As soon as you plan a trip to the Northwest Territories, you’re bound to encounter quirky sights and natural wonders galore.
Summer is ideal as highways are in great condition and outdoor activities are available everywhere you look which makes it a perfect excuse to go out and stay away from playing games online on sites as per yoakimbridge.com.
The Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre in Yellowknife preserves an array of fascinating archive material and is an invaluable way to gain a better understanding of cultural history in NWT.
1. The Bush Pilots Monument
Yellowknife, Canada’s northern town, is an unexpectedly vibrant community boasting a bustling mining industry and flourishing wilderness tourism industry. On flights into Yellowknife you might sit next to an avid diamond miner with their toolbox or businessmen in suits – creating an interesting mix that makes Yellowknife so captivating.
Visit Old Town’s landmark ‘The Rock’ lookout to admire a monument honoring those pilots who helped open up Yellowknife to the world and watch it flourish. Ascend the stairs to reach the top of its tower for breathtaking views over Great Slave Lake and Back Bay; from here you can watch modern float plane traffic as well as marvel at those living on multicolored houseboats in Back Bay; alternatively take a walking tour through its streets where quirky cabins and fish shacks abound!
The Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre is both museum and archives combined into one, housing artifacts related to the history and culture of this vast, rugged region. Come learn about Dene First Nation culture as well as the fur trade’s profound effect in this important northwest territorial museum.
2. Lafferty House
Lafferty House is one of the top tourist attractions in Northwest Territories and features numerous artifacts pertaining to Dene cultures and peoples as well as an assortment of local artist works that cover art and music pieces from both artists.
Hay River offers an outstanding example of Metis architecture that is well worth exploring. A beautiful picnic spot or perfect place for strolling and taking in nature, this house should not be missed!
Catherine Lafferty hails from Yellowknives Dene First Nation and currently resides on both occupied and unceded lands in the Northern Territories. She published a book with All Lit Up called Northern Wildflower which we will feature as part of our Read the Provinces series this month.
Jackson Lafferty is a political leader and MLA from Monfwi Dene community in Ontario. He holds numerous achievements, such as becoming the first Indigenous MLA ever appointed to cabinet, speaker at legislature, and idea for tiny home initiative to address housing shortages in northern regions. Recently he spoke to Cabin Radio regarding this idea for further housing options for Dene communities.
3. Pontoon Lake Territorial Park
Yellowknife River Park is one of nine parks on the Ingraham Trail. Here, visitors can picnic or simply take in its beautiful lake views and surrounding forests. When temperatures dip and the lake freezes over, this location becomes especially popular among anglers.
This small park serves as the starting point of a 6 km round-trip hiking trail to Big Hill Lake, provides day-use parking, and serves as a launchpoint for canoeists, boaters and anglers who want to explore the Great Slave Lake region. Furthermore, it’s an ideal place for viewing aurora borealis (Northern Lights). Visit during Aurora season (mid August to early May when darkness enables viewing).
Tibbitt Contwoyto Winter Road serves Yellowknife diamond mines and exploration activities, and serves as an eight-10 week heavy haul ice road. This road was featured as the setting for season one of “Ice Road Truckers”. When traveling this section of highway it should be treated with caution due to being non-paved and potentially slippery.
4. Cameron Falls
Cameron Falls in Waterton Lakes National Park are a marvellous natural attraction that have charmed visitors from near and far. Situated on the western edge of Waterton Townsite, this breathtaking site has long been an attraction. Rocky Mountain water cascades over 1.5 billion year-old Precambrian rock creating a natural wonder that leaves visitors breathless in its presence.
At certain times of year, Cameron River turns an amazing shade of pink due to argillite mineral present in its waters. This rare phenomenon attracts tourists from all around the globe as well as scientists keen to learn more about this natural wonder.
To reach Cameron Falls, travellers should travel 45 minutes east from Yellowknife along Ingraham Trail into Hidden Lake Territorial Park. Once there, traveller will find themselves at Cameron River Ramparts and Cameron Falls Trailhead where they can explore its incredible waterfalls and breathtaking landscape. For an incredible picnic experience we suggest crossing over the bridge and onto rocks straddling Cameron River until finding an idyllic picnic spot where they can indulge in their favourite snacks and beverages.
5. Louise Falls
Louise Falls is a picturesque two-tiered waterfall situated within Twin Falls Gorge Territorial Park on Hay River and popular among ice climbers. This two-tiered cascade boasts a day use area, walking trail (2.2 km to Alexandra Falls), campground with power, washrooms, kitchen shelters and firepits as well as information signs about Dene culture and traditions in this part of Canada.
Hiking to Louise Falls is relatively straightforward and offers breathtaking scenery along its trail. If you’re feeling more daring, take an adventurous walk on Louise Falls’ Ice Bridge or jump off of its cliff and rappel down its waterfall! Rappeling here can often be safely accomplished due to other climbers often following behind you and thus eliminating falling ice from other rappellers; which poses one of the main hazards when it comes to ice climbing on busy days.
One of the Waterfall Route’s iconic stops, Morant’s Curve was made famous by railway photographer Nicholas Morant and is an ideal spot for taking classic photographs, overlooking Bow Valley Parkway with stunning mountain vistas beyond.
6. The 60th Parallel Visitor Centre
At the border between Alberta and Northwest Territories lies this visitor centre which makes an excellent starting point for your northern adventure. Offering brochures, maps, pay phones, washrooms and drinking water as well as audiovisual presentations that depict life in northern communities, it also hosts audiovisual presentations that depict northern living styles.
The 60th Parallel Visitor Centre serves as a gateway to the incredible natural wonders of this territory. The Nahanni River, recognized by UNESCO World Heritage, provides thrilling canyon scenery for canoeists and rafters to enjoy, while Virginia Falls (nearly double Niagara’s height, four acres wide) stands out as an amazing feature of Nahanni National Park Reserve. Thermal pools such as Kraus Hot Springs and Rabbitkettle add another layer of wonderment within its borders.
Yellowknife, the capital of Northwest Territories, emerged out of a 1930s gold rush and has since seen many cultural institutions such as Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre flourish here. Boat tours and houseboating on Great Slave Lake as well as visiting Hidden Lake Territorial Park with its impressive waterfalls are popular attractions here; plus there are galleries featuring local artist works.
7. Bear Rock
Bear Rock is an attractive natural attraction and a beloved destination among visitors searching for breathtaking natural attractions. The breathtaking sandstone formations and views from its overlook make the experience memorable, and this area boasts various intriguing geological formations including caves and sinkholes that visitors may come across during their explorations.
These karst features in limestone were formed when water seeped through cracks and dissolving material, leaving cavities. Over time, this weaker stone began to collapse, eventually creating a dramatic sinkhole which is the main attraction for visitors.
Sandstone formations at Dewey Beach State Park in Maine are marked by numerous plant species typical to the Northeast region, such as mountain laurel, blueberries, huckleberries, and rhododendron. Wildlife such as wild turkeys and hawks also inhabit this area.
Bear Rocks boasts rugged slopes and rock outcroppings that provide hiking opportunities in every direction, from short level trails through Mountain Laurel and windswept pines to more strenuous climbs up Coginchaug Cave – for any level hiker there will be something exciting and memorable waiting at Bear Rocks National Natural Landmark!