Stunning mirror-like lake in Banff National Park, reflection of the mountains on the turquoise waters
Ronnie Chua/

16 Best Road Trips from Winnipeg

Updated by Pat Dorri on February 14 2024

Winnipeg, Manitoba's vibrant capital, is home to popular markets, picturesque scenery, and some of the most popular festivals in Western Canada. Not only a hub of arts and rich history, Winnipeg is also aptly dubbed "Gateway to the West" due to being the perfect base for some of the most scenic road trips in Canada.

Our comprehensive list of 16 best road trips from Winnipeg covers the best places to visit, whether you're seeking a summer adventure under the vast prairie skies and wonders of lush national parks or a cozy winter getaway amidst snowy landscapes.

Read on to learn more about the amazing destinations that lie a stone's throw from Winnipeg or epic drives across several provinces. You will find key information on what makes each of these road trips unique, how to reach your destination, our highlights and useful travel information to make your planning easy.

Best road trips from Winnipeg

A selection of our best road trips from Winnipeg. Check out our full list of 16 trips below.
Trip typeSome of our favorite road trips
Day tripsDip your toes in the sand in Grand Beach Provincial Park; or learn about the Viking heritage of Gimli
Weekend tripsAdmire boreal forests and enjoy fascinating wildlife watching in Riding Mountain National Park
Long-weekend tripsEnjoy a soak in geothermal waters in Moose Jaw; or explore the "Hub of the North" in Thompson
Longer tripsEnjoy urban breaks in Calgary and Vancouver; or visit the stunning Banff National Park

Day trips from Winnipeg (under 3 hours each way)

If you are looking to plan a day trip from Winnipeg, you are in luck, because there are so many places to visit near the city. From provincial parks to stunning lakes, you will find an impressive variety of amazing places to visit right at your doorstep.

1. Winnipeg to Grand Beach Provincial Park

1 hour 20 minutes from Winnipeg (100 km)

Why you should visit: This relatively short road trip from Winnipeg to Grand Beach Provincial Park offers an amazing blend of history and scenic beauty, all conveniently located within a short drive from the city, making this an ideal day trip for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of urban life.

Upon reaching Grand Beach Provincial Park, you are greeted by the pristine sandy beaches and clear waters of Lake Winnipeg. This destination is not just about relaxation but also offers a plethora of recreational opportunities.

People on golden sandy beach by the lake on a sunny day
You don't need to travel far for the ultimate beach getaway , Grand Beach Provincial Park is a short drive away from Winnipeg.
Murray R Grant/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Head out of Winnipeg on RTE-52, driving northeast towards St Andrew's Rectory National Historic Site and Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site. Following MB-59 from here will take you north, where you will hop on MB-12 to reach Grand Marais and Grand Beach Provincial Park.

Our highlights: A visit to the St. Andrews Rectory National Historic Site is a must. This historical gem, built between 1853 and 1854, played a pivotal role in the political and religious decision-making of its time.

Another place to visit for history buffs on this route is Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site. This experience will make you feel like you have travelled back in time with the guides dressed in costumes showing you the historic, well-preserved buildings.

Upon arriving at Grand Beach, you'll fall in love with its pristine sands and beautiful lakeside setting. It's the perfect spot to relax and feel the soft sand between your toes while soaking in the serene atmosphere.

For adventure enthusiasts, Lake Winnipeg is the perfect playground with a variety of water sports opportunities. Kayaking and windsurfing are especially popular here, offering a thrilling way to experience the lake's vastness and beauty.

If solitude is what you seek, the hiking trails near Grand Beach will be your haven. While the beach might draw the crowds, these trails offer a quieter, more intimate connection with nature.

The family-friendly Spirit Rock hike, close to the lake, is an excellent choice for those looking to explore the natural landscape and enjoy a moment of tranquility.

Did you know? In 1826, a flood wreaked havoc on the Hudson's Bay Company's HQ in Winnipeg. In response, the company built a new facility on higher elevations, which became the start of Lower Fort Garry. Today, it's the oldest preserved stone fur trading post in North America.

Things to note: Firstly, be mindful of the driving conditions. Winter in this region can be quite harsh, with cold temperatures leading to icy roads. It's important to drive cautiously and consider the weather forecasts before setting out.

If you're planning to visit Lower Fort Garry, remember that tours can get quite popular, especially during peak times. To avoid disappointment, it is a good idea to book your tour ahead of time.

St. Andrews Rectory National Historic Site operates with limited visitation opportunities during the winter, and it remains closed on Mondays throughout the year.

2. Winnipeg to Pinawa Dam Provincial Heritage Park

120 km from Winnipeg (1 hour 30 minutes drive time)

Why you should visit: A road trip from Winnipeg to Pinawa Dam Provincial Heritage Park is both a scenic and a historical journey, where you can admire beautiful landscapes as you learn about what makes this dam the first of its kind in Manitoba.

Aside from its historic significance, this destination is particularly popular with bird watchers. The park's peaceful and quiet environment makes it a popular spot for bird watching, where you can observe a variety of species in their natural habitat.

Beautiful autumn view by the lake, with the reflection of auburn colored trees on calm water
Pinawa Dam Provincial Park is perfect for history buffs and natural lovers alike - and it is one of our favorite places to have a picnic lunch near Winnipeg.

How to get there from Winnipeg: Use MB-59 to leave Winnipeg and follow it until Libau, where you will switch to MB-317 to head east. Driving across Winnipeg River, you will soon arrive at Pinawa Dam Provincial Heritage Park.

Our highlights: At the heart of the park is the Pinawa Dam itself, a historical marvel that stands as a testament to Manitoba's hydroelectric heritage. It's a must-see for history buffs and anyone interested in the industrial evolution of the region.

Surrounding the dam are numerous hiking trails. These trails meander beside the Pinawa Channel, offering picturesque views of the wilderness. As you walk, keep an eye out for the local wildlife, including white-tailed deer and otters.

Bird watching enthusiasts will find the park to be a haven for avian observation. The diverse bird species that inhabit this area provide an excellent opportunity for birdwatchers to spot and observe a variety of birds in their natural environment.

If you are looking for a relaxed and leisurely experience, the park offers sheltered picnic areas along the 'Township Tour' trail. These spots are perfect for a peaceful picnic, so make sure to pack your favorite snacks and finger food for a delicious treat.

Did you know? Some of the dam was destroyed by the Canadian Armed Forces, who used it for demolition practice.

Things to note: During the summer months, be prepared to keep away from mosquitoes. These little critters can be quite a nuisance, so packing a good quality mosquito repellent is a wise decision.

Regardless of the season, remember that a Park Vehicle Permit is required for parking in the area. Ensure that you have this permit visibly displayed in your vehicle to avoid any inconvenience.

The weather in this region can be quite variable. Even in the summer, temperatures can drop unexpectedly, so be prepared with appropriate clothing. If you're visiting in winter, be ready for snow and ice, which are common in this area.

3. Winnipeg to Gimli and Hecla-Grindstone Provincial Park

1 hour 50 minutes from Winnipeg (160 km)

Why you should visit: Gimli, a charming lakeside town, offers a rare glimpse into Icelandic culture, thanks to its first European settlers from Iceland. This heritage is still vibrantly alive in the town, so much so that you can even come face-to-face with a Viking (albeit a statue of one)!

Just a short drive away, you will also find Hecla-Grindstone Provincial Park at the end of this road trip. This beautiful park, nestled beside a lake, is home to wetlands, forests, and lakes, and this rich variety of ecosystems makes it an ideal destination for wildlife watchers.

Stone Viking statue, photo taken from below on a sunny day
Gimli is a town that has a proud Icelandic heritage, as you can tell from the impressive 15-foor Viking statue.

How to get here from Winnipeg: Head north on MB-8, which will take you to Gimli on the shores of Lake Winnipeg. After your visit, follow the same highway to reach Hecla-Grindstone Provincial Park across the water.

Our highlights: In Gimli, we highly recommend visiting The Gimli Art Club and Gallery as your first stop. After soaking up some culture, take a leisurely stroll on Gimli Beach, and for a taste of local flavor, treat yourself to a delicious meal at Kris' Fish & Chips, to make up for all the calories spent while exploring.

It is hard not to be curious about the Icelandic heritage of Gimli and want to learn more about it. Here, you can visit a towering 15-foot Viking Statue, and delve deeper into the town's roots at the New Icelandic Heritage Museum.

Continue your journey to Hecla-Grindstone Provincial Park, where you can hike the scenic boardwalks over the wetlands. The park's lighthouses offer stunning lakeside views, providing a peaceful moment to take in the beauty of the surroundings.

As you drive along Scenic MB-8, you'll pass through Hecla village and Gull Harbour, leading you to Lindsay Tower. Ascend this tower for panoramic views that encapsulate the beauty of the region.

Did you know? The 2009 film "Amreeka" used Gimli as a filming location.

Things to note: If you're there at the right time in August, join in the festivities of the Icelandic Festival of Manitoba.

If you're planning to travel in winter, it's essential to be cautious of the driving conditions. Winter in this region can bring ice roads, which can be quite dangerous if you're not prepared.

4. Winnipeg to Kenora and Lake of the Woods

2 hours 20 minutes from Winnipeg (210 km)

Why you should visit: If you are looking for endless lakeside views, this road trip is perfect for you, as the Lake of the Woods boasts an impressive 65,000 miles of beautiful shoreline. This expansive area offers an array of experiences, from tranquil, untouched wildernesses to charming villages and lively cities.

The lake is also a haven for fishing and boating enthusiasts. With over 14,600 islands to explore, each trip on the water offers a new adventure and a chance to see the lake from a different perspective.

Aeriel view of the lakeside city during a purple sunset, with boats docked at the harbor
Kenora is a beautiful city by the shores of Lake of the Woods in Ontario.
Jacob Boomsma/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Get on the Trans-Canada Highway and head east to cross into Ontario. This famous highway will take you directly to Kenora on the shore of the Lake of the Woods.

Our highlights: Begin your exploration with a touch of local history at the Lake of the Woods Railroaders Museum, located just before reaching downtown Kenora. Here, you can learn about the town's railroad past, offering a fascinating glimpse into how the railways shaped the region.

Next, make your way to The Muse, a cultural hub that houses both the Lake of the Woods Museum and the Douglas Family Art Centre. Whether you're there to admire art or to learn about the area's history, The Muse offers a wealth of knowledge and creativity.

For a different view of the lake, hop aboard the MS Kenora for a two-hour cruise. This journey will allow you to admire the islands and shoreline from a fresh perspective, showcasing the lake's breathtaking beauty.

You are in lucky if you are an angler and brought your fishing gear. Whether it's ice fishing in the winter or enjoying a chartered boat trip in warmer months, the lake offers year-round fishing opportunities that are both challenging and rewarding.

The serene hiking trails around the Lake of the Woods are a perfect choice for leisurely strolls. You will find beach parks and nature areas providing pathways that lead you deep into forests for the best of surf-and-turf scenery.

Did you know? Kenora features as a filming location in "One Week", starring Joshua Jackson. The film details a motorbike trip from Toronto to Tofino, BC.

Things to note: If you hope to stay in Kenora, we highly recommend booking in advance. This is especially important in the summer holidays, which are the peak periods when tourists flock to the area.

You'll need to fish on the Lake of the Woods. Remember, Ontario may have different rules and regulations compared to neighbouring regions.

The music festival attracts crowds. If you're not attending, late July to early August can be busy because of the annual event held in the Kenora harbour area.

5. Winnipeg to Brandon

2 hours 30 minutes drive time from Winnipeg (210 km)

Why you should visit: Looking for a relaxing, laid-back road trip? This drive from Winnipeg to Brandon will take you to the agricultural heartland of Manitoba. As you drive, you'll get to admire vast prairies and extensive fields of wheat and canola, painting a picturesque scene of Canada's rich farming heritage.

This second-largest city in Manitoba is not just about its agricultural significance; it's a hub of arts, culture, dining, history, and shopping. This diversity offers something for everyone, from history enthusiasts to art aficionados.

Aerial view of Brandon's downtown during a bold, orange sunset
Surrounded by beautiful fields, Brandon is a vibrant city in Manitoba with much to do and explore.
Jacob Boomsma/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Leave Winnipeg on the Trans-Canada Highway, heading directly west to reach Brandon.

Our highlights: Start your exploration at The Daly House Museum, a beautifully preserved Victorian-era mansion that was once home to the city's first mayor. Built in 1882, the house offers a fascinating window into the early days of Brandon, allowing you to step back in time and experience the city's rich history.

For art enthusiasts, the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba is a must-visit. Conveniently located in the heart of downtown and free to the public, the gallery showcases contemporary art from local and regional artists. It's a great way to immerse yourself in the vibrant cultural scene of Brandon.

The Riverbank Discovery Centre offers a natural escape right in the city. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the Assiniboine River, where the Centre serves as a hub for numerous trailheads. These trails wind through picturesque prairies and along the riverside, providing a serene outdoor experience.

No trip to Brandon would be complete without indulging in the local cuisine. Make sure to hit the shops and then dine on "walleye" – a local delicacy of pan-fried pickerel. It's a culinary experience that's quintessentially Brandon.

And don't forget to sample a beer made from local hops, a perfect way to toast to your road trip adventure!

Things to note: Brandon hosts several notable festivals throughout the year. If you're interested in local culture and events, you might want to plan your trip around The Winter Festival, the Brandon Folk Music and Arts Festival, or the Brandon Jazz Festival.

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Weekend trips from Winnipeg (3-5 hours each way)

Looking for a longer break? You can extend beyond the city's borders and explore one of the most scenic national parks in the nation, just a manageable drive away if you include an overnight stop or two, especially if you can hear nature calling your name!

6. Winnipeg to Riding Mountain National Park

3 hours 10 minutes from Winnipeg (270 km)

Why you should visit: Riding Mountain National Park is a gem among Canada's National Parks and has a fantastic resort townsite - not many national parks have this claim to fame! Once in the townsite, you will also be at the gateway to lush forests and sprawling meadows.

Riding Mountain National Park is also an excellent spot to witness iconic Canadian wildlife in their natural habitat, right in the heart of Manitoba.

Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba, Canada taken from high looking down at the vast lake and forests, stunning colours of the landscape on a sunny day.
The beautiful Riding Mountain National Park is a slightly longer trip from Winnipeg, but that gives you the perfect excuse to book a resort vacation a stone's throw from the park.
Russ Heinl/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Follow the Trans-Canada Highway west until you reach Bloom and switch to Yellowhead Highway. In Neepawa, you will start heading north on MB-5 and then MB-357 to reach Riding Mountain National Park.

Our highlights: Start your adventure at Clear Lake, where you can book a sightseeing cruise from the marina. The lake's tranquil waters and picturesque surroundings provide a perfect backdrop for relaxation and provide some great photo ops.

Nestled on the shores of Clear Lake is the charming townsite of Wasagaming. Although small, this vibrant community comes to life in the summer. Here, you can enjoy boat rentals, play a round of golf, or spend a leisurely day at the beach.

For hiking enthusiasts, the national park offers a variety of trails for all skill levels. These trails are not just pathways through scenic landscapes, but also gateways to potentially spot wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for black bears, bison, elk, lynx, and moose, all inhabitants of the National Park.

If you'd like to extend your stay, you can also camp in the campgrounds of the national park or opt to book one of the cabins or resorts located in Wasagaming for a more upscale experience.

Did you know? Riding Mountain National Park was an inspiration for the classic Canadian novel by W.O. Mitchell, "Who Has Seen the Wind".

Things to note: Wasagaming and the national park are highly popular in summer. Because of this, it is a good idea to book your accommodations well in advance. This applies whether you plan to camp or stay in one of the resorts.

Riding Mountain National Park remains open in the winter, and it offers a different but equally enchanting experience. The hiking trails transform into perfect routes for cross-country skiing. If you're a fan of winter sports, this is an excellent opportunity to enjoy the park's natural beauty in a serene, snowy setting.

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Long weekend trips from Winnipeg (5-8 hours each way)

Winnipeg is the perfect gateway to some of the most charming towns, if you have a little on your hands to spare for your journey. You can also delve into the history of the area, and visit some beautiful parks on the way.

7. Winnipeg to Regina and Moose Jaw

6 hours 40 minutes from Winnipeg (640 km)

Why you should visit: Looking for a change of scenery? This drive from Manitoba to Saskatchewan will take you to the historic city of Regina and then to the geothermal wonders of Moose Jaw.

Regina began as a European settlement in the 1880s, and here, you'll discover a city rich in history and culture. Moose Jaw, a town that flourished thanks to the Canadian Pacific Railway since its founding in 1882, is also a place steeped in history with the extra perk of relaxing geothermal soaks.

World's Largest Moose statue by the highway on a sunny day with a plane on display in the background
Moose Jaw is home to Mac the Moose - claimed to be the world's largest moose statue, made out of concrete and steel and weighing 10 tons.
EWY Media/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Reaching Regina and Moose Jaw from Winnipeg is easy - simply follow the Trans-Canada Highway all the way west into these cities.

Our highlights: In Regina, a visit to the Saskatchewan Legislative Building is a must. Admire its majestic architecture and vibrant gardens, a National Historic Site of Canada. You can take advantage of the free tours offered, providing insights into the building's rich history and architectural significance.

The Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Regina is another key attraction. Dive into Saskatchewan's natural and cultural history and meet Scotty, the world's largest T-Rex discovered in Canada.

In Moose Jaw, the Tunnels of Moose Jaw offer a fun and unique underground adventure. Learn about the city's connection to Al Capone and the role of immigrants in building the city.

To conclude your visit in a leisurely way, you can take a stroll through Moose Jaw's charming historic downtown. Recently named one of the "Coolest Downtowns in Canada", this area is perfect for an afternoon exploration. Admire the architecture, shop in boutique stores, and relax in cozy cafes.

Did you know? Both Regina and Moose Jaw were used as filming locations for the 2005 film 'Just Friends' starring Ryan Reynolds and Amy Smart.

Things to note: Moose Jaw, known as the 'Friendly City', is a great place to seek advice from locals. Don't hesitate to ask for suggestions on places to visit, eat, or explore during your stay. Local recommendations can often lead you to hidden gems and enhance your experience.

8. Winnipeg to Thompson

7 hours 30 minutes from Winnipeg (770 km)

Why you should visit: Thompson is known as the "Hub of the North," and here, you can discover the gateway to the untamed wilderness of northern Manitoba. Nestled amidst the vast boreal forest, Thompson features a stunning landscape of deciduous trees and conifers.

Whether you're planning a day of hiking, wildlife viewing, or simply soaking in the natural beauty, Thompson is the perfect starting point for your Northern Manitoba adventure.

Beautiful waterfalls in a forested area on a sunny day
You will drive past the stunning Pisew Falls Provincial Park on this route from Winnipeg to Thompson.

How to get here from Winnipeg: Follow MB-6 as you leave Winnipeg and follow it north past Lake Winnipeg. You will drive past Pisew Falls Provincial Park before you reach Thompson.

Our highlights: Begin your adventure at Pisew Falls Provincial Park, a must-visit spot before reaching Thompson. Here, you can marvel at the majestic falls and immerse yourself in the surrounding landscape. The park offers remote hiking trails and backcountry camping.

Once you reach Thompson, a visit to the Heritage North Museum will be a treat for any history enthusiast. This museum provides a deep dive into the region's history, showcasing First Nation artifacts and relics from the fur trade era.

For a unique local experience, take a walk along the Thompson Spirit Way. This relatively short pathway weaves through forests and the downtown area, leading you past significant landmarks like the Wolf Mural and Miner Monument.

And, of course, no trip to Thompson would be complete without witnessing the awe-inspiring Northern Lights. The city is one of the prime locations to view the Aurora Borealis in its full, vibrant colors, offering a truly magical experience.

Did you know? Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip has a song called 'Thompson Girl' referencing the city.

Things to note: For a different way to explore the wilderness, consider renting a snowmobile. Sasagiu Rapids Lodge offers snowmobile tours, but it's important to remember to pre-book before your arrival.

While the Northern Lights can be seen year-round in Thompson, the best time to witness this spectacular natural phenomenon is during February and March. These months are known for clearer skies and longer nights.

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Longer trips from Winnipeg (Over 8 hours each way)

Planning an epic road trip from Winnipeg can be both exciting and challenging because there are simply so many options. From iconic cities to world-famous national parks both in Canada and the USA, the world is your oyster!

9. Winnipeg to Thunder Bay

10 hours from Winnipeg (920 km)

Why you should visit: This road trip from Winnipeg to Thunder Bay can be a longer weekend road trip, or you could stretch it out over several days to a week - the perfect journey to allow you some flexibility! It will also allow you to visit some amazing sights in Minnesota in USA.

On this scenic drive, you'll get to explore the forested areas of northeastern Minnesota and Thunder Bay, located on the shores of the world's largest freshwater lake, and surrounded by beautiful boreal forests.

Thunder Bay, Ontario with a rock formation called the Sea Lion, in the foreground and surrounded by Lake Superior, with trees in the distance on a sunny day.
On a clear day, you will be able to see across the water from Thunder Bay, all the way to the majestic rock formations of the Sleeping Giant Provincial Park.
Don Wiens/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Following MB-12 southeast, you will cross into United States and drive through Minnesota on MN-11, almost hugging the border. After reaching International Falls. follow US-53 and visit Voyageurs National Park and Kabetogama State Forest.

You will soon drive through Eveleth and start heading directly east to the shores of Lake Superior. Hop onto the scenic Highway 61 here before crossing back into Canada and reaching Thunder Bay.

Our highlights: International Falls is a great base for exploring Voyageurs National Park in northern Minnesota. This national park is known for its many lakes, waterways, and forests.

Once you reach Lake Superior, the drive from Illgen City to Thunder Bay follows the coastline tightly, allowing you to admire the lake views and visit small lakeside towns such as Grand Marais and Grand Portage.

This road trip will then take you to Thunder Bay, where you can visit Fort William Historical Park, which is a recreated fur trading post. After your visit, you can go for a walk at Marina Park, which is a 20-minute drive away.

If you prefer outdoor activities, you can hike to the top of Mount McKay, the tallest mountain in the Thunder Bay area. The views from the top are amazing, offering vistas of the city, the surrounding countryside, and Lake Superior.

Sleeping Giant is a series of mesas that, when seen from Thunder Bay direction, looks like a giant lying on his back. It is perhaps Thunder Bay's most famous landmark, best seen from Hillcrest Park, and Sleeping Giant Provincial Park is a stunning area to explore, full of natural wonders.

There is much fun for everyone at Thunder Bay, from boat watching to sailing, visiting museums, viewing art and enjoying some of the culinary treats of this area, such as the persian - a cinnamon roll-like treat with berry icing -, Finnish pancakes, or Heartbeat Hot Sauce!

This route follows parts of the famously scenic Highway 61 in Minnesota. If you'd like to extend your trip to see more of Lake Superior on this route, you can find our detailed guide on the road trip on this scenic road here.

Did you know? Perhaps due to the abundance of boreal forests and lakes, Thunder Bay has the world's largest population of lake and forest-loving Finnish people outside of Finland itself.

Things to note: If you are considering making this road trip in winter, it is good to be prepared with decent snow tires and winter driving experience, for these parts of Canada and Minnesota are known to experience over 120 snowy days every year.

It is good to note that Voyageurs National Park is open all year round so you won't have to plan your trip around road and entrance closures.

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Thunder Bay

10. Winnipeg to Calgary

Via Medicine Hat

12 hours 50 minutes from Winnipeg (830 km)

Why you should visit: On this road trip from Winnipeg to Calgary, you'll drive across a long stretch of southern Canada along the Trans-Canada Highway, the major east-west highway in Canada that is also the world's longest national road.

Calgary is considered one of North America's most livable cities; its picturesque prairie landscapes and cowboy spirit, yet vibrant, cosmopolitan city center, make it a unique, fabulous city to visit.

Center Street Bridge, Bow River with Skyline of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
If you are looking for an urban destination at the end of your road trip, Calgary will not disappoint!
Bradley L. Grant/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Although this is a relatively long road trip, it is really straightforward. You will follow the Trans-Canada Highway all the way from Winnipeg to Calgary.

Our highlights: Medicine Hat, along this road trip route, is a city in the beautiful South Saskatchewan River Valley. It is worth a stop, for the city is filled with a vibrant arts scene, numerous craft breweries and cafés, and vibrant community spirit.

Once you reach Calgary, we recommend taking a stroll on the Peace Bridge. This bridge crossing the Bow River allows people on foot and cyclists, so you can take your time to admire the scenery.

Offering the best views of the city, Calgary Tower is another amazing destination for any visitor. You might not believe that the top floor of the tower is at 517 feet!

After discovering the city on foot, another must-visit is Glenbow Museum, an art and history museum focusing on Western Canadian history and culture.

Banff National Park, close to Calgary, is Canada's first national park. Located in the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, it is worth considering a once-in-a-lifetime detour while you are in the area.

Did you know? Calgary is also a cyclist's paradise; the city has the most extensive urban pathway and bikeway network in the whole of North America.

Things to note: As this road trip route takes you along the Trans-Canada Highway which is well maintained all year round, you'll likely not have to worry too much about getting stuck due to adverse weather conditions. Still, if doing this road trip in winter, be prepared for snowy conditions.

The national parks surrounding Calgary are open all year round. If you wish to visit when there are fewer tourists around, opt for the off-season months, September-October or May-June.

For the cheapest tickets to Calgary Tower, book them online in advance!

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Calgary

11. Winnipeg to Edmonton

Via Saskatoon

13 hours 20 minutes from Winnipeg (815 km)

Why you should visit: There are stunning scenic places to visit along this road trip route from Winnipeg to Edmonton, such as Lake Manitoba, Riding Mountain National Park, and the river valley in Saskatoon.

Edmonton is located in the beautiful valley of the North Saskatchewan River, which contributes to the city's having wonderful opportunities to practice outdoor sports and activities. The city is also home to wonderful parks and cultural attractions.

Edmonton is the capital city of the Alberta province of Canada. As such, it is an important commercial and cultural center in the region. It is known as a friendly, sunny city, with more than 300 sunny days every year, and it offers much to see and do for any member of the family.

Historic fort building in Canada on a sunny day
If you are looking for an urban destination at the end of your road trip, Calgary will not disappoint!

How to get here from Winnipeg: Use the Trans-Canada Highway to exit Winnipeg and switch to MB-16 in Bloom. This major highway will take you northwest through Saskatoon and directly into Edmonton.

Our highlights: On the way, we recommend visiting Riding Mountain National Park. This national park, teeming with diverse wetlands, silent forests, and windswept grasslands, is home to a vast range of wildlife. You can read more about what makes this national park special above.

In Saskatoon, visit Wanuskewin Heritage Park. This heritage park is located along the Meewasin Trail by the South Saskatchewan River, and features exhibitions focusing on indigenous culture.

Once you arrive in Edmonton, you will find fun, food, games, shopping, and much more at the West Edmonton Mall - dubbed "North America's Largest Shopping Mall"!

After indulging in a little retail therapy, it is time to explore the city. Fort Edmonton Park is a fascinating heritage park with recreated architecture from the last 150 years, as well as streetcars, food stalls, and more.

We also recommend visiting the Royal Alberta Museum in Downtown Edmonton while in the city. This museum of human and natural history is the largest in western Canada.

Did you know? Edmonton is also known as "Canada's Festival City"; the city hosts over 50 unique festivals yearly! So, why not plan your visit to catch one or two?

Things to note: As in all of Canada, if making a road trip in the middle of winter, it is good to be prepared for snowy conditions by having good snow tires on and keeping an eye on the weather forecast. It is good to have experience of driving in the snow.

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Edmonton

12. Winnipeg to Banff, Lake Louise and Golden

15 hours 50 minutes from Winnipeg (1,000 km)

Why you should visit: This might be one of the most scenic road trips in Canada, let alone on our list. The area between and around the towns Banff and Golden is best known for the spectacular national parks dotted with scenery of high mountain peaks, glaciers, and glacier-fed turquoise lakes.

Banff and Golden are also known for some top-notch restaurants, and, especially in Banff's case, quality craft breweries. World-class skiing, snowboarding and hiking is found in this area which is popular amongst both Canadian and international visitors.

Winter sunrise over scenic Lake Louise and the Rocky Mountains in Banff National Park, Alberta Canada
Beautiful Lake Louise is only one of the stunning, postcard-perfect stops on this unforgettably beautiful road trip.

How to get here from Winnipeg: You will drive from Winnipeg to Calgary on the Trans-Canada Highway on this road trip and this famous highway will then take you to Banff, Lake Louise and you will soon reach Golden, heading west.

Our highlights: You will drive through Calgary on the way, which is a cosmopolitan city with deep Western roots. Attractions in this city are many, but among the most well-known ones are the Calgary Tower and Glenbow Museum.

Banff is a resort town located by the stunning Banff National Park. Banff National Park is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site found in this part of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. The national park offers stunning views of mountains, scenic valleys, glaciers, forests and rivers.

As you can expect, beautiful views surround the town of Banff, and in its center, Banff Avenue is where you can find lovely restaurants, boutiques, and souvenir shops.

Kootenay National Park, part of the Golden Triangle along with Banff and Yoho National Parks, is another place of natural wonders to visit in this area. It is a land of contrasts, where you may admire canyons carved by glaciers, observe meadows marked by wildfires, or enjoy a dip in hot springs.

Lake Louise is known for its turquoise, glacier-fed waters. Visiting here, you can explore a wildlife interpretive center at the Lake Louise Ski Resort, you can go canoeing or hiking, or try rock climbing if you are feeling adventurous.

Nestled in the mountains, Golden is an outdoor lover's paradise. The town is especially well known for world-class skiing and snowboarding. Golden is also located in the middle of six surrounding national parks, not one of them more than two hours away by car.

Did you know? Everything is big in this part of the Rocky Mountains! Here are some mind-boggling figures to give one an extra appreciation for the area: Banff National Park alone has over 1000 miles of hiking trails; Yoho National Park has 28 mountain peaks that are taller than 9000 feet; and Glacier National Park is home to 26 glaciers - although this number is now unfortunately shrinking.

Things to note: Lake Louise and Moraine Lake, both famous for their turquoise color and natural beauty, are popular tourist destinations especially in the summer. In the busiest time, you'll need to book a local shuttle bus to take you to the lakes, for there's no other vehicle access during the busy season.

Banff, Yoho and Kootenay National Parks are open year-round, but some services are not available in winter, so check before travelling to avoid disappointment.

Prepare for winter conditions on the roads, should you be doing this road trip in the winter months. This is especially true for the higher altitude places between the towns Banff and Golden.

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Banff

13. Winnipeg to Yellowstone National Park

Via Mount Rushmore National Memorial

19 hours from Winnipeg (1,120 km)

Why you should visit: Yellowstone National Park is America's oldest national park, and a must-visit destination with its world-famous natural wonders. Old Faithful is arguably the most famous geyser in the world and the Grand Prismatic Spring, with its unbelievable colors, is the largest hot spring in the United States!

Yellowstone is also a place of dramatic natural beauty - the park is home to canyons, alpine rivers, diverse forests and a range of wildlife including bears, wolves, bison and elk.

Whether visiting in summer and being able to hike in the park or taking a snowshoe trek in winter, Yellowstone is a place worth seeing at least once in a lifetime.

Grand Prismatic Pool at Yellowstone National Park.
The Grand Prismatic is the largest hot spring in the United States, and possibly the most beautiful. It is one of the most popular attractions in Yellowstone to visit.
Lane V. Erickson/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Use RTE-155 to exit Winnipeg and head west on Red Coat Trail. At Glenboro, you will head directly south into the United States on MB-5 and enter North Dakota. Keep heading south into South Dakota and pay a visit to Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

Following US-212 west, you will switch to I-90 past Hardin and follow this road to Livingston. Here, US-89 will take you to Gardiner, which you can base yourself in as you explore Yellowstone National Park.

Our highlights: Along the road from Winnipeg to Yellowstone there are also other fascinating natural and cultural landmarks to visit, including Mount Rushmore and Thunder Basin National Grassland.

Mount Rushmore is an American landmark in South Dakota that features the colossal carved faces of four US presidents and offers a unique blend of art, history, and scenic beauty en route to Yellowstone National Park.

As you make your way into northeastern Wyoming, Thunder Basin National Grassland offers stunning landscapes, abundant wildlife, and the opportunity for numerous outdoor activities, perfect for a nature-filled stop on your journey.

For more outdoor adventures, Bighorn National Forest, nestled in north-central Wyoming, boasts breathtaking mountain vistas, over a thousand miles of hiking trails, and diverse wildlife.

Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center is a non-profit wildlife park and educational facility. A wonderful place to see wildlife - though you certainly might spot some of these animals during excursions in the park, as well.

Upper and Lower Yellowstone River Falls are massive waterfalls and a popular tourist destination. Tower Fall is another mesmerizing waterfall and sight to behold, with rock formations towering over it and the waterfall dropping 132 feet straight down.

Did you know? Yellowstone is an active volcanic area. The park sits on top of one of the world's largest volcanoes; leftover from an eruption hundreds of thousands of years ago, the Yellowstone Caldera is about 1000 square miles in size.

You might also find it hard to believe that Yellowstone is actually home to almost 60% of all hot springs and geysers found in the world!

Things to note: Yellowstone East Entrance is closed between November and May. Should you wish to visit the park during the winter months and enter with a vehicle, you might need to circle around to enter via the North Entrance, via Gardiner.

The Grand Loop Road is also closed during these colder months. If you'd like to plan a road trip from Winnipeg to Yellowstone in winter, you can find our detailed guide here to learn more about the best way to visit the national park during this time.

14. Winnipeg to Niagara Falls, ON

20 hours 45 minutes from Winnipeg (1,265 km)

Why you should visit: The drive from Winnipeg to Niagara Falls is undeniably one of the most scenic routes, traversing right across the Great Lakes region and with national forests of breathtaking beauty to explore along the way.

Niagara Falls in Ontario is naturally best known for the magnificent waterfall, but also for fabulous entertainment, shopping, fine dining and history. The city on the Canadian side is connected to that on the US side by the Rainbow Bridge, so you can plan to extend your trip across the border.

Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada with a view of Horseshoe Fall on a sunny day.
Some of the best views of Niagara Falls are arguably from the Canadian Side, but why not cross the border to admire the view also from the American side?
Diego De Munari/

How to get here from Winnipeg: Follow MB-12 southeast and enter the United States. Here, you will hop on US-2 which will take you all the way to the shores of Lake Superior. Keep heading in the same direction until you reach St Ignace and drive onto Mackinac Bridge into Michigan.

Keep heading north on I-75 and then start heading east past Flint to enter back into Canada. You will soon reach Niagara Falls in Ontario past Hamilton and St Catharines.

Our highlights: Ottawa National Forest en route is a stunning nature area, consisting of lakes, forests and waterways. You can enjoy wonderful hiking and wildlife viewing here.

Also found along this road trip route from Winnipeg, Hiawatha National Forest is especially known for water-based activities such as canoeing and swimming, for it is located on the shores of three of the great lakes, and contains many scenic rivers and waterfalls.

Horseshoe Falls is the largest of the three waterfalls that collectively form Niagara Falls. It is best viewed from the Canadian side, and from Skylon Tower, which also features a revolving restaurant rising up to the observation tower to provide views of the waterfalls.

The Canada and US sides of Niagara Falls are connected by Rainbow Bridge. You can walk, cycle or drive along this arch bridge crossing the Niagara River gorge.

If you have some time and want to spend more time outdoors, visit Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens. These gardens comprise 40 hectares of European-style allées, rose gardens, herbs, and vegetables.

Did you know? The famous waterfalls are only about 12,000 years old. They were formed when melting glaciers formed the massive freshwater lakes of the area, one of which (Lake Erie) was flowing towards another (Lake Ontario), carving a river gorge on its way and passing over a steep cliff (Niagara escarpment).

Things to note: Be prepared with proper snow tires should you wish to make this road trip in the winter months.

Note that the last stretch of the road trip, between Hamilton and Niagara Falls, often has heavy traffic, due to frequent travelers between Toronto and Niagara Falls.

15. Winnipeg to Toronto

22 hours from Winnipeg (1,310 miles)

Why you should visit: This scenic road trip from Winnipeg to Toronto will take you along the northern shores of Lake Superior and Lake Huron, and largely along the Trans-Canada Highway, from Winnipeg into Toronto.

Toronto is the capital of Ontario province and is located on the beautiful shore of Lake Ontario. In Toronto you'll find lovely markets, museums, bustling city streets, and lovely green parks. It is perhaps best known for the iconic CN Tower.

Downtown Toronto city skyline during sunset
Toronto's beautiful skyline is quite easy to recognize - can you spot the famous CN Tower?

How to get here from Winnipeg: Leave the city using the Trans-Canada Highway and hop onto ON-17 to reach your first stop in Thunder Bay. From here, you will merge back onto the Trans-Canada Highway and follow it east until Sudbury.

Following ON-400 north will take you all the way into Toronto.

Our highlights: Visit beautiful and unique landmarks at Thunder Bay along the route, such as observing the Sleeping Giant from Hillcrest Park or visiting Fort William Historical Park.

Pukaskwa National Park on the shores of Lake Superior has beautiful coastal hiking trails, conifer forests, boardwalks, and indigenous heritage sites. You can make a stop here on your way to Toronto for a picnic or hike.

Once in Toronto, the CN Tower, at 1815 feet tall, is one of the most recognizable attractions in Canada. This communications and observation tower is located in downtown Toronto, offering views of the whole surrounding city and area.

Toronto is a very walkable city so you can explore most of the city on foot. Royal Ontario Museum presents art, culture and natural artifacts from around the world, and throughout the ages. It is also Canada's largest and most comprehensive museum.

Casa Loma is one of the only true castles remaining in North America. It is located in midtown Toronto, and is currently a historic house museum and landmark.

St Lawrence Market is a large market complex, where you'll find a diverse variety of cultures, foods and crafts.

Did you know? Toronto is considered to be one of the most multicultural cities in the world. As many as 53% of the people living in Toronto were born outside of Canada, and around 180 different languages are spoken in the city.

Things to note: Booking tickets in advance to some of Toronto's most popular attractions, such as the Royal Ontario Museum or CN Tower, might get you cheaper deals.

As with the other road trips from Winnipeg, be prepared for wintery conditions on the roads should you be doing this scenic, longer road trip during the winter.

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Toronto

16. Winnipeg to Vancouver

23 hours 20 minutes from Winnipeg (1,430 km)

Why you should visit: This road trip from Winnipeg to Vancouver might seem long at first, but we promise that it will be worth the drive! This epic drive will take you across half of southern Canada, from Winnipeg all the way to Vancouver in British Columbia, close to the Pacific Coast.

Along the way, you will find some iconic places to visit, including Calgary and Banff National Park. Vancouver itself is worth a lengthy visit, with much fun, culture, and natural attractions to enjoy.

Vancouver itself is a busy and vibrant city, some to Chinatown, lively downtown area and fabulous restaurants. Yet, it is incredibly easy to get into nature when living in Vancouver; being located by the sea and close to mountains makes it an outdoor lover's paradise.

Vancouver, Canada with a panorama view taken from False Creek and the stunning mountains in the distance.
Vancouver is an urban metropolis, but don't let that fool you into thinking it is a grey paradise of skyscrapers - it is also one of the most scenic cities!

How to get here from Winnipeg: This is the longest road trip on our list, so you might be surprised to read that it is one of the easiest to follow. You will simply drive on the Trans-Canada Highway all the way from Winnipeg to Vancouver.

Our highlights: Visit the vibrant city of Calgary along the way; there are wonderful cultural attractions here, and you'll get to experience some deeply rooted Western heritage. Or, take in views of the city by visiting the Calgary Tower.

Banff National Park is but one of many breathtakingly beautiful and interesting nature areas found in the stretch of this road trip that crosses the Rocky Mountains. In this region, you can enjoy fabulous hiking, turquoise glacier-fed lakes, tall mountain peaks, and spotting diverse wildlife.

Stanley Park is a green oasis with West Coast rainforests found right in the middle of Vancouver's urban landscape. This public park is wonderful for walking, cycling, enjoying views of the water and the mountains, or just hanging out and picnicking with friends.

Vancouver Art Gallery has large collections of art and impressive, innovative exhibitions to keep you busy for hours.

Grouse Mountain is one of Vancouver's most popular attractions. Near to the city, this is a fantastic place for outdoor adventure, wildlife viewing and dining.

Another popular attraction in Vancouver is crossing the Capilano Suspension Bridge, where you can walk through the rainforest canopy crossing the Capilano River. This site is also particularly beautiful in wintertime, decorated with beautiful Christmas lights.

Did you know? Vancouver is sometimes called "The Hollywood of the North", due to it being a highly popular filming location.

Things to note: No matter what time of year you're doing this road trip, you'll traverse some high-altitude places crossing the Rocky Mountains.

Enjoy the scenery, but keep vigilant on the roads, especially if travelling in winter; in that time, be sure to be equipped with proper snow tires in case of adverse weather conditions or delays in road clearance.

READ MORE - Road Trip from Winnipeg to Vancouver

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