Wildlife wonders await on this journey to the World's Polar Bear Capital in Canada's icy north. Topping your list of must-sees on this epic voyage are the majestic snow-white bears which skirt the edge of Hudson Bay as the weather turns icy and the frozen waters pave their way to their Arctic hunting grounds. The gateway to the north is none other than vibrant Winnipeg, a cultural, artistic, entertainment and culinary capital whose locals have a gift for enjoying the finer things in life. You'll have an evening to follow their lead, but first join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception and trip overview at a local restaurant.
No doubt you'll be brimming with excitement as you board your early morning flight to Churchill, on the western shores of Hudson Bay. There's no time to waste as you see many of the area's local and historical highlights, such as Manitoba Conservation's Polar Bear Holding Facility, the 'Miss Piggy' plane wreck and the Inukshuk at Town Beach, symbolising hope and friendship beyond borders. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before visiting the Itsanitaq Museum, revealing the harsh way of life of the indigenous Inuit people. Then head to Parks Canada Visitor Center, located in Churchill's historic train station. Here you'll join a Local Specialist to learn about Churchill's history as a fur trading centre. After a busy day of sightseeing, you'll enjoy dinner with your travel companions at a local restaurant before settling in for the night.
You're in for a special treat today as you come face to face with the dog-sledding traditions of the Great Canadian North. Dive into Culture and join a Local Specialist dog-sledding expert to learn all about the traditional and modern Métis lifestyle. You'll hear about Canada's history of dog sledding before experiencing it first hand on an exhilarating ride through the boreal forest on a custom-built cart. Take some time to warm up during lunch at a local restaurant before exploring the town on your terms. Later this afternoon, you'll board a Tundra Buggy and race through the icy wilderness to your accommodation for two nights and one of Trafalgar's Stays with Stories, the Tundra Buggy Lodge. Beyond the bright lights of Churchill in this remote wilderness setting, you'll have the perfect base from which to view and photograph polar bears by day and the Northern Lights at night. Venture outside on the outdoor viewing platforms to snap the perfect shot or relax in the toasty lounge with a book and coffee. Enjoy a delicious meal featuring regional cuisine in its rustic dining hall before turning your eyes skywards to see if Mother Nature has decided to put on a show this evening. Tonight, you'll overnight in comfortable upper or lower sleeping berths, each with its own window and shared bathroom facilities.
Embark on a full-day safari through the icy landscapes of Churchill Wildlife Management Area. Keep your eyes peeled for polar bears, arctic fox, ptarmigan and other sub-arctic wildlife as you wind your way through the tundra and consider what life must be like in this inhospitable environment. Return to the Tundra Buggy Lodge later this evening just in time for dinner. After another round of regional delicacies deliciously served up by the lodge chef, you'll have an opportunity to relax in the Thanadelthur Lounge. You could choose instead to head up to the deck to see if the Northern Lights have made an appearance or there are any lurking polar bear visitors in your midst. For greater insights into these magnificent creatures, join a Local Specialist polar bear species expert from Polar Bears International this evening for an exclusive presentation on all things polar bear.
Leaving Tundra Buggy Lodge behind this morning, you'll embark on yet another day of safari Manitoba-style. Keep your cameras at the ready to capture the resident wildlife in their natural environment or simply sit back and watch the tundra landscapes unfold as you return to Churchill. After a day of exhilarating exploration, you'll board your return evening flight to Winnipeg with dinner on board and check-in to your hotel for your final evening in Winnipeg.
Your encounter with Canada's polar bears at its end, all that's left is to say a fond farewell to your fellow adventurers and board your return flight home. You could choose to extend your stay and explore Winnipeg's vibrant multi-cultural experiences. Delve into its work-hard, play-hard mindset and discover why, even in winter, Winnipeg has a warm heart.