In Canada, there are plenty of opportunities to interact with local wildlife. However, if most of your meetings consist of chasing raccoons from your back deck, why not travel a little further afield in pursuit of some of our more magnificent creatures? Here are 5 Canadian animal adventures that are out of the ordinary and utterly unforgettable:

Snorkeling with Beluga Whales in Churchill, Manitoba

Picture yourself being submerged in the arctic waters of the Hudson Bay, with a pod of curious beluga whales swimming below you. The whales swim just three feet or so below snorkelers, and if you sing they may even come closer because they love music (honestly). Several companies in Churchill will take you out by boat to do this, and there are 1000s of adult and baby beluga whales in the mouth of the St Lawrence River by the Hudson Bay in August, as they come there to have their babies. Seeing so many whales together is incredible, and swimming with them just amazing. See the Travel Manitoba website for more details on this and other wild adventures in Churchill (you can also see Polar Bears there – whoop!). 

Visiting the Baby Harp Seals in the Magdalen Islands, Quebec

Every year, 250,000 Harp Seals migrate from Greenland to the ice floes in the Gulf of St Lawrence to give birth to their fluffy white seal pups (that are protected these days and not hunted). In what is quite possibly the cutest animal adventure you can take in Canada, there are tour companies that will fly you by helicopter onto the ice flow where you can go visit with the newborn seal pups. Visit the Tourisme Îles de la Madelaine website for more info.

Walk with Wolves in Golden, BC

At the Northern Lights Wildlife Wolf Centre you can get educated about the often misunderstood wolves that inhabit the area, and as well as seeing the wolves in their natural habitat. The center organizes tours where you go out for an hour and a half with a guide to walk with wolves in through the Rockies, and then you can take part in a photo shoot with these beautiful creatures. For more info, check out Tourism Golden.

Track Spirit Bears on Princess Royal Island, BC

Although there are plenty of places in Canada that you can go on a bear tour, the rare white Spirit Bear (a genetic variation of the brown bear) is more prolific in a small and geographically isolated area of northern BC. At Spirit Bear Lodge, a community based ecotourism venture owned and operated by the Kitasoo/ Xai’xais First Nations, you’ll be taken through the stunningly beautiful and wild Great Bear Rainforest to see these beautiful and rare animals (as well as grizzlies, brown bears, whales and dolphins). For more bear watching opportunities in BC, visit the Tourism BC website. 

Kayak with Humpbacks in Witless Bay, Newfoundland

In late June and early July, you can see humpback whales breeching the water all over costal Newfoundland, but in Witless Bay you can kayak around icebergs as well as the whales themselves. Experienced guides will be able to get you as close as is safely possible to the whales, treating you to an incredible experience next to these huge oceanic beasts. To find out more about kayaking with whales, visit the Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism website.