Thinking of how to have even more adventures throughout the province this long weekend? Good news! Summer isn’t over yet, so mark down these small town attractions as you travel to every corner of Manitoba.
1. Find a hidden gem — Souris
Heading to the small town of Souris to cross Canada’s longest swinging pedestrian bridge? Slot in some time to also visit the famous Rock Shop, where you can choose between shopping a fine array of polished stones — or find them yourself by obtaining a permit into the Agate Pit. The twelve-acre glacial deposit is known for its agates, epidote, jasper, petrified wood and more.
2. Land a plane — Gimli
While in the Icelandic beach town of Gimli, stop into this little museum that’s tucked among storefronts of Gimli’s commercial strip. The Gimli Glider Exhibit commemorates the amazing emergency landing of a Boeing 767 aircraft that ran out of fuel en route to Edmonton in 1983. Book a time to visit and you can even try your hand at landing a plane in the flight simulator!
3. Experience valley life — Minnedosa
Looking for a small town you can easily spend an entire weekend in? Minnedosa is the place! Spend a day splashing at the public beach at Minnedosa Lake, while admiring the breathtaking views of the rolling Little Saskatchewan River valley. The lake is also the site of the super thrilling Splish Splash Water Park (closed for the season but be sure to check it out next summer). Once the beach day is through, plan to explore the town’s museums, shops and more! Visit tourismwestman.ca for even more activities and attractions in the town of Minnedosa.
4. Take a DIY trip to Churchill — Churchill
While many visitors to Churchill opt for all-inclusive packages, there are also a number of DIY options for seeing this unique northern town in the summertime. Stay at the Tundra Inn (which is also home to one of the town’s best restaurants) and book individual tours to see beluga whales, polar bears or the aurora borealis.
5. Camp at the museum — Austin
Looking for an unconventional camping spot? Camp at the museum! Three Creeks Campground is located right outside the gate of the Manitoba Agricultural Museum. Sleep under the stars and then spend the next day exploring the grounds where you will find 26 buildings from 1879 to the 1920s — including log cabins, houses, churches, trades and public buildings.
6. Milkshakes and mini putt — Carman
If you’ve been trying to check out more of Manitoba’s yummy drive-ins this summer, chances are you’ve heard of the iconic Syl’s Drive In in the small town of Carman. But did you know it’s also the site of a super fun and retro mini-golf course? Pair your milkshake or burger with a few rounds and have the perfect, family-friendly day.
7. Stay in a bed and breakfast — Various
Where there are small towns, there are bed and breakfasts. Skip the chain hotels and instead stay the night on the edge of a National Park, in a cozy heritage home or in a historical farmhouse. Check out the Bed & Breakfast Association of Manitoba’s website at bedandbreakfast.mb.ca for even more options throughout the province!
8. Step inside Nellie’s Homes — Manitou
Nellie McClung was a writer, speaker, suffragette, and later, politician . . . a key figure in the movement to allow some women the right to vote, first in Manitoba and then across the nation. The home of Nellie McClung in her early years is located in the small town of Manitou. A tour of Nellie’s Homes takes visitors through three historic buildings, which are all interconnected by a poignant narrative of a young Nellie McClung who lived in and around Manitou for nearly 20 years. Visit the town’s Tourist Information Centre to grab a map of a self-guided driving tour of other historic sites in the town of Manitou — many of which have a connection to Nellie McClung, such as the famous Manitou Opera House.
9. Drive for doughnuts — Arborg
Where in Manitoba can you grab a doughnut, see a giant curling rock and visit a heritage village? Arborg, of course! Known for its incredible bakery, many take the drive just to grab a fritter or a loaf of rye bread. But don’t leave town without catching a glimpse of the world’s largest curling rock and learning a bit about the area’s history at the Arborg and District Multicultural Heritage Village.
10. Paddle the day away — St. Malo
Spend the day at the beach in St. Malo or take your adventure to the next level by renting a kayak or canoe from Sayzoons. Meet at the St. Malo boat launch and get ready to paddle. Bike rentals are also available!
Wherever you travel in Manitoba, please remember to stay safe by gathering in group sizes in accordance with public health guidelines, staying home if you’re sick, wearing a mask when required, and getting vaccinated.
— For more Manitoba travel ideas please visit www.travelmanitoba.com