• Polar Bear - Hudson Bay Canada  - credit Sue Holden

Region: The Far North Canada

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The Far North Canada – Yukon, Manitoba and North West Territories

Possibly the least known of all the Canadian Provinces, but with plenty to offer, and holiday ideas for the adventurous traveller. In the autumn each year, Polar Bears gather in and around Churchill, Manitoba awaiting the big freeze, and the tasty treats that then await. Meanwhile, to the west the North West Territories vie with Yukon and Alaska to put on the best display of Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). In the summer months, Hudson Bay boasts pods of Beluga’s – these unusual and vocal white whales are often mistaken for wave caps in the Bay. Riding Mountain National Park provides the adventurous traveller with great black and brown bear viewing opportunities – don’t expect the Ritz here!

The Far North Canada - Polar Bears Churchill Manitoba 2 The Far North Canada - Northern Lights.Yukon The Far North Canada - Kluane Nat Pk.Yukon
Credit Frontiers North Adventures Credit Yukon Tourism Credit Yukon Touris

 

Aurora

Polar Bears

Bear Viewing

Canada by Rail

 

 

The Golden Circle

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Combining Yukon in Canada with Alaska in the USA.

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The Golden Circle – a taste of Yukon and Alaska

In the final years of the 19th Century, gold was discovered in the Klondike, attracting thousands of gold-seekers to brave the harsh environment to seek their fortunes. This itinerary revisits several of those sites, combining Yukon in Canada with Alaska in the USA. 

Day 1: Whitehorse
Day 3: Southern Lakes
Day 5: Skagway
Day 6: Haines
Day 7: Glacier Bay
Day 9: Haines
Day 10: Haines Junction
Day 12: Carmacks
Day 13: Dawson City
Day 14: Whitehorse
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Description

 A Taste of Yukon and Alaska

Here we suggest a spectacular mountain self-drive journey which offers a taste of Alaska and Yukon. Drive through dramatic rocky landscapes, past deep blue lakes and experience the excitement of the Klondike Gold Rush. This is a trip for adventurers with opportunities for canoeing, Kayaking, hiking and superb wildlife viewing…

Day 1: Whitehorse
Arrive in Yukon’s capital, Whitehorse and pick up your hire car at the airport. This vibrant city, on the banks of the River Yukon, is flanked by forests and mountains. Steeped in culture and history, it boasts good restaurants, cafes shops, great museums and an award winning local microbrewery.

Two nights in Whitehorse

Day 3: Southern Lakes
Leave Whitehorse and spend a couple of days exploring the Headwaters of the Yukon River. Discover secluded bays, valleys and mountains. Stay in a beautiful lakeside lodge with opportunities for kayaking, canoeing, mountain biking, golf or just relaxing in the stunning surroundings

Two nights in the Southern Lakes

Day 5: Skagway
Visit the historic town of Carcross before driving through the dramatic rocky landscapes of White Pass. Cross the border into the US before descending to the coastal town of Skagway in Alaska. Gateway to the Klondike and the challenging Chilkoot Trail, this gold-rush town was infamous for its lawlessness – it now thrives on tourism and is often packed with cruise ships tourists. Take a walking tour around the historic downtown area and visit the Gold Rush Cemetery. For a different perspective, take a ride on the historic White Pass Railroad.

One night in Skagway

Day 6: Haines
Early morning start to catch the Alaska Marine Highway to Haines – this small town sits between the Chilkoot and Chilkat Rivers. The Chilkoot is a Mecca for brown bear – they are often viewed here feeding on the salmon.

One night in Haines

Day 7: Glacier Bay
Leave your car in Haines, then begin a 2 night trip to Glacier Bay – this remote and beautiful National Park is only accessible by air or boat. Famous for its tide water glaciers, deep fjords and rain forests, the area is also renowned for its wildlife – sightings can include eagles, seals, sea lions and brown bears. Start you adventure with a short flight to Gustavus then transfer to your lodge where you can enjoy guided hikes or kayaking. Your stay here includes a full day cruise into Glacier Bay.

Two nights at Glacier Bay

Day 9: Haines
Your day begins with a half day whale-watching cruise into Icy Strait – this area is North America’s most famous humpback whale feeding grounds. In the afternoon transfer back to Haines for an overnight stay.

One night in Haines
If time allows you may consider adding an extra night here to take a float trip into the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve which boasts the largest congregation of bald eagle in the world.

Day 10: Haines Junction
Return to Canada through the Alpine heights of Haines Pass. This breathtakingly beautiful and dramatic drive takes you to Haines Junction, gateway to Kluane National Park. This vast wilderness park in southwest Yukon is home to grizzly bears, Dall sheep, moose, wolves and mountain goats. This is a top wilderness adventure destination with opportunities for rafting, guided hiking, canoeing, fishing, horseriding and mountain biking. Spectacular glaciers flow down Kluanes broad sweeping valleys – a flightseeing trip over the massive glacier and over Canada’s highest peak, Mount Logan is highly recommended.

Two nights at Haines Junction

Day 12: Carmacks
Return towards Whitehorse along the Alaska Highway then turn north and begin your drive up the Klondike Highway towards Dawson City. The Klondike is widely considered to be the location of the greatest gold rush ever. In 1897, the discovery of gold near Dawson City triggered a stampede of thousands of hopeful prospectors.

One night in Carmacks

Day 13: Dawson City
Continue to Dawson City, taking time to visit where the gold rush all started in Bonanza Creek. Dawson City is bursting with both historic and First Nation Cultural Sites. Spend an evening at the famous Diamond Tooth Gerties.

One night at Dawson City

Day 14: Whitehorse
Return to Whitehorse along the Klondike Highway to begin your journey home or continue your adventure – here are some suggestions

  • Spend a day or two on the Silver Trail and discover a beautiful, wild region with a mining history to rival the Klondike.
  • Take a flight to the Land of the Midnight Sun, North Yukon. Kayaking, canoeing, guided hiking and tours of the Dempster Highway are all possible from here.
  • Relax for a few nights in a log cabin on a secluded lake nestled in the northern foothills of Canada’s Rocky Mountains. Accessible only by water or air, relax in beautiful surroundings or experience the ultimate in wilderness adventure – fishing, canoeing, hiking, wildlife viewing or photography, snowshoeing…

The Golden Circle - Kluane Nat Pk.Yukon

Credit Yukon Tourism


The Golden Circle - Kluane1

Credit Yukon Tourism


The Golden Circle - Moose Yukon

Credit Yukon Tourism


Morning Glacier Bay Alaska

Credit Jackie Appleton

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Little Gems

Haines is a tiny town on the Lynn Canal – one of the deepest and longest fjords in the world.  In the autumn, brown bears gather on the banks of the Chilkoot Inlet fishing for the salmon returning to their spawning grounds.  This is the best bear viewing the writer has ever seen and should not be missed!

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Yukon Highlights

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In this self-drive itinerary we introduce you to the fascinating land that is Canada’s Yukon before dipping into Alaska’s south-west corner.

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Yukon Highlights

Day 1: Vancouver
Day 2: Whitehorse
Day 4: Dawson City
Day 6: Beaver Creek
Day 7: Haines Junction
Day 8: Haines
Day 10: Skagway
Day 11: Johnson’s Crossing
Day 13 : Whitehorse
Day 14: Depart Whitehorse

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Day 1: Vancouver
Fly to Vancouver, British Columbia for an overnight stay to explore the many attractions of this vibrant city.
One night Vancouver

Day 2: Whitehorse
Fly to Yukon’s capital, Whitehorse. Explore the many attractions including great museums, fine dining, a hot springs and great shopping. Visit the S.S Klondike, the largest sternwheeler to ply the Yukon River and a Parks Canada National Historic Site. Take a trip to the Yukon Wildlife Preserve to watch and photograph the wildlife in their natural preserve – including woodland caribou, moose, elk and Dall’s sheep amongst others.
Two nights Whitehorse

Day 4: Dawson City
Collect your hire car this morning and drive to Dawson City, a vibrant mining, cultural and tourism centre, and the home of the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898, and today a National Historic Site. Explore the Klondike goldfields to get a taste of the gold fever that gripped North America a century ago, pan for gold on Bonanza Creek – where the gold was originally discovered back in 1896 – at the free claim owned by the Klondike Visitors Association. And – if you’re feeling lucky – visit Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Gambling Hall and try your luck at roulette or blackjack.
Two nights Dawson City

Day 6: Beaver Creek
A full day’s drive today – a free ferry takes you across the Yukon River to the winding, scenic ‘Top of the World’ Highway. This ridge-top road crosses into Alaska and joins the Taylor Highway before joining up with the Alaska Highway at Tetlin Junction.
One night Beaver Creek

Day 7: Haines Junction
Leave Beaver Creek today, crossing the White River – named after the milky sediments it carries – past the Kluane Wilderness Village and Burwash Landing – a small first Nation Community on the shores of the Kluane Lake.
One night Haines Junction

Day 8: Haines
Travel down into Alaska today to your next destination – Haines – situated at the northern end of America’s longest fjord, sharing a border with 20 million acres of protected wilderness. Haines is a picturesque fishing village located on a finger of land between the Chilkat and Chilkoot inlets on the Lynn Canal.
Two nights Haines

Day 10: Skagway
Travel on the Alaska Marine Highway today for the 1-hour journey to Skagway. This is the State run ferry service that provides a much needed link with the outside world to many communities otherwise cut off the rest of the world.
One night Skagway

Day 11: Johnson’s Crossing
Your journey takes you back into the Yukon today – crossing the Teslin River on route to your next stop at Johnson’s Crossing, in the Southern Lakes region.
Two nights Johnson’s Crossing

Day 13 : Whitehorse
Today’s drive will take you back to the capital city.
One night Whitehorse

Day 14: Depart Whitehorse

All photographs by kind permission Yukon Tourism

caribou crossing

Credit Yukon Tourism

 

Kluane1

Credit Yukon Tourism

 

Northern Lights Yukon

Credit Yukon Tourism

 

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Little Gems

For hen lovers, the long drive between Dawson City and Beaver Creek (nearly 9 hours) may be a step too far, however, you could break the journey at Chicken, Alaska, population in single digits and limited accommodation – but would be great to get the t-shirt!!

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Region: Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories

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Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories

Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories are possibly the least known of all the Canadian Provinces, but with plenty to offer, and holiday ideas for the adventurous traveller. In the autumn each year, Polar Bears gather in and around Churchill, Manitoba awaiting the big freeze, and the tasty treats that then await. Meanwhile, to the west the North West Territories vie with Yukon and Alaska to put on the best display of Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). In the summer months, Hudson Bay boasts pods of Beluga’s – these unusual and vocal white whales are often mistaken for wave caps in the Bay. Riding Mountain National Park provides the adventurous traveller with great black and brown bear viewing opportunities – don’t expect the Ritz here! Contact us for more information

Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories - Kluane Nat Pk.Yukon

Credit Yukon Tourism


Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories - Northern Lights.Yukon

Credit Yukon Tourism


Yukon Manitoba and North West Territories - Polar Bears Churchill Manitoba 2

Credit Frontiers North Adventures

            

Yukon Highlights
The Golden Circle
Yukon in Winter

 

Yukon in Winter

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From November to April, snow turns Yukon into a winter playground. Dog mushing, snow-mobiling, cross country skiing and simply relaxing and waiting for the light show to begin – Yukon offers an easy, yet spectacular addition to your winter adventure. The one thing that can be absolutely guaranteed year after glorious year is snow! 

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Yukon in Winter

The one thing that can be absolutely guaranteed year after glorious year is snow! Snow that covers the boreal forest, snow that coats the peaks in white, snow that melts beneath the ski or flies from the snowmobile track, or flutters from the paws of a dog team. From November to April, snow turns Yukon into a winter playground.

Day 1: Vancouver or Calgary to Whitehorse
Day 2 and 3: Take part in numerous winter activities of your choice.
Day 4: Leave Whitehorse

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Description

The one thing that can be absolutely guaranteed year after glorious year is snow! Snow that covers the boreal forest, snow that coats the peaks in white, snow that melts beneath the ski or flies from the snowmobile track, or flutters from the paws of a dog team. From November to April, snow turns Yukon into a winter playground.

Dog mushing, snow-mobiling, cross country skiing and simply relaxing and waiting for the light show to begin – Yukon offers an easy, yet spectacular addition to your winter adventure.

This sample itinerary could be combined with some downhill skiing in BC or Alberta to give the perfect winter holiday.

Day 1: Vancouver or Calgary to Whitehorse
Take the short internal flight to Whitehorse, and plan on a three night stay. This gives you three possible opportunities to view the magnificence of the Aurora Borealis. Stay in downtown Whitehorse, or head out to Yukon’s premier winter resort, located 55 kilometres south of Whitehorse along the shores of the beautiful Marsh Lake. Settle in on arrival, and prepare for a long evening. The display will typically occur between the hours of 10.00 pm and 2.00 am – although of course, this depends on the level of activity at the time of your visit.

Day 2 and 3
You’ll probably want to lie in after a busy evening watching the lights, but no matter, once you are up, take part in numerous winter activities of your choice. Drive a dog sled, try show shoeing or cross country skiing, take a snow mobile along scenic trails, or enjoy a sightseeing flight over breath taking glaciers and mountain ranges. After dinner in the evening, settle in for the evening show as the ghostly lights dance and float all around.

Day 4: Leave Whitehorse
At the end of your adventure, return to the airport for your flight out.

dog sledding

Credit Yukon Tourism

 

Yukondogs

Credit Yukon Tourism


Yukonnlights

Credit Yukon Tourism

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Little Gems

Canada offers so much more than downhill skiing – a winter holiday may have an element of downhill skiing, but the majority of your holiday might be taking part in other winter activities – dog sledding and snow mobiling to name but two. 

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Ultimate Road Trip – No.4 – The Golden Circle

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Yvonne Dann

 

The Golden Circle is for those travellers that enjoy the open road with little traffic and big views and scenery. Taking in some of the best and most interesting places in Yukon and Alaska, be prepared to be amazed at the scenery, the history and the wonderful chances for wildlife viewing. Become involved in the Gold Rush trail and even try your hand at panning for gold on Bonanza Creek near Dawson City, where gold was originally discovered, to get a taste of the gold fever that gripped North America over a century ago back in 1896. Driving through small villages, and making overnight stops in remote areas is all part of the adventure.  Take time off from driving to take a light aircraft and cruise in to Glacier Bay to see the magnificent glaciers. In addition spend half a day cruising to see the humpback whales feeding in the Icy Straights. Fit in a leisurely float trip along the Chilkat River to view a host of wildlife from brown bears to bald eagles.

Your route may take you to places such as Denali National Park, and cities and towns  such as Whitehorse, Anchorage and Skagway, or perhaps rest up in a log cabin with a pristine lake in front of you and nothing to do but rest.

For more information on driving Alaska and Yukon and to plan your trip, contact us on 01323 446550 info@experienceholidays.co.uk.

 
 

Golden Circle - Glacier Bay Credit Brian Adams

Glacier Bay
Credit Brian Adams

 

Golden Circle - Dawson City Credit Govenment of Yukon

Dawson City
Credit Government of Yukon

Destinations Holiday and Travel Show

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Vicki Tester

 

Experience Holidays along with Destination Quebec are attending Destinations: The Holiday & Travel Show, Olympia London, 29th January – 1st February 2015.  This is the UK’s biggest and longest-running travel show.
 
Come along and visit us on stand AC12  to discuss your travel plans.    

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