Spot polar bears and whales in town where Northern Lights glow 300 days a year

The weather this week has been snowy and cold which seems fitting right ahead of Christmas.

Many areas of the UK were frosted and glittering making it feel like a winter wonderland – just like snow-laden countries like Norway and Canada.

However, unless you live, or visit, the far reaches of Scotland – and get very lucky – you’re unlikely to see one of the world’s most naturally awe-inspiring phenomena.

READ MORE: Coldest places in the world with -55C temperatures and polar bears by the pub

The Northern Lights are on many people’s bucket lists as a “must see” when heading to wintry destinations like Iceland or Svalbard.

But, even if you manage to make your way there the shining, green and blue lights that stretch across the sky aren’t a guaranteed experience.

So, how do you maximise your chances of seeing the incredible Aurora Borealis?

It’s all about choosing the optimum location to go light-chasing!

The small town of Churchill, in Manitoba, Canada, is extremely remote – but there’s a high chance you could see the Northern Lights during your stay.

The subarctic area sees the illuminations in the sky an average of 300 nights per year.

Meaning that the skies only remain dark for 56 – that’s less than two months out of 12.

The tiny town hugs Hudson Bay and is super small so while there’s plenty to do not much of it is inside.

You can see wild polar bears, go for a cruise in the icy waters around the town and even spot beluga whales in the water.

However, you can’t drive in or out of the town as it has no roads so you will need to fly in (get a plane to Winnipeg and then a connection with a tour operator).

Alternatively you can catch the train to Churchill, but be aware that it takes 48-hours on the railway to get there.

If you want to spot the Northern Lights then the best time of year is the winter – from February to March in Churchill – where it will be freezing cold and crisp.

A number of tours will take you to different spots where you can try and spot the incredible lights.

Swoop Arctic offers a “chasing the Northern Lights ” tour of Churchill from £5,012.

You can hope to see the lights from 360degree glazed pods, travel through the boreal forest, learn about the indigenous Inuit and Metis people and even build an igloo.

Frontier’s North offers the Northern Lights in Churchill tour from $6,599CAD (£3995).

It includes dog sledding, museums, culinary experiences, snowshoe treks and plenty of chances to see the lights in the tundra as darkness falls.

Those who are more keen to see the local wildlife can head on a Polar Bear Safari, seek out the cloud wolves of the Kaska coast or even journey to the floe edge (where ice meets seat and seals play).

Find out more about the animal tours at Churchill Wild.


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