Winnipeg is the capital and largest city of the province of Manitoba in Canada.
It is situate at the bottom of the Red River Valley, a flood plain with an extremely flat topography.
As of April 2020, the population of Winnipeg is about 710,000 people. It is the 7th largest city in Canada.
The city covers a total area of 464 square kilometers (179 square miles).
The average altitude is 239 meters (784 feet) above sea level.
The city is named after the nearby Lake Winnipeg (the Earth‘s 11th largest freshwater lake).; the name comes from the Western Cree words for muddy water.
The region was a trading centre for Indigenous peoples long before the arrival of Europeans.
The French built a fur trading post on the site in 1738 called Fort Rouge.
A settlement was founded by the Selkirk settlers of the Red River Colony in 1812, the nucleus of which was incorporated as the City of Winnipeg in 1873.
The arrival in 1885 of the Canadian Pacific, the first Canadian transcontinental railroad, led to Winnipeg’s becoming the major grain market and warehousing and distributing point for the Prairie Provinces.
Winnipeg’s fortunes began to falter after the 1914 Panama Canal opening, when international trade markets no longer had to rely on Canada’s railways.
Winnipeg and its suburbs experienced significant population growth after 1945, and the current City of Winnipeg was created by the unicity amalgamation in 1972.
Today, Winnipeg is a vibrant community of business, artistic, and community development, which competes with major metropolitan areas from across North America.
The Forks is a historic site, meeting place and green space in Downtown Winnipeg located at the confluence of the Red River and the Assiniboine River. For at least 6000 years, the Forks has been the meeting place for early aboriginal peoples, and since colonization has also been a meeting place for European fur traders, Métis buffalo hunters, Scottish settlers, riverboat workers, railway pioneers and tens of thousands of immigrants.
The Canadian Museum for Human Rights is a Canadian Crown Corporation and national museum located in Winnipeg, adjacent to The Forks. The purpose of the museum is to “explore the subject of human rights with a special but not exclusive reference to Canada, to enhance the public’s understanding of human rights, to promote respect for others and to encourage reflection and dialogue.” It held its opening ceremonies on 19 September 2014.
The Manitoba Museum is the largest museum in Winnipeg. It is located close to City Hall. The museum was designed by Herbert Henry Gatenby Moody of Moody and Moore in 1965. The Manitoba Museum is the largest heritage centre in Manitoba and focuses on human and natural heritage. It has planetarium shows and a Science Gallery hall.
The Winnipeg Art Gallery is an art museum in Winnipeg. Its permanent collection includes over 24,000 works from Canadian, and indigenous Canadians, and international artists. The museum also holds the world’s largest collection Inuit art. In addition to exhibits for its collection, the museum has organized and hosted a number of travelling arts exhibitions.
Saint Boniface Cathedral is a Roman Catholic basilica in Winnipeg. It is the oldest cathedral in western Canada, founded in 1818. On July 22, 1968, the 1906 cathedral was damaged by a fire which destroyed many of the structure’s features and contents including the rose window, vestments, 1860 bells, and parish records. Only the façade, sacristy, and the walls of the old church remained. In 1972, a new smaller cathedral, designed by Étienne Gaboury and Denis Lussier, was built behind the 1906 façade.Today, the cathedral is a popular tourist attraction, as well as a major architectural and artistic symbol in Winnipeg.
The Manitoba Legislative Building is the meeting place of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, in central Winnipeg. It was originally named the Manitoba Parliament Building, not Legislative. The neoclassical building was completed in 1920 and stands 77 metres (253 ft) tall.
Assiniboine Park is a park in Winnipeg. The Winnipeg Public Parks Board was formed in 1893, and purchased the initial land for the park in 1904. Although in use before then, the park officially opened in 1909, and is located north of the Assiniboine Forest, along the Assiniboine River. It is named for the Assiniboine people. The park covers 450 hectares (1,100 acres), of which 160 hectares (400 acres) are designed in the English landscape style.
Assiniboine Park Zoo is an 32-hectare (80-acre) zoo that was established in 1904 at the West end of Assiniboine Park. It is managed by the Assiniboine Park Conservancy and accredited by the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums (CAZA).
This multicultural city hosts numerous annual festivals, including the Festival du Voyageur, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Jazz Winnipeg Festival, the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival, and Folklorama.
Winnipeg was the first Canadian host of the Pan American Games.
The city is near the longitudinal centre of North America.
Winnipeg has North America’s largest extant mature urban elm forest.
Being far inland, the local climate is extremely seasonal even by Canadian standards with average January lows of around −21 °C (−6 °F) and average July highs of 26 °C (79 °F).