Icebreaker Cruises, Drift Ice Walks, and Diving
Experience magnificent views of the ocean covered in drift ice!
In the heart of winter, sea ice begins to drift down from Siberia, covering the Sea of Okhotsk with pure white drift ice.
For those looking to experience the power of drift ice, try one of the two icebreaker cruises! The Monbetsu Icebreaker Garinko uses a drill to break up the ice as it proceeds through the frozen terrain. Here, you can have a more up-close-and-personal experience, where the smaller boat allows you to get much closer to the drift ice. There’s also the large and powerful Abashiri Aurora, which smashes drift ice at high speeds, breaking up the ice by ploughing right through it.
Bird-watchers and photographers from all over the world come to Nemuro Strait for drift ice and bird-watching cruises off Shiretoko Peninsula and Rausu. Unlike other bird-watching cruises, the chances of seeing white-tailed eagles and Steller’s sea eagles are quite high, making this cruise all the more special.
In Utoro, located on the Shiretoko Peninsula, visitors can experience “drift ice walks,” with views of the horizon making the perfect backdrop to the fields of ice. Put on a specially-designed drysuit and release your inner child by floating in the water between cracks in the ice, or by simply laying on the ice. Here, you can also try “drift ice diving,” where you can view the drift ice from below.