Our Dene Journey: Cultural Experiencesfrom
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Vacation Style Holiday Type
Activity Level Moderate
Group Size Medium Group
Season: June 16 to September 10
On this journey, you will learn the history of our Dene peoples. See the places, meet the people and travel to our communities and experience genuine Indigenous culture. Meet the leaders and respected Dene Elders, learn about our special connections and relationships with the land. Learn our Dene Laws.
You will learn about the devastating impact of the residential school system and other policies of colonialism and assimilation on our people and our culture. The first Indigenous community you will overnight is home to the first residential school in this area, opened in 1860, over a 160 years ago and we will visit the Memorial, it will be a very tough moment emotionally.
Travel on the mighty Mackenzie River or as we call it in our Dene language, the “dehcho” and visit a traditional culture camp and experience life on the land, enjoy traditional foods and traditional activities like the powerful traditional Dene Hand Games! Back to town after a traditional dinner, we may get lucky and experience our powerful Dene Drum Dance.
Next day we hit the road to visit the tiny Indigenous community of Jean Marie River (pop. 77) situated on the shores on the mighty Mackenzie River. After lunch and wonderful visit, we will continue on to the oldest community on the Mackenzie River, Fort Simpson and learn more about our culture and heritage while visiting this beautiful river community.
Next day is amazing, you will fly into the world famous Nahanni National Park, visiting Virginia Falls, the Cirque De Unclimbables and the oasis of the Mackenzie Mountains, Little Doctor Lake, and is one of Canada’s and the world’s most beautiful natural wonders!
After you get back into town you will enjoy a wonderful evening with a local Dene family for a delicious home cooked meal of traditional foods and hear their stories. Then enjoy a relaxing evening in your hotel and then we drive back to Yellowknife next day.
ODJ22-01: Jun 15 – Jun 21
ODJ22-02: Jun 22 – Jun 28
ODJ22-03: Jun 29 – Jul 05
ODJ22-04: Jul 06 – Jul 12
ODJ22-05: Jul 13 – Jul 19
ODJ22-06: Jul 20 – Jul 26
ODJ22-07: Jul 27 – Aug 02
ODJ22-08: Aug 03 – Aug 09
ODJ22-09: Aug 10 – Aug 16
ODJ22-10: Aug 17 – Aug 23
ODJ22-11: Aug 24 – Aug 30
ODJ22-12: Aug 31 – Sep 06
ODJ22-13: Sep 07 – Sep 13
Minimum 8 persons; maximum 16 persons
*based on double occupancy per room
- Free airport shuttle service
- Comfortable hotel in Yellowknife
- Comfortable B&B in communities
- Meals on the road trips
- Meals in the communities
- Genuine Indigenous culture
- Experience Dene communities
- Traditional Indigenous foods
- Meet with respected Dene Elders
- Day Tour into National Nahanni Park
- 700km road trip on Mackenzie Highway
- See wild Wood Buffalo and game birds
- Return airfare to Yellowknife
- Travel Insurance
- North Star Memory Package
- North Star Souvenir Package
Welcome to Yellowknife!
Welcome to northern Canada! We will greet you at the airport and check you to your hotel. After everyone has checked in, we will all meet for the Tour Package orientation session. Afterwards you have a choice to join our fun and informative Yellowknife Sightseeing City Tour, or just relax and go for a leisurely walk downtown. At 6:00pm we will bring to the scenic Old Town district of Yellowknife for a delicious dinner of local fish at world famous Bullocks’s Bistro! The rest of the evening is free.
The Journey begins, 300kms to Fort Providence!
Drive 300kms to the small, scenic Indigenous community of Fort Providence. Along the way view scenery of the northern Canada landscape and see the world’s biggest wild buffalo! Arriving into the community we will check you into the Snowshoe Inn and then have lunch. After lunch, we will go for a scenic drive to visit the tiny Indigenous community of Kakisa and visit Lady Evelyn Falls. After dinner meet local Indigenous people and stop at the local arts and crafts all their wonderful Indigenous arts and crafts!
Travel on the Mackenzie River, visit the Cultural Camp
After a hearty breakfast, we go for a boat ride on the mighty Mackenzie River, enjoying the scenery of the wilderness to our culture camp. Here you will spend a good part of the day visiting and meeting with local Elders and Knowledge Keepers of the land and hear stories about our culture, hear their personal stories growing up on the river. The of course the local women will cook a delicious traditional dinner, for a fine dining experience on the shores of one of the longest rivers in the world! Then it’s back to Fort Providence for a good nights rest at your hotel. You are reconnecting with the land.
Journey to Fort Simpson, the oldest community on the Mackenzie
Today we continue our journey deeper into the heart of the Deh Cho region. We will drive to the historic community of Fort Simpson, the oldest community on the Mackenzie River, established over 200 years ago as a fur trading centre. You will hear stories about the fur trade and how it has impacted our way of life. You will meet some residents who are still trapping today and selling their fur. Then enjoy a traditional cookout dinner with a local Dene family and her their stories about trying to maintain our way of life in a modern world. We call traditional food, “medicine food”, it’s good for the body and the spirit.
Day tour into the world famous Nahanni National Park!
Fly into Nahanni National Park! Take off from the Mackenzie River in a float plane, soon see the majestic Mackenzie Mountains off in the distance. First stop is the breathtaking Virginia Falls, twice as high as the Niagara Falls! After the Falls, it’s onto beautiful Glacier Lake to see the impressive Cirque de Unclimbables. Finally, you visit one of the most scenic places in the entire Mackenzie Mountain Range, Little Doctor Lake wait until you see this place! See our land, experience our land.
Enjoy a relaxing scenic drive back to Yellowknife!
After breakfast it’s time to say goodbye to this wonderful people of Fort Simpson and it’s back on the road back to Yellowknife. Enjoy the ride, get some rest along the way in our comfortable newer vans. We will arrive into Fort Providence just in time for a delicious buffalo burger lunch. Arriving into Yellowknife, check into your hotel and we will all meet for a wonderful evening of fine dining of delicious local foods. Reminisce with the other guests about your Dene Journey!
Wonderful memories of your northern adventure!
After a hearty breakfast it’s time for us to take you to the airport. It was wonderful having you on our tour. Thank you for choosing North Star!