The most luxurious safari hotels might have the pick of the best locations, but for the most part, they’re static. Not Tundra Lodge in Canada. This a hotel on wheels. And for a good reason too. It has to be mobile to get you to the best spots to hang out with local polar bears and seeing northern lights.
It is in Churchill — already a prime Arctic wildlife location — on a piece of private land just above Hudson Bay. This patch of ice is where the ice begins to form. This means that it attracts the bears right at the start of the season.
The rolling hotel isn’t set up to hound the bears. It doesn’t follow them or make them feel threatened. Nor does it chase them. The bears move happily around their environment. The movement of the hotel gives you the opportunity to wake up in the best possible area to see them.
You can also get in prime position to see the Northern Lights. Trust us, half a kilometre can be the difference between a spectacular natural light show and what looks like misty clouds.
The company running the tours — Natural Habitat Tours — is completely carbon neutral. Given that global warming and melting ice is a huge threat to the bears, their partnership with the WWF is important. You get a wonderful wildlife experience but you know that you’re travelling responsibly and helping support animal welfare.
Yes, that is a polar bear that you can see through the window. Your digs might not be up to much, but you’re going to spend so much time looking out of your window you won’t notice.
If you’re lucky you’ll also get to see caribou, Arctic hare, ptarmigan and snowy owls. An Arctic fox or two might even make an appearance. You might be there for the polar bears but the other wildlife could be just as astonishing as the main event. And with a hotel on wheels, you won’t miss a second of the extraordinary action.
Only through October and November. It's not a large window, but the experience is so worth it!
What you need to know:
Natural Habitat Adventures offer something unique: a guarantee that you’ll see polar bears on the tour. Or you get a free trip. This is one of the reasons their travel window is so small. The core dates in the polar bear season give you a guarantee that you’ll get to see these incredible creatures in the wild.