aerial view of Whitehorse in the Yukon Territory

Why Whitehorse is Your Perfect Autumn Destination

Why Whitehorse is Your Perfect Autumn Destination

Vast wilderness, towering mountains, friendly people, and enchanting vistas, the Yukon certainly lives up to Canada’s nickname, the Great White North. Whitehorse, also known as the Wilderness City, is the capital city of Yukon and home to some of the most spectacular scenery in Canada. For most people, Whitehorse is a winter wonderland of fun and adventure, but autumn is also one of the best times to visit with endless once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to experience. We’ve put together a bucket list of activities for you to try this autumn to feed your wanderlust!

lake in whitehorse

Autumn is the Perfect Time to See the Yukon Northern Lights

If there’s one thing you can’t miss in Whitehorse, it’s the Northern Lights. The Aurora Borealis is a feast for the eyes, and autumn is among the best times of year to see it. The solar particles collide with oxygen and nitrogen in the atmosphere to produce the Earth’s greatest light show and it will leave you spellbound.

northern lights at night

We suggest booking a Yukon Northern Lights Package with Northern Tales to see the dazzling colours light up the sky. Your tour package includes pick-up and drop-off, a heated cabin or wall tent with hot drinks and snacks to make your viewing enjoyment. Northern Tales also offers other tour packages, such as ice fishing, dog sledding, snowmobile driving, and more!

See Wildlife in Action and Go for a Soak!

The Yukon is home to some of the most majestic wildlife, and the Yukon Wildlife Preserve is a 700-acre refuge area where you can witness 13 species of northern Canadian mammals in their natural environment. Located only 25 minutes from downtown Whitehorse, visitors can tour the preserve on foot, by skies, bikes, or on a guided bus. There are plenty of photo opportunities so make sure you’re camera-ready – you never know what animals you might encounter!

lynx at Yukon Wildlife Preserve

Photo: JF Bergeron via Tourism Yukon

When you’ve run out of room on your camera, head over to the nearby Takhini Hot Springs for a relaxing dip in the 42℃ water. The water is odourless, has no sulphur smell and rich in minerals like calcium, magnesium, and iron. Just don’t forget to pack your flip-flops and swimsuits before you head out for the day.

soakers at Tahkini hot springs near Whitehorse

Photo: Enviro Foto via Tourism Yukon

Horseback Riding Yukon: See Breathtaking Fall Colours Equestrian Style

As you wait for the night’s dancing Northern Lights, you can enjoy the magical colours of fall in daylight. Fall in Whitehorse means seeing the leaves change to vibrant oranges, vivid reds, and intense yellows, and there’s no better way you can experience such jaw-dropping sights than on the back of a trusty steed. You can try this adventure of a lifetime with Sky High Wilderness Ranch. Journey through the mountains surrounding Fish Lake on horseback and explore the unadulterated landscape away from the crowds!

horseback riders crossing a stream in the Yukon

Photo: Enviro Foto via Tourism Yukon

Yukon Hiking Is Unbelievable

Another great way to immerse yourself in nature is by hiking. Whether you’re looking for an easy or challenging trail with rugged terrain, the Whitehorse region has something for hikers of all levels. We recommend Fish Lake and Valerie Lake (easy level), Mount White or Kujo Ridge (moderate level), or Ibex Ridge (difficult level, but exceptionally beautiful in fall). Visit Yukon Hiking for maps and planning, or check out some Yukon hiking tours for guided adventures.

hikers atop Grey Mountain

Photo: Yvonne Mueller via Tourism Yukon

Whitehorse Has An Amazing Culinary Scene

Make sure you include a gastronomic adventure while you’re beefing up your list of outdoor activities. The culinary scene in Whitehorse is very diverse and here are some fantastic events and festivals to keep an eye out for, including:

● Annual Wine Festival put together by Rendezvous Rotary Club of Whitehorse. The event generally happens in mid to late October.

● The Yukon Beer Festival on October 12 and 13, featuring beers and ciders from across North America.

stein of beer

You can always stay up to date on what’s cooking in the Yukon culinary world by following @yukonculinary on Twitter and Instagram. Celebrity chefs including Vikram Vij and Trevor Bird have both been featured in past culinary festivals. And if you’re unable to fit these in your calendar, you can always head to The Deck when you’re hankering for a tasty meal. Here, you can enjoy rustic fare on the impressive patio and unwind after a long day.

Make Coast High Country Inn Your Home Base

The Coast High Country Inn is in downtown Whitehorse and a short walk from bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and boutiques on Main Street. The hotel may be near a hub of activities but it’s also tucked away from the noise. Jim Light Park is right next to the hotel, and it’s about a 5-minute walk to the mighty Yukon River and waterfront trails. Fun fact to know: the Royals stayed here during their 2016 Canadian Royal Tour. Walk in their footsteps and get a taste of the Royal Suite by booking room 414!

exterior of coast high country inn

During your stay, enjoy a host of amenities and features, such as:

● Free Wi-Fi and parking
● Complimentary airport shuttle pick up and drop off
● Pet-friendly rooms
● Spacious rooms with jacuzzi hot tubs or kitchenettes

For your next great Yukon adventure, find your home away from home in Whitehorse at the Coast High Country Inn. You’ll love relaxing and unwinding there after a long day of exploring. Book your stay and begin planning for your fall wilderness excursion today!