The running joke of my trip to Winnipeg was “What’s in Winnipeg”. My husband was kind of along for the ride. He has been to Canada before specifically Toronto, but didn’t have an idea as to what could be in Winnipeg. Since Winnipeg is within driving distance of the Twin Cities, I figured it would be fun to go and check it out. As someone who has never been to Canada before, I wanted to be able to use my passport. For what it’s worth, I think Winnipeg was fun to visit and I’d be open to going back again.
To get to Winnipeg from the Twin Cities, we had to drive to Fargo, go straight north through Grand Forks, to finally cross the border into Canada. Winnipeg is in Manitoba which is the province directly above North Dakota. This was one of the most boring drives I have ever been on. I think I have burned my husband out from road trips. Oops. As we entered Canada, we were greeted with the Manitoba welcome sign which I politely asked my husband to take a picture of me in front of the sign. I can now officially say that I have been to Canada.
One of the first things we did in Winnipeg was to check out The Forks. The Forks is an indoor market with several local shops and businesses. We found several coffee shops along with a breakfast cafe inside. While The Forks advertises itself as an indoor market, it’s so much bigger than that. There’s a riverfront and a small stage for live music. It was cool to walk around and see everything. Inside The Forks, there was a bookstore which made me happy. Of course, I bought a few books.
Another notable thing to do in Winnipeg is the Canadian Human Rights Museum. The Canadian Human Rights Museum is the blue building off to the left and a core staple of downtown Winnipeg. There are seven floors to the museum including the tower that you can walk up to. This museum was gorgeous! There are glowing yellow stone ramps that lead to each section of the museum. There were several sections that included the Holocaust, missing Indigenous women, and a section on LGBTQIA+ rights. There were sections of the museum that were difficult to process. There was one story I read in the Holocaust section about a boxer named Johann Trollmann. He was forced to fight in a “German” style of boxing. In protest, he put flour on his skin and died his hair blonde to mimic the Aryan look. He was taken to a Concentration Camp where he was killed. Reading stories like this makes you realize how one small act of defiance can be so powerful. There were several stories that stuck with me and I still think about even weeks after visiting this museum.
In between various activities, me and my husband visited a few breweries including Brazen Hall Kitchen & Brewery, Lake of the Woods, and Barn Hammer Brewery. Barn Hammer had live music when we were there which was great to listen to. Lake of the Woods was right in the heart of downtown. Brazen Hall was a little more out of the way but had great food. I had a Juicy IPA that I liked.
The one other thing that I wanted to mention was we went to several board game stores and a board game cafe while we were there. Across the street from Barn Hammer Brewery was A Muse N Games. My husband commented that A Muse N Games was one of the nicest board game stores that he has ever been in. There were several shelves with board games, and all of the Dungeons & Dragons merchandise was located in the back. There were two people who came up to us asking if we were looking for anything specific. I ended up buying a new set of dice with seals in them along with a card game. I would go back to Winnipeg solely to visit A Muse N Games again.
The board game cafe that we went to was Across The Board. Across the Board was huge! There were a lot of tables and close to 100+ different games to play. There were a lot of menu options too which I wasn’t expecting. It was the perfect place to have lunch and unwind while on vacation.
Once me and my husband drove home, I asked him what he thought about Winnipeg and he said he had a lot of fun. I think Winnipeg is not the first choice when thinking about visiting Canada, but I do think there’s a lot worth seeing.