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Polar Bear Expedition by Train

Polar Bear Expedition by Train

8

days

starting fromUS $6,530per person

Star Rating 5

5 of 5 stars (9 reviews)

  • Choose your own activities and experiences to make the most of your trip.
  • Have all the details of your trip organized and arranged for you.

See Polar Bears By Train In Canada

Travel to Churchill by train to witness the incredible polar bear migration. With a friendly expert guide, you spend two days on a specifically designed Tundra Buggy watching polar bears in their natural habitat. Time off the tundra is spent learning more about life in the north, including a thrilling dog sled experience. Experience the best of everything Churchill has to offer.

Trip Outline

8 Days / 7 Nights

Arrive Winnipeg 1 night Winnipeg 2 nights VIA Rail 3 nights Churchill 1 night Winnipeg Depart Winnipeg

Polar Bear Expedition by Train - Map

Availability

OctNov

Places Visited

WinnipegChurchill

Accommodation Style

HotelTrain

Your Train Experience

VIA RailSleeper Train

Activity Level

Easy

What you'll love about this trip

  • Close-up polar bear encounters

  • Overnight journey through the arctic tundra by train

  • Watching polar bears from the comfort of a Tundra Buggy

  • Unique activities such as dog sledding

  • Maximum group size of 22 guests

Common Questions

  • Is this an escorted tour?

    Our vacations are not typically 'escorted.' We combine the best of both worlds – the reassurance of seamless connections, customer service support, and scheduled activities, plus the freedom of 'independent' travel. You are not tied into a specific group, or a rigid daily itinerary. This allows us to personalize your trip to suit your occasion, interests, and timeframe.

  • Can this trip be made shorter or longer?

    Absolutely! We personalize all our clients' trips to fit their exact tastes and needs. You can add days at locations that you'd like to explore and spend more time at. Or leave out certain areas that don't interest you as much. Discuss your travel goals with our Canadian Insiders who make sure that your trip fits your needs and budget.

  • Can I customize this trip?

    Your trip can be as rich as you'd like, and completely arranged around your interests and needs. The greatest benefit of working with us is our local knowledge. You can get your FREE personalized trip plan and decide what you'd like to see and do.

    If your trip is a special occasion, we'll make sure it is unforgettable. Or if you're traveling with a group, we'll take care of the logistics so you can share time together stress-free.

  • Am I on the train the whole time?

    All of our trips include stops to get off the train to explore Canada's beautiful locations, national parks and unique cities. However, if you're keen to maximize your time onboard, we'll pair you up with the perfect train experience.

  • Where am I staying on this trip?

    This trip features an overnight rail journey, and you'll get a comfortable private cabin on the train for the duration of your train ride. The trains feature common lounge areas and dining cars where you can socialize with fellow travelers.

    When not on the train, you'll be staying at various three to five star hotels or lodges along your route. All our accommodations are carefully selected by our Canadian Insiders. We'll make sure that wherever you stay, you get the best value and comfort based on the seasonal availability.

  • What is the train experience like?

    Because most Canadians typically do not use the train for commuting (as in the US or Europe), the two main rail providers here are driven by tourism. You'll experience the romance of true trans-continental rail travel, with a wide selection of services, accommodation types, and great food.

    Featured train experiences:

      VIA Rail is Canada's national train provider, with routes running Coast to Coast and through remote parts of northern Canada. The type of train depends on your journey, and can vary from the classic trans-continental sleeper trains to daylight trains with overnight stops.

      Sleeper Trains feature a once in a lifetime adventure of sleeping on the train in comfortable cabins. You can relax in your private onboard accommodations, or enjoy local wines and chef-prepared meals in the dining car during this unforgettable trip.

  • How much does my trip cost?

    All our trips are personalized to fit our clients' schedule and budget. The price of your trip generally depends on the travel season, train service, accommodations, and the sightseeing tours you take. Please request your personalized quote which will provide you with the detailed information you need.

  • What is included in the price?

    Typically we include and pre-book all your main trip components so you don't have to worry about your connections, places to stay, or activities on your trip. You'll receive your detailed digital travel documents, and our Canadian Insiders remain at your disposal throughout your trip to answer any questions.

  • What are the best ways to travel around Canada?

    Canada has a network of spectacular roadways, train routes, ferry crossings, and float planes. We can arrange for you to travel by car or to sit back and relax.

  • When is the best time to see wildlife?

    That depends on the destination and type. As a rule, the main feeding and migration seasons are best for wildlife experiences. Tell us which animals interest you and we'll make your trip coincide with the best viewing season.

This Trip in Pictures

This is a journey like no other, crossing the Arctic tundra on a train to Hudson Bay to see polar bears.

This is a journey like no other, crossing the Arctic tundra on a train to Hudson Bay to see polar bears.

Stay in the town of Churchill and see polar bears from a specially designed Tundra Buggy

Stay in the town of Churchill and see polar bears from a specially designed Tundra Buggy

The bears gather in this area every year, waiting for the bay to freeze.

The bears gather in this area every year, waiting for the bay to freeze.

Before their hunting season starts, they take time to relax or spar, putting on a great show.

Before their hunting season starts, they take time to relax or spar, putting on a great show.

You'll also get a chance to see other wildlife like Snowy Owl, Snow Goose or Arctic Fox.

You'll also get a chance to see other wildlife like Snowy Owl, Snow Goose or Arctic Fox.

And learn about life in the far north or try dogsledding.

And learn about life in the far north or try dogsledding.

A short flight brings you back to Winnipeg to end your Canadian polar journey.

A short flight brings you back to Winnipeg to end your Canadian polar journey.

Recommended Itinerary

Think of this itinerary as just a starting point. Our experienced Canadian Insiders will create a personalized trip plan for you that matches your travel style, schedule and budget.

Day 1 – Arrive in Winnipeg
After checking in to your downtown hotel, spend the day exploring the city. Head over to the Manitoba Museum, which has nine galleries displaying historical artifacts or to the Forks, a funky market which is one of the city’s most popular gathering places. This evening get acquainted with your fellow travellers at an information session led by your hosts.

 

To ensure you are comfortable in Churchill’s cold temperatures, ask us about winter clothing rentals. We highly recommend you do this early, as availability is limited!

Overnight in Winnipeg.

 

Day 2 – Board VIA Rail
Today you board VIA Rail and begin your journey to Churchill. As you travel into northern Manitoba, the scenery changes from forests to plains to arctic tundra.

Overnight onboard the train.

 

Day 3 – Train Journey North Continues
Spend a quiet day riding the rails across Manitoba. This is a full day onboard the train and is a great opportunity to meet your fellow travelers. The scenery becomes more barren the further north you travel, and the feeling of crossing such a vast landscape is quite incredible.

Overnight onboard the train.

 

Day 4 – Explore Churchill & Dog Sledding
Your train pulls into the little Churchill train station this morning. Get your bearings on a town and area tour, when you’ll have a chance to photograph the Polar Bear Holding facility, historical Cape Merry and other unique points of interest.

 

Later, meet a local musher and hear his incredible tales of Arctic racing and meet his pack sled dogs. After a thorough briefing, feel the exhilaration of racing a team through the boreal forest on a one-mile groomed trail.

 

This evening at a Cultural Presentation, you’ll learn what it’s like to live in the northern reaches of Canada through the stories of a Churchill resident, such as a local trapper.

Overnight in Churchill.

 

Day 5 – Polar Bear Viewing by Tundra Buggy
Finally the moment has come to head out and search for polar bears. You’ll board a specially designed Tundra Buggy and journey into the Churchill Wildlife Management Area for your first chance to see polar bears in the wild. Since the number of visitors to the CWMA is highly restricted, your chances of seeing the bears up close is excellent. Your knowledgeable guide will know just where to go, and as the bears congregate in anticipation of the ice forming on the Hudson Bay, there are plenty of great photo opportunities.

Overnight in Churchill.

 

Day 6 – Explore Churchill
This morning, enjoy a visit to the Polar Bears International House to learn about ongoing polar bear research, as well as the Parks Canada Interpretive Center where you’ll learn more about the history, wildlife, and culture of the Churchill area. A visit to the Itsanitaq Museum gives you the chance to see ancient Pre-Dorest, Dorset, Thule and Inuit artifacts, as well as browse for unique northern souvenirs.

Overnight in Churchill.

 

Day 7 – Polar Bear Viewing and Return to Winnipeg
Enjoy another extraordinary day exploring the Churchill Wildlife Management Area onboard a Tundra Buggy. As well as capturing incredible, up-close photographs of polar bears, you’ll see other wildlife such as arctic fox, ptarmigan, and snowy owl. This evening you will fly back to Winnipeg and check-in to an airport hotel for a one-night stay.

Overnight in Winnipeg.

 

Day 8 – Depart from Winnipeg
Much too soon, your polar bear adventure ends as you depart from Winnipeg.

Start Dates

2021 Trip Start Dates
October 9, 18, 30
November 6, 8

 

2022 Trip Start Dates
October 8, 15, 24
November 5

Pricing

Prices of this trip vary by departure date, hotel class and the choice of activities. Request your quote to check availability or to book this trip.

  • Train Experience

    Train Experience

    Learn more about the onboard service and look inside the trains you will be traveling on during this trip.

    Read about the VIA Rail train

    VIA Rail

    VIA Rail trains take passengers across the vast country of Canada through some of the most amazing scenery in North America. The service includes sleeper cars, gourmet meals, and lounge and viewing areas.

    Read about the overnight train trips

    Sleeping on the train

    Experience a once in a lifetime adventure of an overnight train journey. Sleep on board the train and enjoy chef-prepared meals in the dining car during this unforgettable trip.

  • Accommodations

    Accommodations

    In addition to the sleeper train cabin, below are examples of the places you can stay on this trip. Please get in touch to discuss your options and to check availability.

    Four Points By Sheraton Winnipeg

    Four Points By Sheraton Winnipeg

    Conveniently located adjacent to the Winnipeg International Airport, Four Points by Sheraton offers a number of complimentary amenities that will make your stay as comfortable as home. Enjoy free coffee and bottled water, high speed internet and a 24 hour fitness center.

    Tundra Inn

    Tundra Inn

    The Tundra Inn is a charming, family run hotel located in the northern town of Churchill. With comfortable, spacious accommodation and complimentary amenities, this is the perfect place to relax before or after your arctic adventure. Your stay includes continental breakfast, free tea and coffee and high-speed internet.

  • What's Included

    What's Included

    These are the places and experiences to look forward to on this trip.

    Accommodations:
    • 2 nights in Winnipeg hotel
    • 3 nights in a Churchill hotel
    • 2 nights onboard VIA Rail in Sleeper Plus Class

     

    Churchill Experiences:
    • Services of an interpretive guide
    • 2 Tundra Buggy bear viewing day tours, including lunch
    • Churchill Town and Area Tour
    • Itsanitaq Museum
    • Parks Canada Interpretation Center
    • Polar Bears International House visit
    • Evening Cultural Presentation
    • Dog Sledding Excursion

     

    Meal Inclusions:
    • All meals, from the morning of Day 2 to the evening of Day 7

     

    Transfer Inclusions:
    • One-way air transportation from Churchill to Winnipeg
    • All transfers while in Churchill

     

    Other Inclusions:
    • Digital Travel Documents
    • Fresh Tracks Canada customer service – from the time you book, you are assigned your own personal Vacation Coordinator whom you can reach out to with any questions or requests.

     

    Important trip notes:
    Train schedules are subject to delay.
    Order of activities may vary depending on wildlife sightings and weather conditions.


    Not Included

    Meals, other than those mentioned
    • Gratuities
    • 8.5% Taxes (5% GST and 3.5% PST)
    • Airfare between your home and Winnipeg
    • Hospital, medical insurance, trip cancellation and evacuation insurance (mandatory to book this trip)
    • Winter clothing rental (can be arranged, please don’t hesitate to ask)

     

    Ideas to customize your trip

    Think of this itinerary as just a starting point. These are some of the experiences you can add-on to personalize your trip.

    • Enjoy extra nights in Winnipeg before or after your polar bear tour
    • Make this a truly epic bear tour, and combine your polar bear trip with a grizzly viewing tour
    • Take the train from Toronto or Vancouver to Winnipeg

  • Customer Reviews  (9)

    It was amazing to see Polar Bears up close

    Star Rating 5

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    It was amazing to see Polar Bears up close and personal in their environment. The frosting on the trip was seeing the Northern Lights. Amazing!

    The arrangements were seamless

    Star Rating 5

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    The arrangements were seamless; reservations, luggage transfers, dining, transportation - all taken care of. We just followed our expect guide! I was impressed with the helpful information that we received prior to the trip from Fresh Tracks.

    We loved the Tundra buggy days

    Star Rating 5

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    We loved the Tundra buggy days, the dog sledding and seeing the Polar Bears. All tour guides were great as well, the buggy drivers and the whole group at the dog sledding! We found the Fresh Tracks staff very friendly and helpful, we are extremely satisfied.

    We had a truly outstanding trip

    Star Rating 5

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    We had a truly outstanding trip. The train ride was a special feature which definitely made the trip special. Our group was a very congenial one from all over the world. Tour guides were outstanding and people in general were great. Lots of bear sightings and activity. One of the great trips we have taken. Thanks for your help.

    The dog sled was like icing on the cake

    Star Rating 5

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    The trip was amazing! It started with our trip to the Human Rights Museum in Winnipeg - by far the best museum we have ever seen! Thank you for recommending we visit the museum. Our journey to Churchill was an adventure. Let's put it this way - we couldn't wait to get on the train and we couldn't wait to get off the train. I am glad we experienced it because it was on the train that we got to see the Northern Lights! They were fantastic! I think we hardly slept that night because we were so focused on the sky. Arriving in Churchill was a real surprise. We had no idea one could get so cold so quickly. Our first day on the Tundra Buggy we were able to park right next to at least 5 polar bears. What an experience - talk about up close! The dog sled was like icing on the cake! The guide was so informative, fun, and great to listen to. As a dog lover this was such a bonus. Thank you for your help and advice. We are always looking for new and different adventures to experience and this was perfect!

    Seeing the polar bears and dog sleds was an amazing experience

    Star Rating 5

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    We had a wonderful time on our trip. The guide was terrific - I never had to worry about where to go or what to do because he was very organized. The people in the tour group were a lot of fun too. Seeing Winnipeg, Churchill, the polar bears and dog sleds was an amazing experience!

    Our trip was incredible, we can't stop looking at our pictures

    Star Rating 5

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    Where do we start? Our trip was incredible we can't stop looking at our pictures. We could not of asked for a better guide. He's very passionate about the well being of the polar bears and their environment.  And so knowledgeable. We always enjoy a vacation more when we learn something new. This trip was on my wife's bucket list for 7 years and was well worth the wait.

    What a special vacation with a unique adventure

    Star Rating 5

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    We had a terrific time on our trip to Churchill to see the polar bears. All was so well arranged and easy for us. The accommodations were good, food was fine and the sites were amazing. What a special vacation with a unique adventure, I will be talking about this for years to come! 

    Trip of a lifetime

    Star Rating 5

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    We just wanted to thank you and all your colleagues at Fresh Tracks Canada for helping us arrange and therefore enjoy the trip of a lifetime we had in Churchill. The group leader was a delight. Thanks again to all.

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  • Know which places to go and which areas are best during certain times of the year.
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