Polar Bear Safari

About the Experience

Experience quintessential Canada in the remote northern frontier town of Churchill, Manitoba on our Polar Bear Safari! This adventure offers the thrills and chills of viewing polar bears from the safety and innovation of the slow-moving Tundra Buggy®.

Canada’s North is home to wildlife species like the Arctic fox, snowshoe and Arctic hare, lynx, mink, moose, gray wolf, black bear and barren ground grizzly bear. And, of course–the red carpet star of Churchill, the polar bear.

Wild Women’s Polar Bear Safari offers the perfect equilibrium of adventure and education. You will have the opportunity to interact with experts and learn more than the “bear” minimum. It’s a feel-good destination and decision as partial proceeds from these tours go towards funding projects by Polar Bears International.

We are committed to responsible, low-impact travel to protect these fragile natural habitats while supporting local communities and celebrating the traditions and customs of the Indigenous residents.

There will be several Tundra Buggy safaris in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area (CWMA), where polar bears patiently await for the temperature to plummet and freeze the iconic Hudson Bay. 

The itinerary allows for relaxed opportunities to explore the CWMA landscape for the Canadian “Big 5” (whatever your Big 5 may be!) and subarctic birds like the rare three-toed woodpecker. Ross’s Gull is one of the most sought after sightings of the approximately 175 species found in and around Churchill.

To warm up your rosy cheeks, explore Churchill’s dynamic history and rich culture at the Itsanitaq Museum. The collection of Inuit carvings and artifacts that are among the oldest in the world from Dorset, Thule and modern Inuit life.

At the Parks Canada Visitor Centre, located in Churchill’s historic former train station, you can virtually visit Wapusk National Park and the national historic sites in Northern Manitoba through interactive exhibits. Peak into a life-sized polar bear maternity den and learn about the vital connection between Indigenous people and the caribou.

With a local dog musher, you will learn when to “gee” and when to “haw” as you charge through the boreal forest with a yipping team of sled dogs. “Whoa” is universal dog-speak, of course.

We’ll spend three cozy nights on The Tundra Buggy® Lodge, near the edge of Hudson Bay. This is the beating heart of polar bear country and the Tundra Buggy® offers incredible access to view bear behavior. The train-like lodge has outdoor viewing platforms and at night, exterior field lights allow for extended viewing of the bears. The wall-to-ceiling windows and roof-top observation deck of Thanadelthur permits a 360° view of the tundra and spellbinding aurora borealis.

The Lodge is a series of connected cars including a lounge car, dining car and sleek sleeping compartments–where you can curl up under a Hudson Bay blanket, of course! Each berth has its own thermostat controlled heating unit.

In the on-board dining hall, affectionately known as “Dan’s Diner” you can expect a savoury regional menu that might include elk, bison lasagna, elk and Arctic char.

The Polar Bear Safari is an immersive, transformative destination with deep Indigenous roots and unparalleled wildlife observation. The Tundra Buggy® Lodge will be the place your mind drifts long after you depart Canada’s North. Gee! Haw! Yeehaw!

 

 

 

 

 

Click here to see the full itinerary!
Polar Bear Safari

About the Experience

Experience quintessential Canada in the remote northern frontier town of Churchill, Manitoba on our Polar Bear Safari! This adventure offers the thrills and chills of viewing polar bears from the safety and innovation of the slow-moving Tundra Buggy®.

Canada’s North is home to wildlife species like the Arctic fox, snowshoe and Arctic hare, lynx, mink, moose, gray wolf, black bear and barren ground grizzly bear. And, of course–the red carpet star of Churchill, the polar bear.

Wild Women’s Polar Bear Safari offers the perfect equilibrium of adventure and education. You will have the opportunity to interact with experts and learn more than the “bear” minimum. It’s a feel-good destination and decision as partial proceeds from these tours go towards funding projects by Polar Bears International.

We are committed to responsible, low-impact travel to protect these fragile natural habitats while supporting local communities and celebrating the traditions and customs of the Indigenous residents.

There will be several Tundra Buggy safaris in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area (CWMA), where polar bears patiently await for the temperature to plummet and freeze the iconic Hudson Bay. 

The itinerary allows for relaxed opportunities to explore the CWMA landscape for the Canadian “Big 5” (whatever your Big 5 may be!) and subarctic birds like the rare three-toed woodpecker. Ross’s Gull is one of the most sought after sightings of the approximately 175 species found in and around Churchill.

To warm up your rosy cheeks, explore Churchill’s dynamic history and rich culture at the Itsanitaq Museum. The collection of Inuit carvings and artifacts that are among the oldest in the world from Dorset, Thule and modern Inuit life.

At the Parks Canada Visitor Centre, located in Churchill’s historic former train station, you can virtually visit Wapusk National Park and the national historic sites in Northern Manitoba through interactive exhibits. Peak into a life-sized polar bear maternity den and learn about the vital connection between Indigenous people and the caribou.

With a local dog musher, you will learn when to “gee” and when to “haw” as you charge through the boreal forest with a yipping team of sled dogs. “Whoa” is universal dog-speak, of course.

We’ll spend three cozy nights on The Tundra Buggy® Lodge, near the edge of Hudson Bay. This is the beating heart of polar bear country and the Tundra Buggy® offers incredible access to view bear behavior. The train-like lodge has outdoor viewing platforms and at night, exterior field lights allow for extended viewing of the bears. The wall-to-ceiling windows and roof-top observation deck of Thanadelthur permits a 360° view of the tundra and spellbinding aurora borealis.

The Lodge is a series of connected cars including a lounge car, dining car and sleek sleeping compartments–where you can curl up under a Hudson Bay blanket, of course! Each berth has its own thermostat controlled heating unit.

In the on-board dining hall, affectionately known as “Dan’s Diner” you can expect a savoury regional menu that might include elk, bison lasagna, elk and Arctic char.

The Polar Bear Safari is an immersive, transformative destination with deep Indigenous roots and unparalleled wildlife observation. The Tundra Buggy® Lodge will be the place your mind drifts long after you depart Canada’s North. Gee! Haw! Yeehaw!

 

 

 

 

 

DAY ONE: WELCOME TO WINNIPEG

Upon arrival, make your way to the luxury boutique hotel, Inn at the Forks Hotel located in downtown Winnipeg, where the Assiniboine River meets the Red River (”The Forks”). Note: you will be required to make your transportation arrangements from the airport to the Inn.

This evening, we will visit the enormous collection housed at the Manitoba Museum. There are over 2.8 million artifacts and specimens here–and you can actually “adopt” one for $35 (to $500) to help support the care and conservation of the object. 

At the museum, northwestern Canada’s colonial history comes to life through the shared stories of Indigenous women who were the lifeblood of the European fur trade. They acted as invaluable guides, translators and consumers. The HBC gallery showcases a trapper’s base camp and a how-to on beaver hat-making.

Afterwards, we’ll be well-spoiled with a 3-course indigenous dinner served in the Museum Galleries. 

Tonight, in the comfort of the Inn at the Forks, we recommend counting polar bears, not sheep, in anticipation of the Tundra Buggy experience that lies ahead!

 

DAY TWO: CHURCHILL ADVENTURE 

Today we make a beeline to the “polar bear capital of the world”–Churchill! This is where the world’s largest carnivores spend their summer vacation, patiently waiting and pacing for the bay to freeze so they can begin hunting for ringed seals.

We’ll jump on an early morning flight to Churchill with a grab-and-go breakfast from the hotel. Upon arrival, we’ll immediately begin exploring the area’s historical points of interest: Cape Merry and the Port of Churchill. Weather-permitting, we’ll also swing by Manitoba Conservation’s Polar Bear Holding Facility (“polar bear jail” for troublesome bears). There are 28 cells and the detained bears are safely relocated after serving their short term. White is the New Black in these parts!

After lunch, things get mush-y. We’ll visit a local resident and dog sledding expert for a mile-long ride on a custom-built sled through the northern boreal forest. You will learn the difference between “gee” and “haw” in no time! Of course, “whoa” is always an option too.

After the rush of a dog-powered sled ride, we will attend a workshop led by Indigenous artist Sandra Cook, a longtime resident of Churchill. Inspired by her frozen surrounds, Sandra integrates a variety of media and ‘canvases’ to celebrate the landscape, wildlife and northern skies. At the Town Centre Complex (a large collection of Inuit wall hangings are on display here), you will have the opportunity to create your own take-home masterpiece under Sandra’s instruction to indelibly document your time in Churchill. 

And now for the moment you’ve been waiting for: we’ll transfer to the Tundra Buggy Dock to board an official Tundra Buggy to make our way to the exclusive Tundra Buggy® Lodge at Polar Bear Point in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area.

We will meet the Lodge staff for a safety briefing and orientation of the accommodations. Then, we will unwind and indulge at Dan’s Diner (the Lodge’s dining hall nickname). Be sure to look for the dazzle of the northern lights before you cozy up under your Hudson Bay blanket! Unfortunately, they can’t be queued up like Netflix but Mother Nature always has surprises up her sleeve!

 

DAY THREE–FOUR: TUNDRA BUGGY ADVENTURE

Are you now pacing like the polar bears and ready for the tundra? 

On day three, after a sweet and savoury breakfast, we will depart on a full-day Tundra Buggy Adventure. There will be substantial time spent on the tundra with a picnic lunch and refreshments provided. 

 Picnic with polar bears. That’s a big bucket list CHECK!

After searching for polar bears, ptarmigans, Arctic fox and other wildlife in action, you will return starry-eyed to the Tundra Buggy® Lodge to chill out in the late afternoon. 

Swap stories with your fellow Wild Women and enjoy some laughs, cocktails and apps in the lounge before dinner. In the evening, entertainment may include an informative lecture, slide and/or video presentation. And/or, a free display of the northern lights!

DAY FIVE: EXPLORE CHURCHILL

After breakfast on day five, we will depart the fairytale experience of the Lodge and revel in another full-day Tundra Buggy Adventure. Pack your bags and bring your carry-on luggage with you as luggage will be transferred separately and you won’t have access to it until arrival at the hotel in Winnipeg.

We’ll start the day with a ready, set, go breakfast and take a panoramic drive 23km east of Churchill to the Churchill Northern Studies Centre (CNSC) for a facility tour and introduction to Rocket Greens. It’s not rocket science–it’s better! Rocket Greens is a hydroponic initiative that produces fresh greens for the community year-round. CNSC is an independent non-profit field station focused on sub-arctic research and education, located on the former site of the Churchill Rocket Research Range. Get it? Rocket Greens?

Rocket Greens operates out of a 40’ shipping container manufactured and named, The Growcer (from an Ottawa/Iqaluit based company). The self-contained gardens help address food security issues in northern and remote locations, delivering 250-400 items of fresh produce to the community each week.

After a decadent lunch we will immerse ourselves in the vibrant culture and history of the Itsanitaq Museum. The museum’s collection of Inuit carvings and artifacts that are among the oldest in the world from Dorset, Thule and modern Inuit life.

We will then transfer to the Churchill airport for a flight back to Winnipeg (a light meal will be served on board). Upon arrival, the group will be transferred to an airport hotel.

 

DAY SIX: ONWARDS AND UPWARDS

Today you will pinch yourself and wonder where you are and where you’ve been. Where did your uninterrupted polar bear view go? To ease you back into the real world, we’ll take a shuttle to the Assiniboine Park Zoo for a breakfast reception in the Tundra Grill, overlooking the tundra landscape in Journey to Churchill exhibit (home to the zoo’s mighty polar bears).

After breakfast, the group will be privy to an exclusive Canadian Signature Experience through the Journey to Churchill exhibit with an impactful Indigenous All My Relations Gakina Ndinewemaaganag cultural tour. This experience is cooler than the sub-Arctic temperatures!

The Wild Women pack will then transfer from the zoo to Winnipeg International Airport. 

For more information and visuals about the Polar Bear Safari and Tundra Buggy® Lodge, please visit the site of our partner and friends at Frontiers North.

 

Click here to see upcoming trip dates to book your spot!