Winnipeg Tourist Attractions
Top Tourist Attractions in Winnipeg
Winnipeg, the "Prairie capital", is situated equidistant from the Atlantic and Pacific at the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine rivers.
Within a period of 260 years it has evolved from little more than a muddy pool (Indian, "win nipi" 5 "murky water") to become the capital of Manitoba and the fourth largest city in Canada. In addition to its excellent economic structure Winnipeg enjoys a very active cultural life. It has six professional performing arts companies offering everything from drama and ballet to concert and opera, some of which e.g. the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and the Manitoba Theatre Center, have won international acclaim.Ethnic diversity is one of the hallmarks of Winnipeg, Britons, Germans and Ukrainians heading the list of more than 40 ethnic groups. St Boniface, the French quarter, has the largest Franophone community west of Québec.Winnipeg is also a city of trees, an estimated 2 million. Mostly planted before 1920 various species are represented including some 250,000 elms alone.In 1738 Sieur de La Vérendrye chose the site for his Fort Rouge which later became the nerve center of a flourishing fur trade marked by increasingly bitter rivalry between the North West and Hudson's Bay Companies. In 1821-22 the Hudson's Bay Company established its own Red River trading post, christened Upper Fort Garry. The settlement which grew up outside the fort took its name from the Cree word "win-nipi" meaning "murky water".It was still a small community of only 215 inhabitants when the province of Manitoba was created in 1870. But by the time of its incorporation in 1874 the figure had grown to 1,879, and ever since then Winnipeg has been the premier manufacturing and marketing center in western Canada. In 1882 it became an important stop on the first Canadian east-west railroad, soon developing into the financial, industrial and retailing capital for the entire West. At the same time, agriculture became a major factor in the province's economy. Following the first shipment of wheat from Manitoba in 1876 a multitude of grain trading businesses sprang up in the city and the Winnipeg Grain Exchange, now the Winnipeg Commodity Exchange, was founded.The greatest period of expansion however occurred between 1901 and 1914. The population increased to 100,000 as immigrants from Europe and America poured into the prairies, among them large numbers of Ukrainians, French-Canadians, Germans, Poles and Scandinavians, producing the city's characteristic mix of ethnic groups each of which preserves its language and traditions.This was the time also when the city center began to take shape, the insatiable demand for housing, offices and business premises brought about by the influx of immigrants giving rise to a building boom.Winnipeg was hard hit financially in 1914 by the opening of the Panama Canal which proved to offer a cheaper route for freight to British Columbia and Alberta. The set-back proved temporary, being overcome in time by the city's transformation into the major manufacturing center in the prairies with, amongst others, extensive clothing, food processing, furniture, farm machinery, machine tool and electronic components industries. It is this diversification which largely accounts for the city's enviable economic stability.In the 1920s Winnipeg began to present a more outward-looking and cosmopolitan face, as well as acquiring a symphony orchestra, ballet company and professional theatre (it already had a university, the University of Manitoba founded in 1877). In the early 1970s the city enjoyed another building boom. Old and dilapidated downtown buildings were replaced and the center was revitalized with numerous high-rise blocks. Following a period of recession at the start of the 1980s the pace of new building quickened again in 1983.Some of the highlights of Winnipeg are the Forks, with a market and entertainment area, the open green space of Assiniboine Park in the summer, and the Manitoba Museum, and soon, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.
Assiniboine Park is a 370 acres park with large open green spaces, the city's zoo, the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden, and many other features.
Winnipeg has a small but vibrant Chinatown, marked by the Chinese Gate between Logan Avenue and James Avenue.
Royal Canadian Mint
The Royal Canadian Mint produces coins not just for Canada but for a number of other countries as well. Anyone interested can follow the whole minting process.The ultra-modern building also contains a tropical garden, fountain and museum.The Royal Canadian Mint should be on every visitor's itinerary to Winnipeg as it is one of the city's premier attractions. The Royal Canadian Mint provides an insight into the manufacturing of coins and you don't have to be a numismatist to enjoy it.The excellent tours available show visitors how coins are manufactured from start to finish and the machinery and processes are fascinating. The museum on site does an excellent job of showing visitors how coins and currency first started and have become an integral part of everyday life.
Address: 520 Lagimodière Boulevard, Winnipeg, MB R2J3E7, Canada
Opening hours: May 24 to Sep 6: 9am-4pm
Sep 7 to May 23: 9am-2pm; Closed: Sun, Mon
Sep 7 to May 23: 9am-2pm; Closed: Sun, Mon
Entrance fee in CAD: Family $13.00, Adult $5.00, Senior over 65 $4.00, Child 5-17 $3.00, Child 4 & under FREE
Facilities: Gift shop
Fort Whyte Centre
The Fort Whyte Center is known for its four lakes, grass and aspen parkland and areas of bog (accessible via boardwalks) where waterfowl and other wildlife can be observed.Walking trail information is available in the Interpretive Building and many of the trails are wheelchair accessible.A wonderful place to undertake a canoe or kayak ride, Winnipeg's Fort Whyte Center is great escape from the trials and tribulations of city life. Fort Whyte Centre offers a multitude of aquatic recreation courses for those looking to sharpen their skills.Spread over 400 acres, there is plenty of space for visitors to find their own special place.
Portage Place Shopping Centre
On Portage Avenue stands the complex of ultra-modern buildings known as Portage Place. Located in this architecturally striking development are numerous shops and offices, several restaurants, three cinemas and an IMAX theatre with a vast screen on which action movies in particular show to spectacular effect.Portage Place Shopping Center was undertaken in the late 80's as part of a downtown revitalization program by the City of Winnipeg. The wisdom of this project and the mall's viability remains to be seen. For those visiting in the winter, Portage Place Shopping Center boasts of underground heated parking.
Prairie Dog Central Railway
The Prairie Dog Central is a fully restored steam powered locomotive offering trips across the prairies. The train consists of vintage coaches which carry visitors to the towns of Grosse Isle. Various theme excursions are offered including Train Robberies, Magic Trains and The Howlin' Halloween Express.
Royal Winnipeg Rifles Regimental Museum
Uniforms, weaponry and a variety of other items illustrating the history of western Canada's oldest military unit are displayed in the Royal Winnipeg Rifles Regimental Museum.On display at the Royal Winnipeg Rifles Regimental Museum are military items including military artifacts, pictures, books, and documents. The Royal Winnipeg Rifles Regiment was started in 1883 and the museum traces the development and history of the regiment over time right up to the regiment's participation in the latest United Nations effort.The Royal Winnipeg Rifles Regimental Museum also has displays and materials on the Winnipeg Light Infantry and the Winnipeg Grenadiers. The museum is housed in the architecturally stunning Minot Armoury.
University of Manitoba
The University of Manitoba founded in 1877 is the oldest university in western Canada. It has its own art gallery, zoological museum, geological mineral collection, planetarium, greenhouses and many different displays.The University of Manitoba founded in 1877 is the oldest university in western Canada. It has its own art gallery, zoological museum, geological mineral collection, planetarium, greenhouses and many different displays.Beautifully laid out in a gentle U curve of the Red River, the University of Manitoba's campus grounds are a delight to stroll around. Many of the buildings just off the Quad are made of Tyndall stone and feature interesting archietural highlights.The University of Manitoba is Winnipeg's and Manitoba's largest post secondary educational facility.
Historical Museum of St James Assiniboia
The Historical Museum of St James Assiniboia is comprises of three buildings including a municipal hall, a historical Red River Home, and a general purpose building. The municipal hall dates from 1911 and contains exhibits of St James Assiniboia and surrounding areas. The Historical Red River Home contains period pieces from 1860-1890. The third building at the Historical Museum of St James Assiniboia contains items related to blacksmithing, farming and transportation. Occasionally the Historical Museum of St James Assiniboia hosts environmental theatre productions, check in to see what may be playing. The best attraction at the museum is the price, the museum is free!
Some of the province's most ancient trees are to be found in the delightful Kildonan Park (open daily). There are also splendid flower gardens, a Hänsel and Gretel Witch's Hut, and an open-air theatre - the Rainbow Stage - where plays are performed in summer. Other attractions include a swimming poo, golf course,l and boat trips on the Red River.Kildonan Park has a wide variety of walking and cycling trails and park maps are posted to help visitors find their way. The ultimate Kildonan park experience is a picnic in the park, followed by a swim in the pool, topped off with an evening of entertainment at Rainbow Stage.
Kildonan Presbyterian Church
Completed in 1854 Kildonan Presbyterian Church on John Black Avenue was the first of this particular denomination in western Canada.The stone design of the Kildonan Presbyterian Church is modeled after the small parish churches of Great Britain. Mr Duncan McRae, a Red River stonemason of some note, supervised the construction of this historic building. The Kildonan Presbyterian Church has rough stone walls, pointed windows, and a gable roof. An interesting façade design was added to the Kildonan Presbyterian church to add a bit of artistic flair.The church is surrounded by an ancient graveyard with many old and interesting headstones of settlers long ago departed.
Living Prairie Museum & Interpretive Centre
The Living Prairie Museum is an opportunity to visit one of the few remaining vestiges of natural prairie land. The 16 ha (40 acre) former conservation area harbors 200 species of native plants, including some now rare. Audio-visual and other explanatory material is provided in the reception area.The Living Prairie Museum has an excellent interpretive center with a multitude of interpretive displays showing the way the prairie used to be and the way it is now. A second story outlook platform allows for visitors to gaze out at the preserved prairie an wonder what it used to look like when it stretch from the Rocky Mountains in the West to the Canadian Shield country in the East.
Ross House Museum
Ross House (in the Joe Zuken Heritage Park in Meade St.) was the Red River Settlement's first post office and is one of the area's earliest examples of a half-timbered building.Ross House was built in 1852 and was originally located near the banks of the Red River near Market Avenue but has since been moved the Joe Zuken Heritage Park. Ross House provides an interesting insight into the workings of Western Canada's first post office and into the lives of the Ross Family.The Ross House building has been meticulously restored and the staff on hand are very helpful and available to answer any questions visitors may have.
Winnipeg International Airport
The recently renovated Winnipeg International Airport is located in the north-west area of the city. It is approximately a 20 minutes from the city center. Handling flights from all over the world, the Winnipeg International Airport is well equipped for travellersThe Winnipeg International Airport features ample parking, a variety of restaurants, a bookstore, giftshop and an arcade. Also on site is a non denominational chapel. There is a large international hotel on the property, a short walk from the terminal building. Several hotels are a short cab ride away. If you have questions or get confused, just look for one of the Goldwing Ambassadors. These helpful folks will point you in the right direction.
Address: Room 249, Administration Building, 2000 Wellington Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3H1C2, Canada
Western Canada Aviation Museum
The Western Canada Aviation Museum near the airport is the second largest of its kind in Canada. As well as several vintage aircraft (including a Tiger Moth, a Junkers JU 52, and a Bristol Freighter) the museum traces the significance of aviation in Canada's history. One section is dedicated to Canadian Women in Aviation.The Western Canada Aviation Museum has several modern aircraft, some of which visitors can climb into.The Museum is also active in searching out planes that are lost under mysterious circumstances and recently found a plane that went missing 1931 near Charon Lake.
Address: 958 Ferry Road, Winnipeg, MB R3H0Y8, Canada
Opening hours: 9:30am-4:30pm; Sun: 12pm-5pm; Sat: 10am-5pm
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25), Day after Christmas, St Stephen's Day, Boxing Day (Dec 26), Good Friday - Christian
Entrance fee in CAD: Family $18.00, Adult $7.50, Students $5.00, Child $3.00
Useful tips: Children 3 years of age and under are admitted free.
Winnipeg Police Museum
The museum at the Winnipeg Police Training Division brings together pictures, items of equipment and other memorabilia of the Winnipeg Police Department from its foundation to the present day.Located in Winnipeg's leafy west end suburb of Westwood, the Winnipeg Police Training Division museum is of interest to the general public and those in law enforcement careers. The Winnipeg Police Training Division is housed in the former Allard public school and Winnipeg trains all its new recruits at this location.On display are items of interest from 1874 to present including old handcuffs and weapons along with old handwritten police reports.
Address: Box 1680, Winnipeg, MB R3C2Z7, Canada
Opening hours: 9am-4pm; Closed: Sun, Sat
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), Labor Day - Canada (1st Monday, Sep), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25), Victoria Day - Canada, Easter - Christian
Entrance fee: FREE
Disability Access: Full facilities for persons with disabilities.
Pan Am Pool
The Pan Am Pool (Poseidon Bay) was built for the Pan American Games held in Winnipeg in 1967. The 65 m (213 ft) by 25 m (82 ft) pool is one of the largest in Canada. The generously proportioned Hall of Fame houses a collection of water sports memorabilia including a large array of stamps with designs reflecting sporting themes.The Pan Am Pool is frequently the host of major swimming, water polo and diving competitions. Public swim is available everyday and for the daring, the high diving platforms are accessible for those wanting try the 10 m / 30 foot drop.
St James Church
Dating from 1853 St James Anglican Church is western Canada's oldest timber church.St James Anglican Church is a provincially designated historical site and sits atop a high point in the otherwise flat land. The suburb of St James in the city of Winnipeg is named after the St James Anglican Church.This historical church is one of Winnipeg's oldest buildings and is still in use. Although not used for regular services, the church is prime destination for those looking to get married and is also used for supplementary services in the summer.
Grant's Old Mill
The watermill known as Grant's Old Mil occupies the site of the Red River Settlement's first mill built in 1829.It was established by Cuthbert Grant, leader of the Metis at the Battle of Seven Oaks. Grant's Old Mill is open to the public and provides a glimpse of a real working water powered mill as well as offering samples of stone ground wheat. The area surrounding Grant's Old Mill is perfect for picnics or just enjoying the sun.
Transcona Historical Museum
Transcona, a suburb of Winnipeg, is well known as a center of railway activity for the major carriers Canadian National and Canadian Pacific, along with Via rail. The Transcona Historical Museum has an interesting assortment of items and one of the most interesting is the mystery picture section. Here residents and guests alike are asked to look at old photos to help the Transcona Historical Museum fill in the missing information on people and events.
Winnipeg Naval Museum
Most visitors to the land locked prairie town of Winnipeg are surprised to find a naval museum! The Winnipeg Naval Museum opened in 1980.The Naval Museum has an assortment of items of interest relating to the British and Canadian Navies from the First World War to the present day. Naval personnel from the prairies and naval vessels named after prairie towns are two of the principal themes.
Corydon Avenue in Winnipeg is usually referred to as Corydon or the Corydon area. This avenue has its own unique flare with small shops and outdoor patios on a relatively small tree lined street. During the summer months the area is always busy, particulary on warm days.
Paddlewheel River Rouge Cruises
Visitors can take a cruise in a paddlewheeler along the Rouge River with Paddlewheel River Boats. This company has been operating for decades and is a popular summer tourist attraction. A variety of options are available, including dinner and special events cruises.
Red River Exhibition
The Red River Exhibition, most commonly known in Winnipeg as the "Ex" is an annual fair held in early summer. The event features all sort of rides, agricultural displays with animals, live entertainment, oddities, games, food, and more. This is a fun family event and often a tradition for locals.
Map of Winnipeg Attractions