Discover Vuntut National Park, Yukon

Located within the captivating landscapes of the Yukon, Canada, this extraordinary park beckons adventurers and nature enthusiasts alike to embark on a journey of discovery. Encompassing over 4,300 square kilometers of untamed wilderness, Vuntut National Park offers a sanctuary for diverse wildlife, from majestic caribou herds to elusive grizzly bears and rare bird species.

Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of boreal forests, vast tundra expanses, and crystalline lakes that define this untouched paradise. Whether you crave the thrill of backcountry hiking, the tranquility of canoeing along winding waterways, or the awe-inspiring spectacle of the Northern Lights painting the night sky, Vuntut National Park promises an unforgettable experience.


Top 3 Facts About Vuntut National Park



Spanning an impressive 4,345 square kilometers (1,678 square miles), Vuntut National Park is one of Canada’s largest protected areas, offering ample space for exploration and adventure.


Indigenous Heritage

Vuntut National Park is deeply rooted in Indigenous culture, with the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation playing a vital role in its co-management. Visitors can learn about traditional knowledge, storytelling, and sustainable practices from the local Indigenous community.


Caribou Migration

Witness one of North America’s most remarkable wildlife spectacles as over 160,000 Porcupine caribou migrate through the park each year, making it one of the largest caribou herds on the continent.

Camping and transportation in Vuntut National Park

info_iconBackcountry camping permits required for wilderness camping opportunities.

How to Get to Vuntut National Park

Getting to Vuntut National Park requires some planning due to its remote location. Here’s how you can reach this pristine wilderness:

  • By Air: Whitehorse International Airport (YXY) in Whitehorse, Yukon is the nearest major airport. From there, you can charter a flight to Old Crow Airport (YOC), the closest airport to Vuntut National Park. Old Crow Airport serves as the gateway to the park, and you may need to arrange transportation from Old Crow to the park entrance.
  • By River: During the summer, adventurous travelers can access Vuntut National Park by paddling the Porcupine River, which flows through the park. This journey typically involves careful planning, as the river conditions vary, and adequate supplies and equipment are necessary for a safe trip.
  • Guided Tours: Consider joining a guided tour or expedition that includes transportation to Vuntut National Park. Several tour operators offer wilderness adventures in the Yukon region, providing a hassle-free way to experience the park’s beauty while benefiting from experienced guides and logistical support.

Places to Stay Near Vuntut National Park

While Vuntut National Park is a remote wilderness area with limited facilities, there are some options for accommodation and camping near the park where visitors can stay before or after their wilderness adventure. Here are a few options:

  • Old Crow: The community is the closest settlement to Vuntut National Park and offers some lodging options, including guesthouses and bed-and-breakfasts. Accommodations in Old Crow provide a glimpse into the traditional lifestyle of the Vuntut Gwitchin people and offer a chance to learn about their culture and heritage.
  • Campgrounds: There are several campgrounds near the park where visitors can set up camp before or after their exploration of Vuntut National Park. While these campgrounds may not offer extensive amenities, they provide basic facilities such as tent sites, picnic tables, and fire pits. Be sure to check availability and make reservations in advance, especially during the peak summer season.
  • Backcountry Camping: For those seeking a true wilderness experience, backcountry camping within Vuntut National Park is an option. While no designated campsites are within the park, backcountry camping is permitted with proper permits and adherence to Leave No Trace principles. Visitors should be well-prepared for self-sufficient camping and ensure they have the necessary gear and provisions for a safe and enjoyable experience.
  • Lodges and Cabins: Some lodges and wilderness resorts in the surrounding area may offer accommodations and guided tours that include visits to Vuntut National Park. These options provide a comfortable base for exploring the wilderness while enjoying amenities such as hot showers, meals, and guided excursions.
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Best Time to Go to Vuntut National Park



Summer brings long days and warm temperatures to Vuntut National Park, creating ideal conditions for outdoor adventures. This is the peak season for visitors, as the park’s diverse landscapes come alive with blooming wildflowers, bustling wildlife, and vibrant greenery. Summer is the best time to go to Vuntut National Park for hiking, backpacking, and wildlife viewing, with ample opportunities to spot iconic species like caribou, Dall sheep, and grizzly bears. Canoeing along the Porcupine River offers a tranquil way to explore the park’s waterways, while camping under the midnight sun provides unforgettable evenings immersed in the wilderness.



Winter blankets Vuntut National Park in a serene cloak of snow, transforming the landscape into a wonderland. While access to the park may be limited due to extreme weather conditions, winter offers an enchanting experience for those willing to brave the cold. Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing provide opportunities for exploration along silent trails, offering glimpses of wildlife tracks and frozen waterfalls. Winter’s clear, dark skies create ideal conditions for stargazing and witnessing the mesmerizing spectacle of the northern lights dancing overhead.



Spring in Vuntut National Park marks the awakening of the wilderness as the landscape emerges from the grip of winter. During this time, the days grow longer, and the temperatures gradually rise, signaling migratory birds’ return and dormant vegetation’s awakening. Spring is one of the best times to visit Vuntut National Park for wildlife enthusiasts, as animals such as caribou and grizzly bears emerge from hibernation, and birdwatchers can spot various species returning to their breeding grounds. Hiking trails begin to thaw, offering opportunities for exploration amidst the backdrop of snow-capped peaks and rushing rivers.

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Fall brings a breathtaking transformation to Vuntut National Park as the landscape bursts into a riot of color. The crisp air carries the scent of autumn as the leaves turn shades of red, orange, and gold, creating a stunning backdrop against the rugged terrain. Fall is a quieter time in the park, with fewer visitors and a sense of tranquility pervading the wilderness. It’s the best time to go to Vuntut National Park for photographers and nature lovers, offering unparalleled opportunities to capture the beauty of the changing seasons. As the temperatures cool, wildlife becomes more active, providing excellent chances to observe migrating caribou, moose, and other animals preparing for winter.

Must-See Attractions

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Porcupine Caribou Herd

Witness one of North America’s largest caribou migrations as the Porcupine Caribou Herd travels through the park. This awe-inspiring natural spectacle is a highlight for wildlife enthusiasts, offering the chance to see thousands of caribou on their annual journey.

Northern Lights

Vuntut National Park is situated within the auroral oval, making it an excellent location for viewing the northern lights. On clear winter nights, visitors can witness the breathtaking display of colorful auroras dancing across the night sky, creating an unforgettable experience.

Porcupine River

Paddle along the Porcupine River, which flows through the heart of Vuntut National Park, on a canoe or kayak expedition. This scenic waterway provides a unique perspective of the park’s landscapes and allows for wildlife viewing opportunities along the riverbanks.

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

Plan Ahead

Plan Ahead

Before your trip, familiarize yourself with the park’s regulations, facilities, and available activities. Consider the time of year you plan to visit and any specific permits or reservations you may need for activities like backcountry camping or guided tours.

Pack Appropriately

Pack Essentials

Be sure to pack essential gear and supplies for your visit, including appropriate clothing and footwear for the weather conditions, navigation tools, first aid kit, food, water, and any camping equipment if you plan to stay overnight.

Respect Wildlife

Be Bear Aware

Vuntut National Park has a healthy population of grizzly bears and other wildlife. Take precautions to avoid bear encounters by storing food and scented items properly, making noise while hiking to alert bears of your presence, and carrying bear spray for protection.

Stay Informed

Prepare for Remote Travel

Vuntut National Park is in a remote wilderness area with limited services and facilities. Be prepared for self-sufficient travel by bringing extra supplies, emergency communication devices, and a detailed map or GPS for navigation.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Vuntut National Park

You’re in for an adventure when you visit Vuntut National Park! Whether you’re keen on birdwatching, hiking through the untouched landscapes, or canoeing across the Old Crow Flats with its many shallow lakes, there’s never a dull moment. In winter, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing offer a frosty but scenic workout.

Vuntut National Park holds a treasure of stories tracing back to the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation. Established to protect this part of the northern Yukon and its cultural significance, visiting this park is a journey into the heart of their ancestral lands where their traditions and respect for the land continue to thrive.

Keep your binoculars handy and you might spot the Porcupine caribou herd—stalwarts of the region! Other locals include the peregrine falcon, moose, and the elusive grizzly bear. With such biodiversity, Vuntut is a living library of the Yukon’s wildlife.

Adventure awaits, but it does involve some travel! The remote nature of Vuntut National Park means it’s best reached by air with a charter plane to the nearby community of Old Crow. Once there, local guides can help you explore the park’s stunning wilderness.

You’ll be fascinated to know the Vuntut Development Corporation is the economic arm of the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation. By investing in sustainable projects and tourism within their traditional lands, they create jobs and opportunities, ensuring the community benefits from its own natural resources responsibly.

The heartbeat of the Vuntut Gwitchin culture lies in its language. Efforts to preserve it include community programs that promote learning and speaking the language across generations. By embracing these initiatives, the language stays vibrant and alive—echoing through the wilderness and the community itself.

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