The largest and least inhabited of Canada’s provinces and territories, Nunavut is a vast place with seemingly not much to see. However, it’s the sparseness and wilderness that’s appealing to more and more tourists, and those who are simply curious to see how people live up here, in what truly is the Great White North! So, if I were heading to Nunavut, what would I want to see? Well, if transportation were no issue, I’d head for the following:
- Iqaluit – The capital of Nunavut and the territory’s largest settlement, yet Iqaluit is home to less than 7,000 people. I’d like to meet some of the locals and find out how they cope living in such a cold climate, visit their museums and historic sites, and spend a couple of days experiencing life in Iqaluit.
- Baffin Island – Iqaluit is located on the southeastern coast of Baffin, which is the largest island in Canada. There are untouched glaciers to see, and the opportunity to view plenty of wildlife including polar bears, Arctic Fox, Arctic Wolf and Arctic Hare, as well as Barren Ground Caribou, lemmings and seals.
- Auyuittuq National Park – A great place to get to see much of the wilderness that Baffin Island represents is within the Auyuittuq National Park. Backpacking in the park would be an amazing experience in the summer, seeing its fjords, glaciers and ice fields.
- Ellesmere Island – Even further north than Baffin, Ellesmere is true wilderness. The largest settlement is home to all but five of the island’s residents, yet there are only 141 residents in the hamlet of Grise Fiord. The Inuktitut name for this settlement is ‘Aujuittuq’ which means ‘place that never thaws’ and considering the average high in July is only 4C it’s not surprising! Well it is 1,160 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle!
Article copyright Claire Bolgil. Claire is a freelance travel writer based in Beautiful BC. Find out more about her at www.clairebolgil.com