2021 SWIM WITH ORCAS PHOTO TOUR [Sold Out - Join Wait List ]
Skjervoy, Norway | NOVEMBER 13-19TH 2021
Photo Expedition to Swim with Wild Orcas
Photography Expedition: Swim with Orcas – Norway Adventure Tour and Photo Workshop 2021
Cruise on the water in beautiful northern Norway, swim with majestic Orcas in the wild, explore the Norwegian wilderness and watch the magical auroras dance across the night sky.
Swimming with wild Orcas and Humpbacks in Norway is one of the most incredible experiences you could ever do to connect with wildlife. On your 7 day trip you have 5 days of swimming from ~9:30am to 1:30pm. This is weather dependant and we will only go on the water if it is safe conditions.
This is an Expedition and it is defined as an adventure where you must be healthy enough to participate, carry your own gear, load your own gear, act responsibly and safely, listen to guides and captain and to understand there are unpredictable circumstances with wildlife and weather.
Boat Setup: Open 12 Passenger Rib Boat - Maximum 8 guests, 2 guides and 1 boat captain
Water Temperature: 5 degrees Celsius or 41 Degrees Fahrenheit. See photos above for water visibility. Drysuits are included and we will do a demo the first day to ensure everyone is comfortable
How swimming with orcas works: We will locate Orcas first, and photograph them above water if they are in transit. If they are feeding then we will try to find a safe way to drop in quietly and stay near the boat and let the Orcas swim by us. Some sessions are timed based on the Orcas and Humpbacks activity and can be 30 seconds to 1hr. It varies so much depending on what feeding activity we come across. Please note that the swimming sessions are unpredictable and the goal is to see them underwater and your GoPro footage and photographs will vary depending on our luck! That's what we know for sure about wildlife photography; it's unpredictable and random. But we have a crew of boat operators who have been doing this for more than 10 years and we personally have 2 intensive years of locating and photographing Orcas and Humpbacks.
Air Temperature Average: November -10 to +2 Degrees Celsius or 14 to 35 Degrees Fahrenheit. This is important to take note, that bringing a winter jacket or wind proof jacket on top of your drysuit may keep you warm in between swimming sessions.
We are staying at 1 of 2 locations. The first is approximately 45 minutes from the Skjervoy Harbour in a hotel where it is double occupancy unless otherwise requested. The 2nd location is near Skerjvoy in a cabin home where we have a lot of space for our gear, group teachings, meals and bonding. It is $900 USD extra for those who want their own room
Breakfast is either a buffet provided by the hotel staff/or simple breakfast , Lunch is to go and likely salad and sandwiches and dinner is a more filling meal after a good day on the water.
After each session we will likely go to the grocery store to pick up any snacks you may want or alcoholic beverages. This is a routine we always do to ensure guests can get what they want or need - approximately 30 minutes each day.
Photography Instruction and Guiding by:
Photography instruction before we head out in the field and post editing instruction using Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.
Watch the video below to get a feel for this incredibly stunning place and send us a booking request on the right hand column.
General Itinerary and Information * Sample dates 2021 to be confirmed *
November 13th: Pickup downtown Tromso at 9am. Drive 3-4hrs North to Hotel - bring snacks for journey. Settle in, eat dinner, photography lesson: how to shoot auroras. At night, we will go out and do some aurora watching as well as showing you how to photograph the auroras.
November 14th - 18th: Breakfast at 7-7:30 am. Leave for harbour at 7:45am - We will be waking up very early to be prepared for the day on the boat. Please see below for equipment needed to snorkel with orcas, otherwise, just photograph orcas from the boat. Go to hotel to put on drysuits, come back to van to pick up camera gear then head to boat. Sail around fjords looking for orca pods that are feeding/hunting in order for us to swim with them they cannot be in transit. If Orcas are in transit we will photograph them from above the surface. Lunch/snacks on the boat or at 1:30/2pm if that is preferred and then we arrive back for 6pm dinner at our hotel after an hour drive. Lesson: post-work production editing techniques and tricks and then off to shoot more auroras or hangout.
Note Auroras depend on clear skies and strong KP rating. Also there is quite a bit of light pollution from the villages, street lights but we will try our best to choose the locations that have limited light pollution. We will go to auroras depending on guides.
November 19th: Flex day for photographing the fjords and editing as well as packing up gear. We check out at 10am and we will have light lunch at 11am then leave for ferry and back to Tromso. A wrap up dinner in Tromso - each guest pays their own bill and tour ends before dinner 5:30pm
Drones permitted with proper certifications and experience
What to Bring:
Recommended Photo Gear
DSLR Camera (full frame, crop, mirrorless)
Underwater Housing is optional and can be rented for your specific camera
GoPro with an extendable stick and underwater housing. Extra batteries for the colder temperatures is essential. - bring an attachment with an extendable pole or chest mount
Sturdy Tripod for Northern Lights
Wide Angle Lens e.g. 14-24 mm f/2.8, 16-35mm f/2.8 or 17-40 mm f/2.8 (recommend for Auroras) and for your underwater housing
Mid-Zoom Lens e.g. 24-70 mm, 24-105mm or 18-135 mm
Telephoto Zoom Lens e.g. 70-200 mm, 100-400, 600 mm (recommended for wildlife). *** We highly recommend 600mm options using a converter or long lens as we keep our distance from wildlife unless they approach us.
Drone – When on the boat you can fly them but it is at your own risk. Additional 2 batteries is recommended - 3 total
Proper memory cards for your specific gear, Laptop with Adobe Lightroom/Photoshop downloaded
What to Wear & Gear to Bring:
Please bring a variety of clothing options and layer to easily adjust to the changing climate. Here is a list of recommended clothing and gear to bring:
If you have your own drysuit, snorkel gear and fins please let us know. If you want to use the ones we have organized for free just let us know your measurements for height, weight, foot size.
Recommended to bring a Mustang Suit to wear over your drysuit while in transit
30-35L Dry Bag to put camera gear during transit
Waterproof and Windproof Jacket that can fit over a drysuit (1 size larger than your typical jacket) - alternatively a Survival Suit is a great option and can be found for $200 online
Warm Mid layer: Sweater/Fleece
Thick Warm Pants
Thermal Leggings/Long Johns
Good Hiking Boots
Winter Gloves for the boat
Photography Gloves (optional)
Ski Goggles for boat
Blanket for the boat
Anything else for your comfort
SWIM WITH WILD ORCAS PHOTO TOUR
Dates: November 13-19, 2021
Location: Skjervoy, Norway 300km north of Arctic Circle
Available seats: SOLD OUT Email us below to Join Wait List.
Difficulty level: Moderate to Hard
Wildlife Photo Chances:
4/10 to 8/10
Price: $4,950 USD (total)
Registration deposit: $2,475 USD (full payment required 90 days after initial deposit to the tour).
Arrival: Fly Tromso (TOS) before the start date. We pick guests up before 10am on day 1. We drive you 3-4hrs to Skjervoy. Book AirBNB or Hotel near downtown Tromso for November the day before tour starts
Departure: The day after the tour is recommended to leave Tromso (TOS). Book AirBNB or Hotel near downtown Tromso for the last day of the tour
Included: Drysuits/Snorkel/Fins included, 2 professional photo guides, all tuition, individual post processing sessions, transportation and accommodation on start date from Tromso, Boat charter for 5 days. All meals (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner).
Not included: Any travel services required arriving and departing at and from the starting location in Tromso, Norway. Any private insurances, taxes, immigration, duty and visa fees where applicable. Any personal items including alcoholic beverages, snacks, souvenirs and travel insurance.
+$900 USD for single supplement
2020 video recap
2019 video recap
Frequently Asked Questions: Artica Adventures
Are you tours just for photographers?
Answer: No, not at all! Our trips are approximately 50/50% split of photographers and non-photographers. These trips are called photo tours as Jenni and I are instructing photography lessons hands on while we explore and sail. We have non-photographers (with iPhones, etc), beginners to expert photographers on our trips. It's the perfect learning grounds where you get to immerse yourself in nature and be surrounded by great people.
Why Artica Studios Adventure Photo Tours vs. Other Tours?
Answer: Jenni and I are so passionate about our tours we take small groups that are more intimate where we can connect with each one of our guests. We also pride ourselves on taking you to these remote locations that are extremely difficult to get to and otherwise unaffordable. Our tours are never over-priced as we want you to have a life changing experience and for you to share your experience (and photos) with family and friends and for them to be able to afford to have their own Artica Adventure experience.
Our tours are not just photography workshops, they are life changing experiences that will shape you as a person. Whatever your current understanding is of photography, our workshops will help you improve in a variety of areas, including composition, editing, business acumen, personal style development, work flow and more!
We are looking for positive, like-minded people to join our trips as it is most often the people who make the experience and everything else is just a bonus. We love animals and the environment and we care deeply about creating inspiration and action to help make the world a better place.
Let's fall in love with Orcas and the Arctic together!