We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Calgary, Canada
5 posts
Save Topic
What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Ten years ago, my husband and I decided to take a "Canuck Bucket List Tour." Our goal: to visit and photograph every province and territory in Canada. We now have visited "all of it but Nunavut." The result has been many wonderful memories and spectacular photographs. In retrospect, perhaps we should have visited Nunavut first. We've spent lots of time looking into our options and have concluded that this area is best suited to those interested in adventure travel. Ten years ago, that would have been us! Now, imagine a couple in their sixties. He has a heart condition. She uses a walker or wheelchair to get around. Any suggestions? My main interest is photography, but many of my best shots came from an excellent telephoto lens. I don't walk well enough to get "up close and personal" to my subjects.This does not have to be a long visit. We recognize that given the cost of airfare and accommodation, it will be by far the most expensive of our trips. But for me, the tour will not be complete without ALL the provinces and territories. We are flexible regarding time, but realize that a summer visit would probably be most likely to yield decent photographic opportunities. Mind you, our New Brunswick photos are a pretty gloomy lot. It didn't stop raining the entire time we were there. Opinions?

9 replies to this topic
Penticton, Canada
Level Contributor
14,176 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Hi

Not quite answering your questions but offering this tidbit anyway.

I just saw a program where some of the adventure ships stop in some of the real northern locations. During the time they were on shore the locals had some events scheduled to entertain. If you time it with when one of the ship that is in port it looked like they were organised to get people to venues. or even take one of the boats.

this is one that i found with google adventurecanada.com/trip/…

another page for into http://nunavuttourism.com/

Calgary, Canada
5 posts
Save Reply
2. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Thank you! We had not looked into the "adventure ships." The name alone was enough to scare us away. I'll check those sites tomorrow.It is now almost 2:00 a.m. in Calgary!

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
357 posts
31 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

First of all, its great to hear you are excited about visiting Nunavut. It sure does scare a lot of people ;)

I have only visited Iqaluit and frankly, I think even impaired mobility will not prevent you from taking great photos there.

I suggest you stay in a small hotel called Accomodations by the Sea. It's right on Frobisher Bay and you will have amazing views right from your room and breakfast/dining/lounge area. It's easy to get to, taxis in town are all flat rate.

They do have some festivals in the summer, so perhaps timing your visit with that might give you a more diverse experience.

I don't know if I'd venture further than Iqaluit if extensive hiking is not going to be on the menu, the rest of the communities up north are not exactly bustling, and I think accomodations are a lot more limited the further north you go.

Hope it works out for you!

Calgary, Canada
5 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Thank you! We took a look at their website and it looks perfect. We are inclined to agree with you. It is probably best if we stay close to what we used to call Frobisher Bay. Anything more adventurous would probably be a frustrating disappointment. Yet, we don't think our Canuck pilgrimage would be complete without even a short look at Nunavut. I'm looking forward to some great photos (weather permitting)!

Calgary, Canada
Destination Expert
for Canadian Rockies
Level Contributor
6,163 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

I think Iqaluit is about as much as you can do with someone who needs a walker or wheelchair.

Beyond Iqaluit, all of the communities, I believe, are fly-in only and not all have hotels. Flights are on small airplanes and other than very new buildings, you won't find much that is accessible. In Pangnirtung, for instance, the only hotel requires climbing quite a number of stairs as does the only home-stay. There are certainly locals with mobility issues, but it's not always easy going, and it tends to be family effort to make it work.

Outside of Iqaluit, there's also really not a whole lot to do that isn't outdoors. Communities are built around the land and rarely are larger than about 1000-1400 people. So they'll have an airstrip, a couple of general stores, perhaps an arts/cultural centre, combined with a library, possibly a Parks Canada Centre, a hotel maybe two and a one or two homestays. Often no restaurant other than takeout from a counter at the general store.. Tourism is almost completely based on very occasional small cruise ships (under 80 people) and those coming to hike/climb/ski in the parks.

While those 'adventure' cruises might have somewhat accessible ships, getting to shore would not be feasible for someone without good mobility. In just about any community, shore expeditions are by small inflatable zodiac boats. You have to be able to get in off a dock into the boat and vice versa - and balance in the boat. And, there's not likely to be any shore transport - generally you'd be walking anywhere.

You definitely want to schedule your trip in the summer - i.e. mid June to early September. Beyond that, the weather can be iffy and than can easily mean delayed or cancelled flights and very poor weather. Iqaluit also only has a handful of accommodations, so you need to book well in advance. If you need an accessible room, I would contact the hotel directly - may be very few and need to be directly booked.

It's also worth preparing in advance in regards to any medical issues. Iqaluit is very small (8000 people) - it does have the main (only major) hospital for the territory, but it's small with limited advanced capabilities. Any major traumas or surgeries will be air evacuated to places like Ottawa or even Edmonton. Everything has to be flown in or come in on the sea lifts, and delays or cancellations to flights are not unheard of - and can cause chain-reaction delays. So, when going north, it's always a good idea to allow for a longer trip than planned - bring extras for prescription medications, medical supplies and if there are any potential medical issues, not a bad idea to have copies of pertinent medical records.

As a note, there is good Rogers' reception in Iqaluit, but not sure about Telus. Outside of Iqaluit, Telus is the only option.

For flights, I would definitely contact the Nunavut Tourism group - I don't know all the ins and outs, but I know that booking through an outfitter saved us more than 35% off the price of plane tickets. So you might be best booking through a Nunavut based tour agency or outfitter - they get big discounts on First Air, which is Inuit owned.

Almost all flights are through Ottawa. I think there are some flights via Edmonton/Yellowknife, but those weren't eligible for the outfitter discount. The way the flights are scheduled, you usually need to stay a night in Ottawa on the way to Iqaluit, but you can get back to Calgary in one day if you get the morning flight out of Iqaluit.

Calgary, Canada
5 posts
Save Reply
6. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Thank you! Your reply pretty much sums up what we have read through other sources. It's good to hear from people who have been there. We still plan to try, next summer. It will be a short visit, Iqaluit only, with the only goals being to look around town and take photos. Wish us luck!

Kamloops, Canada
Level Contributor
562 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

A couple of thoughts. I travelled with my youngest daughter a couple of years ago and we decided to do Toonik Tyme in April. Provided a view of "spring" time in the far north. The temperatures were not too cold(cold at -10 to warm at -2), you prairie folk are pretty hardy!! The other travel tip is that I used airmile points to go from Kamloops, north to Yellowknife and then east to Iqaluit, it was very cost effective dollar wise and point wise. Most of the town is easy to get around in, the regular tourist hotspots are great to visit although we missed the legislator building as it was closed on a holiday Monday. My daughter and I had a great time!

http://www.tooniktyme.ca/

Calgary, Canada
5 posts
Save Reply
8. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

Thanks! I especially appreciate your comment about Airmiles. We had noticed that the map included the far north. We've never tried to book it.

Kamloops, Canada
Level Contributor
562 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?

You may have to play around with dates and timing of bookings but it is well worth it!!

Reply to: What do you suggest for mobility impaired seniors?
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
Get answers to your questions about Iqaluit