Discover the Arctic’s ‘Big Five’
As Canada’s largest and northernmost territory, Nunavut offers a vast expanse of unspoiled natural wilderness. From crisp and clear rolling rivers to the vivid hues of the Aurora Borealis, there is no shortage of breathtaking sights to explore here, at the top of the world.
Only accessible by air and sea, Nunavut is home to a modest 32,000 inhabitants; however what the area lacks in human population it more than makes up for in wildlife. In the skies, on land, and in the icy waters, a cornucopia of life is thriving. In fact, Nunavut is home to what has been dubbed the arctic version of Africa’s ‘big five’: which includes polar bears, walruses, muskox, caribou and whales.
Despite Nunavut’s remote location, visitors from all over the world come to be dazzled by its sprawling rugged terrain and to catch a glimpse of its native creatures. Some of the best areas for wildlife viewing can be found in Nunavut’s National Parks, Territorial Parks, Bird and Wildlife Sanctuaries, and Heritage Rivers.
At Quttinirpaaq National Park you can see astounding wildlife surrounded by breathtaking artic landscapes. Located at the northern tip of Ellesmere Island, the park’s northern coast is a mere 720 kilometres from the North Pole. At this remote part of the planet, visitors have the rare opportunity to observe wildlife that has little to no contact with humans. Often curious and unafraid of sightseers, encounter the rare Peary caribou, artic wolves, and herds of magnificent muskoxen with their shaggy beards and long curved horns.
Equally as fantastic, Sirmilik National Park located at the northwest end of Baffin Island, is one of the most diverse regions in the arctic. At the Navy Board Inlet, tourists can see the likes of narwhals, caribou, polar bears and ringed seals, while the nearby waterway Eclipse Sound, is a migration route for harp, bearded and ringed seals, walruses, belugas, killer whales and massive bowhead whales.
View Nunavut’s sublime natural wonders as you journey through the Northwest Passage alongside drifting icebergs. Numerous operators offer artic cruises that provide travellers with the unique opportunity to see some of the world’s rarest animals. As you travel along your route, keep an eye out for the long unicorn like tusk of the narwhal whale peeking above the water’s surface, and be sure to bring your binoculars to marvel at the robust concentrations of wildlife on Devon Island.
In addition, wildlife enthusiasts have plenty more chances to get in touch with nature. Witness the comical mannerisms of basking walruses , check out a world-class beluga whale observation site, or embark on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure to observe enormous snow-white polar bears in search of seals.
Book an arctic adventure of a lifetime.