Whether it’s the call of the outdoors, bustling city life or the intrigue of its diverse history, Manitoba is perfect for a weekend escape. For an authentic Manitoba experience, you’ll want to explore the province’s unique culture and history, and see all that its capital city has to offer. (Winnipeg is only a two-hour flight from Calgary.) Here are some can’t-miss sites to include on your weekend itinerary.
One of Winnipeg’s most vibrant and culturally diverse districts, The Forks boasts some of the best shopping, dining, lodging and unique attractions in the city. Choose from museums like the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, shop at The Forks Market, learn about Indigenous culture at the Agowiidiwinan Centre, hit the hiking trails, playgrounds and parks — the only problem you have at The Forks is trying to fit it all in.
A renowned National Historic Site, the Exchange District offers historic buildings, exceptional dining and nightlife, and is popular for summer tours, including food and drink excursions and walking tours like Death and Debauchery to learn the city’s dark history. The area is also home to the Winnipeg International Jazz Festival in June and the Winnipeg Fringe Festival in July.
Feel the magic of the French neighbourhood in the heart of Manitoba’s Francophone community. Where French and Métis traditions come together, St. Boniface offers a cultural experience like no other. Explore the ruins of the Cathedrale de Saint-Boniface as well as Winnipeg’s oldest building, Le Musée de Saint-Boniface Museum. Grab an artisan pastry from La Belle Baguette or a fresh-brewed coffee from Café Postal and check out the featured art at the Maison des Artistes Visuels Francophones’ exhibit space.
Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site
Located 30 kilometres from downtown Winnipeg, Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site chronicles the historical significance of the Hudson’s Bay Company, Indigenous connections and the fur trade. Appealing to history buffs and children alike, visitors can take part in interactive activities, workshops and learn about the province’s Indigenous Peoples.
One thing Winnipeg knows how to do well is museums — they’re among the best in all of Canada. Build a better understanding and respect for global cultures at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights; discover Qaumajuq at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, a leading visual art museum, which is also home to the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art in the world and learn about the history of aviation on the Canadian Prairies at the Royal Aviation Museum of Western Canada; entertain the kids at the always-popular Manitoba Children’s Museum; and explore nine different interpretive galleries about Manitoba’s heritage at the Manitoba Museum.
Pamper yourself at The Fort Garry Hotel, Spa and Conference Centre with fine dining, romance packages and the ultra-relaxing Ten Spa. The Inn at the Forks and Mere Hotel also offers luxury options in Winnipeg’s downtown along the Red River. Or, get comfortable at the Delta Hotels Winnipeg with its pillowtop beds, hearty Canadian meals, rooftop pool and breathtaking views of downtown.
Travelling with kids? Keep them occupied at the dinosaur-themed water park at the Victoria Inn Hotel and Convention Centre or with the wild water slides at Canad Inns Destination Centre locations in the neighbourhoods of Fort Garry and Polo Park.
Indulge in decadence at Fort Garry Hotel’s Oval Room Brasserie with selections that include prime steak cuts, lamb and black cod. Opt for a fun and modern take on the Pacific Northwest at Nola or relax at Nonsuch Brewing Company with a local pint of craft beer and a sharable plate like jerk oxtail, oysters with caviar and Manitoba bison tartare. For a cultural culinary experience, visit Feast Café Bistro, an Indigenous-owned restaurant with modern dishes that feature pickerel, bison, buffalo and salmon.
Find what your heart is longing for in Manitoba, where travellers find authentic, memory-making experiences filled with history, excitement and culture. Visit TravelManitoba.com and plan your adventure today.
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