Header Photo by Jad Davenport

Happy #PolarBearWeek

Led by Polar Bears International, #PolarBearWeek celebrates the fall polar bear migration to Churchill, Manitoba, where bears gather in anticipation of the big freeze. With this annual migration in mind, it's no surprise that Churchill (known as the Polar Bear Capital of the World) has become a major tourism destination, where wildlife enthusiasts and photographers can view polar bears from huge tundra vehicles or even by foot. Follow along as we count down 20 of the best photos taken in this special region of the world...

20. Dax Justin: Big Stretch

One thing we've learned from watching polar bears: They love yoga! 

19. Gary Peart: Snow Cap

No explanation needed.

18. Julie Eric: Bears at Sunset

The soft light really shows off their fur, don't you agree?

17. Steve Sinnock: Zen

Meditation on the tundra.

16. Ramona and Steve Boone: Autumn Cuddle

Ramona and Steve captured this tender moment perfectly.

15. Terra Carroll: Thrice as Nice

Three's company.

14. Ruth Elwell Steck: Extreme Close Up

This photo confirms it: polar bears are the most photogenic animal. 

13. Michelle Valberg: Curiousity 

A classic Tundra Buggy view on an excursion with Frontiers North!

12. Jason Ransom: No Sharing

We wouldn't want to cross this bear at the dinner table.

11. Evan Roberts: Rugged Terrain 

This photo shows off the landscape of Churchill so well, you feel like you're actually there.

10. Tomas Taylor: Ithaca

When it comes to iconic backdrops in Churchill, it doesn't get much better than the abandoned MV Ithaca.

9. Drew Hamilton: Face Plant

After all, polar bears ARE known for being a bit goofy.

8. Alex de Vries: After the Hunt

While local guide Alex de Vries has an abundance of amazing shots on his feed, we can't help but LOVE this shot of a polar bear who has clearly had a successful winter hunt.

7. Jason and Deb Ransom: Polar Bear Plunge

It's not always easy to photograph polar bears from the freezing waters of the bay, but Jay and Deb pulled it off exquisitely. 

6. Caleb Ross of Nanuk Operations: Rainbow

As one of the most liked polar bear shots on the Travel Manitoba instagram, this photo is all about being in the right spot at the right time! 

5. Jad Davenport: From Above

This amazing shot took Nat Geo photojournalist Jad Davenport 2 years to plan and orchestrate!

4. Daisy Gilardini: Hitching a Ride

Only a few photographers a year get the opportunity to capture the moments when a mother bear emerges from the den with her cubs, and Daisy Gilardini is one of them. 

3. Jiangou Xie: Sparring Bears

Sparring bears with a referee wolf? That's definitely not something you see every day (unless you're in Churchill, of course)

2. Dennis Fast: Frolicking in the Fireweed

This rare and incredible photo by Dennis Fast is easily one of the most iconic polar bear shots taken during the summer months in Churchill.

1. Build Films: Motherly Love

Topping off our list is this peaceful family portrait that inspired artist Kal Barteski to put paint to canvas. We're in love!