Polar Bears of Churchill
This program is no longer being offered
In late October and early November, polar bears congregate on the shores of Hudson Bay in Canada’s Arctic, waiting for the bay to freeze. Once the ice forms, the bears can reach seals, their favorite prey. The port community of Churchill is located on the bears’ migration route. Visitors at this time of year have the unique opportunity to view this magnificent animal in its natural habitat, a world-class wildlife experience.
- Two full days of bear viewing from our Tundra Buggy®. An outside back platform and openable windows afford excellent photo opportunities. In 30 years of operating these tours we have always seen bears, usually close-up. The bears are curious and frequently come up to the Buggy to “check us out.
- Learn about life in Churchill on the edge of the Arctic from a local resident.
- “Meet the people” program featuring a Métis storyteller and Churchill resident who will talk about her experiences growing up as a trapper’s daughter.
- Visit Oak Hammock Marsh Preserve near Winnipeg to view migratory waterfowl.
- Travel by train from Winnipeg to Churchill, 1000 miles north, affording a leisurely view of northern Manitoba with the transition from prairie farmlands to the largest undeveloped boreal forest in the world, to the roadless tundra near Hudson Bay. Recalling an earlier era, the train consist includes sleeping cars, lounge, and dining car serving meals prepared on board.
- Option of flying back to Winnipeg in the evening on 3 November instead of returning by train.
Daily Itinerary summary
- Day 1: Guests arrive in Winnipeg. Lodging at Victoria Inn near the airport.
- Day 2: Visit Oak Hammock Marsh conservation area to view migratory waterfowl in morning; afternoon begin our train journey to Churchill
- Day 3: We leave the train this morning and catch up with up further up the line late this afternoon. Off-train activities include Pisew Falls, Paint Lake, the northern boreal forest, and a visit to Thompson, Manitoba’s third largest, and northernmost city.
- Day 4: Arrive Churchill this morning. Guided Churchill and vicinity tour, including visit to the Polar Bear “jail” where you will see the massive traps used to trap bears which venture into town, Cape Merry, the town’s inukchuk overlooking Hudson Bay, the port facilities, and an insight into life in a town on the edge of the arctic. There is also free time for shopping, or a visit to the renowned Eskimo Museum with its outstanding collection of Inuit carvings. Lodging at Tundra Inn next two nights.
- Day 5: Full day of bear watching on the Tundra Buggy. This evening listen to Métis storyteller, Myrtle DeMeulles describe her experiences of growing up on the Arctic.
- Day 6: Encore day of bear watching on the Tundra Buggy. Time for last minute shopping before departing on the train this evening. Option: fly back to Winnipeg this evening with accommodation at the Victoria Inn by the airport. Inquire for availability and price.
- Day 7: Travel through the northern Boreal Forest and see portions of the line that we missed while off the train on day 3.
- Day 8: Return to Winnipeg this afternoon. Lodging at Victoria Inn.
- Day 9: Guests depart Winnipeg.