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    Steppes Travel is made by the people who work here. Incredible holidays are made possible because of their vast travel experience and the great enthusiasm they bring to their work.

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    We carefully select our experts based on their knowledge, companionship and influence, ensuring that you can travel with the most knowledgeable leaders in the field.

Beluga whale

Canadian Arctic Holidays

A space in which wildlife can flourish with little human influence. Become one with an Inuit community and seek out the elusive narwhal, or head out onto open waters in search of whales and polar bears.

The Arctic region of Canada is a vast, wild territory of tundra, ice packs and isolated towns and villages together with an Inuit community set on preserving their culture and customs. The Canadian Arctic is also one of the few true wilderness places where wildlife can thrive unencumbered by human interference.

 

Sea ice in the Northwest Passage, Canadian Arctic
Northwest Passage, Canadian Arctic

Why we like the Canadian Arctic

Despite being one of the world’s sophisticated countries, a great swathe of Canada’s northern territory remains a vast ice-bound wilderness ripe for adventure. Hudson Bay, Baffin Island and the infamous Northwest Passage are all intriguing names remembered from school days and are now accessible by small, comfortable, expeditionary ships, or by staying in remote lodges and camps.

Artic Foxes, Quebec, Canada
Artic Foxes, Quebec, Canada

Canadian Arctic: What to Expect

With a limited supply of income-earning resources, tourism, and particularly polar bear viewing, has become a major industry in the Canadian Arctic and several towns have become famous tourist hot spots, but with 5,000 miles of coastline to choose from, there is plenty of scope to find isolation. Move away from the towns and you find a barren wilderness which harbours a rich variety of wildlife, where orcas, walruses and narwhals swim the cold oceans and musk ox, arctic foxes and polar bears rule the frozen lands.

Experiences

Wildlife Viewing

Watch and listen to belugas, the canaries of the sea, or go in search for polar bears.

Search for Polar Bears

Look out for the king of the Arctic – the polar bear.

Visit Inuit Communities

Learn about the Inuit traditional and modern ways of life.

View the Aurora Borealis

With very little light pollution, watch the Aurora Borealis.

The history of Franklin

Learn more about the fate of Franklin, his men and their recently rediscovered ship.

Join an Expedition Vessel

Explore areas only accessible by small expedition vessel.

Learn Inuit History

Visit the fascinating Inuit cultural museum and learn all about Inuit history.

Stay in a Polar Lodge

For a true wilderness experience, stay in one of the exclusive polar bear lodges, a short flight from Churchill.

Camp on the ice-floe edge

Stay the night in luxury camps on the ice-floe edge with Inuit guides. Search of the elusive narwhal.

Photography Tour

Photograph bears in spring flower meadows along with prolific birdlife.

Meet our experts

A passion for travel runs right through every one of our experts - meaning they're always ready with first-hand insight about their specialist countries.

Sue Grimwood

Sue has a passion for polar bears and has seen more than most people can dream about. She has canoed down the Yukon river encountering grizzly bears and moose, walked with polar bears in Manitoba, paddled with belugas in Nunavut, explored the ancient sites of the Inuit and sailed the coastlines of Labrador and Nova Scotia.
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Roxy Dukes

Roxy’s love for Canada is limitless and she has returned on an almost yearly basis since her first visit as a child. From hiking the high alpine trails, riding with local cowboys to kayaking with humpbacks, she has likely been there and done it.
Talk with our experts
  • 01285 601 784

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Speak to our experts

Our team is waiting to help you tailor a trip that will leave you with stories for a lifetime. Call us on

01285 601 784

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After years of dreaming about a trip like this, I entrusted the planning and logistics to Sue. What a seamless journey and the most memorable trip – I will never forget seeing a narwhal for the first time.

Destination: Canadian Arctic
Travel Expert: Sue

All I can say is “everything was perfect”.

Destination: Canadian Arctic
Travel Expert: Roxy

We couldn’t believe that it was possible to see so many beluga whales and polar bears in one trip. This was a remarkable trip and one that was fantastically well put together by Sue.

Destination: Canadian Arctic
Travel Expert: Sue

Frequently asked questions about Canadian Arctic

What clothing should I take to the Canadian Arctic?

The Canadian Arctic covers a huge area and varies dramatically throughout the year.

For summer trips you should expect temperatures around +5 to -5 and It is always best to pack plenty of thin thermal layers rather than one thick layer. For voyages wellington boots, waterproof over-trousers & a waterproof jacket are essential. Most ships provide wellingtons & we will confirm the inclusions on your itinerary. Some ships also provide waterproof outer gear or have this available to hire.

For land-based trips to Churchill in the summer, you will not need heavy cold-weather gear however you will want good insect repellent. For later season departures a parka jacket is often included during polar bear watching excursions, we will let you know what you need to take for your specific trip. For spring ice-floe edge tours you can hire a full set of expedition kit.

What language do Canadian Inuit speak?

Inuktitut is the general term for Inuit languages spoken in Nunavut and the Northwest territories this covers a few variations but is considered official language. The Inuit culture is based on spoken word rather than written language which was only adapted from Cree syllabary in the late 19th century and in 1976 the Language Commission of the Inuit Cultural Institute approved two standardized writing systems for Inuktitut in Canada: one using the syllabary and the other using the Latin alphabet.

Do I need any immunisations?

The best person to speak to is your doctor or nurse practitioner, as the advice can change and we are not medically qualified to advice. Generally, the standard immunisations are recommended.

What clothing should I take to the Arctic?

It is always best to pack plenty of thin thermal layers rather than one thick layer. Waterproof snow boots or insulated wellington boots are recommended. It may be possible to rent gear locally, some trips will provided a parka jacket and boots, we will inform you of the inclusions on your personal itinerary but please ask for specific details. Aside from clothing, a high factor sun cream and sunglasses are considered essential, as the glare of snow and water will magnify the effects, insect repellent recommended at some times of the year.

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Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

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