Canada’s Big Five Safari
Experience the spectacular wildlife of Canada, with an adventure from the dense forest of Riding Mountain National Park to the colourful tundra of Churchill. This one-of-a-kind Big Five Safari is a salute to the incredible array of megafauna that populate the forests, prairies, tundra and waters of this beautiful country!
Your journey begins in Winnipeg, the geographic centre of North America. Travel overland to Riding Mountain National Park where the boreal forest, meadows and lakes, lofty heights and deep gorges of the Manitoba Escarpment are home to moose, black bears, a captive bison herd and more. Enjoy daily wildlife drives to photograph the amazing wildlife and landscapes of the area. Next, fly north to Churchill, where the boreal forest gives way to the rugged tundra and northern waterways. Set out by boat and Zodiac amongst inquisitive beluga whales and explore the Churchill Wildlife Management Area in search of the majestic polar bear.
Canada’s Big Five Safari
Day 1 : UK - Arrive Winnipeg
Welcome to Winnipeg, the capital of the Canadian province of Manitoba. On arrival make your way to your airport hotel for a welcome meeting and dinner with fellow travellers and your interpretive guide.
Day 2 : Riding Mountain National Park – Wildlife Safari
Leave Winnipeg behind this morning for the coach drive to Riding Mountain National Park, making a stop at Farmery Estate Brewery in Neepawa for a tour and lunch. Continuing through the prairie grasslands to the rolling hills of the Manitoba Escarpment you enter the Riding Mountain National Park through its historic East gate and take in a wildlife drive for a first chance to search for moose, black bear and other wildlife. The beautiful lakeside Boutique hotel is home for the next two nights and is located in the heart of Wasagaming inside the park.
Day 3 : Lake Audy Bison Enclosure
Enjoy a wildlife drive in the national park this morning. The park is home to many species of animal but your time will be spent seeking out black bears, dear, moose and more. Afterwards there’s an interpretive tour of Wasagaming’s charming streets. This afternoon you can enjoy a cruise on Clear Lake, steps away from downtown Wasagaming. The water is so clear that you can see the stones, sand and pebbles that make up the bed of the lake. This evening head out on another wildlife drive, this time to the lake Audy Bison Enclosure to see a captive heard of 40 bison. Learn about the history of the enclosure and the importance of bison to the region.
Day 4 : Riding Mountain National Park - Winnipeg
One last morning wildlife drive today to spot more wildlife before an interpretive hike through Ominik Marsh, then it’s time to head back to Winnipeg for the night.
Day 5 : Winnipeg - Churchill
After breakfast board a morning flight to Churchill. First adventure of the day is a Tundra Buggy drive into the Churchill Wildlife management area. Your Tundra Buggy driver and interpretive guide explains the geological and natural history of the tundra whilst you enjoy colourful landscapes and spot and photograph dozens of species of birds and other wildlife. Enjoy a picnic lunch on the Tundra Buggy and maybe see a summer polar bear cooling off in the waters of Hudson Bay. Afterwards enjoy free time to relax and explore Churchill.
Day 6 : Beluga Whales and Prince of Wales Fort
Start today with a Churchill area tour of various points of interest including the famous Polar Bear Jail and Polar Bears International House and the interpretive centre, where a polar bear ambassador explains all things polar bear. Then it’s time for a first beluga whale experience as a boat tour takes you into the Hudson estuary where thousands of beluga whales gather each year to feed on the small fish and give birth to their young. Belugas are curious creatures and it won’t be long before they surround the boat. Then it’s on to the other side of the river for a tour of Prince of Wales Fort, the oldest and most northerly stone fort in Canada. Nest adventure on the list today is a mile long dog cart trip through the boreal forest to learn about the history of dog sledding and its importance to northern communities. Then its time to relax aver dinner and maybe a pint in the pub.
Day 7 : Churchill - Winnipeg
Get even closer to the belugas today on a zodiac tour in the Churchill River. There’ll be some great photo opportunities as the pods of belugas surface close to the zodiac attracted by the bubbles from the motor. At the Parks Canada Visitor Centre you’ll see in depth displays revealing the remarkable history of Churchill through wildlife dioramas and exhibits that portray the history of the fur trade in the area. Final stop of the day is the Itsanitaq Museum, home to an enormous collection of Inuit artefacts honouring the indigenous roots of Churchill. Return to the airport in Churchill in time for your flight back to Winnipeg and a final night.
Day 8-9 : Winnipeg - Arrive UK
Be sure to check-in in good time for your homeward flight.