Beware of polar bears
Although usually just found on the tundra, bears have been known to wander into town. You must always be on your guard against bumping into one of these giants while you walk about town, especially at night.
- National/State Park
Polar bears do make their way into town (though mostly the outskirts, so don't panic!). There were 12 individuals in the polar bear jail when we were visiting. They keep them there until the bay freezes so that they don't return once released. The garbage dump is an attractant for these hungry bears that haven't eaten in months. There was also a bear in town the last night we visited, but the polar bear alert team managed to frighten it off. If you see a polar bear, go to the nearest building and tell someone you saw the bear. There is also a polar bear alert number you can call, but I forgot what it is. Ask in town.
Do not venture off on your own outside of town. Make sure you are with someone who is trained in firearms use and has a gun. Keep in mind that this is not only for your safety, but also the safety of the bears. When an animal attacks a human, it is typically euthanised. Avoid unnecessary polar bear deaths by taking precautions!
Polar Bear Siren
You may hear an air-raid sounding siren at night in Churchill. I was told that this is a Polar Bear alert, however according to a fellow VTer, this is simply to let you know that a curfew is in effect.
The only ATM we found in Churchill was that in the Royal Bank of Canada.
In view of the fact that AmEx cards are hardly ever accepted in Churchill and most bars only accept cash, make sure that you have enough folding money for the day and evening, as walking in the deserted streets at night as a touriist, in a town that has its fair share of bears from Sept - Nov, is maybe a little unnerving.
If you are at Royal Bank if only to get yourself warm, then right next door is the post office where if you speak to the lady nicely, she will unofficially stamp your passport with her Polar Bear cancelling rubber stamp although it must be between Mon - Friday and ideally around noon, as they have limited opening hours especially in the winter
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