Located on the shoreline of the Hudson Bay, the tiny Canadian town of Churchill is the ‘polar bear capital of the world’. This is where, every autumn, the bears set out across the newly frozen ice to hunt for seals and where wildlife watchers assemble to watch. The ‘great polar bear gathering’ is one of the wonders of the natural world and is a bucket-list trip for wildlife enthusiasts and photographers alike. You’ll see all the action from inside warm tundra vehicles as you explore the Arctic wasteland. You’ll also see beluga whales and a stunning range of birds.
Get to know Swedish Lapland with indigenous Nordic people by going on snow safari, sledding with Sámi reindeer herders. Stay in simple snow-covered log cabins as you explore the frozen beauty of northern Scandinavia, learning the traditions and culture of this ancient people that for countless generations has lived by trapping, fishing and semi-nomadic herding. Travel by reindeer sled, or you can also mix it up with husky mushing and snowmobiling. And in the evenings there’s also the added bonus of watching the fabled northern lights.
Set sail from the southernmost city in South America – Argentina’s Ushuaia – across the Drake Passage and follow in the footsteps of Shackleton and Scott. A cruise around the islands of the Antarctic peninsular is not just an experience of a lifetime (and a chance to tick that difficult seventh continent o your list), but also one of the best places on Earth to see penguins in the wild. You’ll encounter three of the 17 species in one go – Chinstraps, Gentoos and Adélies – but you’ll also be in temperatures as low as -30. So wrap up warm.