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Lee M

Recommend using another lodge/tour for polar bear expedition.

Review of Lazy Bear Lodge
2.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed Nov 9, 2022
1) The staff needs BETTER TRAINING:

On the first night, I came to the front desk because I could not turn on the heat. They said someone would come but no one ever did.

The restaurant staff was very nice, but the kitchen was slow. Up to 45 minutes waiting for our food at dinner. This resulted in my missing the night mushing bus. More on that later.

Dirty towels were removed from our room, but not replaced with clean towels.

Tour/crawler guides should talk less and spend more time looking for wildlife. Less socializing, more scanning for bears. They improved on the second day.

2) COMMUNICATION

Lazy Bear scheduled our airport arrival pickup. Because it was 3 earlier than the normal pickup, we had our travel agent confirm the pickup on the day before arrival. But when we arrived at 2am from Vancouver there was no one to meet us. Fortunately there was a taxi we could take. Got to the hotel at 3:30AM!

Staff did not know many elements of the schedule such as starting times, checkout time, luggage pick up times. They seem to make it up as they were asked. We got different answers from different staff. For example, we had an 8:30 helicopter tour the last day and wanted to know if we had to get up early or could wait to put our bags out when we got back.

When we arrived, our prepaid helicopter tour was not on our schedule even though it had been on previous versions of our itinerary.

The emergency number you provided in Winnipeg rolled over to voice mail. It said “the office is open Monday through Friday”. Not very encouraging.

The people in Winnipeg don’t know what is planned in Churchill. The tour leaders don’t know how the lodge functions, and the people at the front desk don’t seem to know much of anything.

3) FRUSTRATING INCIDENT

When my dinner arrived 45 minutes after ordering, I told one of the staff that I would be at the evening bus at exactly 7pm, but not earlier for the mushing bus. He said no problem. When I dashed to my room for my coat, I past the same staff and the driver who was taking us to the mushing. I reminded them of my coming. They said no worries. BUT when I went outside the bus was just driving away. I was upset. Fortunately I requested/demanded the same staff person drive me to the mushing location.

We were told to get dinner in the hour between the two tours. Someone should have told us an hour was not enough time for dinner at the lodge. I still do not know what we were supposed to do.

4) OTHER SUGGESTIONS:

The guest rooms need more light. All lights were on one side of the room at the head of the beds. Hard to see our stuff getting dressed in the dark.
Date of stay: October 2022
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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      Reviews (258)
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      9 - 14 of 258 reviews
      Reviewed November 8, 2022

      Better than expected. Saw Polar Bears on both days on the Tundra. We were lucky as the 2nd day we had a Polar Bear come up to the Tundra Buggy. (I think it was the smell of chili as the guides were getting our lunch ready). Our guides, Eric & Deacon - the owner's son were great! Funny and knowledgeable about the bears and the area. Deacon - aka Muskrat King was hilarious and his magic show was great. The lodge was comfortable with private bathrooms in each room. Restaurant had great food, we loved the breakfast and dinners. The entire staff were friendly and helpful. Sue was great answering all our questions when booking and getting to the airport and lodge. We saw the Northern Lights, Could not go on the dog sled ride as it was too warm for sled and too mushy for the wheels. But Dave Daley gave a nice talk about the dogs and his adventures in dog sledding. I did a lot of research on several Polar Bear excursions before I booked with Lazy Bear Lodge. I made the right choice and would definitely go back sometime to see the Beluga whales too! Thanks to everyone at Lazy Bear Lodge for checking everything off my bucket list!

      Room tip: All rooms are comfortable. Some are on 1st floor, rest on 2nd floor.
      Date of stay: October 2022
        • Sleep Quality
        • Cleanliness
        • Service
      1  Thank FrankieNi
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Reviewed October 30, 2022 via mobile

      First of all I read sone negative comments regarding Lazy Bear Expeditions which were written be A few unhappy travelers that expected a Marriott with all the amenities. Well, this not a Marriott it is a lodge built and owned by Wally Daudrich, a man born in Churchill who was a guide and built this business from scratch. He and his family have worked hard to build a fantastic operation that employs many from all over the world. His employees are hard working, courteous and friendly. His son, Deacon alias “muskrat king” as I called him is a terrific young man and was our guide; 17 years old and is years old and most knowledgeable and makes sure all tourists remain safe as this is polar bear country. Our trip was booked thru Lazy Bear and there Winnipeg contact, Sue, was terrific. Stayed at inn at the forks in Winnipeg; a terrific hotel at a great location. Our flight was delayed on first day by snowstorm in Churchill some 7 hours. Sue made arrangements to take the group to Winnipeg museum, and we finally arrived in snowy, clod Churchill late evening where they kept the restaurant open for us. Our rooms were small bit cozy. Hot shower and Keurig machine. Breakfast was great and they have the only espresso/ Cappucinno machine in Churchill. Which by the way is only aaccessible by train or plane. That’s why expensive.
      FYI, Wally just bought a 47’ catamaran boat foe beluga tours. A state of the art boat that was shipped up and will be ready for upcoming summer.
      We viewed many polar bears, red Fox during our trip. Remember, nothing is guaranteed in life, that means polar bear sighting is not guaranteed but our driver and guide found them.
      So prepare for an adventure with a terrific family owned tour operation and remember that you are in Churchill, CA, population of 950, three restaurants and no five star hotels.
      Oh, yes we saw northern lights, the front desk called us three times at night to let us know the northern lights were going on and what colors they were.

      Date of stay: October 2022
      Trip type: Travelled as a couple
      Thank Bostonwhaler43
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Reviewed October 29, 2022 via mobile

      Our trip was amazing and over exceeded our expectations. Lazybear does everything possible to have you see the polar bears. The lodge is a lodge and you will hear noise and food was ok and a small lounge area, but they try to accommodate everyone as best they can. The people at the lodge go out of their way to make this a great trip for you. Our driver and tour guide Eric and Deacan were knowledgeable and passionate about making this the best trip possible. Please remember to tip (although they do not ask for a tip), they work hard long days for all of our enjoyment and although it is a lot of money for this trip we realized no one can control where the bears are and Lazybear does everything they can to make it possible. They only get to work 6 months of the year. The dog mushing experience and Northern lights were both amazing as well. The best place to shop for souvenirs is the gift shop beside the lodge. Flights will be delayed so plan for a delayed flight. Great experience and we will be back for Bulega Whale season at some point.

      Date of stay: October 2022
      Trip type: Travelled as a couple
      Thank David C
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Reviewed September 14, 2022

      We stayed there during our stay in Churchill. The place is remote and the village is small, but accomodations were really unwelcoming. The room was VERY small, almost impossible to move around if you have a big piece of luggage. Food was substandard; we could get better items from the local supermarket. THere is no social area. When they close the restaurant area (the restaurant works only a couple of hours per day) there is no place to stay in the lobby. During nighttime, there was no one in the lobby and no contact telephone available (we try to call and got no answer). I wonder what would happen if something occur to a guest (even simple things like getting stuck out of the room, not to mention medical issues, etc).

      Date of stay: September 2022
        • Sleep Quality
        • Rooms
        • Service
      2  Thank acukiert
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
      Reviewed September 12, 2022

      We were here in July . The town of Churchill is very slow with a few treasures in it. Lazy Bear Lodge was wonderful The food was great in the restaurant . The service was really good. They busted their behinds while being understaffed . They were so nice and respectful . Patience was key. The rooms were very comfortable . I know that 4 days isn't a long time but it was plenty to do everything we had signed up for. Don't pass on the up close and personal with the Belugas. It was such a treat to put our face in the water and SING , yes SING, to the whales! We loved our time there. We saw polar bears lounging around the shores. We of coarse were in a boat or HUGE snow truck. We went dog sledding too. What a treat that was. When you have an incredible opportunity like this you should take it!

      Date of stay: July 2022
        • Location
        • Cleanliness
        • Service
      Thank B9090OCmichellel
      This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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