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A Message about email for our American and European Fans

December 17th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS

Email Opt-inWe like to keep in touch with you through our e-Newsletter. But it is becoming difficult, because we are a Canadian company. The Canadian Government has legislated that any company sending commercial e-messages – like our e-newsletter – must use a double-opt-in confirmation system. The laws that govern this are known here as CASL.

What is a double-opt-in email confirmation system?

When you subscribe to our e-Newsletter, a confirmation email is sent to you. This message goes out before we send you the e-Newsletter. You must click on the link in the email to receive the newsletter. Once you have clicked on the confirmation email, you’ll never receive a confirmation message again. If you don’t, you will continue to receive a confirmation email every time you ask us for something. And you will never get the information that you require.

The double-opt-in tell us that you really want the information and allows us to continue to keep you informed. To receive a double-opt-in email, complete this form.

Help us keep in touch with you, please.

Those of you familiar with electronic messaging can see the Catch-22 we are in. We cannot send you a message explaining why you need to confirm your e-address. Not until you have confirmed your e-address! We really need your help to sort this out.

Please note that if you have already confirmed your email, you will not receive a confirmation email!

Extend the snowmobile season into April

September 4th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS, Featured Trip, Sports, TECHNOLOGY

Snowmobile Weekend in the ArcticIn 2016, you can extend the snowmobile season into April by booking one of our new Arctic Snowmobile Weekends. Designed specifically for snowmobile enthusiasts, these new trips can accommodate beginners or experienced drivers.

Discover Baffin Island

This 3 night/4 day snowmobile adventure is suitable for all skill levels. Iqaluit, Nunavut’s territorial capital, is the base for two full-day excursions on sea ice and frozen tundra. Air fare from Ottawa is included in the package price, as is the use of a snowmobile for both excursions. You can read more about Discover Baffin Island here.

Iqaluit to Kimmirut Circuit

This 3 night/4 day snowmobile road trip is for experienced snowmobilers, who love cross-country journeys to places they have never been. Air fare from Ottawa is included in the price of this trip too, as is the use of a snowmobile. After a night in Iqaluit, participants drive across the sea ice of Frobisher Bay to the Meta Incognita peninsula for a land crossing to Kimmirut. Known as an artists’ colony, Kimmirut is situated close to the migration route of belgua and bowhead whales. You’ll spend the night in Kimmirut, before returning by snowmobile to Iqaluit. Read more about the Iqaluit to Kimmirut Circuit here.

Snowmobile Safety First

We have posted on our website 5 things you need to know about snowmobiling in the Arctic. Number 1? Safety first. The Arctic is not safe for snowmobile cowboys who disregard the rules of the trail. If, however, you love blue skies, crisp air and the sound of engines roaring along a wilderness trail, then these exclusive snowmobile weekends will make your heart beat faster.

Cory Trepanier, Canadian Artist, in Iqaluit

July 24th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS

Cory TrepanierOne of the perks of working in the Canadian Arctic is meeting interesting people, especially artists. There is a long tradition of southern artists travelling the north, camping in remote areas to spend time painting and sketching. Members of Canada’s Group of Seven did it eighty years ago. This summer Canadian artist Cory Trepanier is exploring the North, adding to his Into the Arctic Collection. You can read his field journal here.

Cory Trepanier in Iqaluit

Cory En Plein AirCory has kindly sent us a selection of photos depicting him at work en plein air. He is experiencing excellent weather for painting outside, these last weeks of July. We will be posting the photos he shared with us on our Facebook page and Twitter feed.

One advantage to artists and photographers of travelling at this time of year to Iqaluit is the long twilight that comes each day the midnight sun shines. A beautiful hue is cast across the landscape that adds magic to a painting or photo.

To learn more about visiting Iqaluit for a weekend or a week, visit our Arctic Weekend Getaway section of the website.

Expedition Leader Field Report: Great Migrations

June 15th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS, AK PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Expedition Leader Jane Whitney has sent us a report and photos from the floe edge

On our second trip to the Floe Edge, we had to pull our qamutik sleds over the dark open water leads between the big ice pans. Dozens of Northern Fulmars were feeding at the surface, while flocks of Black Guillemots twirled and landed. Ring seal slipped into the water and bobbed with curious eyes.

Great migrations of narwhal and icebergs

At the floe edge, we had stopped near two massive icebergs grounded in their travel from the Greenland icecap which made for a dramatic backdrop for the dozen Narwhal our guides had spotted. They were gone as quickly as they arrived, and so we waited. A large, 800 pound Bearded seal passed through, followed by even larger 3500 pound Atlantic Walrus.

Chef Gavin It was lunch time, and our chef was frying up open faced Beef Burgers with onion and gravy with a warm wild mixed mushroom soup. Someone in the group pointed out excitedly the Polar Bear Sow coming our way with two of this year’s stark white cubs in tow. We tripped in excitement, the setting was so perfect. The mother bear would not stay for long however, and left quickly with her cubs in tow. What a show for lunch!

We would see bear after bear approach from the east, most making their way south to the seal they could smell nearly 5 km away. One of the bears was making it’s way through the rough shore ice toward us. We silently clicked away with our cameras. It took it’s time, coming ever so slowly. At one point it stood up to get a better view of us, and it had to be nearly 9 feet tall. Down it went and made it’s way to the water, entering ever so slowly, lying on it’s belly, head first, rear paws faced skyward the last to enter. The ice it swam to was thin enough it took a few attempts to get on, and once up, the bear shook three times, water droplets flying. The bear slide into the water on the other side of the ice and slowly swam across the vision of our binoculars and long lenses. We watch a seal approach the bear, and both passed each other as if they hadn’t a care in the world. Later we would paddled our kayaks to a pan of ice where we climbed out to see the bear move across another, bigger, jagged pan of ice. Coming back, we marveled at the different shades of blue of the sculpted ice in the Arctic waters. By the end of the day we had counted 8 bears.

Al fresco steak dinnerWe had a lot of fun this week together, enjoying our new friendships. Gavin helped us celebrate the week by barbequing grilled vegetables with seared Arctic air dried strip loin steak over buttermilk whipped mash potato au jus at the ice edge. The whales were a little late for the after dinner show, but the Beluga did show up…maybe 15 to 20 blowing so much water out of their blowholes before diving under the pack ice where we stood to feed.

What was amazing was we could hear their blows under the ice in the air pockets they found there.

The Great Migrations of Lancaster Sound
Jane Whitney

The Canadian Arctic by Private Jet

June 3rd, 2015 | By | Filed in ACTIVITIES, AK NEWS

JaegerCalling all global jet setters! Have you ever thought about what it might be like to take your private aircraft to the Canadian Arctic? If you’re looking for an exclusive trip, designed specifically to your preferences and guaranteed to be the only one of its kind, look no further. Arctic Kingdom can organize every aspect of your custom expedition, assuring that it will be unique.

Save Time

Having access to a private aircraft will save you a great deal of time. You have the added bonus of customizing your arrival and departure flights and tailoring them to your specific agenda. If you have a limited amount of vacation time, we’ll work our magic because it’s actually possible to get a taste of the Arctic in as little as four days! Taking advantage of your personal aircraft ensures that you will get the most out of your vacation. You will have more time to indulge in what the Arctic has to offer.

Convenience

Getting the best flights can sometimes be a big headache! The simplicity of flying on your own personal aircraft has a large appeal for busy individuals who demand convenience.

Go where few have gone before by Private Jet

The Arctic has kilometers upon kilometers that are still unexplored, even today, when Google Maps seems to have covered the Earth. The benefit of using Arctic Kingdom to design private jet adventure is that you can go where no one has gone before. Email us and we’ll organize every aspect to make your dream Arctic vacation a reality.

Author: Mandy Ams

The Top 3 Family Trips to the Arctic

May 29th, 2015 | By | Filed in ACTIVITIES, AK NEWS

Pond InletEvery parent is searching for the ideal family trip, one that’s fun, educational and provides the perfect atmosphere for family bonding. Look no further than an Arctic adventure! We understand the challenge parents face trying to find a vacation that keeps their children engaged and entertained, yet doesn’t conflict with the school schedule. Outlined below are the three best trips that are packed with family- friendly fun!

The June Family Trip – Narwhal & Polar Bear Safari

With dates in June, the Narwhal and Polar Bear Safari is an unforgettable opportunity to witness narwhals and polar bears in their natural habitat. Families will be able to observe a cultural presentation of Inuit throat singing, drum dancing and storytelling by local elders. Your children will have the chance to interact with Inuit children and be taught what it’s like to be young in the Arctic while learning about the amazing history of the region. This expedition is truly unforgettable and the firsthand educational value is immeasurable.

The August Family Trip – Polar Bears & Glaciers of Baffin Island

August is another ideal time for a family vacation, serving as a nice wind- down before school starts again in September. The Polar Bears & Glaciers of Baffin Island expedition takes your family through the Arctic by land and sea, allowing you to get the best sighting of the Arctic. Go blueberry picking during the day and enjoy a feast of Arctic char at night. Visit beautiful Auyuittuq National Park and hike the foot of Coronation Fiord while bonding with your family over the beauty that surrounds you.

Polar Bear Migration Fly- In Photo Safari – The Family Trip in October and November

Whether you’re Canadian or American, the Polar Bear Migration Fly-In Photo Safari during October or November is a great Thanksgiving getaway for the family! Going away over Thanksgiving gives families the opportunity to take a holiday without your children missing much school. Spend five days and four nights in Arctic Kingdom’s Polar Bear Cabins situated on the coast of Hudson Bay. While there, your family will have the chance to get up close and personal with polar bears, Arctic fox and caribou and enjoy the magical display of the Northern Lights.

In Iqaluit, Baffin Island in addition to the three trips listed, your family could learn to build an igloo, kayak, snorkel or fish for dinner! Our Arctic Weekend Getaways deliver memorable moments over a long weekend. PD Day long weekends will never be the same after a trip to the Arctic!

Limerick Day – Some Arctic Poetry

May 12th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS

Ringed Seal, Limerick DayMay 12th is Limerick Day! Named after the city of Limerick in Ireland and dating back over 500 years, this method of poetry was made popular by Edward Lear and is celebrated on his birthday. He classified the limerick as a poem of fun, nonsense and obscenity.

Although Limerick Day may not be the most well- known event, we thought it would fun to post some limericks about polar bears and snow and all things related to the Arctic! Enjoy!

Limerick Day Arctic poetry

There once was a seal named Brice
Who hated slipping on ice
Until one chilly day
He jumped in the bay
Because he was wearing his floatation device!

Have you ever seen a beluga whale
Try and stand on a scale?
It’s a tough thing to do
When you’re eating fondue
And it all goes straight to your tail!

The Arctic is home to polar bears
Keeping warm with a thick coat of hair
They like to play in the snow
And drift around on ice floes
And they do it all with such flair!

Author: Mandy Ams

Custom-Designed Journeys: Wildlife Migrations

May 5th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS, AK PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Wildlife Migrations: Polar Bears, Narwhal and Caribou

Caribou in autumnMigrating is favoured by animals worldwide and is fairly universal in the animal kingdom. Animals migrate in an effort to find food, a more hospitable climate or places to breed. Arctic animals are no different, specifically caribou, polar bears and narwhal. The opportunity to witness these annual journeys is a unique experience and Arctic Kingdom can take you there!

Custom-designed Caribou Migration Safaris

The Porcupine Herd and Central Arctic Herd of caribou migrate annually. These long journeys allow them to take advantage of nutritious food, relatively few predators and relief from the insects along the coast of the Arctic Ocean. Caribou travel an average of 2,000 to 3,000 kilometers (1200 to 1800 miles) annually, with the direction, pattern and intensity of their movements differing based on the seven caribou seasons outlined below:

  • Spring Migration – Race to the calving grounds
  • Calving – Brief sanctuary
  • Post-calving Movements – The heard gathers
  • Summer – The herd scatters
  • Fall Migration – Guided by snow
  • Rut and Late Fall – Battle for the right to reproduce
  • Winter – Abiding the cold and the dark

Private Polar Bear Migration Journeys

When the temperatures start to drop in autumn, polar bears gather in Churchill, Manitoba which is considered the “Polar Bear Capital of the World.” They are preparing to begin their annual migration in which they head north along the coast of Hudson Bay to where the first ice forms. The formation of sea ice is imperative to polar bear survival in the Arctic. It provides a fundamental platform that is needed to hunt seals and endure the winter. When temperatures begin to rise in the summer and the ice starts to melt, polar bears are forced ashore to wait out the next few months until the ice reforms again. During this time, the polar bears fast, live off their fat reserves and conserve their energy for the upcoming season. Because greenhouse gases are affecting the Earth’s temperature, it results in polar bears staying inland far longer than they have in the past.

Narwhal Migration: Only in the Arctic

Narwhals are creatures of habit that results in a very predictable migration pattern to the same locations each year. During both summer and winter, they prefer deep water. They are cited as one of the deepest diving cetaceans. The annual migration of the narwhal begins in the spring when they arrive at the floe edge in Lancaster Sound and swim through the cracks in the ice enroute to their summer destination. They are frequently spotted spending their summers in the ice-free fjords of northern Baffin Island.

In September or October, once the days shorten, the temperature drops and the ice begins to reform once again, narwhals begin their 3000 kilometer (1800 mile) trip back to the pack ice in Baffin Bay.

Seldom witnessed; Never forgotten

Being able to witness caribou, polar bears and narwhals during their annual migration is truly extraordinary. The beauty of seeing wildlife in their natural habitat performing this instinctive journey is unlike any other experience available to travellers. Arctic Kingdom can create custom- tailored expeditions that ensure you get a front-row seat to witness these natural phenomena.

Author: Mandy Ams

To get your free, no obligation quote for a custom-designed Arctic wildlife safari contact us.

Now you can consult an Arctic Kingdom Certified Polar Advisor (AKCPA)

February 20th, 2015 | By | Filed in AK NEWS

AKCPA BadgeSome travellers prefer to make arrangements through travel professionals. We support that choice. So much so that we have introduced a travel agent education program that entitles graduates to call themselves Arctic Kingdom Certified Polar Advisors. AKCPA for short.

Only travel professionals who have attended specific training sessions and passed an exam are entitled to use the AKCPA designation. They are specialists who are passionate about polar travel and especially Arctic Kingdom’s menu of adventures. You’ll receive excellent advice when asking questions about what to expect, what to wear or when to see the Northern Lights.

Why consult an AKCPA

Every AKCPA is a subject matter expert, able to answer questions, make suggestions and book the Arctic Kingdom trip that will best suit you. They receive the latest information about changes and new trips.

Look for the AKCPA badge on business cards and websites of travel professionals in your neighbourhood. It is a sure sign of knowledgeable professional.

Aboard the MV Cape Race – September 2014

November 6th, 2014 | By | Filed in Diving, Projects, Recent Trips

Jason Hillier, one of Arctic Kingdom’s senior Team Members, spent 17 days aboard our charter vessel M V Cape Race in September. He has shared his log entries with us.

M V Cape Race at sea

M V Cape Race at sea

September 1, 2014 – Qikiqtarjuaq, NU – Day One aboard MV Cape Race.

Today, we set sail on a “reverse” course of Arctic Kingdom’s The Best of Labrador, Baffin Island and Greenland. Stepping out of the airport, I was struck by my luck; a sunny, warm day and no wind. It was a great day to get on a ship and start an adventure!

After meeting the crew, who had strolled up the road to the airport to find me, once they saw the plane land, we piled into a Zodiac to make our way to my home for the next 17 days.

We were sailing from Baffin Island to the Torngats in Labrador, through the Strait of Belle Island and down the west coast of my home province to the island of Newfoundland. We were bringing 12 university scientists on an epic voyage to collect data and samples of everything from kelp to invertebrates to freshwater algae. We would also conduct bird surveys.

The team consisted of cold water divers and “inter-tidalers” that we affectionately referred to as Team Bear Bait as they are biologists who wade through inter-tidal zones collecting specimens. Our Parks Canada Bear Monitor was on board to ensure everyone was safe and sound throughout all the shore excursions, both inside and outside the National Park. But it’s always fun to tease.

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