Throughout much of Canada’s history, Manitoba has played a key role in the development of our nation. It has been the gateway to unlimited opportunities and new beginnings for generations of pioneers. The rich prairie soil has nurtured a proud heritage of many people, united in building a strong, culturally diverse society.
Often referred to as the ‘Keystone Province’, Manitoba is located near the geographical centre of North America. Winnipeg, the capital city, is often called ‘The Gateway to the West’, and because of its central location in Canada, has become one of the most important cities in the country. Many national and international companies having established their offices there.
Manitoba is a fairly level province with slopes interspersed among rolling hills that reach a height of 2,700 feet. Its total area is 251,000 square miles, almost twice the size of the United Kingdom. It encompasses a land surface area of 212,000 square miles, with the rest being water contained in the many thousands of lakes. The majority of the lakes are located in the northern part of the province. From north to south, Manitoba measures 761 miles, with the more populated area of the south being 280 miles wide. Even though Manitoba is so large, it only has a population of 1.3 million people, over half of whom live in Winnipeg. The rest of the population is mainly spread over the southern part of the province, where agriculture is the predominant industry. Northern Manitoba has some mining towns, First Nations Reserves, and Inuit communities, but other than these, it is mainly uninhabited. Manitoba’s population is a fascinating blend of people from many ethnic backgrounds, including English, Scottish, Icelandic, Ukrainian, Swedish, Danish, German, Dutch, Polish, and many more. All these people are proud of their backgrounds, regularly celebrating their heritage in festivals through the province, and portraying the customs and cuisines of more than fifty cultures. Winnipeg is known for its multiculturalism.