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The Forks National Historic Site of Canada

Variety Heritage Adventure Park Map

The French Quarter

Children playing drums and fiddles with brightly-coloured houses in the background in the French Quarter zone of the Variety Heritage Adventure Park Make some music in the French Quarter!
© Parks Canada

Fun Stuff to Try!

  • Take a peek inside the historic homes of Saint-Boniface
  • Make some music on the instruments scattered along the streetscape
  • Grab some friends and put on a show at the park’s bandstand!

Did You Know?

Saint-Boniface is the largest French-speaking community in Western Canada!

Before there was a Winnipeg, there was a Saint-Boniface—a thriving French-Canadian community across the Red River from The Forks. Saint-Boniface has been a landmark for centuries; if you look east, across the river, you can still see the landmark that inspired people to call Saint-Boniface la ville de la Cathédrale (City of the Cathedral).

The city of Saint-Boniface was officially founded by Bishop Provencher in 1818, but it had been a hub since the time of the fur trade. In politics, culture, and spirituality, Saint-Boniface is a community of firsts:

  • the first Roman Catholic mission, cathedral and educational institution in the west, all founded in 1818;
  • the first hospital in Western Canada, founded by the Sisters of Charity of Montréal (the Grey Nuns) in 1871; and
  • the longest-running theatre company in Canada, Le Cercle Molière, founded in 1925.

By the beginning of the 20th century, Saint-Boniface rivalled the expanding City of Winnipeg in energy if not in size, boasting grand homes and thriving businesses. Today, Saint-Boniface is still the heart and soul of the francophone west, and the “downtown” of Manitoba’s vibrant and evolving French-speaking community!

About VHAPHours of Operation | Adventure Park Rules | Water Park Rules | Map
Adventure Zones: The First Peoples | The Fur Trade | The Métis | The Settlers 
The Iron Horse | The French Quarter | The Metropolis