By: Tully Luxury Travel
Insider’s Look • Arctic • Travel
Picture the golden sun rising over a pristine field covered in a thick blanket of snow. The ice crackles as it settles over the vast bay. A light wind brings the promise of colder temperatures. This barren landscape, in the remote Canadian Arctic, is a playground for polar bears. They migrate here every year beginning in October to wait for the coast to freeze so they can hunt for food.
Few people ever get to stand here, mesmerized by an unobstructed view of the world’s largest land predator. But that is exactly what this expedition into Nunavut offers: a 5-day polar bear safari in unspoiled wilderness.
Your journey begins and ends in Winnipeg, where you will stay in a boutique hotel. From here, a short flight takes you to Churchill on the edge of Hudson Bay. Known as the Polar Bear Capital of the World, Churchill is the final stop for many looking to catch a glimpse of the majestic bears. Your journey, however, continues. Take a scenic 50-minute flight along the west coast of Hudson Bay to a camp near Arviat, Nunavut.
Inaccessible by road and miles from the nearest settlement, your base camp is quiet, remote and a perfect place to experience the wild beauty of true Arctic tundra. Stay in private Polar Bear Cabins, repurposed from an old Inuit hunting facility and strategically placed on the migratory route the animals take as they make their way north. This location almost guarantees daily sightings.
Surrounded by an unobtrusive electric fence, you can safely observe the bears as they frolic in the snow near you. The curious bears have even been known to come right up to the fence.
Although remote, don’t expect to subsist here on pork and beans. The camp is known for its superb cuisine, created fresh daily by a private on-site chef using a custom-built oven. From delicious meals to fine wine and exquisite desserts, you’ll be thankful for the fence that keeps those bears out of your dining tent.
Spend your days observing polar bears and other wildlife, such as the Arctic hare, Arctic fox, pine marten, willow ptarmigan, snowy owl, gyrfalcon and wolverine. Head out on short hikes with local Inuit guides to photograph the striking landscape and catch a glimpse of even more wildlife in their natural habitat. In the evenings, if the weather conditions are good, watch a surreal display of northern lights dance across the sky.
– The Tully Team
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