A Holiday Guide to Winnipeg Experiences

For many, holidays are a time for over-consumption. Whether we’re consuming turkey, toffee, or trinkets, the feeling of gluttony at the end of December is familiar to many. This year, our family has specifically tried to focus on experiences rather than things. We strive to teach gratefulness and awareness about how to live in the moment and give back whenever possible.

That’s why we’ve created this guide for Winnipeg experiences. Whether you’re looking for fun gift ideas or just cool activities to do this winter, these experiences will surely create lasting memories. No gluttony involved!


  1. One pass, four experiences


The Winnipeg Pass is a great way to experience the city’s flagship attractions for a low price. The pass includes admission to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, the Royal Canadian Mint, the Manitoba Museum, and FortWhyte Alive. It also includes a free play bonus at the city’s casinos when you become a Club Card member.

The pass lets you visit all four places one time in any order. There are one-day passes and three-day passes, with discounts for children.


  1. Membership has its benefits


For some families, the kids will BEG to attend Winnipeg institutions such as the Manitoba Children’s Museum, Assiniboine Park Zoo, and Manitoba Museum more than once in a year. This is why memberships are a smart way to save money and support local arts and culture. Family memberships may include grandparents too, please check with each individual  organization. These memberships are wonderful gifts too. We discovered the joys of the Manitoba Museum when we received a family membership as a Christmas gift once. We are now members and have bought for our friends to enjoy as well. Many times memberships come with free admission, benefits from sister organizations (even out of province) and other exclusive members-only events. Check with each organization for individual perks and special offers.

BONUS: December is membership month at the Manitoba Museum.



  1. #TreatYoself

When you want to give the gift of relaxation, book a buddy day with your BFF. Winnipeg now boasts some swanky spa life with opportunities for pampering all over the city including Thermëa, Urban Oasis Mineral Spa, Riverstone at Inn at the Forks, the incomparable Ten Spa, and there’s also Tiber River (two locations in the city). Whether it’s a manicure or pedicure for fun, or a rejuvenating facial, a trip to the spa is a great way to relax during the stressful holiday season. Each of these spas has gift cards available too so if the holiday season is to rushed–book that pampered experience once the kids head back to school. #YOLO

From top left, clockwise: Thermea, Ten Spa, Riverstone at Inn at the Forks
From top left, clockwise: Thermea, Ten Spa, Riverstone at Inn at the Forks
  1. Act out


For the drama-lover on your list, a gift certificate to the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre is a no-brainer. With no expiration date, they can wait for the perfect show.

If they want to eat during the show, a gift certificate to Celebrations Dinner Theatre is an excellent choice. Celebrations combines musical comedy, parodies (Ferris Bueller’s School of Rock is currently playing) and a four-course meal for a night of family fun.


  1. Get your art on


First Fridays are a great way to experience free art in the city. On the first Friday of every month, galleries and studios in the Exchange District open their doors and welcome the public to learn about the city’s art scene. Talk to artists, view exhibits, and see why Winnipeg’s art scene is so renowned.


  1. Tour Half Pints Brewing Co.


If you’re a local beer fan, you’ll want to tour Half Pints Brewing Co. Every Saturday at 1:00 p.m., one of their brewers takes you through the brewery, the brewing process, and how Half Pints fits into the Winnipeg beer scene. It’s the best way to learn about beer next to drinking it.


  1. Manitoba Electrical Museum & Education Centre


Shockingly, the Manitoba Electrical Museum & Education Centre is not nearly as popular as it should be. The free museum takes you through Manitoba’s hydroelectric development from the 1870s to the present. If you want to learn more about electricity and see what Manitoba was like without it, this is the perfect way to do so. If you’re a Gen X’er you will love seeing all the electronics of your childhood on display too. Admission is FREE so check their website for hours.


8. Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Family activities designed to provoke thought and conversation about human rights will be offered every day from December 26 to January 8 at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR).
The Museum will be open every day except December 25 during the school break, including Mondays, December 24 (closes at 3 p.m.), Boxing Day and New Years’ Day. On Wednesdays, the Museum is open until 9 p.m. On January 4, admission is free between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.
Visitors of all ages can share their holiday traditions through art, discovering unique ways that Canadians from diverse backgrounds spend their time during this season. Another activity uses origami paper folding to create tokens of hope, encouraging discussion about the importance of hope, peace and harmony to different cultures around the world.
Classical music performances by cellist Blair Burns and violinist Maya de Forest of the Manitoba Conservatory of Music and Arts reflect the importance of freedom of expression, December 26 and January 2 at 12:30 p.m. in the Stuart Clark Garden of Contemplation.
Hour-long gallery tours or 75-minute architecture tours are offered each day from December 26 to January 8 for an additional $5 (adult rate). Until December 22, all Explore the Galleries tours are free with admission. Check humanrights.ca for times.

Spenser Payne, RobYn Slade and Jane Testar will celebrate 30 years of Munsch stories being adapted for the stage with a Ghostbusters-themed take that not only the kids will love, but adults won’t want to miss either!

Debbie Patterson – who has been adapting Munsch stories for PTE for 11 years – has selected Alligator Baby, The Dark, Good Families Don’t, Mud Puddle and The Boy in the Drawer to come to life on stage for audiences both young and old this holiday season.

“What I love most is that in these plays, I have to find a way for the characters to use the stories to solve their problems,” says Patterson. “I truly believe that telling our stories can solve problems, not just as kids, but throughout our lives. By sharing stories we connect with each other and make sense of our world.”

Runs:               Thursday, December 22nd until Sunday, January 8th

Times:              1pm, 3pm & 7pm (performances vary daily, see attachment or visit www.pte.mb.ca)

No shows:        December 24th, December 25th, December 31st, January 1st, and January 2nd

Prices:              Family Four-Pack is $46, Individual tickets are $12.75

Tickets can be bought online at http://www.pte.mb.ca/





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