Hello! I’m Lisa (Instagram: @lisa__anne_) and new mom to the sweetest little boy named Warrick. My husband and I live in Calgary, but I grew up in Souris, a small, southwestern Manitoba town.
After Warrick arrived we knew we would be making less of the yearly NFL and College Football trips that we are used to and more trips back to Manitoba. Souris, like any small town, has its unique charm and loads of family-friendly activities for all ages! Heading straight east on the Trans Canada from Calgary, it is 15 minutes south of Highway #1 but also 30 minutes southwest of Brandon (Westjet has a daily, direct flight from Calgary to Brandon!) In my biased opinion, if you happen to be making a trip to Manitoba, a stop in Souris is a must!
Whether Souris is just a quick stop on your way to another destination or a longer stay is in order, there are many options of accommodations. If you love to camp, the Victoria Park campground is a popular summer destination for campers from all around. With full service, tenting and group camping spots, there are options for every type of camper as there is also full camping amenities available! Since camping is not for everyone, or if you are travelling in the winter, there is also the newly built Souris Hotel! The hotel has a great setup for families, with a private bathroom separating the two queen beds in each room! The hotel also has pet-friendly and accessible rooms, along with a delicious continental breakfast each morning. If you are travelling with a bit larger group, the Guest Room is a fantastic option if you are looking for more of a condo-type accommodation. With a full kitchen and two suites sleeping up to 6 people each, the Guest Room is located in the heart of downtown Souris, within walking distance to many family-friendly activities.
Visiting a small town, you might think “There will be nothing for us to do, we will have to drive to a larger centre to keep the kids entertained”, but in Souris, that is not the case. There are many low cost and free activities to keep your little ones busy! A summer must would be visiting the Souris Outdoor Pool, located in Victoria Park, in the campground. This isn’t your ordinary small-town pool, with waterslides, a lazy river, zero entrance and two small, child-size slides - this pool will keep your family entertained and cool for hours on those hot summer days! The pool is also great for picnics as there is a large, shaded, green space.
If you are more of an active family, there are hiking trails throughout Victoria Park, which will take you past the Old Oak which (said to be over 500 years old) and the Lookout Tower (which gives you a 360 view of the town), a 9-Hole golf course that is suitable for all abilities, and an Agate Pit (for those who have children that love to collect rocks!).
If you have older children that are interested in history, there are many museums in town to visit. The Hillcrest, The Plum, and Railway Museum are great stops to learn a bit more of the town’s history! Last, but not least, the #1 must stop in Souris is the Souris Swinging Bridge, the Largest Pedestrian Swinging Bridge in Canada! The bridge has newly been rebuilt due to flooding in 2011 and was designed to be fully accessible so everyone can enjoy this star attraction! While taking in the sights, don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for the Souris Peacocks roaming the town!
With all the activities, you work up an appetite. We highly recommend a stop at Minary Homestyle Bakery! Baked fresh every morning, their donuts and cinnamon knots are something you will want to write home about. As that appetite grows throughout the day, the Woodfire Deli serves up delicious woodfire pizza (we recommend the Canuck Pizza - their drunken mushrooms are amazing!) as well as soup and sandwiches (the Glenwood wrap is where is it at!). The Woodfire Deli also has a full coffee bar to give you that extra pick me up during the day. Another tasty spot is the Whistling Donkey. With a full menu from salads, sandwiches, pizza, appetizer and a separate kid’s menu, there is something for the whole family! To end your day, a stop is needed at the Dairy Bar for everyone’s favourite… ICE CREAM! Now these are just a few of the food options in Souris, and there are also two groceries stores that are fully stocked with anything you may need during your stay!
For a town of 2000 people, there is never-ending family fun in this unique little town and if you are looking for a different family vacation or road trip, Souris should be a must-stop on your list of places to see in our beautiful country!