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Encounters with the Unicorn of the Sea

These magnificent animals are famous for the intricate, spear-like tusk that protrudes from their heads. By definition, the word ‘narwhal’ means corpse whale, as they often swim on their backs and lay without moving for several minutes.

Where do Narwhals Live?

Narwhals live in the Arctic waters of Norway, Canada, Greenland & Russia and they do not migrate like most whales. They winter for up to five months beneath the sea ice in Baffin Bay-Davis Strait. Our narwhal safaris are based in Arctic Canada.

The Best Time to See Narwhals

Early summer, May and June in Arctic Canada when they move closer to shore - prime time for narwhal-viewing.

Narwhal Close Up Arctic Canada Medium
St Arctic Canada Polar Bear Shutterstock Ondrej Prosicky


Our Narwhal and Polar Bear safari gives you the best option of seeing these elusive animals in the wild. Delight in the serenity of watching them from the secure vantage point of the floe edge, ensuring a safe and unforgettable journey.

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  • Narwhal tusks are an elongated canine growing straight through the top lip, this tusk seen on males, grows up to 2.7 metres in length and it spirals towards the tip with a hollow interior. The purpose of the ‘tusk’ or tooth still isn’t confirmed, though thought perhaps to impress females. Females occasionally grow their own, but it is never as impressive as the males, in fact some males can grow two.
  • Part of the Monodontidae family, alongside the beluga whale, they feed on squid and fish and travel in groups, usually of between 15 and 20 individuals.
  • Narwhals are among the world’s deepest known divers, staying under the water for up to 25 minutes at a time and going as deep as 1,500 metres.
  • They often get trapped in moving pack ice and fall prey to Inuit who hunt them for their beautiful tusks and their vitamin C rich skin. There are strict hunting quotas in place to help ensure the survival of the species.
  • Known enemies of the narwhal are polar bears, walruses and humans.
  • Solely living in Arctic waters, they have been seen in joined pods of hundreds, or even thousands, as they try to work their way into the cracks of breaking floe ice.