Westman Road Trips Worth The Drive (IN)…

With Summer FINALLY right around the corner (HURRAH!), there is no better time to hit the road and discover all of what Westman has to offer – and trust us, there is a lot!
In the spirit of the approaching season and the accompanying warmer weather – we’ve put together a few road trips completely built around a few of the region’s local drive-ins.  That’s right – because WHY NOT? These places can only be enjoyed for such a short time each year and besides – who doesn’t love finding that perfect burger/ ice cream joint? (if you’re into that sort of thing, that is).
Roll down those windows and get ready to salivate – here are our top picks!


Busy B Drive-In – Boissevain, MB







*photos by: Sandy Black Photography & Busy B Drive-In

The Busy B Drive in is one of Boissevain’s most cherished spots, serving up Canadian classics such as poutine, burgers, chicken, tasty frozen treats and so much more – including custom ice cream cakes for special occasions (like the one picture above – DROOOOL).

Wander through the town and embark on a self-guided tour of the Boissevain Outdoor Art Gallery, a Manitoba Star Attraction which features 17 larger than life historical murals for you to enjoy.  A full list of the murals and their location, as well as a mural scavenger hunt can be found in the link above.

Continue South along the #10 highway for a selfie with Tommy Turtle – a local roadside attraction standing at 28 feet tall! Keep heading South for about twenty minutes and you will reach the International Peace Garden, another Manitoba Star Attraction that straddles the Canadian-U.S. border and offers 25 acres of scenic outdoors and botanical artistry.

Wanting to stay the night and turn this into a weekend getaway? William Lake Campground – just 25 minutes Southeast of Boissevain in the Turtle Mountains – offers a beach, boat launch and multiple canoe/kayak launching points as well as fantastic hiking opportunities.  Explore the Turtle’s Back Trail on your way to the Turtle’s Back Summit for a spectacular view of Southwest MB; where the range’s prominent hill offers unspoiled views for miles! Another great option in Turtle Mountain Provincial Park are the new Turtle Mountain Adventure Huts, located near Adam Lake and serving as the perfect base-camp spot for all of your adventuring.

For more inspiration visit:


NOTE: Be sure to visit International Peace Garden’s website for details beforehand, as visiting this attraction is considered International Travel and requires you to download an app for re-entry into Canada.

Summer Shack Drive-Inn, Carberry, MB







*photos by: Craig & Nichole Photography

A must stop while in Carberry, The Summer Shack is sure to satisfy a hankering for that classic juicy burger, fries and a milkshake combo. If you’re really wanting to level up – make those fries ranch fries (deep-fried taters topped with fresh mozza, green onion, bacon and sweet ranch dressing, pictured above), you won’t be disappointed!

While in town, make your way over to the Carberry Museum & Gingerbread House; a fully-restored beauty and one of the only three found in all of Canada! Be sure to also stop along main street and pop into Offbeat ‘N Antiques, an antique store specializing in farmhouse prairie vintage items, such as old general store items, advertising, automobile collectibles and more.

Now, you all knew it was coming… but, COMMON, “What’s a visit to the area WITHOUT a stop at the nearby Spruce Woods Provincial Park“? Another MB Star Attraction (that’s right, Westman boasts 12 of the Province’s 63 star attractions, ahem #notsohumblebrag), this park is truly one of a kind;  offering a wide assortment of scenic hiking opportunities, set in a desert-like ecosystem – sand dunes and all! Always a favourite, the self-guided Spirit Sands & Devil’s Punch Bowl Trails, just a short 20 minute drive South of town along highway #5 offers breathtaking views.  Another short 10 minute jaunt South and you’ll find Sara the Camel, standing proud & tall (just shy of 17 feet) as a symbol of the Glenboro community and in representation of the Spirit Sands.

Head back to the park for the night and stay at the Kiche Manitou Campground, or stay at the nearby Forest Hills Cabins , located on Swan Lake First Nation adjacent to the park – which offer all pine lofted cabins for rent that also come equipped with BBQ’s, central air, TV’s and your OWN PRIVATE HOT TUB!

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Velvet Dip – Brandon, MB








*photos by: Velvet Dip

With their doors having first opened back in 1965, Velvet Dip has been serving up ice cream and nostalgia in Brandon ever since. Carrying a huge selection of hard & soft ice creams, as well as a great variety of dip flavours (peanut butter, cake batter & toasted coconut – oh my!) and specialty menu items such as the Velvet Turtle Supreme and the Monster Sammich (two monster cookies from Kuipers Family Bakery with vanilla ice cream in the middle), it’s not hard to see why!

Next up, head to Brandon Tourism’s website and choose one of the numerous themed self-guided/guided walking tours that highlight the city’s history & architecture, art & culture, and even nature.

A quick 5 minute trip North of Brandon off the #10 highway, you will find the Commonwealth Air Training Plan Museum, the only museum in Canada dedicated entirely to the airmen who trained and fought for the Commonwealth during World War II. Showcasing aircraft, artifacts and memorabilia from the time period, it’s easy to see why this site has been named one of only six designated Signature Museums in the Province, as well as Manitoba Star Attraction and National Historic Site.

Kick up your feet and take in a show in the evening at the Western Manitoba Centennial Auditorium; Brandon’s performing arts centre. Music, comedy, theatre, dance, and kids’ entertainment are all frequently part of the line up and sure to entertain.

For more inspiration visit:


NOTE: If you are in Brandon for the weekend, we suggest planning for a mini day trip outside of the city to visit one or more of the communities listed above/below – many of which are just a short drive away. For example, Minnedosa is only 30 mins from Brandon and Neepawa just another 20! Souris’ iconic swinging bridge is approximately 35 mins SW of Brandon and heading NW of the city, you’ll find Rivers Provincial Park – which means you can enjoy the best the city has to offer and the beach in the same day 😉

CJ’s Snack Shack and Mini Golf – Rivers, MB








*photos by: CJ’s Snack Shack

Want to head somewhere that has it all in one spot? Make CJ’s Snack Shack and Mini Golf, located within the rolling hills of Rivers Provincial Park your next destination for fun. Not only does this place offer a full hot & cold menu (with unique items such as pizza burgers, deep fried Oreos & deep fried PB & J’s!) – but they also have an on-site mini golf course as well as kayak rentals and bait shop so that you can enjoy some time paddling/fishing on Lake Wahtopanah, which is just steps away from the snack shack.  Prefer to soak up the sun and lay on a towel reading? A nice sandy beach area with a playground, picnic area and washrooms is also just around the corner, as well as the provincial park’s campground – so everything is easily accessible by foot.

Be sure to head to the town of Rivers, located less than 3km away – where you can stop and see the Rivers Railway Station; a one and a half  story structure originally built in 1917 for the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway and designated a National Historic Site in 1992.  Interested in more of the areas rich history? Take a short detour 8km Northwest of town and visit the Clack Family Heritage Museum, a unique pioneer museum that boasts a collection of antique automobiles, equipment and pioneer artifacts.

Peruse through the many beautiful items at All Things Hanna; a portrait art studio and women’s ethical fashion & gift store, located in a gorgeous mid-century former church in Rapid City, about 20 minutes Northeast of Rivers.

Looking for a fun and peaceful daytime activity out in nature? Head to Lucky Break Ranch & Tack (about 20 minutes away from the park) where you can get out for a trail ride without the hassle of caring for, catching and saddling your own horse! The wonderful owners/guides have a lovely group of horses that will take you out to tour the valley, see the buffalo, and explore the beautiful surrounding area.

For more inspiration visit:



Dari-Isle Drive-In – Minnedosa, MB







*photos by: Dari-Isle

The Dairy Isle Drive-In in Minnedosa has been a town staple for visitor’s and locals alike since 1965 – serving delicious homemade burgers and gluten free soft ice cream, as well as a wide range of hot menu items, including fish & chips and deep fried pickles – something to satisfy any craving. 

Grab your swimsuit and get ready to hit Minnedosa Beach; a large, sandy area that has a picnic area, boat launch, playground, concession stand, kayak club and even a fun open floating water park; Splish Splash Waterpark! This one’s a must see for the kiddos (or the kids at heart).  The town is also known for its Museum & Heritage Village, which neighbours the lake and features 9 restored heritage buildings; fully furnished with period artifacts from days gone by – water wheel, trout pond and windmill included. 

Right along Main Street downtown, we recommend a stop in some of the vibrant and unique shops the community boasts, including Inspire Studio of Fine Arts; an art studio & gift shop with a flair for the rural, and local artists within Western Manitoba. A short walk away, you can stay at the gorgeous Farmhouse Loft (this is a coveted spot – be sure to book in advance), housed on the second floor of Farmhouse 50; where you can grab a morning coffee before heading out for the day or more local gems from Manitoba artisans in the shop. Prefer camping? Book one of the sites right near the beach at the Minnedosa Campground.

Time to hit up Neepawa, only a 20 minute drive West! First stop: Farmery Estate Brewery; a designated Manitoba Star Attraction and North America’s First Estate Brewery, where visitors can see first-hand how the product is made from start to finish.  Neepawa is not only home to one Star Attraction, but two – with Margaret Laurence Home being the second; a designated heritage site that features a wealth of original furnishings as well as artifacts from the internationally renowned author, who lived in the house with her grandfather from 1935-1944.

The town is home to the Lily Nook; a landscaped six acre open garden that showcases over 1,500 named varieties of Lilies and where you can also purchase bulbs for your own garden.

Love hiking? The Langford Recreational Trail System makes for a scenic walk and if biking is more your speed, you will love the HyLife Back Forty Multi-Use Trail Park. This 5.1 km cycling course combine short technical climbs and flow trail descents to challenge any cyclist. Technical features include rock and wood drops, table top jumps, wall rides, log rides and lots of berms. Get ready for lots of WEEEEEEE-ING!

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Lickety-Splits Drive In – Gladstone, MB







Located right on the Yellowhead (#16) highway in Gladstone, Lickity-Splits offers its famous hand-made burgers and french fries (or ‘frings’ – a combo of onion rings & french fries, for when you can’t decide between the two), hard and soft ice cream as well as full menu including items like the perogies & sausage platter.

Keep on the #16 for another minute and you’re sure to not miss Gladstone Happy Rock – another must stop spot for a selfie with this popular roadside attraction, which also serves as a visitor centre for the town. Next, head downtown and treat yourself to some retail therapy at Heart and Soul Balance; a full service florist & gift shop offering a large variety of unique items – where you’re sure to find something for anyone & everyone!  Just a block away is the Gladstone Bakery, known for some of the best baked goodies in Westman.  Do yourself a BIG favour and pick up an order to go of some of the MOST DELICIOUS pastries (looking at you, whipped cream filled long johns) that we’ve EVER tried.

A one minute walk away, you’ll see the historic 1902 former Galloway Bros. Department Store, one of the first department stores to be built outside a major city in Manitoba.

Camp at the beautifully maintained Williams RV Park and Campground, which offers up full-service and riverside site options, as well as an on-site community pool and playground. Alternatively, 30 minutes Northwest from Gladstone is a truly one of a kind experience to be had at Journey Home Artist Retreat in Waldersee, where you can spend the night in a Mongolian Yurt and immerse yourself in a beautiful prairie setting overlooking a quarter mile of the Big Grass River.  Experiential creative, healing & wellness packages as well as culinary offerings that are sure to impress (made by your wonderful hosts) really make for a memorable experience.

For more inspiration visit:


The Beach Hut – Killarney, MB







*photos by: Craig & Nichole Photography

Ahhh… does anything say Summer more than spending the day at the beach and enjoying an ice cream cone to beat the heat? The Beach Hut, located just across from the main beach at Killarney Lake, gives you the chance to do just that.  After a day soaking up the sand and water, hop on over to enjoy some of the best burgers and ice cream around, as well as a game of Mini Putt Golf.

Great camping spots are available at the Killarney Agricultural Society Campground; tucked right around the beach and Erin Park, which has a great splash pad and playground for the kids, as well as Kerry Park Campground, located on the north side of the lake and boasting more than 100 serviced sites.

History buffs will love the Turtle Mountain Flywheel Club Museum, where one can find as many as 100 engines on display, ranging from a one horsepower unit to a Ruston-Hornsby diesel that powered the community’s first Pool Elevator.

If you like a good game of golf, Killarney Lakeside Golf Club; dubbed the ‘hidden jewel of the South’ and well known for its lush greens and scenic fairways, is an 18-hole course with a full service clubhouse, pro shop and driving range.

Fancy a relaxing day spent pampering yourself instead? Visit The Mary Ann Moore Wellness Centre downtown and treat yourself to a float therapy session, massage or other treatment at this full-service spa that offers many ways to unwind.

Last but not least, a stop worth making for art enthusiasts is The Heritage Home for the Arts, which provides a creative, dynamic and all-inclusive space to promote the growth of the community’s vibrant arts & culture – with new exhibitions to view each month (see website link above for more info on upcoming exhibitions).

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The Dairy Bar – Souris, MB







*photos by: Craig & Nichole Photography

The Dairy Bar in Souris offers up not only your typical drive-in fare (though they still do, don’t worry!), but also a great selection of lighter options, like their Mediterranean and Southwest Power Bowls or Cauliflower bites, as well as your typical options with a twist.  Try the Tres Tacos, Mexi Fries (both pictured above) or the High Tide Fish Burger for that WOW factor!

Make your way downtown and stop in at Lagasse’s Studio of Fine Art, which houses an outstanding collection of unique handmade items from over 100 local Manitoba artists and businesses. This is the perfect place to find that special gift for a loved one (and yes, self-love counts because you won’t be able to hold back in this store). Turn left when you exit the store and find the Souris Swinging Bridge just a few blocks away – another of those Manitoba Star Attractions we just can’t seem to get enough of 😉 This attraction draws approximately 5,000 visitors each year and holds the title as the longest swinging pedestrian bridge in Canada! Just beside this famous attraction, you can’t miss a stop at the Hillcrest Museum, designated as one of Canada’s most important heritage properties, where you can step back in time and learn about the community’s founder as well as period displays showcasing life in the early 1900’s, World War memorabilia, an agricultural exhibit, extensive mounted butterfly collection, vintage fire engine, CP Rail Caboose and more.

Oh, did we mention to keep a lookout for the community ambassadors – the TOWN PEACOCKS? In Souris, it is not unusual to spot a peacock (or two, or three… or ten) roaming about freely through town and you will quickly come to see that the community has embraced their unique mascot in many ways; with Peacock Days celebrations in the Summer and many of the shops carrying peacock souvenirs. How fun is that?

Head to Victoria Park and follow the walking trails through to the lookout tower, which offers an unsurpassed panoramic view of the town, river, lush forests and agricultural lands that surround the area. Feel like a day out on the water? Rent a kayak or canoe (or SUP, party island, or water mat) from River Rat Rentals and explore the beauty of the Souris River and surrounding area. They also offer bike rentals so if land is more your speed – they’ve got you covered. This park is also home to Souris’ Outdoor Pool , which features four slides, lazy river and beach-like entry. Stay at the parks campground, which offers wonderfully maintained sites or the Souris Hotel, located downtown and known for it’s friendly service and well-appointed rooms.

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Joe Dandy’s – Oak Lake, MB








*photos by: Joe Dandy’s

Conveniently located just off the Trans-Canada Highway in the charming town of Oak Lake, Manitoba, Joe Dandy’s is owned and operated by five siblings with a passion for high quality food and a desire to serve their community. Whether you’re craving a hot and tasty meal, or you’re looking for a cool treat after a long summer day, Joe Dandy’s is the perfect place to get exactly what you’re looking for.

Head 30 minutes West towards Elkhorn and stop in to explore the Manitoba Antique Automobile Museum, housing a collection of more than 100 vintage autos, steam engines, farm machinery and antiques, as well as a restored school house, pioneer home and church on the grounds. Just a few minutes away in town, you will find Samantha’s Boutique; the trendy store with the pink door – where you can browse the fantastic selection of ladies fashion & accessories, home décor and more. Want to find more great local gems? Head back towards Virden and check out the outstanding variety of stores this town has to offer, including Shari Lyn Fashions; a trendy boutique store offering the latest fashions and Flower Attic & Gifts; a two story gift and flower shop jam-packed with some awesome finds!

Feel like making the most of what the area has to offer!? We recommend staying at Aspen Grove Campground; a campground with ALLL the amenities, including picnic tables, fire pits, heated pool, free hot showers, mini golf, volleyball, walking trails, WiFi and of course campsites (they even have a few RV’s for rent to save you all the hassle).  No trip to Oak Lake is complete without a trip to the nearby Oak Lake Provincial Park, where you’ll find a beautiful sandy beach, playground, convenience store and one of Manitoba’s finest 18-hole Championship Golf Courses; Oak Island Resort & Golf.

Prefer to stay in a hotel? Book a room at Jays Inn & Suites right in Virden and plan your daily adventures from there. Speaking of nearby adventures – be sure to check out Eternal Springs, located only 7 miles East of town and includes 2 small stocked trout ponds, a 66-foot swinging bridge, BBQ pits, hiking trails, and day-use picnic areas.

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* Tourism Westman would like to acknowledge that Southwest Manitoba encompasses Treaty 1 and Treaty 2 Territory and is located on the original territory of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dene and Dakota Nations, and the homeland of the Métis Nation.  Acknowledging these original caretakers is a reminder of our unique heritage, our important relationship and our obligations to and shared responsibilities with Indigenous Peoples.
* Please contact individual businesses directly for operating hours and policies.  Throughout the Province, please continue to adhere to all current recommended COVID-19 guidelines.