Winter time – either you love it, or not so much. For those who love it, they live for the snow and being able to bundle up in their snowsuits. If you’re not a fan of winter, maybe it’s because you haven’t found the right activity yet. To help you out, we came up with a list of 50 things to do across Manitoba this winter that you’ll enjoy.
There is so much to do in winter that will make you forget about the cold and enjoy the outdoors.
1. Canad Inns Winter Wonderland
The first event to check out in the winter months is the Canad Inns Winter Wonderland in Winnipeg. Take in over one million lights throughout 26 different theme areas. It’s something the whole family will enjoy. Details
2. Shuffle Duck Tournament
Kick off winter on December 22 with the Shuffle Duck Tournament in Stonewall. The annual event blends curling and shuffleboard on ice using rubber ducks on hockey pucks. It’s a fun event for the whole family. Details
3. Winter Camping in Provincial Parks
Can you brave bone chilling Manitoba winter nights? Then, go winter camping in Manitoba Provincial parks. While developed campgrounds close for the winter season, there are several options for winter camping including cozy cabins at certain locations.
Enjoy camping in Jackfish Lake cabin at Spruce Woods Provincial Park or James Lake cabin at Turtle Mountain Provincial Park. There is no charge for camping or use of the Jackfish or James Lake cabins, but registration is required for any overnight use in these two parks. For Spruce Woods, call Carberry District Office at 204-834-8800; for Turtle Mountain, call Boissevain District Office at 204-534-2028.
For more information on winter camping in provincial parks, contact your local District Office/toll- free 1 -800 -214 – 6497 or email SD@gov.mb.ca . More Details
4. KidFish Ice Derby
Take the family to the KidFish Ice Derby. All the proceeds go to the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Manitoba and CancerCare Foundation of Manitoba. So, not only are you enjoying something entertaining with the kids, it’s for a good cause. Details
5. Raw: Almond
Enjoy dining in the annual pop-up restaurant on the frozen Assiniboine River that serves multi-course meals prepared by some of North America’s (and Winnipeg’s) finest chefs served on long communal tables in an elaborate tent. Details
6. Tim Hortons Brier
This year, the Tim Hortons Brier is held in Brandon from March 2 to the 10. Head to the Westoba Place to cheer on your favourite curling team. Details
7. Asessippi Family New Year’s Eve
Spend New Year’s Eve with the family at Asessippi. Fireworks, games, movies plus a midnight torch run that the whole family will enjoy, sounds like a great way to spend New Year’s Eve. Details
8. Beaver Days
Take in one of Manitoba’s premier winter festivals, the Beaver Days. The Whiteshell Community Club puts on the three-day event in Falcon Lake. February 8 to 10, the whole family can enjoy many different games and activities out in the snow. Details
9. Skate the Lake
Skate the Lake is a two-day pond hockey tournament on Minnedosa Lake. This year’s event is to raise money for a new recreational facility in Minnedosa. Teams compete in a 4-on-4 hockey game right on the lake. Details
10. Big Fun Festival
From January 23 to 27 is the Big Fun Festival in Winnipeg. The annual five-day music festival showcases multiple genres of music across downtown Winnipeg. The festival is a chance for up and coming Canadian artists across the country as they perform against the prairie winter backdrop. Details
11. Falcon Lake Loppet Ski Race
Pencil in March 3 and head to Falcon Lake for the annual Floppet Loppet Ski Race for the whole family. The new event is a unique Nordic ski race through the boreal forest. There are three different race lengths depending on what you prefer. Details
12. Picturesque Winter Views of Lake Winnipeg
Go cross country skiing at Camp Morton. The park has 12.4 kilometres of trails offering excellent skiing for all levels of skiers, from novice to advanced. Enjoy picturesque winter views of Lake Winnipeg and of forests of oak, ash, birch and spruce. Details
13. Festival du Voyageur
Winter time in Winnipeg has Western Canada’s largest winter festival, the Festival du Voyageur. Not only do you get to appreciate the winter elements of Manitoba, but it’s all with unique entertainment you won’t find anywhere else. Details
14. Canadian Free Traders Fest
Experience life as a fur trader in the Spruce Woods winter! Join in these family fun activities all weekend: Snowshoe Trek, Camp activities. Details
16. Family Fishing Weekend
Twice a year, Manitoba holds Family Fishing Weekends. Once in the Spring/Summer, and the other one in the Winter. This year, February 16 through 18 is Family Fishing Weekend where families can fish across Manitoba parks (excluding federal parks) without a license.
17. Gimli Ice Festival
Embrace your inner Viking at the Gimli Ice Festival. Gimli is home to some of the most unique festivals, the Ice Festival being one of them. There will be fun and games for the home family, as you’re immersed in the culture of the municipality. Details
18. Hudson Bay Quest Sled Dog Race
The Hudson Bay Quest is a way to revive the sport and tradition of dog sledding. It has also turned into an event to celebrate the culture of northern Manitoba trappers running from Gillam to Churchill. You’ll be teamed up with your dog sledding crew to compete in the race. Details
19. Wonderful Winter Weekend
A winter weekend filled with curling, fishing, skating, fireworks and more family activities at the Winnipeg Beach. Participate in chili contest, baking contest, cookie contest, poster contest, snowmobile radar runs, ice fishing derby or just go there to soak up the festive atmosphere. Details
20. Festival des Amis – Festival of Friends
The Festival des Amis – Festival of Friends, takes place over Louis Riel long weekend every year in St. Malo. It’s a place to enjoy dancing, food, and a lot of family fun and to celebrate the culture and traditions of the first Métis and French settlers to the area. Details
21. Northern Manitoba Trapper’s Festival
The annual Northern Manitoba Trapper’s Festival is a chance to learn and celebrate the heritage of the northern pioneer. You’ll learn the skills and participate in activities that the pioneers engaged in. Details
22. Cross Country Ski in Grand Beach Provincial Park
Choose from over 37 kilometres trails that traverse this famous summer destination. Rest awhile at the warming shelters along the way. Details
23. Ice and Fire Yoga
Usually, yoga is done indoors or at a park in the summer. How about trying it out on the ice? At the FortWhyte Alive Museum, you’ll be guided through a yoga series as you lay down on the ice.
What about an outdoor yoga practice around a roaring fire, followed by wildcrafted tea?
24. Riding Mountain Loppet
Grab your skis and head to Riding Mountain National Park on March 9 for the Riding Mountain Loppet. The 13th annual cross-country ski race is for all those who enjoy the sport. There are four distances for every level of cross-country skiers. Details
25. Great Backyard Bird Count
On February 16 and 17 is the Great Backyard Bird Count in Manitoba. Take a birding hike through the woods, tallying up all the birds you find. It’s a fun and educational event that supports a greater cause. Details
26. Hockey Family Fun Weekends
The world knows how much Canada loves their game of hockey. It’s a tradition for families to gather together on the ice to play a round or two. So, take in one of the Hockey Family Fun Weekends to pass the puck around. Details
27. Dog Sledding
Not ready for a race but want to try dog sledding? In Churchill, that is where you’ll get the best dog sledding around. You’ll be shown the ropes of running a dog sled team for an authentic experience. Details
28. Ironman Outdoor Curling Bonspiel
Another truly Canadian game is curling. You’ll find many curling events throughout the winter months, including the Ironman Outdoor Curling Bonspiel. The three-day event is a fundraiser for the Heart & Stroke Foundation on the Red River. Details
29. Lake of the Prairies Ice Fishing Derby
If you’ve never gone on an ice fishing derby, try one of the many available this winter. The Lake of the Prairies Ice Fishing Derby is your chance to win a lot of money, and have a lot of fun. Details
30. Manitoba Ag Days
The largest indoor farm show in Canada is the Manitoba Ag Days in Brandon. For three days, you’ll have the chance to cover 10 acres of Pure Farm exhibits that attract visitors from across North America. Details
31. Ski Asessippi
When there is snow on the ground, it’s time to bring out the skis and snowboards. Head to Asessippi for a weekend to ski the largest ski area in Manitoba. Details
32. Wolf Howl Hike
Curious about wolves and their sounds, then register for the Wolf Howl hike on January 4 at Whiteshell Provincial Park. You’ll be guided along the hike as you howl for their haunting calls. Details
A true winter activity is tobogganing. It may seem like it’s more for kids, but it’s something that even adults can get behind. There are many types of toboggans you can use depending on how fast you want to go.
Check out the hills in your town or head to hills in Spruce Woods or Turtle Mountain provincial parks.
34. Ski Holiday Mountain Resort
Looking for something in the southern part of the province? Then head to Holiday Mountain Resort in La Riviere. One of Manitoba’s most popular ski resorts with on-site lodging, recently came under ownership by Lake Louise. Details
35. Western Canadian Pond Hockey Championships
Another truly Canadian winter event is to play pond hockey. Once the water freezes over, the ponds turn into natural skating rinks for the kid. The Western Canadian Pond Hockey Championships will be in Portage la Prairie on February 15 through 17. Details
36. Canadian Power Toboggan Championship
Held in Beausejour, the Canadian Power Toboggan Championships is the longest-running snowmobile race in the world. Racers of all ages and skill levels compete in Stock, Modified, Vintage and Motorcycle classes, from Kitty Kat right through to Pro levels. Details
37. Polar Bear Watching
If you haven’t noticed, Churchill is the place to be in winter in Manitoba. Not only is there dog sledding, but you can also go polar bear watching. Go on a photo tour in Wapusk National Park for the ultimate polar bear viewing expedition.
38. Mystery Mountain Winter Park
To hit the slopes in northern Manitoba, then head to Mystery Mountain Winter Park near Thompson. There are 10 kilometres of cross-country trails, runs for exceptional skiing and snowboarding, and trails for snowshoeing as well. Details
Looking for more of an adrenaline adventure this winter? Grab your snowmobile and take on one of the many groomed trails across the province. There is also the Free Ride Weekend February 16 through 18. Details
40. Snowboard at Stoney Mountain
Want to snowboard? Then, this is the destination for you. Although it’s known for its snowboarding, there is some good skiing at Stoney Mountain as well. You can even do some night skiing and snowboarding. Details
41. Winnipeg Jets Game
Although the NHL season starts in Fall, there is something about going to a game when there is snow on the ground that makes it a truly Canadian Winter experience. Check out a Winnipeg Jets Game and cheer on Manitoba’s team. Details
Want to do some skiing but take your dogs with you? Then try out skijoring in and around Winnipeg. It combines the love of cross-country skiing with one or two dogs. You’ll be harnessed to the dogs as they pull you along the cross-country trails. Details
43. Snowdance Festival of Winter and Music
For something that has a bit of everything, check out the Snowdance Festival of Winter and Music from January 18 through the 20. From outdoor winter events to live music Friday night, there’s something for the whole family out at the Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes. Details
What was once a way for people to make their way through the snow has now turned into a favourite winter pastime. Snowshoeing is not just an excellent workout, but it is a lot of fun as well. Have the chance to explore nature’s winter wonderland.
Snowshoe ungroomed neighbourhood parks, or head to Manitoba parks like Beaudry, Birds Hill, Hecla/Grindstone, Spruce Woods and Whiteshell provincial parks.
45. Winter Whoot Festival
The Winter Whoot Festival is an annual festival in March over three days at Snow Lake. The event, which is fun for the whole family, includes outdoor and indoor games, snowmobiling and cross-country skiing trails, snow golf, bonspiels, and so much more. Details
46. Winter Adventure Weekend
At Riding Mountain National Park from February 8 to 10 is the Winter Adventure Weekend. The family event brings together many winter activities over the three days for an unforgettable festival. Details
47. Winter Walking in Hecla/Grindstone
Enjoy a solitary winter walk and explore this beautiful park all decked in winters glory. Details
48. Cluster: New Music + Integrated Arts Festival
If you love the sound of contemporary music and enjoy viewing contemporary art, then the Cluster: New Music + Integrated Arts Festival is for you this winter. The annual festival will bring out many different emotions and with the creativity of the artists. Details
49. Sleigh Rides in Birds Hill Ranch
Visit Birds Hill Park Ranch to enjoy sleigh rides over snowy landscapes! Details
50. Fort Dauphin Museum Louis Riel Day Celebration
The annual Louis Riel Day of Celebration is on Monday, February 17 at the Fort Dauphin Museum. Spend the afternoon participating in indoor and outdoor events that the whole family will love. Details
51. Skate the Red River
Each year, depending on how much the ice freezes over, the Red River turns into a large skating trail. Spend an afternoon or evening with your loved one skating down the trail and cozying up in one of the five new warming huts. It’s a tradition in Manitoba to skate the frozen river.