Each November, wilderness lovers flock to Churchill, Manitoba in the hopes of catching a glimpse of the wildlife that calls this town home. Known as the “Polar Bear Capital of the World,” Churchill offers plenty of opportunity to take in the wonders that Northern Canada has to offer. The various tours that cater to Churchill’s countless tourists offer visitors a chance to see the Northern Lights or the opportunity to snap photos of arctic creatures in their natural habitat. The town is also home to a number of historical and cultural centres that illuminate Churchill’s exciting, and at times, dangerous past. If you’re excited to explore a brand new area of the True North, try venturing to this Manitoba destination this month.
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Get up close and personal with the king of the Arctic
Though it is a charming and personable town, the greatest incentive in traveling to Churchill is opportunity to see polar bears in the flesh. It therefore makes sense that the majority of activities in the town revolve around these majestic creatures. Companies such as Great White Bear Tours take visitors out in tundra buggies to spot polar bears, while Natural Habitat Adventures offers amateur photographers a chance to capture priceless images of these creatures, complete with on-site guidance by an expert photographer.
Learn about Inuit culture
Visitors looking to add a bit of culture to their stay will relish the opportunity to visit the Isanitaq Museum. This attraction is home to a collection of Inuit artifacts that are some of the oldest of their kind. Key pieces include Inuit art, handmade kayaks, and stuffed animals. The highlight, however, is perhaps the collection ancient carvings that illustrate the daily life of Churchill’s first inhabitants. The museum’s gift shop displays Inuit art for sale, as well as historical books and local artisanal crafts.
Take in the Northern lights
Churchill is frequently referred to as one of the best places in the world to catch the Northern Lights. The Aurora Domes are Plexiglass bubbles located 20 minutes from Churchill that provide the opportunity to take in the wonder of the Northern Lights from the comfort of indoors, a welcome opportunity considering that temperatures in Churchill can dip below -20 Celsius. If you’re interested in learning more about the science behind the phenomenon, check out the Churchill Northern Studies Centre, an independent research and education facility dedicated to the exploration of Northern science that offers information on the Northern Lights.
Explore Canadian history
Take a trip through time at the Fort Prince of Wales Historic Site. Built 250 years ago by the Hudson’s Bay Company, this fur trading fortress was constructed in order to fend off attacks by the French. Today, the fort is a treasured Canadian heritage site. Guided tours of this attraction describe what daily life was like at the fort and the rivalry between the French and English over the Hudson’s Bay fur control. If venturing out to the actual fort isn’t appealing to you, you can still learn about the site’s rich history by taking in the exhibits in the Parks Canada Visitor Centre.