When a new hostel opens up in Canada, particularly those in unique or new settings, I can’t help but get excited. In the small town of Churchill, Manitoba, home of the polar bears, belugas, and all things arctic adventure related, the Tundra House Hostel opened its doors to eager backpackers and budget travellers from all over the world. Tundra House Hostel is Churchill’s first, and only hostel, and possibly one of my favourite hostels I stayed at during my cross Canada travels.
I was picked up, alongside a french canadian fellow and a korean exchange student, at the VIA Rail Churchill Station by Belinda Fitzpatrick, the owner and manager of Tundra Inn and Tundra House Hostel. On our short drive, I learned that she’s an Australian that fell in love with the north and never left. She married a local fellow and started the hostel, based on her worldly experiences, and has been loving every day of it. She gave us a brief run down on safety and smiled the entire time, clearly loving what she does.
Welcome to the Tundra House Hostel
As we pulled up to 51 Franklin Street, Belinda showed us around the Tundra House Hostel. I hung up my jacket and took a quick tour of this cute and cozy home away from home, with a shared kitchen, on-site laundry, free wifi, private and dorm style rooms, and one of the most comfy common living rooms I’ve ever set foot in. The spacious dining area is the perfect place to swap stories with other travellers or share a beer.
The Tundra House Hostel is a stones throw away from the Tundra Inn Pub, what would soon become one of my favourite spots to grab a pint and a delicious bite. If you’re in Churchill for squeezing in as many tours as humanly possible, you’ll be happy to hear that you’re never more than a few blocks away from your tour operators. Whether you plan on getting out in the Tundra Buggy, or want to kayak with Belugas, it’s a superb location for those wanting to experience as much of Churchill as possible.
Tundra House Hostel Does It Right
I’ve been to countless hostels. Between the small run ma & pop hostels to the big chain HI Hostels, to the party fueled hostels of Samesun Backpackers. While each have something unique to offer, the Tundra House Hostel pulls off something incredible. Within half a day, this place became my home away from home. Friends share stories, connections are made, and next thing you know you find out you’ve got a lot of the same interests. The common question you’ll hear in Churchill is “What brought you up this far north?” – the answer seems to be consistent. Adventure, curiosity, wildlife, or for some, because it was on the VIA Rail line.
Churchill is a beautiful destination, and while it can be a bit pricey in terms of accommodation, Tundra House Hostel is a breathe of fresh air for the budget traveller. With rooms starting at $32 per night, it’s perfect for squeezing the most of your money and putting it into some of the unique tours & experiences that are offered in Churchill.
51 Franklin Street, Churchill MB
Phone: (204) 675-8831