на Facebook
    Trip that touched! Right people, in the right place and in the right time and of cause with the right trip provider! This is a trip I want to go more! Thank you Alexey Kolbov and Mzungu Expeditions, thank you all guy's from trip who became a real friends for me!
  • Сергей Мартьянов
    отзыв опубликован на Facebook
    Отлично съездили на Ямал. Приключений было выше крыши. Подобрала отличная команда.
  • Наталья Ципилева
    отзыв опубликован на Facebook
    #ЭтоТундраДетка �
    или как я оказалась на Крайнем Севере и узнала, что он бескрайний!
    Накануне Нового 2018 года, в 6 утра, ожидая вылета на свободную Кубу, было принято решение ехать на Ямал.
    Впереди было 3 месяца, чтобы собраться, но как это часто бывает, сборы откладывались до последнего. За 2 недели до поездки началась подготовка: покупка тёплых вещей, поиск туристических сумок, подбор спальника, термобелья, посуды, специальной обуви и так далее. Именно в этот момент я поняла, что это будет путешествие, которое будет отличным от всех других.
    С момента прибытия в аэропорт Шереметьево и начались наши приключения. Внезапный досмотр вещей, веселые посиделки в зале ожидания, потерявшийся багаж нашего путешественника, первая встреча с Салехардом. Переезжая Обь по зимнику, в шутку прощаясь с цивилизацией, мы смеялись над замёрзшей водой в бутылках.
    А потом...началась пурга. Не метель с мягкими снежинками, а пурга со снежной кбрупой, которая больно бьёт в лицо и руки. Когда не видно неба и земли. Через 5 часов ломается один из 3 трэколов. И водители в течение 3 часов под обжигающим ледяным ветром её ремонтируют.
    Дорога в арктическую тундру. Долгая, сложная и местами опасная. Но она и стала важной частью нашего приключения. Наверное за эти 15 часов в пути, по полному бездорожью понимаешь, что такое настоящий дикий Север.
    Уставшие, мы встретили рассвет 🌅 на месте нашего дальнейшего пребывания - в стойбище оленеводов. И расстелив по-быстрому спальники, заснули все как убитые. А утром началась адаптация к местной жизни, погоде, еде, иногда очень сильному ветру 💨 , метелям и яркому солнцу ☀️.
    Оленина и рыба 🐟 были основными нашими продуктами. И конечно чай ☕️ и что покрепче 😉🥃 Наши повара Лёня и Оля кормили нас очень вкусно! Через день мы были готовы пить из одной кружки и есть одной ложкой. Лишь бы успеть 😂 к обеду или ужину.
    Каждый день был расписан. Зимняя рыбалка, забой оленя и проба тёплой крови; разбор и сборка чума, катание на оленях, даже приготовление еды- это отдельная история. Ведь вода в тундре-это снег, который нужно натопить для начала.
    Не смотря на позднюю ямальскую весну, было много-много солнца и синего неба! И конечно, белоснежная сказка, которая окружила нас, погрузила всех нас в другой мир!
    Это была полная перезагрузка. Без телефонов, без соцсетей, без дресс кода, без каких-либо масок. Только ты и тундра. Только снег и олени . Только наша экспедиция в составе 13 человек и наши гостеприимные ненцы. И никого больше на 260 км. НИ-КО-ГО!
    Поэтому каждый из нас стал частью дружной веселой команды.
    И поверьте, самый грустный момент был тогда, когда пришла пора уезжать из тундры...
    Сейчас принято говорить «выйти из зоны комфорта». Так вот для меня, покидая бесконечную сНежную тундру, я выходила из настоящего душевного комфорта.
    Это авантюрное решение поехать на Крайний Север, жить жизнью оленеводов стало самым ярким приключением в моей жизни!
    Я счастлива знакомству и дружбе с Алексеем Кольбовым, а для нас просто Мзунгу, организатором нашей экспедиции, который пригласил меня и мою сестру! Спасибо Mzungu Expeditions за всё!
    И хочется сказать, до свидания 👋🏻 тундра, спасибо гостеприимный Ямал и надеюсь 🤞🏻 до встречи!
    Мечтаю о новых путешествиях и верю, что однажды я обязательно соберу рюкзак 🎒 и снова отправлюсь в путь!
Yamal peninsula, Russia

Best season: March April, August September, December

Traveling on TREKOL to 200km depthward Yamal peninsula, the area of ever frost, where temperature goes up to -50 degrees in winter.

Participating in celebration of the Festival of reindeer herders, where Nenets and Khanty people gather together from around and where the main activity is reindeer sledge racing.

Practical learning of culture and everyday life of "True people" (as Nenets people call themselves), overnights in traditional chums.

Posturing of an enormous herd, sometimes counting to 10 thousand units, in an attempt to find out who goes after who in Polar Tundra, reindeers after Nenets people or vice versa:)

Reindeer sledge riding

Reindeer roping skills and cooking traditional Nenets meals. During migrating seasons when Nenets people move several times a week, we offer participation in migration.

Traditional ice fishing

Chance to see polar lights (Aurora Boreales) in Yamal, which Nenets people ironically call edge of the world
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