Time for some day tripping . . .
There are so many fantastic places to see just outside our city!
Brandon is considered by many to be the regional hub of western Manitoba. Pack a picnic lunch, jump in the car and explore the beautiful scenic parks our region has to offer! Head back to the city at the end of the day and plan your next adventure!
Experience Clear Lake Country
Located approximately 100 km north of Brandon is Clear Lake, located inside Riding Mountain National Park—Manitoba’s first national park.
Not only does this pocket of wilderness contain a variety of shops and eateries, but also a ton of rugged nature just waiting to be explored!
The hiking is among the most scenic and inspiring in Manitoba, while the stunning views over the escarpment down Highway 19 or Highway 10 through the park is always a treat. Water activities include canoe and kayak, water-ski, wake-board or stand-up paddle boarding on the pristine waterways of Clear Lake and for many anglers, the scenery is enough to make it the experience of a lifetime.
In the winter, folks can glide down the Parks Canada skating trails and outdoor skating rink or snowshoe along the groomed trails or set out over frozen landscapes that would be inaccessible at any other time of the year.
Here are a few other notable provincial parks to explore near Brandon…
Learn some history at Criddle/Vane
This 130‑hectare area preserves the former homestead of two prominent Manitoba families. Known for their contributions in the fields of science, art, sport and culture, the Criddle and Vane families originally settled here in 1882.
The park provides you with two hiking trails that take you past the former Criddle home site which was the first entomological field station in Western Canada, a cemetery, as well as the remains of the original landscape features such as the tennis court and golf course.
Enjoy Oak Lake
Oak Lake is one of the larger lakes in the province and it offers exceptional fishing and water sports. Oak Island Resort offers a world class 18-hole golf course with a pro shop and restaurant (seasonal). The campground has a plethora of serviced lots, a grocery store, ice cream, cabin rentals, mini-golf and swimming pools.
The provincial park offers beach volleyball, baseball diamonds, basketball courts, horseshoe pits, fire pits, a children’s playground, covered picnic shelters, washrooms and a sandy beach. Meanwhile, Cherry Point Park offers a one-kilometre natural walking trail with benches facing the lake, so if you get tired, you can take a break or just sit and take in the beauty of the lake.
Time to beach it up at Rivers Provincial Park
Made up of 38 hectares of mixed grass prairie, this park is situated by Lake Wahtopanah. The lake, a reservoir created by damming the Little Saskatchewan River, was named after the native word “watopapinah” meaning “canoe people”.
The community of Rivers was named after Sir Charles River Wilson, Chairman of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Board of Directors. The park is home to a popular beach and provides ample fishing for pike, walleye and perch.
Go hiking at Spruce Woods Provincial Park
This park offers a unique sand dune environment where endangered wildlife species such as Western Hognose Snake and Northern Prairie Skinks can be found. Interpretive and hiking trails lead across rolling hills, mixed grass prairie, through white spruce and deciduous forest and to the eerie spring fed ponds of the Devil’s Punchbowl.
The park features camping facilities, unsupervised beach, horseback riding trails, interpretive programs and special events throughout the summer. For winter enthusiasts, the park has an extensive system of cross‑country skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobile trails as well as an outdoor skating oval, rink and toboggan hill. Interpretive events are held throughout the winter as well.
Explore Turtle Mountain Provincial Park
A large block of deciduous forest and more than 200 lakes and wetlands straddle the international boundary in Southwest Manitoba. This is in fact the first part of Manitoba to dry after the glaciers receded. Rising 245 metres above the prairie, this rolling terrain is popular amongst avid mountain bike enthusiasts.
Its abundant wildlife includes; white‑tailed deer, moose, waterfowl, songbirds and its namesake Western Painted Turtles. The park offers a wealth of recreational activities from skiing, skating, tobogganing and snowmobiling in the winter, to hiking, cycling and canoeing in the summer
Challenge yourself at William Lake Provincial Park
William Lake Provincial Park is located to the east of Turtle Mountain Provincial Park. A challenging yet rewarding hike up the Turtle’s Back Trail provides you with a spectacular panoramic view of Southwest Manitoba.
It passes through Turtle Mountain Community Pasture, which offers you a glimpse at where livestock roam and graze. The lake is well‑liked by windsurfing enthusiasts because of its round shape, clear water and gas‑motor restrictions. It is stocked with Brown Trout making it a favourite for anglers. There is also a swimming and beach area.