Exploring the foreign tundra brings you face to face with this area’s most famous attraction, the mighty polar bear. Known as the polar bear capital of the world, Churchill is located 1,100 km from Winnipeg. Watch Manitoba’s landscape shift from prairie, to parkland, to boreal forest to tundra on a train ride north. Or take in incredible arial views of Manitoba’s coastline along the Hudson Bay on descent after a short flight to Churchill.
Dubbed “Lords of the Arctic,” polar bears are the world’s largest land carnivores. They have no natural enemies. Consequently, they have no fear. There is nothing like feeling your heart pounding in your chest as a polar bear strides silently along the snow mere metres away. Churchill is one of the few human settlements where polar bears can be observed in the wild, and often very close. Unique tundra vehicles, designed to move easily over snow and ice, provide protection while getting you in the perfect position to watch and photograph these majestic bears. Or, you can walk amongst polar bears – an adventure fueled by adreneline.
Prime viewing times are October and November, when the bears move from their summer habitat on the tundra to the shores of Hudson Bay. There they wait for the ice to form, giving them access to their winter hunting grounds, stocked with seals.
As summer rolls around, bears and their cubs can be seen frolicking on the tundra, against a backdrop of colourful wildflowers. But bears aren’t the only animals who come out to play during the summer months. In July and August, as many as 3,000 beluga whales bring their young to splash in the Churchill River estuary. They break the surface to fill their lungs with air, and at the same time, fill you with wonder. Curious by nature, they circle your kayak and swim alongside – a welcoming party you will never forget.
High above it all, the northern lights dance amid the stars as Churchill is known as one of the top three places in the world to see this dazzling lightshow. And be on the lookout for an endless supply of wildlife, including woodland caribou, arctic fox and hundreds of species of birds.
The people here are as welcoming as the wildlife. The locals love sharing their culture and stories. To them, each traveller is another welcome guest. And, in the authentic northern logdes, the food and friends are a hearty as home.
Here is a world far from yours, and one that you’ll never want to leave. Welcome to Churchill.