As one of Canada’s most remote regions, you may wonder why you would ever want to vacation near the Arctic Circle. Simply put, even the most hardcore travelers don’t often consider the Northwest Territories one of their must-see destinations. But let us clarify: the more off the beaten path a place is, the more unique the attractions are. Only in the Northwest Territories can you see the Northern Lights in the Aurora Capital of the world, drive the longest ice road in North America, and experience the Diamond Capital of North America. While the Northwest Territories is never going to be the next Sin City or NYC, it still has plenty of bucket list potential and is more than worthy of a second look.
Here are 3 must-have experiences in the Northwest Territory:
Visit the Aurora Capital of the World
Dubbed Nature's Greatest Light Show, the capital city of Yellowfork has over 240 potential viewing days of the Northern Lights a year. Thanks to the region’s perfect geographic positioning under the Auroral Oval and a semi-arid subarctic climate that's ideal for cool, clear nights, there are specific lodges setup as prime aurora borealis viewing areas or you can take a special photo tour to learn how to best capture the crazy colors on film.
Drive the Longest Ice Road in North America
A manmade marvel in engineering, for the majority of the year, the world’s longest ice road is a series of impassible lakes strung together by 64 portages. In the winter months, it’s a lifeline to Canada’s most remote regions, which have no permanent road access. Trucks make long trek repeatedly, hauling in a year’s worth of supplies to these civilizations, and braving roads that are yes, made out of ice. You too can take the eerie road trip from Mackenzie Delta to the Beaufort Sea, just try not to get tripped out when you look down and discover you’re not walking on water, you’re driving on it.
Explore the Diamond Capital of North America
Despite many historical ties to precious metals and even the discovery of gold, Yellowfork, the capital of the Northwest Territories wasn’t really put on the map until the discovery of diamonds in the early 90s. You can tour the biggest mine in Canada while learning about the history of the region and shopping for bling.