02-06-2018 China: Tigers, Cranes, and Ice Festival - incredibleTravelPhotos
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China: Tigers, Cranes and Ice Festival

Heilongjiang Province

February 6-15, 2018

8 participants only

During this workshop you'll have a chance to photograph two iconic Chinese wildlife species (Siberian Tigers and Red Crown Cranes), minority villages, and the very unique ice festival in Harbin.

The Siberian tiger is the largest felid in the world and is known as the King of the Forest. In the 1980s, it was listed as one of the first-class national protected animals of China. We'll photograph the tigers at the Siberian Tiger Park, which host over 500 purebred Siberian tigers and is the largest natural park of its kind in the world. We'll observe their behavior roaming in vehicles in a similar fashion as wildlife is photographed in Africa. At this time of the year, we’ll have a winter fairy tale landscape and full access to the park with little distraction from other visitors.

We'll then photograph the Red Crown Cranes in the Zhalong Nature Preserve. Established in 1979, the 2,100 km2 (810 sq. miles) marshland is a major migratory route for birds migrating from the Arctic to South East Asia. Within the park, a large flock of Red Crown Cranes is released daily for feeding and “flight exercise”. We’ll have a chance to learn about the Red Crown Cranes, visit an inspiring photo gallery, and photograph the cranes during our private photoshoot sessions.

The Harbin ice festival is truly unique. Local artists carve exquisite scenes from around the world out of ice and snow. Huge palaces, mythical creatures, famous people, religious icons are illuminated at night and provide photographic opportunities like nothing you have seen before. The festival is over 50 years old and still unknown to most Westerners.

We'll finally have the chance to photograph ancient villages. The villages are chosen for their preserved ancient culture. We'll photograph rural agricultural customs, families going thru their daily routines, the synergy between the elderly and the young generation. Even though China is going thru rapid changes and building mega cities, there are still pockets of undiscovered beauty seldom visited by Westerners.

This workshop is all inclusive: Lodging, all ground transportation, meals, special fee to photograph the tigers, special fee to photograph the cranes, entrance fees, English speaking guide, all meals, and photo instruction.

Our goals are multiple folds, with the following cropping to the top: We want to make your experience memorable by taking you to places most Westerners don't know about. We want to share more than just photography so you can discover new ways of thinking and improving your personal photographic vision. We want you to come back with renewed appreciation for older traditions and wildlife.

China is changing like the rest of the world, except that changes in China are rapid and much more pronounced. Chinese philosophers have been praising the places we visit for centuries and for good reasons. Come and experience it with your own eyes and soul.

See you in January in China.


Registration (Double Occupancy): $6,900
Single Supplement: $800

Deposit (non-refundable):
$600 (Double Occupancy)
$800 (Single Occupancy)

Deposit (Non-refundable)


Oliver Klink has been photographing in China for the past 12 years. He has visited many minority cultures and National Parks in Hunan, Yunnan, Guizhou, Fujian and more provinces. His image, “Herding Instinct” won the grand prize at the Rayko International Photocontest in 2014, others have received “mentioned” in the Black and White Spidar Awards for the past 5 years. “China is changing rapidly, as the traditions in remote villages are vanishing. We travel with unique privileges from local guides and field experts, and where Westerners have seldom been seen”.

Jeffrey Tang, field expert, has been my guide in China for the past 7 years. His strength is to connect with the local people and make us feel “welcome with them”. His attentive demeanor and attention to details enable us to travel safely and give us privileged access that will make your images “stand out”.

One local expert at each location we visit. The person is a well-regarded artist (photographer, painter, calligrapher), which will enhance our vision with local inspiration.

Local staff members (drivers, helpers) who enrich our stay with the most current information, special activities, and “ways in” to places you only dream about!

- Photographing wildlife with special access (tigers, cranes)
- Photographing ancient villages with special access (model shoot)
- Photographing ice festival (night photography)
- Daily review of images (emphasis on “what else can I do”)
- Brainstorming sessions (theme, story telling, portfolio, hero shots)
- Post processing and workflow (efficiency, accuracy, quality)

- 10 days of guided photoshoot
- Accommodation, meals, ground transportation
- Special permits, private photoshoots, all entrance fees
- Instruction booklet emailed before the workshop

- Not Included :
- Transportation to and from Harbin (HRB)
- Transport from Harbin airport to hotel
- Personal expenses, alcoholic beverages
- Travel Insurance
- Extra night(s) in Harbin
- Tips to local staff

Double Occupancy: $6,900
Single Supplement: $800

Deposit (non-refundable):
$600 (Double Occupancy)
$800 (Single Occupancy)

Full payment due by October 31, 2017 (payable by check)

Registration: $6,900
Single Supplement: $800

Terms and Conditions

- The workshop takes place during winter, where low temperatures are the norm in the region we visit. Weather can be challenging. Be prepared for moody sky and cold temperature.
- Up to 1 mile walking on trails and wood platform to gain various accesses to the tigers, the cranes, and the ancient villages.
- We are staying in local hotels and rustic guest houses. Beds can be hard, heating might be sub par, you might get warm water only at certain time of the day.
- We are eating freshly cooked local Chinese cuisine with lots of vegetables, soup, and local meat (not spicy). Chopsticks are the common “silverware”.
- We are traveling on ultra-modern highways to the local unpaved roads.
- However, the photographic opportunities are incredible. It is an amazing adventure and photographic experience.

To Be Announced

Where: Heilongjiang Province (China)
When: February 6-15, 2018
Who: Oliver Klink, Jeffrey Tang, local staffs
Airport: Harbin (HRB)
Accommodations: Local hotels (single or double occupancy)
Weather: 0 – 30F. Moody Sky
Cost: $6,900 ($800 Single supplement)

Workshop details for China Tigers, Cranes, and Ice Festival (click on a tab)


February 6-15, 2018

Note: Itinerary and activities might change based on weather conditions

10 days on the ground to photograph Siberian Tigers, Red Crown Cranes, Ancient Villages and the Ice Festival in Harbin.

Day 0 (Optional) - February 5, 2018:
- Arrive in Harbin, recover from jetlag
- We can arrange airport transportation and hotel for you.

Day 1 (D) February 6:
- 2PM: start of the workshop
- Welcome
- Evening: Ice and Lantern Festival

Day 2 (B,L,D):
- Travel to the Siberian Tiger Park
- Private Photoshoot #1 – Afternoon

Day 3 (B,L,D):
- Siberian Tiger Park
- Private Photoshoot #2 – Morning
- Visit the ground of the Siberian Tiger Park
- Private Photoshoot #3 – Afternoon

Day 4 (B,L,D):
- Siberian Tiger Park
- Private Photoshoot #4 – Morning
- Photograph rare breeds (liger, white tiger, etc.)
- Private Photoshoot #5 – Afternoon

Day 5 (B,L,D):
- Siberian Tiger Park
- Private Photoshoot #6 - Morning
- Ancient Village (Movie set)

Day 6 (B,L,D):
- Morning: Landscape, frosty trees, villages
- (Or buffer day for Siberian Tiger Park)
- Travel to Harbin

Day 7 (B,L,D):
- Travel to Zhalong Preserve
- Afternoon Photoshoot #1: Red Crown Cranes

Day 8 (B,L,D):
- Private Photoshoot (Sunrise) #2: Red Crown Cranes
- Morning Photoshoot #3: Red Crown Cranes (flight shots)
- Afternoon Photoshoot #4: Red Crown Cranes (feeding)
- Private Photoshoot (Sunset) #5: Red Crown Cranes (flight, glowing light)

Day 9 (B,L,D):
- Private Photoshoot (Sunrise) #6: Red Crown Cranes (flight, glowing light)
- Red Crown Crane gallery
- Travel to Harbin

Day 10 (B) (February 15): - Conclusion of workshop

What to Bring

Upon signing up for the workshop, you’ll receive a detailed coursebook describing what to bring, recommended camera gears, booking your flight, and more.

Clothing: (temperature ranges from low 0F to 30F)
- Warm Clothes (layers, dawn jacket, Gore-Tex shell, ski pants, winter hat, gloves, and thermal underwear)
- Winter boots
- Hands and feet warmers
- Knee pads (for low angle shooting)
Camera Equipment:
- DSLR (bring your camera manual), extra battery (and charger)
- Recommended Lenses:
Wildlife portrait: 100-400mm
Wildlife environmental: 70-200mm
Ancient Villages: 24–105mm
Ice festival: 16–70mm
- Tripod (Optional, will be mostly used at the Ice Festival and for landscape shots)
Other Equipment (Optional):
- Small notepad (notes, observations, write down questions)
- Camera raingear (Kata, Kirk, or just heavy garbage bags) to protect against water and condensation

Photography Review Equipment (Recommended):
- Laptop (with power cord), memory card downloader
- Post processing software (Lightroom, Photoshop, plug-ins)
- External hard drives (backup)

Valid passport and visa for travel to China


This is an all-inclusive workshop (transportation, lodging, meals, local guide, photo instruction). It also includes all the entrée fees for the Siberian Tigers Preserve and the Cranes at the Zhalong Marshland Preserve. The workshop does not include transportation to Harbin, China (start and conclusion of the workshop)

Workshop comprises...
- 10 days on the ground in China
- All meals, accommodation, private car transportation
- All entrance fees
- Feeding fee at the Siberian Tiger park & Crane Zhalong Reserve
- Private photoshoots at the Tiger park
- Private photoshoots at the Crane Reserve
- Private photoshoots at ancient villages (movie set)
- Coursebook and orientation materials
- Small group (maximum 8 people)
- Daily reviews (including tips on post processing, file management, idea to build portfolio)
- One instructor, One local expert, two local guides, drivers

Not Included:
- Visa Application
- Transportation to and from Harbin (HRB)
- Transport to and from Harbin airport to hotel
- Personal expenses, alcoholic beverages
- Travel Insurance
- Extra night(s) in Harbin
- Tips to local staff

Travel Recommendations:
- Plan on arriving in Harbin no later than February 6 at noon. Your return flight can be booked any time on February 15.
- We can assist with booking extra nights in Harbin (pre workshop) and airport transportation.

Trip Cancellation & Travel Insurance Suggestions:

Here are a few recommendations but please browse around as services and prices vary.

• Travelex Travel Select http://www.travelexinsurance.com (800) 228-9792
• Travel Guard http://www.travelguard.com/ or Travel Insurance Services http://www.travelinsure.com.
• Travel Insurance Services (Walnut Creek, CA) http://www.travelinsure.com/cobrand/select/photoex (800) 937-1387
• Atlas International Insurance (HCC Medical Insurance Services) http://www.visitorsmedical.com/atlasinternational.html
• TEN (Travelers Emergency Network) Emergency Evacuation Coverage https://www.sevencorners.com/insurance/HW7C6YH
• Medjet Assist 1-800-527-7478 https://medjetassist.com

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