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Motor Boat Cruise on the Mackenzie River in the Northwest Territories

| CA-NSA002

Expedition on the Mackenzie River to the Arctic Ocean with Indigenous Guides


Join an exciting motor boat cruise on the Mackenzie River and get to know the indigenous culture while experiencing the rugged, untouched beauty of Canada's North!


  • Mackenzie River
  • Boat Expedition to the Arctic
  • Local & Experienced Indigenous Guides
  • Genuine Indigenous Culture
  • Dene and Inuit First Nations
  • Cross the Arctic Circle
  • Wildlife and Bird Viewing
  • Riverside Camping
  • Arctic Ocean
  • Yellowknife
  • Inuvik
  • Tuktoyaktuk


On this unique motorboat trip down the mighty Mackenzie River, you will boat from Great Slave Lake all the way to the Arctic Ocean! This is an incredible journey of over 1800km by power boat. You will be immersed in the dramatic landscapes and history of the great Mackenzie River and the culture of the Indigenous people of Canada’s Northwest Territories. You will experience the history of the Dene people of Canada, hear their stories, and share their respect for the land and the Great River DehCho. You will learn about their special connections to the land, connections that have provided life for millennia and share their timeless traditions.

Availability Mid June – mid August
Duration 10 or 15 days
Departs From Yellowknife, NT
Difficulty Moderate
Group maximum 10 people
Meet on Location Yes
Pick Up Yes


14 557
  • Expert Guides
  • Small Group Experience
  • Fast & secure payment
  • International number: +1 778 348 1676

Prices (2024):

10-Day Expedition (4-person min):
$19995 CAD per person

  • June 25-July 4
  • July 8-17
  • July 20-29
  • August 1-10

15-Day Expedition
Not available in 2024

All prices are per person, in CAD.
Prices are based on double occupancy.

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What's Included

Find out what is included and what to bring.


  • Ground transportation from Yellowknife to Hay River or Fort Providence
  • Scenic road trip on the Mackenzie Highway
  • Accommodations in Yellowknife, pre and post trip
  • Accommodations at B&B’s in remote communities
  • Two nights tent camping along the river
  • Boats, motors, fuel, safety equipment
  • All meals & snacks while on the trip
  • Return flight from Inuvik to Yellowknife

What to bring

  • Warm jacket
  • Fleece clothing
  • Long pants
  • Shorts
  • Hiking boots
  • Wet shoes or rubber boots
  • Rain gear (jacket and pants)
  • Toque or balaclava
  • Long underwear (top & bottom)
  • Hat & gloves
  • Sunglasses, Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Full packing list is provided at booking

Not Included

  • Fishing licenses (available for purchase online)
  • Transportation from your home city to Yellowknife NWT
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance (mandatory)

Contact us for more Information about this tour


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Find out more details about the tour and its highlights


This epic trip on the Dehcho in the Northwest Territories of Canada is offered as 10 or 15-day durations. The 10-day tour starts in Fort Providence, while the 15-day tour starts in Hay River and includes the crossing of Great Slave Lake. Most nights are spent in the local communities at hotels or B&Bs, with a couple of nights spent camping at riverside campsites.

The Mackenzie River is known as the ‘great’ river or the ‘big’ river by the Indigenous people along its course. The trip starts from Yellowknife Northwest Territories, with a scenic road trip to either Hay River for the long trip or Fort Providence for the shorter trip. This remarkable trip focuses on the river and the communities you will visit along the way.  

After reaching the Mackenzie River Delta at Inuvik, you will complete your journey to Tuktoyaktuk on the shores of the Arctic Ocean. Dip your toes into the ocean, or jump right in! You will spend the day and overnight in Inuvik before flying back to Yellowknife.

Your lead guide on this remarkable Mackenzie River expedition is famous for his knowledge of the area and speaks all Indigenous languages of the region. Joe, ‘The Aurora Hunter’, was born and raised in the NWT and had a strong track record of leading visitors and tour groups into the wilderness of Canada’s north. Joe’s Dene background and connection to the local communities on this epic northern trip are remarkable. He continues the tradition of storytelling, keeping the spoken history and languages of his people alive. His family has lived here for generations, and his ancestors have lived here for thousands of years. They are waiting here to welcome you into their homes and homeland. You are in good hands.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be immersed in the history and traditions of the Indigenous people of this area, and you will have experienced Canada’s true north on the great Mackenzie River.

The Mackenzie River is the longest and largest drainage basin in Canada and second only to the Mississippi River in all of North America.

Though its drainage area covers a large portion of northern British Columbia and northern Alberta, the main stem of the Mackenzie River starts at the west end of Great Slave Lake, about 150km southwest of Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories.

After leaving Great Slave Lake, the Mackenzie River winds its way west before turning northwest along the eastern side of the Mackenzie Mountain Range, eventually emptying into the Arctic Ocean about 1800 km downstream. At times, the river is up to 2-3km wide, with narrower sections of 200-800m. Rapids are infrequent, but there is a stretch of rapids downstream of the village of Jean Marie River.  The river finds its own path, and there are many braided sections and islands along its course.

The Mackenzie River flows through vast areas of Canada’s great northern boreal forest and sub-arctic taiga. The region is considered one of the largest intact ecosystems remaining in Canada.

The Mackenzie River and its massive arctic delta draw hundreds of migratory bird species. Wildlife in this area includes moose, caribou, wood bison, beaver, wolverine, lynx, wolves, black bears, and grizzly bears.

Payment Details


All bookings require a deposit of 15% per person in order to confirm your dates.  The balance is due at least 60 days prior to your trip departure date, at which time the deposit become non-refundable.

Between 59 and 31 days prior to departure, there is a 75% refund of all funds.  30 days or less prior to the Package departure date, there is a 50% refund of all funds.