This town of 6,000 (2016) was established in 1875 and is the largest Icelandic settlement outside Iceland. The town’s name means “home of the gods” or “great hall of heaven” where brave men gather with the Norse god Odin. The town has a Viking statue and the oldest Icelandic cemetery in Canada. The town also became famous in the early 1980s as the site of the “worlds heaviest glider landing” as an Air Canada jet from Toronto to Fredericton ran out of fuel in a metric conversion mistake and glided in to an abandoned airstrip.
Annual events include Sun Country (mid-July), Icelandic Festival of Manitoba (early August), Sun Fest (mid-August).
Gimli Motorsport Park
3 km west on Hwy 231 (at highways 8 & 9)
This 2 kilometre asphalt racetrack hosts sports car races, motorcycle races, and drag races for professionals and amateurs.
Historically, this track was also the landing strip for the famous “Gimli Glider”, an Air Canad passenger jet that ran out of fuel on a 1983 Toronto-Fredericton flight (due to a metric conversion error) and ended up gliding to a safe landing here.
Gimli Historical Museum
62 2nd Avenue, 1 block east on the waterfront
Housed in the 1915 Gimli Public School, exhibits about the town’s Icelandic and Ukrainian heritage as well as the Lake Winnipeg commercial fishing industry. Open daily 10 am to 4 pm July & August; Wed – Sun 10 am to 6 pm in June. Admission $2, Ages 5-16 $1, family rate $5.