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Many funny racoon-dogs but unfortunally no bears. Nice place though with many birds and other animals. You need to walk 2 km from the car park.
Date of experience: May 2019
We booked the hide a half year in advance. Seeing a bear would be the highlight of our holiday since we are both animal lovers. Peep was really helpful during the arrangements! On the night itself we didn’t see bears which was really disappointing. Maybe the rain had something to do with it. We arranged a second night and boy were we glad we did. We saw a bear coming walking out of the woods a couple of times. An amazing sight! Definitely worth it.
The first night we shared the cabin with two other people but we still had our own (private) part of the cabin. The second night we had the whole cabin for just the two of us.
This experience was great, I recommend it!
Date of experience:August 2019
I was thrilled to discover Natourest’s overnight stay in a bear hide! The staff at Natourest were hugely helpful and helped me to find the best opportunity and travel options. The hides are comfortable, completely bug free, and are split into two to allow for some privacy. As a woman travelling on my own I had no concerns at all about overnighting in the wilderness! I was SUPER lucky and we had multiple bear sightings, as well as raccoon dogs and a wide variety of birds. I highly recommend this experience!
Date of experience: June 2019
We went to see the bears in the height of season. I think we were quite unlucky but we waited from 5.30pm until 11.30pm and didn’t see a single bear! Luckily we woke up around 4am and did manage to see 2, I would have been disappointed if this hadn’t happened but obviously nothing is guaranteed with nature.
However we did not have a good experience with the sleeping arrangements. There are two hides – Andres told us to go into the one on the left. We were in there for 10-15 minutes, unpacked our things and settled in. Shortly afterwards, he knocked on the window and asked us to go out. He said ‘if you like, you can move to the other hide’. I thought this was strange, why would we want to move? I asked him if that is what he would prefer us to do and he replied ‘do it’! This may have been partly due to the language barrier. He did apologise.
We packed up our things and moved to the other hide. There were already 6 people in there and we found ourselves sharing a bunk with 2 others. The description on the website says the bunk area is private but this is not the case! It is shared! If you go in a couple, you could be sleeping on bunks right next to another couple. This really made me feel quite uncomfortable and wasn’t what we were led to believe. We struggled to sleep as a result.
I would recommend the experience (although perhaps go for more than one night to increase your chances of seeing the bears) but do not think the accommodation was as it was described to us and this did slightly marr the experience. Peep’s communication beforehand was fantastic.
Date of experience: May 2019
Firstly, let me just say the older reviews referring to bugs in the huts and noisy at night, etc. are for the old hides, they’ve now got newly built upgraded hides that are clean, comfortable, warm, completely bug-free, quiet and all around fantastic for sleeping and nature watching.
We saw 2 brown bears and it was an absolutely amazing experience that I would recommend to anyone and everyone who is remotely interested in animals/nature.
Fantastic communication, customer service and friendliness from the company that helped organised it.
Can’t recommend this enough!
Date of experience: September 2018
Great time bear watching from a basic but safe wooden hide! We saw bears on two occasions and 3 in total i believe. Surreal experience and very exciting. Such an adrenaline rush. It was a bittersweet moment as the bears came after it was too dark to film, but that also forced me to enjoy the viewing and not worry about the footage. Worth it! A great story to be told.
Date of experience: May 2018
To start, seeing bears in their own habitat in the wild is a very special experience. But I just wanted to list a few things I wish I knew before our stay.
We stayed in the more expensive Lux cabin. The drive from Tallinn is around 2 hours, very good roads I may add & it’s easy to find the meeting point from the maps provided.
It takes around 20-25 minutes to get from where the car is parked to the hide, I highly recommend welly boots or similar as I was ankle deep at times in mud!
The hut is basic and will be filled with bugs, ours was full of small black flies and mosquitos – we forgot bug spray, I would recommend it.
The dry toilet is ok, doesn’t smell and they supply special biodegradable toilet paper.
We arrived at the hut around 430pm, we seen a family of 3 bears at around 8pm, then a larger bear on his own around 9pm, some raccoon dog activity soon after then after 1030pm it was too dark to see anything.
I would recommend some books, magazines or games to fill the time also (there’s only so much conversation two People can have!!)
The bunk beds are made of wood and have a small mattress and sleeping bags were provided, but it was a warm night so we used them as pillows.
We brought our own lantern, I cannot stress how important this is, the hut is in absolute darkness, DO NOT FORGET THIS!!!!
If you are in any way not a fan of bugs, their presence, noise etc I wouldn’t recommend this. I am not a huge fan of buzzing noises or scratching type bug noises,if you are in anyway similar- just don’t go, I didn’t sleep a wink as every little noise freaked me out-but if you aren’t a big wuss like me-go for it!
We had a rodent visitor in the night, a small dormouse type creature that definitely scared me as
the scuttling noises had me thinking all sorts but in all honesty once I seen it I was ok!
Bottom line – it is a very cool experience and if you like the outdoors and want to see some wild bears and raccoon dogs, this is for you.
Ps- do not forget to leave the key back, we were 40 mins away and realised we had it with us, made an already tiring journey a lot worse!
Date of experience: August 2016
Stayed in two person luxury photo hide for two nights in July 2016. Saw bears on six occasions between these nights. Lots of other wildlife as well. Couple of things to say which aren’t a complaints at all but should be known, hide is approx. mile from hide from meeting point down rough path, mosquitoes are nasty, make sure you have net or repellent and have an outdoor pillow to help sleep better. Would thoroughly recommend throughout for a hopefully more than a life time experience.
Date of experience: July 2016
We were glad of the Tom Tom which got us easily to the meeting place. Prewarned about mozzi spray we set off to the hide and made ourselves comfortable. The seats are excellent and I was pleasantly surprised at the non smelly dry loo and the comfortable bunks where we all, at some stage through the night, managed to sleep. The one or two mozzies that managed to get in to the hide we managed to splat fairly quickly so no reason problem here at all.
The raccoon dogs, then the fabulous, enormous brown bears appeared as on cue. Although they are clearly habituated to this clearing, they seem to have learned to ignore the hides. The power of the bears was obvious as they swatted away the stones “hiding” the fish. When the second bear appeared there was a bit of a stand off, then a loud chase. They can fairly shift when they want to! The raccoon dogs hung around most of the night, picking up scraps. Lots of birds as well, flycatchers, jays, great spotted woodpeckers and a cuckoo, ( heard close by but never saw). Left the hide in the morning for the short walk back to the car more than satified. A brilliant experience. Highly recommended
Date of experience: May 2016
It was the third time we were in Alutaguse. We arrived at the hut, and placed the cameras in place. Fifteen minutes later, he was applying – the raccoon dog. Sniffing around and checked the situation. After few minutes had been a total of five raccoon dogs. At the moment, they are already so thick and furry. The raccoons dogs was there whole evening and posed for our pictures. At one time they all sitting in a row and looked at us as like the cinema. Outside was already shadowy and the time was waiting a bear. Unfortunately, he did not come in the this evening. Previous occasions, he has always been there. Square the night came to eat wild boars. We packed things at eight in the morning, and left the hut. Ultimately still went well, the show offered raccoons dogs and wild boar cattle were fighting with each other. Definitely recommend that everyone go to an experience in itself, in the dark forest and listen to the voices and watching wild animals.
Date of experience: October 2015