Curious Polar Bear, Canadian Arctic

Canadian Arctic Holidays

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.


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. 

What to expect on your Canadian Arctic holiday

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.

Some ideas for a Canadian Arctic holiday

  • Follow the reindeer migration on the edge of Hudson Bay.
  • Sail the Northwest Passage in a comfortable ice-strengthened expeditionary ship in search of polar bears and whales.
  • Watch polar bears from a remote lodge lazing around, playing or fighting as they eagerly await the return of sea ice and their favourite food.
  • Watch and listen to belugas, the canaries of the sea, who congregate in great numbers in the Hudson Bay during the summer.
  • Explore the islands and ice choked channels that make up Canada’s largest territory of Nunavut, one of the world’s least populated areas.

Beyond the ordinary

  • Camp in exclusively luxury on the ice floe edge with Inuit guides in search of the elusive narwhal.
  • Snorkel with the belugas in Hudson Bay: these curious whales often come close to check you out.
  • Walk with polar bears in the company of experienced guides for unparalleled photographic opportunities.
  • Take a hot air balloon ride to see an aerial view over the vast frozen ocean.


our canadian arctic expertise

Sue has a passion for polar bears and has seen more than most people can dream about. She has cruised the Canadian Arctic in summer and taken land-based expeditions in spring and autumn, so she can provide first hand guidance on the best way to see the Canadian Arctic, including recommending the most suitable ships and lodges. 


Canadian Arctic FAQs

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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, water proof over trousers & a waterproof jacket are essential. Most ships provide wellingtons & we will confirm the inclusions on your itinerary. Some ships also provide water proof outer gear of 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 are the Inuit Games & pastimes?

With long hours of darkness the Inuit have come up with some amazing ways to keep themselves entertained which improve their strength agility and control. These include the classic tug of war and wrestling through to high kicking and mouth-pulling contests. Blanket Tossing, Drum Dancing and Throat Singing are other traditions you can hope to experience. 

Is Polar bear skin really black?

Yes and their fur is actually hollow and not white this is the most thermally efficient colouring allowing them to absorb heat in the cold and reflect it during the sunnier days.  

Will I see penguins?

Despite all your childhood tales showing polar bears & penguins together they actually live in separate hemispheres. There are species of auks and guillemots that look similar to penguins but they can fly. 

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. 


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Polar Bear Cubs

This is an opportunity of a lifetime.
Each Spring it is possible to join a small and exclusive expedition to observe and photograph polar bear mothers and their cubs. This is a very special experience and a trip that sells out years in advance. So enquire now for 2018.

Winter Activities

There is lots to do during the winter in the Canadian Arctic which is great fun for all the family. 
Explore the Arctic by dog sled, skiing, snowshoeing or try your luck at ice fishing. 
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Client Reviews

Dog Sledding, Canadian Arctic
''All excellent. My pre-trip queries were all dealt with by Sue or were answered in the extensive pre-trip info.''

Robert Raiswell

Canadian Arctic
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Holiday Ideas in Canadian Arctic

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