Churchill (Manitoba)

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Churchill is a small, friendly town perched on a promontory that separates the estuary of the Churchill River and Hudson Bay. In terms of European exploration it is one of the oldest places in Canada, used as a stopping place in the 16th Century by explorers trying to find the fabled Northwest Passage then subsequently as a fur trading outpost. Its strategic location on the Bay led to it becoming a thriving port town and to this day it remains a vital transportation hub for central Canada. Inland it is flanked by immense expanses of arctic tundra, and this wild landscape is the realm of the polar bear.

In late autumn the bears gather around the edge of Hudson Bay waiting for the ice to freeze so they can venture out to look for food. Churchill is the closest town to this gathering point and it is from here you can embark on a true adventure. Venturing out on to the tundra in specially adapted vehicles with expert naturalist guides enables you to get close to these captivating animals without disturbing them, meaning an incredible opportunity to observe them in their natural environment.

In summer Beluga Whales gather in great numbers in Hudson Bay and this is also when the bears leave the ice sheets and return to the land. Therefore summer can also be a fantastic time for wildlife viewing from Churchill, and certainly a little bit warmer than later in the year!

 


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