Speaking of Manitoba, Canada, the land of Polar bears flashes in our minds immediately. But, it's so much more than that! Having mesmerizing lakes, extraordinary museums, spectacular northern lights, and unique festivals, there are plenty of reasons to visit Manitoba.

10 Little Limestone Lake

Canada reminds us of snow, mountains, polar bears, conifer trees right? But who on earth can contemplate that it beholds a tropical seeming lake in Northern Manitoba. Despite Manitoba being one of the coldest places, the lake seemingly shares characteristics with islands to the south in summer. Being the world's largest and spectacular lake, "Limestone Lake" has the ingredient marl, due to which it changes color often. If Marl sounds Greek to you, it is Calcium Carbonate - a rich deposit.

When the temperature is high, it is formed as "Calcite", separating out of the water and forming crystals with a milky turquoise hue. As the temperature dips, the calcite dissolves, the marl depletes and the water is evidently clear. This dramatic color transformation is from dull blue-gray to aquamarine to sky blue. The underground lime deposits have been present for centuries for now. It is located on Highway 6 near the Northwest Tip of Lake Winnipeg and is available for an array of activities such as boating, hiking, and camping.

9 Seeing the Northern Lights

Apart from Norway, Sweden, Manitoba is the perfect hub to dance under the coveted "Northern Lights" or "Aurora Borealis". Even though Yukon and Northern Territories are popular places for it, Churchill entices everyone around the world, being the top three spots of the world. It is exactly below the auroral oval and the prime months to see them are January to March. The vivid spectacle of Aurora Borealis can be divided into three stages: Expansion, Break Up & Recovery.

In the expansion stage, the green glow is fairly visible, the breakup phase is where the lights scatter in multiple colors and scramble all along while the final stage is pulsating lights. Churchill is deemed to have 390 nights of northern lights a year. Apart from the northern hemisphere, Manitoba has options in the south to view the Northern Lights. They are "Flin Flon" on the border with Saskatchewan, " The Pas" and "South Of Winnipeg".

Related: Canada’s #1 Tourist Attraction Shares A Border With The U.S.

8 Festival du Voyageur, Winnipeg

An annual 10-day winter festival taking place at Saint-Boniface in Winnipeg, Manitoba is held each February in Canada. One can bask in celebrations highlighting International snow sculpture contests, snowshoe races, musical performances, charity fundraisers, media-related competitions, historical, educational and recreational activities. The main aim is to celebrate the history and traditions of Metis, the original inhabitants of Manitoba, The Voyageurs, boatmen employed by fur companies for trading goods back then, and First Nations, any groups of indigenous people of Canada. It started in 1970 to promote the impact of these communities in Manitoba and maintain the legacy.

A whole spread of food delicacies is a part of this event right from Tourtière, Poutine, Vegan Wild Mushroom Strudel, mashed potatoes topped with pork and gravy, pea soup, different types of wine, Caribou, a staple drink of this festival, served in an ice glass and traditional cuisine of this region. A lot of revenue is generated through this event as well as it receives immense funding.

7 Narcisse Snake Dens

A provincial wildlife management area, home to almost 10,000 Garter snakes writhing around is an attraction in Manitoba, located next to Highway 17 and 103 km north of Winnipeg. The place is quite suitable for snakes as the topsoil sits on top of limestone eroded by water, creating a network of caves. As per a professor at Oregon State University, it's the biggest concentration of snakes. Breeding is the main purpose of them coming together in spring and it hibernates underground in winter. Snakes are quite thin and not highly venomous in nature. The best time to visit this place is late April and early May.

6 Canadian Museum for Human Rights

The first museum in the world dedicated to history and understanding of human rights. In 2000, a Winnipeg-based Media tycoon, Izzy Asper introduced the idea of a museum exploring human rights. It was built primarily to examine issues such as racism, genocide, atrocities due to the holocaust and educate people about human rights.

Designed by the architect Antoine Predock, this museum has a total floor space of 2,60,000 square feet with five main levels, three mezzanine levels, and a 328 ft tall glass structure called " Tower of Hope". The stupendous monument has a 17ft difference on each level from ceiling to floor. The jaw-dropping architecture of the whole museum cost a whopping price of $351 million and is 2,60,000 square feet of total building area. It is timeless with panoramic views and landscape. Almost 50 years were needed for this marvelous creation and it was opened on 10th Aug 2008.

It forayed with themes such as " Indigenous Perspective", "Canadian Journeys" and "Examining the Holocaust". The goal of this museum is to promote human rights, propagating freedom of expression and respect for each other. Although, having separate galleries for Holocaust and Persecution of Aboriginal met controversy from groups including Ukrainian Canadian Congress, German Canadian Congress, and few.

Related: Quebec’s Old City Is UNESCO-Listed & Other Reasons To Visit

5 The Forks, Winnipeg

Manitoba is incomplete without visiting Forks, marking the confluence of Red and Assiniboine Rivers. Apart from that, Forks Market has garnered a lot of attention due to the multitude of food kiosks, dining spaces, specialty shops for souvenirs, entertainment options, and reviving the rich history of Forks.

The green space is bustling with food emporiums having gourmet cheeses, meats, organic baked goods, wine and shops of aromatherapy products, unique types of cigars, and artworks from local and Canadian artisans. The market is open year-round and it earns generously. While the place Forks is also known for skating rinks, trails, and snow parks.

4 Riding Mountain National Park

Having 3 different ecosystems such as grasslands, upland boreal, and eastern deciduous forest, this national park is a home for a diversity of flora and fauna. Around 3.5 hours west of Winnipeg and the nearest airport being Dauphin and Brandon, it's easily accessible. The entry permit fee of an adult is $8.50 and $7.00 for a senior. Wildlife is abundant ranging from black bears, elks, moose, bison, cougar, wolves, porcupines, coyotes, white-tailed deer, snowshoe hares, and a variety of other species. Apart from the animals, there are also freshwater lakes such as Clear Lake, Lake Audy, Moon Lake, and Whirlpool Lake. One can also have an incredible experience of hiking And camping.

3 Churchill River For Beluga Whales

Manitoba strikes polar bears and northern lights at once but the presence of whales isn't that conspicuous yet. Beluga whales, also known as "White Whales," visit Churchill River Basin and Hudson Bay Area. These giant whales are quite harmless towards humans and are intelligent, friendly, and curious. Whale lovers can view the highest concentration of them from June To September.

2 Land of Polar Bears

The famous residents of Churchill, Manitoba are none other than Polar Bears and thus, it's renowned for being "Polar Bear Capital Of The World". The challenges of staying in Churchill involve staying on the periphery of the Arctic and sharing the land with the biggest carnivore, Polar Bears. The residents live with many precautions albeit few accidents have taken place where rules were defied. The economy of Churchill is primarily supported by tourism propagated by Polar Bears, Northern Lights & Beluga Whales.

Most prime time to view polar bears is from October to November. In winter, the best way to view Polar Bears is by tundra vehicle tours offered by famous operators like Great White Bears Tours and Frontiers North Adventures.

1 Icelandic Festival

The Icelandic Festival of Manitoba, "Islendingadagurinn" persists to be one of the oldest festivals harkening back the Icelandic culture and heritage. The event turns quite vibrant due to Icelandic fashion show, beach sandcastle contest, traditional festivals, Music On The Rooftop Event, Fris Nok tournament, a homegrown sport played with a bottle and Frisbee, and other live events. The event is held every August in Gimli, Manitoba.

Next: A Complete Guide To Polar Bear-Watching Tours In Manitoba