When Europeans pushed into the land that's now Manitoba in the late 1600s, they went for the wildlife. Or more accurately, they went for the wildlife's fur. Today, the province's rich supply of furry and fishy creatures—and the unspoiled wilderness in which they live—still draws travelers. One animal in particular—the polar bear—is more easily seen in Manitoba than anywhere else. Each year, the town of Churchill becomes a kind of way station for the migrating bears, allowing people a close-up view of one the largest predators in North America.

Wilderness enthusiasts also enjoy seeking out Manitoba's moose, black bear, caribou, white-tail deer and wide variety of birds, including snow geese, Canada geese, ducks, grouse, snowy owls, eagles, falcons and hawks. The water-blessed province offers excellent fishing and boating on the inland lakes and rivers and the opportunity to view seals and beluga whales in Hudson Bay.

The southern part of Manitoba combines the majestic expanse of the prairie with distinct farming towns of Ukrainian, Russian, Icelandic and Mennonite heritage. And lest you think Manitoba is entirely farmland, forest, lakes and tundra, there is also Winnipeg, a cosmopolitan center of culture and industry rising from the prairie.

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