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WALRUS & WHALE SAFARI

OVERVIEW

Behold hundreds of walruses basking on sun kissed ice, and witness the migration of majestic Arctic whales - the bowheads. Snorkel and kayak on this arctic island safari in the 24 hour sun.  

 

WHAT WE LOVE

  • Witness the beauty of the High Arctic, where frozen ice meets open water with giant ice bergs calved from glaciers
  • Observe migrating bowhead whales breach playfully, and slap their flukes on the mirror smooth water
  • Wonder at the immense size of walruses, bigger than a car, as they sun themselves on floating ice islands
  • Kayak, hike and take small boat excursions into the stunning wilderness
  • Photograph pods of a mother walrus and baby in the soft glow of the 24 hour midnight sun
  • Snorkel or dive along the ice floe edge and exhilarate in the moment when a bowhead whale swims by
  • Listen to the chirps and whistles of the whale songs while underwater or through a hydrophone on the surface
  • Witness polar bears hunting for seals among the floating pans of ice

 

WHAT’S INCLUDED

  • Highly qualified Inuit guides and expedition leaders
  • All transportation beginning in Igloolik/Hall Beach.
  • Accommodation:  7 nights Igloolik/Hall Beach - an arctic safari style luxury base camp
  • All meals in Igloolik/Hall Beach and at base camp

 

WHAT TO KNOW

  • Late June and early July is the ideal time for this trip
  • In June and July the average temperature is 40 degrees Fahrenheit and there is 24 hours of daylight
  • The weather will play a huge factor in the activities and wildlife sightings of each day
  • Safari style luxury tents have wooden floors equipped with electric power, heaters, elevated beds and ample standing room

 

HOW TO GET THERE

Flights are available to Ottawa (YOW) from major U.S. and Canadian cities on a variety of carriers. Travelers will then take a flight to either Igloolik (YGT) or Hall Beach (YUX). Base Camp transfer is 30 minutes by snowmobile or qamutiq and boat.


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SAMPLE ITINERARY

DAY 1: JOURNEY TO ARCTIC BASE CAMP
Depart Ottawa for Igloolik/Hall Beach. Transfer to our waiting snowmobiles or qamutiqs and boats and travel out to the luxury outpost safari- style base camp set on a pebble beach, where our chef has prepared a welcome dinner.

DAYS 2-7: INTO THE WILD
Daily sorties to the floe edge where ice meets the open water in search of the Bowhead whales, herds of walrus on floating ice islands, hikes and floe edge lunches. Wonder at the numerous sea birds diving and swooping over the water. Some days we travel by boat far out into the Foxe Basin in search of floating islands of ice packed with hundreds of Walrus sunning themselves. We quietly watch these enormous animals and take photographs from both the ice and boat getting as close as our expedition leaders and Inuit guides will allow. We observe the walrus diving for clams and repeatedly hauling themselves out of the water and back up onto their resting platform on the ice. We enjoy hot lunches on the very same piece of ice as the walrus, which are not at all concerned by our presence. During the boat excursions we have opportunities to spot Bowhead whales cruising the icy waters during the annual migration.  Other activities include kayaking and hiking. For the adventurous, there are options to snorkel or dive along and underneath the sea ice. Daily boat excursions (can be up to 10 hours per day with lunch stops and wildlife viewing) with local Inuit boats and guides out into the waters of the Foxe basin in search of walrus, bowhead whales. If lucky, we will spot polar bears swimming among the ice.

Day 8: DEPARTURE
Morning departure to Ottawa.

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