Water. Rock. Art. Adventure. These are the words that should come to mind when you think of Flin Flon, Manitoba, a small city located 8 hours north of Winnipeg along the Saskatchewan border. From indie music festivals and fishing derbies to snowmobile trails and drive-in theatres, there's something to uncover here in every season. Discover this amazing area of Manitoba yourself and plan your trip around these 10 attractions and events.
1. See the views from Flinty's Boardwalk
For those who have a firm belief that Manitoba is an entirely flat, prairie province, Flin Flon will come as a surprise. Built up on rock outcrop, the landscape of the town can be better seen with a hike along Flinty's Boardwalk. The 4.2 kilometre trek brings you around the perimeter of Ross Lake with spectacular views and interpretive signage that explains how the rock below was formed by volcanic rocks that erupted underwater millions of years ago.
2. Rock out at Blueberry Jam Music Festival
Flin Flon has more than earned its reputation as the home to one of Manitoba's most vibrant art scenes. They frequently land among in the top in the country for number of Culture Days events, while enjoying year-round programming that converges at the NorVA Centre and Johnny's Social Club. Relatively new to the town is the Blueberry Jam Music Festival, a 4-day celebration designed for musicians and music lovers. Located at the Flin Flon Tourist Bureau & Campground, the festival brings in talent from out of town while also showcasing local artists.
3. Drop a fishing line in a pristine lake
With an abundance of vast lakes surrounding the city of Flin Flon, it's no wonder that much of the town enjoys recreational fishing in both the summer and the winter months. Avid anglers should plan their trip in April, when the Flinty Fishing Derby takes place on Lake Athapapuskow, offering cash prizes up to $25,000. The lake is known for its incredible fishing opportunities and has at least seven species including lake trout, whitefish, northern pike and walleye.
4. Meet Flintabbatey Flonatin and see the town's history
If there is a single most popular roadside attraction in Manitoba, it might just be Flintabbatey Flonatin. Known as Flinty to locals, the statue gives a nod to fictional character Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin of The Sunless City, the town's namesake. Given his fame, take a few photos with Flinty before heading next door to the Flin Flon Station Museum. This charming museum is housed in the former Canadian National Railway Station building and offers a thorough overview of the town's mining history.
5. Meet the animals of the Joe Brain Petting Zoo
Named after local millionaire and honorary citizen Joe Brain, the Joe Brain Children's Petting Zoo is a great way to entertain your little ones. The petting zoo houses friendly pigs, adorable goats, ponies, chickens and more.
6. Catch a flick at the drive-in
Go retro and experience one of two old-fashioned drive-ins left in Manitoba. The Big Island Drive-In is open during the summer and into early October, airing the latest blockbusters on its large outdoor screen. Grab your bucket of popcorn (giant pickles optional) and get cozy in your car for a movie under the stars.
7. Cheer on the Flin Flon Bombers
Like many other Manitoba communities, Flin Flon is a tried and true hockey town - with a great record to boot. The Flin Flon Bombers have churned out NHL stars like Bobby Clarke, Reggie Leach and Mel Pearson - just to name a few. Get to know the spirit of this city by attending a Flin Flon Bombers game between September and March.
8. Hit the snowmobiling trails
Grab your Manitoba Snopass and discover the trails in this unique region of northern Manitoba. The Border Explorers Snowmobile Club have all the information you need on trails in Flin Flon, and if you're adventurous you can take the 144-km trail from Flin Flon to The Pas.
9. Shop and eat your way through town
Being a small city, it is easy to pencil in some time to check out all the local shops and eateries during your visit. Popular dining spots include iconic drive in Mike's Ice N' Burger, which has all the milkshake flavours you could ask for and diner classics like burgers, hot dogs and fries, as well as Mugsy's Deli for deli sandwiches and salads and the Orange Toad for specialty coffee. While you're at it, search for a unique gift or souvenir in the locally owned boutiques and shops that can be found along the quaint Main Street.
10. Explore the water and the wild
Why else is Flin Flon a must for your next year of travel? The city is in close proximity to some of the best wilderness experience Manitoba has to offer. Stay in a yurt or cabin in the nearby Bakers Narrows Provincial Park, or rent a canoe and paddle one of the surrounding lakes. The quiet, untouched wilds make this region one of the best for outdoor enthusiasts.