Expedition to Nenets reindeer nomads' camp in the area of Kara Sea


September 7 to 12, 2024
Tour Yamal peninsula, Russia

summer tour to Yamal, expedition to Nenets, Far North of Russia, explore Russia Yamal expedition Tour to Salekhard Nenets tribe people summer tundra

Have you ever dreamed of travelling 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 pastures and setting their chums as easy as if it was a tourist tent.

The summer expedition provides deep dive into everyday life and culture of Nenets reindeer herders in remote nomad camps in the area of Kara sea .

Have you ever dreamed of travelling 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 pastures and setting their chums as easy as if it was a tourist tent.
The summer expedition provides deep dive into everyday life and culture of Nenets reindeer herders in remote nomad camps on the shore of Kara sea and accompanied by ethnologist.

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


Dates: September 7 – 12, 2024

Duration: 6 days / 5 nights

Number of participants: 5 – 10

Cost per person:
- 98 900 rubles subject to 10 participants,
- 104 900 rubles subject to 8 – 9 participants,
- 115 900 rubles subject to 4 – 7 participants.

Early booking discount: 10% (valid until April 7, 2024)

Everything is included except for flight to Salekhard roundtrip, Russian visa and travel medical insurance.
Estimated direct flight cost from Moscow to Salekhard roundtrip is 23 000 rubles.
Estimated direct flight cost from St. Petersburg to Salekhard roundtrip (not every day) is 20 000 rubles.

Single supplement: 6000 Russian rubles (Single accommodation is not provided in the nomads' camp).


Day 1. September 7, 2024. Arrival in the Nenets reindeer herders camp

Arrival in Salekhard at 8 in the morning. Meeting at the airport of Salekhard. Transfer to the camp of reindeer herders of the Yamal tundra, the area of Payuta, Lake Landikyato and the Yenzor Yakha River, the Yamal peninsula (TREKOL all-terrain vehicle, driving time about 9-12 hours, depends on the road conditions). Lunch (lunch box) on the way. Evening arrival in the reindeer herders' camp, acquaintance with the family. Dinner (including national cuisine) and overnight in chum.

* Recommended flight with Yamal airlines from Moscow flight YC-32, departure from Moscow at 3:15 in the morning, arrival in Salekhard at 8:00 in the morning.
Flights from St. Petersburg are possible with a connection or a direct flight the day before with Yamal airlines flight YC-856, departure from St. Petersburg on September 6 at 12:35, arrival in Salekhard at 17:20.

Meals included: lunch (lunch box), dinner
Accommodation: chum (traditional dwelling of the Nenets)

Day 2. September 8, 2024. Traditional fishing

After breakfast, the traditional fishing of the Nenets on the lake, the Yorkuta River or on the shore of the Kara Sea (depending on the location of the camp at the moment and the most relevant fishing place). Installation or checking of nets for fishing. The reindeer herder certainly uses every opportunity to please the family with fresh fish, because he already knows ahead of time in which river or small lake the living silver of his native land is found. As soon as a new nomad camp settled close to such a place, they prepare the nets and wait for the catch. If there is a fishing rod in the camp, you can try fishing with a stick and line (you can also bring along a fishing rod with you on a trip).
Gathering firewood, collecting water and other daily activities of the camp residents.
If reindeer herders wish, we can organize an evening devoted to the traditions and customs of the indigenous people (Nenets fairytales, folk songs).
Lunch, dinner (including national cuisine), night in the chum.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Chum (traditional dwelling of the Nenets)

Day 3. September 9, 2024. Activity with a reindeer herd or migrating across the tundra

After breakfast, transfer to a reindeer herd, watching the work of the Nenets with reindeers. Gradual immersion in the world of the Nenets reindeer herder, that is, in the world of his reindeers. Here, the whole life of a person is subordinated to the rhythm of reindeers' life. Every day despite the weather, they entrap reindeers. During the migrating days, for this purpose they set "corral" made of sledges, made in the morning at the herd coming. Sledges are forming semi-circle, tied with a rope. First reindeers come into this corral, then they are caught and taken for gear up. Men leave the corral stepping over the rope, but women go under it. Reindeer must be caught and trained to ride in a harness.
Participation in reindeer lassoing, throwing tynzyan (lasso). Photography.
In the summer, there is a high probability of participating in the reindeer herders' migrating along the tundra (moving the entire camp to a new place). In summer, the Nenets migrate to a new place several times a week, so you need to be prepared to change the place of our staying any day. For migration, all the chums are dismantled and, together with all the stuff, are loaded into sledges. The Nenets gather the whole herd, harness the sled reindeer to the sledges and make the transfer to a new place several kilometers away from the former one. Reindeer breeders set up chums and set up the stuff in a new place. Migrating in the tundra is an integral part of the life of this nomadic people, who cover few hundred kilometers a year to the north and back to the south. Packing and moving during the summer migration takes a few hours. You can photograph the whole process.
Lunch, dinner (including national cuisine), night in the chum.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner
Accommodation: Chum (traditional dwelling of the Nenets)

Day 4. September 10, 2024. Participation in the everyday life of the Nenets

After breakfast, acquaintance with the life of a chum housewife in Yamal. Women have an equally important concern – making a home for the whole family. To make a house means to make, process, and soak reindeer skins, from which they then sew nukes, a cover for the plague. Dressing and shoving the whole family from head to toe is also women's concern. Much depends on how warm and comfortable the malitsa for men and the yagushka for women will be: after all, you can't joke with 40-degree frost in the tundra.
Workshops on treatment of reindeer skins, bead weaving, making special natural ropes of reindeer veins or sewing and fitting of national dress, taking pictures.
During long summer days, together with the Nenets kids we will pick mushrooms and berries. August is the ideal season for mushrooms in the tundra. There are a lot! The berries here are cowberry, blueberry and crowberry. And, perhaps, the royal cloudberry will still be there. Multi-colored berries and mushrooms grow alternately on a white "carpet" of reindeer moss. This is an ideal breeding ground for the reindeers, which grow fat as much as possible this season, in a season when there are no mosquitoes and gnats, and nothing distracts from their favorite treats.
If the reindeer herders during this period wander near the Kara Sea, we will get to the seashore in the Baydaratskaya Bay area and see the harsh nature and mighty power of the northern sea washing the entire Yamal Peninsula.
Evening conversation around fire about culture and religion.
In September there are good chances to see the Northern lights!
Lunch, dinner (including national cuisine), night in the chum.

Optionally (at extra fee) - ritual slaughtering of a reindeer (meat can be taken with you) or traditional hunting.

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

Day 5. September 11, 2024. Participation in the life of the Nenets and transfer to Salekhard

After breakfast, workshops on making poles for chum (choosing the right tree, preparing trunks, preparing and dressing), repairing cargo sledges or playing Nenets national games: throwing tynzyan on a horey (pole), Nenets triple jump, pole pulling, Nenets national wrestling and other traditional sports.
About 11 a.m. departure to Salekhard (TREKOL all-terrain vehicle, the travel time is 7-9 hours, depending on the road conditions). Lunch box along the way.
Arrival in Salekhard. Accommodation in Hotel Parallel or similar.
In the evening, a walk around the city and dinner in Okhota restaurant (traditional cuisine of the Russian North). Overnight at the hotel.

Meals included: breakfast, lunch (lunch box), dinner
Accommodation: Hotel Parallel or similar

Day 6. September 12, 2024. Return flight

Breakfast in the hotel.
Transfer from the hotel to Salekhard Airport. Return flight from Salekhard.

* Recommended flight with Yamal airlines to Moscow flight YC-31, departure from Salekhard at 9:00, arrival in Moscow at 10:00.
For a flight to St. Petersburg, a direct flight with Yamal airlines YC-855, departure from Salekhard on at 18:45, arrival in St. Petersburg at 19:55.

Meals included: breakfast
Accommodation: no

* The order of activities on days 1 to 5 may vary depending on weather conditions or at the discretion of the owners of the chum.


  • 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!
Cost includes:

- airport transfer as per program
- transport services as per program (TREKOL all-terrain vehicles available for all 5 days).
- accommodation in hotel in Salekhard (in comfortable twin/double rooms)
- accommodation in chum in nomads camp (together with Nenets family)
- three meals daily in chum (incl. national cuisine) and full board in Salekhard
- permits for entering border area
- experienced local driver-guide (Russian-speaking)
- English and Russian speaking guide and team leader
- all activities and workshops as per the program
- photo and video shooting
- visa support

Additional cost:

- air ticket to Salekhard (roundtrip)
- medical travel insurance
- souvenirs
- ritual reindeer slaughter ceremony
- additional services (marked as optional in the program)
- single supplement

To take with:

- Clothes sets fitting weather conditions, including summer wear (shorts, T-shirts, trousers) and warm wear (fleece, trousers, windstopper jacket), long sleeve shirts.
- thermo fission
- rubber boots
- hats for all types of weather: cap/hat/suncap and warm hat
- comfortable trekking closed boots and comfortable light shoes (snickers)
- swimsuits (up to you)
- raincoat
- sleeping bag for -5 degrees C (comfort temperature)
- inflating tourist mattress
- anti mosquito net (up to you)
- personal hygiene products (incl. towel, hygiene tissues, soap)
- personal medical kit (analgesics, antiseptic, antibiotic, antiviral, intestinal, multivitamins, rehydron, court plaster, your personal medications)
- sunblock set (cream, sunglasses, cap) and wind protection means
- facial anti mosquito net (up to you)
- repellents: sprays, creams
- big backpack or bag for stuff
- small backpack for short walks
- forehead torch
- photo and video camera, spare batteries
- dry bag (up to you)
Yamal peninsula, Russia

Best season: August September

Traveling by TREKOL all-terrain vehicle to 250 km depthward Yamal peninsula, the area of permafrost, where temperature goes up to -50 degrees and even more in winter.

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 thousands units, in an attempt to find out who goes after who in Polar Tundra, reindeers after Nenets people or vice versa:)

Reindeer sledge riding and Nenets national games (depending on the season).

Reindeer lassoing skills and cooking traditional Nenets meals.

During migrating seasons when Nenets people move several times a week, participation in migration.

Traditional fishing and hunting.

Tundra covered with berries, mushrooms and "white carpet" of reindeer moss.

Chance to see Northern lights (Aurora Borealis) in September in Yamal, which Nenets people ironically call edge of the world.

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