Discover Ukkusiksalik National Park, Nunavut

Welcome to Ukkusiksalik National Park, where the raw beauty of the Arctic comes alive in a pristine wilderness unlike any other. Located in the remote reaches of Nunavut, Canada, Ukkusiksalik offers a mesmerizing blend of untouched landscapes, abundant wildlife, and rich cultural heritage. Spanning over 20,000 square kilometers, this Arctic wonderland encompasses a diverse terrain of rugged mountains, expansive tundra, winding rivers, and crystal-clear lakes, all cloaked in an aura of tranquility and isolation.

Named after the “place of soapstone” in Inuktitut, Ukkusiksalik National Park is not just a sanctuary for nature enthusiasts and adventurers but also a living testament to the deep connection between the Inuit people and their ancestral lands. Here, visitors can immerse themselves in the timeless rhythms of the Arctic, marvel at the dancing auroras, encounter majestic caribou herds, and trace the footsteps of ancient cultures.


Top 3 Facts About Ukkusiksalik National Park


Cultural Heritage

Ukkusiksalik is rich in cultural heritage, with archaeological sites dating back over 5,000 years. These sites include ancient tent rings, food caches, and hunting blinds, providing insights into the traditional ways of life of the Inuit people who have inhabited the region for millennia.


Marine Life

The coastal waters of Ukkusiksalik are teeming with marine life, including seals, walruses, and beluga whales. These nutrient-rich waters support diverse ecosystems, making them a vital feeding ground for marine mammals and seabirds.


Northern Lights

Ukkusiksalik National Park is one of the best places on Earth to witness the mesmerizing dance of the Northern Lights. With its dark skies and minimal light pollution, the park offers unparalleled opportunities to experience this natural phenomenon in all its breathtaking glory, making it a bucket-list destination for aurora enthusiasts worldwide.

Camping and transportation in Ukkusiksalik National Park

info_iconBackcountry camping permits required for wilderness camping opportunities.

How to Get to Ukkusiksalik National Park

Getting to Ukkusiksalik National Park is an adventure due to its remote location in Nunavut, Canada. Here’s how you can reach this Arctic wilderness:

  • By Air: The most common way to access Ukkusiksalik is by chartering a flight from either Winnipeg or Yellowknife to Baker Lake, a small community located south of the park. You can arrange for a bush plane or helicopter from Baker Lake to fly you directly into the park.
  • By Boat: You can also access Ukkusiksalik National Park by boat during the summer. From Baker Lake, you can travel by boat along the Thelon River, which provides access to the park’s coastal regions. This option offers a unique opportunity to explore the park’s rugged coastline and witness its marine wildlife up close.
  • Guided Tours: Another option is to join a guided tour or expedition that includes transportation to and from Ukkusiksalik National Park. Several tour operators offer multi-day trips that combine transportation, accommodation, and guided excursions within the park, providing a hassle-free way to experience its wonders.

Places to Stay Near Ukkusiksalik National Park

Given the remote and undeveloped nature of Ukkusiksalik National Park, options for accommodations or campsites directly adjacent to the park are limited. However, there are a few options for places to stay or camp nearby:

  • Baker Lake: The community of Baker Lake, located south of Ukkusiksalik National Park, offers the closest amenities and lodging options. There are a few hotels, guesthouses, and bed and breakfasts in Baker Lake where you can stay before or after your visit to the park. Some accommodations may offer camping facilities as well.
  • Camping Along the Thelon River: If you’re accessing the park by boat along the Thelon River, you may find opportunities for wilderness camping along the riverbanks. Be sure to bring all necessary camping gear and supplies and knowledge of Leave No Trace principles to minimize your impact on the environment.
  • Guided Tours and Expeditions: Some guided tours and expeditions to Ukkusiksalik National Park include camping accommodations as part of their package. These tours typically provide all necessary camping gear and equipment and experienced guides who can lead you safely through the wilderness.
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Best Time to Go to Ukkusiksalik National Park



Summer is the peak season for visiting Ukkusiksalik National Park, offering long days of continuous sunlight and relatively milder temperatures. This is the best time for hiking, wildlife viewing, and exploring the park’s diverse landscapes. The tundra bursts into life with a riot of colors, while rivers and lakes become navigable for boating and paddling adventures. Visitors can also enjoy the spectacle of the midnight sun, which bathes the Arctic wilderness in a soft golden glow, creating unforgettable moments of natural beauty.



Winter transforms Ukkusiksalik National Park into a silent, snow-covered wilderness, offering a unique and serene experience for adventurous travelers. While temperatures plummet and daylight hours shorten, this season provides opportunities for activities such as snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and aurora viewing. The park becomes a haven for solitude and introspection, with the only sounds being the whisper of the wind and the occasional call of wildlife. However, winter travel to Ukkusiksalik requires careful planning and preparation for extreme cold and limited services, making it suitable only for experienced outdoor enthusiasts.



Spring in Ukkusiksalik National Park brings the awakening of the Arctic wilderness. As temperatures rise and daylight hours increase, the landscape transforms remarkably. Snow and ice start to melt, revealing the vibrant colors of tundra vegetation and wildflowers. This season is ideal for witnessing the arrival of migratory birds and observing Arctic wildlife emerging from winter hibernation. However, travelers should be prepared for unpredictable weather conditions and lingering snow cover in the early months of spring.

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Fall in Ukkusiksalik National Park brings a sense of tranquility as the summer crowds disperse, and the landscape begins to transition into a tapestry of rich fall colors. The tundra foliage turns red, orange, and gold, creating a stunning backdrop for outdoor hiking and photography. This season also offers excellent opportunities for spotting wildlife preparing for winter, including caribou and Arctic foxes. However, travelers should be mindful of decreasing temperatures and the potential for early snowfall, which may limit access to certain park areas.

Must-See Attractions

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Thule Archaeological Sites

Explore the well-preserved remains of ancient Thule settlements, offering insights into the rich history and culture of the Arctic’s early inhabitants. These sites include tent rings, food caches, and hunting blinds, providing a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the Thule people who thrived in the region centuries ago.

Thelon River

Explore the pristine waters of the Thelon River, which flows through the heart of Ukkusiksalik National Park. Whether by canoe, kayak, or boat, a journey along the Thelon River offers a unique perspective of the park’s wilderness, with opportunities for wildlife viewing, fishing, and experiencing the tranquility of the Arctic landscape.

Northern Lights

Ukkusiksalik National Park is one of the best places on Earth to witness the mesmerizing dance of the Northern Lights. With its dark skies and minimal light pollution, the park offers unparalleled opportunities to experience this natural phenomenon in all its breathtaking glory. Plan your visit during winter for the best chance to see the auroras illuminate the Arctic night sky.

Helpful Tips: Making the Most of Your Adventure to Ukkusiksalik National Park

Plan Ahead

Plan Ahead

Ukkusiksalik is a remote, isolated wilderness area, so careful planning is essential. Research park regulations, obtain necessary permits, and arrange transportation and accommodations well before your trip.

Pack Appropriately

Be Prepared for the Elements

The Arctic climate can be harsh and unpredictable, so prepare for various weather conditions. Dress in layers, bring waterproof clothing and pack essential gear such as sturdy hiking boots, insect repellent, and a reliable map and compass or GPS device.

Respect Wildlife

Be Bear Aware

Polar bears are a natural part of the Arctic ecosystem and may be encountered in Ukkusiksalik National Park. Familiarize yourself with bear safety protocols, carry bear deterrents such as bear spray, and always remain vigilant while hiking or camping in bear country.

Stay Informed

Be Flexible

Weather and conditions in the Arctic can change rapidly, so be prepared to adapt your plans accordingly. Have a backup itinerary in case of inclement weather or other unforeseen circumstances, and remain flexible and patient throughout your visit.

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Ukkusiksalik National Park3 scaled

Frequently Asked Questions about Ukkusiksalik National Park

Think epic landscapes and untouched wilderness. You’re looking at hiking through rolling tundra, kayaking in Wager Bay, and witnessing the midnight sun. Every corner spells adventure!

Keep your eyes peeled for polar bears, caribou, and Arctic wolves. Not to mention, peregrine falcons and snowy owls often grace the skies.

Your gateway to this remote treasure is through flights to Naujaat, Baker Lake or other nearby communities. From there, charter a flight or opt for a boat ride in summer, or travel over the icy landscape by snowmobile in winter.

Spanning over 20,885 square kilometers, it’s a vast expanse of natural wonder. Compared to the more famous Banff National Park’s 6,641 square kilometers, it’s a giant in its own right.

The best time to visit Ukkusiksalik National Park is during the summer months (July to August) when temperatures are milder, and daylight hours are long. This is the peak season for outdoor activities such as hiking, wildlife viewing, and boating.

No, there are no accommodations within Ukkusiksalik National Park itself. Visitors typically stay in nearby communities such as Baker Lake and arrange for day trips or expeditions into the park. Camping is allowed in designated areas with a wilderness camping permit.

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