This summer has been difficult for most. This is the time when many travel and take special trips with their loved ones. This is when the idea for a Winnipeg staycation was born.
Summer is usually the time when many decide to participate in fun family activities that they normally don’t have the time to take part in.
This summer, however, has made things a little more difficult in terms of travel. Especially because people are doing their best to social distance and keep their families safe.
We have been taking every precaution necessary to ensure the health and wellbeing of ourselves and others since this pandemic began. Venturing out into the world to take part in some fun activities, while a positive thing, was something that we had to prepare ourselves for.
We wanted to make sure that everything we participated in this summer in Winnipeg was safe for everyone involved.
I, for one, strongly encourage people to continue to practice social distancing and to only participate in things that you feel comfortable participating in.
If you are sick or experiencing symptoms of any illness, please stay home. Not just for everyone else’s safety but also for your own.
If, however, you want to have your own family Winnipeg staycation, it was a wonderful experience and yes, we felt safe on our small journey to our own big backyard.
OUR SUMMER WINNIPEG STAYCATION
This post was sponsored by Tourism Winnipeg. All opinions expressed are my own.
There are several great things about taking a fun summer staycation within your own city. Not only does it limit your travel, but it can also be an affordable option for a fun summer excursion.
THE ROYAL CANADIAN MINT
We started our Winnipeg staycation by visiting The Royal Canadian Mint.
(One thing to note is that they screen their visitors before having them enter. The pre-screen can be completed online on the Manitoba Health site within 24 hours of your visit to the Mint. This was an easy process and helped to make us feel safe and comfortable visiting.)
The Mint is in Winnipeg and has a gorgeous 110-foot-tall glass tower that was designed by Winnipeg’s own architect Etienne Gaboury.
There are also 75 flags displaying the countries that have their coins produced here in Winnipeg. It was a neat experience to view the manufacturing facility to see where the coins are made. We really enjoyed learning more about the process and having a chance to see so many things firsthand.
Visiting the Royal Canadian Mint was an educational and fun activity for our family. We all had a fabulous time as a whole but I think our 12-year-olds favorite part was hearing the story about the pizza-sized million-dollar gold coin. I mean, who wouldn’t want one of those?
It was great to get an updated tour of the Mint, as our last visit was 6 years ago!
FUN PARK AMUSEMENT
After we finished our visit to the Royal Canadian Mint, we checked out Fun Park Amusement.
It is one of Winnipeg’s newest family fun entertainment facilities. There are several different things for families to do at this awesome place.
Whether you choose to literally climb the walls, bounce on the trampolines, visit their huge indoor playground, get in a round of laser tag or participate in so many more of their fun activities, there is something here for everyone!
We have concluded that after our experience here, it would be a great place for a young child’s birthday party. In fact, our 12-year-old climbed every single one of their rock walls in what was record time.
We had a blast and the facility was well kept, clean, and left us feeling comfortable and safe with our visit. If you want to find something fun to do this summer with your family, this would be a fantastic option.
CLARION HOTEL & SUITES
While visiting Winnipeg for our staycation, we stayed at the Clarion Hotel & Suites. This gorgeous hotel is super close to several different amenities, making it a great choice for those looking to get out and explore.
The good news? If you want to bring your furry friend along for the ride, they also have pet-friendly rooms to accommodate that. We found that amazing because those kinds of establishments really are few and far between and many people would love to bring their pets along on a staycation with them.
The staff here are wonderful and friendly, and they did everything to ensure that we had a safe and comfortable stay.
My family and I stayed in a beautiful room located on the third floor. They had a gorgeous fireplace in the room that would be perfect for warming your tootsies in the winter.
The view was also quite breathtaking as the large window in our room overlooked portage avenue.
Staying here felt comfortable as there were several different precautions being taken by the hotel to ensure our safety. Not only that but the room was extremely clean and spacious making it a very comfortable experience for us.
It was nice to have a cozy place to rest after a busy day of exploring beautiful Winnipeg Manitoba.
BREAKFAST AT THE ORIGINAL PANCAKE HOUSE
Need I say more?
Breakfast is an extremely important meal and honestly, one of my favorites. Especially when it includes pancakes.
This place, attached to our hotel, did an amazing job accommodating our family. We felt very safe and well taken care of while enjoying a delicious breakfast. We have both lovers of pancakes and lovers of French toast in our household and neither order disappointed.
Each plate was large and full of delicious tasting items! It was the perfect way to fuel our bodies for another busy day exploring.
The funny thing is, I put up an Instagram poll to see if my followers were Team Pancakes or Team French Toast and 62% took my husband’s side and prefer French Toast over pancakes.
If you all haven’t visited the Original Pancake House, you really should! In fact, they don’t just have breakfast foods. The Original Pancake House also offers classic lunch and diner dinner fare along with their mouth-watering all-day breakfast.
So, whether you want some burgers or waffles, you are sure to find something that tickles your fancy coming out of their lightning-fast kitchen.
OAK HAMMOCK MARSH
This place is truly a birder’s paradise.
There is truly no better way to start the morning’s adventures than out on a canoe enjoying the beautiful marsh. The sights and sounds of all the stunning wildlife that live in the gorgeous wetlands are something to be enjoyed!
The Oak Hammock Marsh is located just a 20-minute drive north of Winnipeg and offers several different hiking trails, boardwalks, bird viewing opportunities, and of course, canoe excursions.
The girls really had fun following a flock of geese down a narrow channel in our canoe. We even got the chance to see a Trumpeter Swan and let me tell you, they are majestic creatures.
After the fun outdoor canoeing adventure, we headed to do some more exciting outdoor activities and decided to go critter dipping off the dock. It was really a neat experience and something fun to do while enjoying the great outdoors.
LUNCH AT HARGRAVE STREET MARKET
The smiles on my girl’s faces said it all at lunchtime. We stopped to enjoy a delicious lunch just in time to feed some hungry bellies. After all, critter dipping and canoeing can really help you work up an appetite.
The Hargrave Street Market is an exciting, new addition to the booming Winnipeg food scene. They offer an amazing array of dishes, bursting with fantastic flavors.
With several different food vendors to choose from, you are sure to find something to satisfy everyone’s taste buds. Our 14-year-old had the Al Pastor from Good Fight Taco and said that it was easily one of the top 3 meals that she has ever eaten.
We loved the ambiance of the market; the food was delicious, and the experience was fantastic overall. We can’t wait to visit again.
WINNIPEG ART GALLERY
This was a fantastic place for our family to enjoy.
The Winnipeg Art Gallery is one of Canada’s most prominent art museums. It houses the largest collection of contemporary Inuit art, which we loved to see as we have a special place in our hearts for the North.
They also have several different collections of decorative art, fine art, and even photography. It was a great opportunity for our family to learn more about art and take in some beautiful interpretations of different scenes.
We had a fantastic visit to the Manitoba Museum. It was not our first time, and will definitely not be our last.
(It is important to note though, that all the interactive displays are closed for the time being for safety. Despite the hands-on activities being off-limits, the experience was still a fantastic and educational one.)
The girls really enjoyed the Nonsuch Gallery. With several different exhibits to take in and many different learning experiences about Manitoba’s past, present, and future to take part in, the Manitoba Museum is a great place to go on your next staycation.
THE FORKS MARKET AND BEE2GETHER TANDEM BIKE RENTAL
The Forks Market is a really awesome tourist destination in Manitoba that offers so many years of history and year-round shopping. If you haven’t checked it out yet, you really should when you feel comfortable to do so.
It was a lot of fun to be tourists in what we think of as our own backyard at the Forks. The smells and sights are something to marvel at.
Walking around, we just had to stop for some freshly baked cinnamon buns from Tall Grass Prairie and pair them with a yummy coffee from Fools and Horses. All the little shops there are gorgeous and contain so many fun items.
The girls really got a kick out of Kite and Kaboodle, that could be because the store is quite literally a child’s dream. Boasting 3400 square feet, the girls couldn’t get enough looking at all the awesome toys.
After exploring on foot, we decided to check out the Bee2gether Tandem Bikes. Now, these are something for the memory books for sure. They provide the chance to travel through Winnipeg, along the river, and even to surrounding neighborhoods all while riding one person in front of the other on tandem bikes.
This had to be one of our all-time favourite experiences as a family.
We had decided to rent the 6 Seater Limousine Surrey for an hour and had so much fun. I don’t know when the last time we nonstop laughed like that was but we certainly won’t forget this adventure.
We pedaled across the Esplanade Riel bridge and around the forks, waving at people as we pedaled past.
We highly recommend this experience for families that love to laugh until their bellies hurt.
ACROSS THE BOARD GAME CAFE
This place was like nowhere we had ever been to before. Not only is it a fun place to go play board games but they also have an amazing array of delicious menu items to choose from.
Across the Board Game Café is a full-service coffee house and restaurant in addition to being a place to hang out and play some fun board games. We loved to have the chance to try out new games that we have never played before.
We really enjoy family game nights so this was a great way to have a unique one. A game expert came and helped us choose what game we wanted to play and answer whatever questions we had.
I played some fun and easy games like Uno, Labyrinth, and PayDay with our youngest, while my husband played some more in-depth strategy game with our eldest called Le Fantome de l’Opera.
While playing we did get a little hungry, so we decided to try out “The Dice Bowl”. This delicious bowl is a fun snack consisting of pretzels, popcorn, goldfish, smarties, ritz crackers, gummy worms, and seasoned cheerios. It was really quite a fun experience!
After all, games and snacks go perfectly together. We had a great time at Across the Board Café and were impressed with how clean it was and all the safety precautions everyone was taking. We can’t wait to go back!
ASSINIBOINE PARK ZOO
We also paid a visit to Assiniboine park zoo.
The zoo is located 15 minutes from downtown Winnipeg and provides the chance for visitors to interact with animals from all over the globe. The exhibits are always wonderful here. In fact, the Journey to Churchill one was breathtaking. We loved seeing the way polar bears, muskoxen, arctic foxes, and other northern species live.
They also have the Aurora borealis Theatre, which projects a beautiful 360-degree horizon on the encircling wall. It is no surprise that with our love for the North, our highlights on this visit to the zoo were definitely the Journey to Churchill Exhibit and the Theatre itself.
We really enjoyed watching the Arctic’s seasonal beauty unfold right before our eyes. This is absolutely an experience we would love to have again and again.
LUNCH AT PARK CAFE + ENGLISH GARDEN AND LEO MOL SCULPTURE
I have to say, the gardens are so beautiful. We got to walk through them and take in all the sights and smells of the fresh flowers. It was such a wonderful experience.
The gorgeous Park café has floor to ceiling windows that overlook the duck pond and the lawns at Assiniboine Park. They offer a variety of food items like sandwiches, soups, salads, and burgers.
It was nice to take a break from the heat after visiting the zoo and the gardens and sit down for a nice refreshing lunch at the Park Café.
We also got the opportunity to walk over the footbridge to Sargent Sundae, because after all, hot weather always calls for a cold afternoon treat.
Although it was not busy, there were stickers stuck on the ground outside of the shop on Portage Avenue. They were placed 2 meters apart to ensure social distancing. These stickers gave me confidence that they were doing everything in their power to keep visitors safe.
All in all, our wonderful Winnipeg Staycation was a fantastic experience for the whole family and a great way for us to save our summer.
It is important to note though, that with so much going on in the world right now, you must use your own discretion to determine what you feel comfortable doing and participating in. There is no shame in keeping yourselves and your family safe. We genuinely believe that everyone on every step of the way of our journey made sure that they did their utmost to keep us safe and well. The protocols that are in place at each establishment granted our family great comfort in knowing that we could still participate in the activities we loved, all while keeping our family safe.
If you want to book your very own Winnipeg Staycation check out Tourism Winnipeg’s Packages and deals today!
Enter to Win Your Very Own Family Summer Winnipeg Staycation!
Now you can enter to win your very own Summer Winnipeg Staycation Experience. Just visit Tourism Winnipeg’s contest page to find out how you can enter to win prizes that are valued at $1,500 CDN each. Good luck to you all!
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Thursday 3rd of September 2020
I have never been to Winnipeg and now I definitely want to go! So many diverse things to do....the marsh looks lovely!
Tuesday 1st of September 2020
My hubby was born in Winnipeg and he still has family there so we've spent a few summers in the 'peg. I've heard of the legendary Pancake House but never been there and I'd love to come back to visit the new market!! We're mostly doing local trips to small towns in Alberta but I'm definitely over Covid. It can kick rocks.
Monday 31st of August 2020
What a wonderful way to enjoy your summer safely! And Winnipeg looks like a fantastic destination. I'm adding it to our to-visit list.
Jody @ Mommy Moment
Monday 31st of August 2020
It was a very fun weekend, close to home! I am sure you would love Winnipeg when it is safe to travel.
Friday 7th of August 2020
Sounds like a lot of fun. Especially for kids and family. Glad to see you've found all these interesting places to visit.
Jody @ Mommy Moment
Friday 7th of August 2020
We had a great time. There are so many fun places to explore here in Winnipeg!
Friday 7th of August 2020
Glad you had so much fun! So many fun things to do!!