If you are already searching on TripAdvisor I think you don't have to look further.
This was our first time visiting Whitehorse and quite frankly there are choices when you search for accommodations in Whitehorse. I won't say they are better than others as I cannot compare Sundog to others when i have not seen/stayed at other places. This is the one thing I've tried to stay away from in my reviews as it really doesn't help anyone, neither future visitors nor the places themselves.
BUT, let me tell you that if you are looking for a place to stay in Whitehorse to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights/Aurora Borealis and to experience Whitehorse, you cannot fail with Sundog Retreat. They are not the cheapest (relatively) but what you pay for is really what you get, and then some, so it all adds up at the end, and here's why in my opinion.
First off, i usually rent a car if i could when we travel, and when i read the reviews on this forum i cannot quite find the info i needed. Let me just say that it IS OK to rent a car if it fits your budget and you want to get around, and there is parking right in front of each cottage within the property. So there's that. But after 5 days 4 nights there, we were glad we didn't rent a car as when we checked, it was $60++ before insurance and everything per day. Plus, most of the activities that we had Andrew & Heather set up for us involved a bit of distance and they took care of us each of the legs. The money we saved from renting a car and gas was happily going to Sundog Retreat. We say this because they are a self owned and operated business and our entire trip they have earned every penny. We are glad our money was well spent. Plus, having spent 5 days there you find out how genuine Andrew and Heather are and you just wish that they do well and continue to expand their business.
So to the place itself. Sundog has a few cottage choices to choose from, and there are three that are Aurora Viewing cabins, which means they are positioned within the property to be able to view the lights directly. But make no mistake, each cottage is a gem in its own right, just really depending on your budget, size of the group, and of course availability. I stayed at the Cranberry which was THE BEST cabin on the property. Words cannot describe it but let's just say that we had way too much space to ourselves! This cabin also has the most 'privacy' as there are no direct cottages nearby. The others are located slightly closer to each other although they each have their own space as well in other parts of the property. This cabin was also the closest to the 2 immaculate 'viewing cabins' Sundog has built just for guests to 'wait' for the lights, so for those at the other non-viewing cabins you really aren't missing much. They have ample snacks (cookies/marshmallow) and beverage mixes (hot choco/tea) waiting for you in each viewing cabin, plus a fire pit outside for those who wants to heat up some marshmallows! Last but not least a professional (i think) telescope for those who enjoys one.
In terms of the rooms, very new and spacious with everything you need, cable TV is available and they are working to have wifi at each cabin but right now it's only at the Den (forgot most of the names of the cabins already) and signal can be picked up at the Cranberry for the most part. All of the necessities are there, almost everything you can name from rice cookers, to pots, to utensils, wok!, cooking oil, salt/pepper etc. the basics (don't expect ketchup now :)) They provide biodegradable liquids for the bathroom as well so depending on how 'green' you are, that would cover your shampoo/body wash, with fresh towels provided.
All you really need to bring is food which you can buy the first day if you bought the Aurora package as we did, which included a city/downtown tour where afterwards you can get everything you need (Canadian Superstore, or Walmart if you prefer them). We stocked up to cook for ourselves for 5 days but you can also choose to have Sundog prepare meals for you. Just gotta let them know in advance and add it to the package. Our package also included the airport transfers both ways, and again, it just saves the money for a taxi/transfer/car rental and makes it very easy.
Separately, we've also booked through Sundog the dog sledding experience and also Hot Springs (at Tahini?). both are a must if you ask me, especially if this is your first time to a cold (and i mean COLD) weather destination. Yet again, booking through Sundog they will take care of everything, including the transfers to those locations.
I hope i didn't miss anything as i really wanted to spend some time to write this. From the moment when we arrived, they were ready for us and had an itinerary planned for us for our stay, up through when they dropped us off at the airport. What i wrote was for the winter visits only and i'm sure they would be just as great during the warmer months.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Winter northern lights, summer midnight sun. Private cabins, hot tub, sauna, full amenities. Yukon hospitality and welcoming fruit basket. Near Whitehorse on 160 private acres. Friendly hosts respect your privacy. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Sundog Retreat Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada