Charleswood: Small-town vibes with big-city benefits

Welcome to Charleswood: a semi-rural community delivering big-city pleasures with the wholesomeness you can only find in a small town. Located at the southwestern corner of Winnipeg, Charleswood is a suburban neighbourhood known for its idyllic personality and incredibly safe streets.

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Despite being part of Winnipeg, the roads are lined with ditches and the landscape is filled with lush greenery — it feels just like you’re driving through the country!

Cyclists and joggers find refuge on the quiet roads, and Charleswood is a haven for nature enthusiasts, being home to the Assiniboine Forest and Assiniboine Park Zoo. Not to mention, Canad Inns Winter Wonderland is less than 15 minutes away if you’re looking for some excitement during the winter. 

For those with an appetite for great food and entertainment, the neighbourhood features a tasty selection of family-owned restaurants, lively events and festivals, and a reliable bus service for convenient access to the rest of the city.

Incorporated in 1913, this rural municipality is no stranger to being exclusive from the surrounding neighbourhoods — Charleswood stood independent from the city until 1972 when it was finally amalgamated into Winnipeg.

So, if you want something different — an escape from the big city without having to sacrifice accessibility — the suburban community of Charleswood is a perfect compromise.


A few facts about Charleswood

In 2017, Charleswood was listed as the top place to live among all the neighbourhoods in Winnipeg as noted in Maclean’s Magazine.

And the community’s fame doesn’t end there: a series of prints inspired by the neighbourhood are available on Etsy. The first in the series features the municipality’s unofficial slogan, “Welcome to Beautiful Charleswood: The Land of a Thousand Urban Ditches”.

Ditches aside, a deep history runs through Charleswood with The Grand Passage being one of the province’s most historically significant landmarks. The Passage was used to cross the Assiniboine River by buffalo as well as Indigenous people, Métis hunters, early settlers, and notable figures such as Lord Selkirk and Cuthbert Grant.

Originally part of a vast territory known as Rupertsland, Charleswood was granted to the Hudson Bay Company in 1670 — the land was eventually ceded to Canada in 1869, a year before the province of Manitoba was created.

To honour its antiquity, the Charleswood Historical Society collects and preserves historic knowledge and artifacts native to Charleswood. For instance, the Caron House, the last remaining farmhouse on the Assiniboine River, was saved from demolition in 1980.

As for the name, Charleswood, it has two plausible origins: it’s a salute to the first municipal mayor, Charles Kelly, or it’s a blend of the Parish name, Saint Charles, and the dense woodland that occupies the area.


What to do in Charleswood?

As a part of Winnipeg, there’s no shortage of things to do in and around Charleswood. Shop at the Shelmerdine Garden Centre, stroll down the Harte Trail, and enjoy a cup of coffee at the Joy Coffee Bar. For something to eat, the Park Café is sure to satisfy with floor-to-ceiling views of Assiniboine Park, while Chef Wayne Martin of Capital Grill and Bar serves up his take on comfort food, to name just a few of the many great restaurants to discover in Charleswood.

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Visit the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden for a quiet retreat, and witness the magnificent creations by master sculptor, Dr. Leo Mol. As a resident of Charleswood, Dr. Mol donated the collection of sculptures to the community, which inspired the development of the peaceful English garden. After walking the garden, don’t forget to visit the Leo Mol SchoolHouse Studio to learn about the history of sculpting.

Hit the links at the Tuxedo Golf Course where players score well regardless of their club caliber. Across from Assiniboine Park in the heart of an urban forest, this relaxing course includes a mix of sand, water, and mature trees. Play 18 holes while the kids have fun mini putting or sneak in a quick nine before taking advantage of the outdoor patio. Despite its close proximity to Charleswood, the golf course actually falls within the neighbouring community of Tuxedo.

The Assiniboine Park Zoo is a popular destination for Winnipeggers all over the city, and it’s a must-see attraction for those new to Charleswood.

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The zoo features the award-winning Journey to Churchill exhibit, which is one of the most comprehensive displays of northern species in the world; it includes polar bears, arctic foxes, snowy owls, and reindeer. The naturalistic landscapes, impressive viewing areas, and interactive experiences engage the whole family in a fun and educational way.

The zoo is also home to a variety of wilderness creatures — their sanctuaries are divided into seven exhibits: Animals of Asia; Butterfly Garden; Grasslands & Boreal Forest; Kinsmen Discovery Centre; Mcfeetors Heavy Horse Centre; Stingray Beach; andToucan Ridge.

If you don’t have a car, getting around Charleswood is convenient on foot or by bike, while public transportation will take you anywhere in Winnipeg. The bus service runs regularly and reliably throughout the neighbourhood, though you are required to make a couple of transfers when traveling across the city.

Currently there are 43 active listings in the Charleswood area with a year-to-date median price of $420,000.

Are you ready for big-city size with small-town vibes? Make yourself at home in beautiful Charleswood. Contact your REALTOR® to help you find your perfect home here.


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