Around the World with Winnipeg’s Folklorama

Spain Traditional Dancing

For two weeks each summer, scattered around the city of Winnipeg, lies a unique chance to travel around the world without actually getting on a plane. Sure, you won’t see the beautiful beaches of the Philippines or the colonial architecture of Spain but you will get a taste of the culture thanks to Folklorama.

Known as the largest and longest-running multicultural festival in the world, Folklorama allows visitors to experience the cultural dances, food, and people that make the city so diverse. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to experience many of the pavilions (shows) during my time in Winnipeg. [Read more…]

Experiencing Humanity at Winnipeg’s Museum for Human Rights

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

I was told that the most impressive feature of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights was the building itself but this couldn’t be more wrong. Sure, the building is gorgeous. It was carefully and thoughtfully designed by Antoine Predock, who incorporated meaning into every facet of the facility. From the darkness of humanity simulated by beginning the museum partially underground to the beacon of light symbolized by reaching the top floor with expansive views of the city, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is an architectural marvel.

Human Rights Museum Winnipeg

However, the museum itself is equally fantastic. I thought that one 3-hour morning would be enough but that wasn’t the case. If you really want to dive into everything, you’ll need longer. I decided to jump on the 1.5 hour tour, which is a great way to get oriented with the museum and its different floors. The tour gives you insight into the building, the layout, the galleries and the intention of the museum. Unlike most museums that lay out artifacts and historic items, this museum is designed to provoke discussion and inspiration into the movement of humanity.

[Read more…]

Finding True Music at the Winnipeg Folk Fest

It was my first folk fest and I wasn’t sure what to expect. Actually, I had never camped at a music festival before. I have been to Burning Man, which is absolutely amazing, and I’ve been to one-day music festivals as well but this would be my first time at a true music festival.

Winnipeg Folk Festival Tickets

I had heard something about the Winnipeg Folk Fest being one of the best folk festivals on the continent and that was enough to peek my interest. It’s a festival. It’s camping. It’s music. Count me in.

Tucked into beautiful Birds Hill Provincial Park, the festival makes its mark among wide open fields and trees. We opted to camp in the festival camping area so that we could be closer to the event and closer to the party. After arriving, we trekked over a kilometre with all our stuff (the only part of the event I wasn’t a big fan of) and found a great little spot in the middle of a patch of trees where we could pitch our tent. We were lucky because many campers arrived a day before us. Maybe they wanted to be out in the open field under the scorching sun? I wanted shade and I was already dreaming of an inflated air mattress and throwing myself onto it for a quick break.

[Read more…]

Indian Food with a View | Clay Oven Winnipeg

Claypot Winnipeg

Words can hardly describe the pleasure of a mouth-watering Indian dish hitting the tastebuds and the Clay Oven is an Indian restaurant that doesn’t disappoint. Actually, it’s not just an Indian restaurant. It’s an East Indian / Hakka restaurant. Imagine the combination of Hakka-Asian food and Indian. Do I really need to say more?

As if the delicious food wasn’t reason enough to visit, Clay Oven has a speculator location (one of many) right in the Shaw Park stadium with views of the baseball game below. Why buy a ticket when you can combine watching the game with sitting on the Clay Oven patio drinking beer and eating samosas?

[Read more…]

Gimli, Manitoba | A Popular Weekend Retreat from Winnipeg

Moving to Winnipeg, Manitoba for the summer of 2015 was a busy affair. First, my wife and I had just arrived home from a 5-month trip around the world. We had just five days to spend with family before moving to a new city. Second, Winnipeg wasn’t going to be relaxing at all. After quickly moving into our new apartment, we had to immediately start our full time sales jobs that we moved there for. We also had to start experiencing the best things to do in Winnipeg so we could write about them on here. I was also starting to write a travel book called Limitless Travel and creating a travel hacking course called Zero to Dream Trip. Needless to say, I was busy and stressed.

While inner-city paradises like Thermea Spa certainly helped, we wanted to get out of the city for a weekend. We chose Gimli, Manitoba.

Lakeview Resort Gimli

Just one hour north of Winnipeg on the shores of Lake Winnipeg, Gimli is an icelandic settlement perfect for a relaxing weekend. We wanted to spend as much time indoors as we did outdoors so we booked a couple of nights at Lakeview Resort, which offers apartment-style rooms right next to the beach.

Our room was incredibly spacious. The massive bedroom had a king-sized bed and a flat screen TV, the living room had a comfortable couch and another flat screen TV, and the full kitchen had everything we needed. There was also a balcony off both the living room and the bedroom that offered views of the lake.

 It was a quiet weekend right before the summer rush, which allowed us to have the beach almost to ourselves. The sunsets were beautiful and if we didn’t see it from the beach, we saw it from the deck as the pink hues mixed with the clouds. It was a truly lazy weekend. We borrowed a DVD from the front desk (free of charge) along with a board game (also free) and just sat around watching movies and playing games. Occasionally, we’d leave the room for some delicious fish n’ chips (available at the hotel as well) or to grab some ice cream from across the street.  

Gimli is an incredibly popular place that Winnipeger’s flock to in the summer. There’s tons of things to do in the summer such as as the Icelandic Festival, the Gimli Film Festival,  the Icelandic museum, plenty of outdoor activities or just kicking back and relaxing on the sandy beach.

A weekend doing nothing was just what we needed and Lakeview Resort on Gimli beach was the perfect place to make it happen.

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A big thank you goes out to Lakeview Resorts for hosting us for a couple of nights. I can see why this hotel is so popular.

Instagram photos by yours truly. Collage photos courtesy of Lakeview Resorts.

 

Pure Tranquility Within the City | Thermëa Spa Winnipeg

I just got back from paradise, only this time I’m not talking about Hawaii, Bali, or the coast of Mexico – I’m talking about the Thermëa spa in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

I’m not kidding. I think this place may have saved my life. After months of intense stress, my back was knotting up, my legs were getting tight and even my jaws were beginning to ache. When I heard about a new nordic-inspired spa opening up in Winnipeg, I was intrigued.

Relaxing at Thermea Spa Winnipeg

Nestled on a slice of Crescent Drive Park, Thermëa is all you really need to gain back your senses, sooth your soul and feel like you’ve just got back from a one-week vacation without leaving the city. They’ve really got it all. Swedish massage, body treatments, facials, and best of all – a thermal spa.

[Read more…]

Living the Cottage Life at Clear Lake, Manitoba

Martese Clear Lake

When my wife and I moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba for the summer of 2015, I was told that we were entering cottage country. There’s plenty of jokes about Winnipeg, ranging from that flat landscape to the harsh winters but when it comes to lakes and cottage life, there’s no better place to be.

Experiencing some of the lakes was on my must-do list and when my parents came to visit for a weekend, I did some research and found Clear Lake, which is nestled inside Riding Mountain National Park. This is the one of only two national parks in Manitoba and although the mountains are nothing compared to the Rockies, the wildlife and serenity is unmatched.

[Read more…]