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Thompson, a city North of 53 in Manitoba, the largest city in northern Manitoba, and the third largest in the province. With a population of about 13,000 (2016), Thompson is the hub of the north. About 35% of the population is Indigenous.


Highland Tower, Canada's largest photo-real mural. Robert Bateman's "Wolf Sketch" painted in 1990.

The modern history of Thompson began in 1956 when a major ore body was discovered. The community was founded in 1957 following an agreement with the Government of Manitoba and Inco Limited. Thompson is a planned community and is named after Inco's chairman, John F. Thompson. The population has been estimated as high as 26,000 residents prior to the recession in the 1970s.

Thompson came to be known as "The Hub of the North", as it functions as a centre for politics and commerce in the region. However a decline in population occurred during the following decades, levelling off around 13,000 people.

Its most prominent local industry is the mining, milling, smelting and refining of nickel. Aside from Vale Ltd., Manitoba Hydro, Calm Air, MTS and the provincial government employ the majority of the people in Thompson.



Thompson is marked by a subarctic climate. Monthly means range from −23.9 °C (−11.0 °F) in January to 16.2 °C (61.2 °F) in July. Though a majority of the annual precipitation of 509 millimetres (20.0 in) falls from June to September, winter is by no means devoid of precipitation. Snow falls mainly from October to May, with generally small accumulation in June and September, totalling 187 centimetres (74 in) per year.

Get in


By plane


By train

See also: Rail travel in Canada

By car


Thompson is 761 km from Winnipeg via Highway 6, 384 km from Flin Flon via Highway 6, 10 and 39. From the Minnesota/Manitoba border via Highway 6, 101 and 75, it's 870 km.

By bus

  • Mahikan Bus Lines, (bus depot) 936 Sherbrook Street, +1-204-677-4181. Operates bus routes in Manitoba. Service to Thompson from Winnipeg (9.5 hours away) including a stop in Cedar Grove (4.5 hours away). Operates two days per week. Same day transfer available at Cedar Grove for travel to and from The Pas and Flin Flon. Travel time to Thompson from The Pas is 7.5 hours and from Flin Flon is 9.5 hours.
  • Maple Bus Lines, (bus depot) 27-15 Selkirk Ave, +1-204-289-4154, toll-free: +1 833 339-4197. Scheduled service to Thompson from Winnipeg (8.75 hours, operates overnight).
  • Thompson Bus, +1 204 939-3991. Overnight bus to Winnipeg from Thompson (9.5 hours, $75) and daytime bus from Cross Lake (3 hours, $50).

Get around


By public transit


Thompson's public transit service is provided by Grey Goose Bus Lines ( +1 204-677-0360). There is also one designated handivan, Thompson Handivan Service ( +1 204-677-3478). There are 2 regular routes, Eastwood and Westwood, and an overload bus for before and after school service for R.D. Parker Collegiate. Hours of operation are M-Th 7:30AM-6:10PM, F 7:30AM-9:10PM, Sa 11AM-6:10PM, no Sunday service.

Thompson Transit operates two bus routes, which meet up at the Plaza Mall and Southwood as transfer points.

  • The Eastwood route stops at Plaza Shopping Centre (transfer point), City Centre Mall, Eastwood School, Princeton Towers, Highland Tower, Thompson General Hospital, Southwood (transfer point) and Wal-Mart.
  • The Westwood route stops at Plaza Shopping Centre (transfer point), Burntwood School, Norplex Pool, Southwood (transfer point) and R. D. Parker Collegiate.

By taxi


Taxi service is provided by: Driftwood-Nickel City ( +1 204-677-6000), North Star Taxi ( +1 204-778-3333), and Thompson Cabs ( +1 204-677-6262).



The Spirit Way Walkway


The Spirit Way Walkway highlights 16 points of interest with historical, cultural, geological, industrial, artistic, and scenic perspectives.


Miner Statue

Take a brisk walk downtown past the post office, the liquor mart and the homeless shelter. See some of Manitoba's finest in action.

  • Aviation Tribute, Mystery Lake Rd. Tribute to Lambair and Northern Aviation. Rebuilt Norseman float plane on banks of Burntwood River.
  • Bailey Bridge, Behind City Hall. Restored section of World War II bridge designed by Sir Donald Bailey. Point of Interest along Spirit Way walkway.
  • Howling Wolves Rockface. Start of Canada's largest rockface sculpture. A Spirit Way point of interest.
  • Tribute to Commerce. A unique scenic viewpoint separating wilderness and urban life, old fur trade routes, and modern shopping malls. A Spirit Way point of interest.
  • 1 Heritage North Museum, Princeton Dr & Mystery Lake Rd, +1 204-677-2216. Start of Spirit Way pathway. A beautiful log cabin building housing northern artifacts. A Manitoba Star Attraction.
  • Bateman Mural Viewpoint, 4 Nelson Road. Official viewpoint for largest lighted mural in the world.
  • 2 Bateman Wolf Mural, 274 Princeton Drive. Canada's largest photo real mural. Only mural of a Robert Bateman painting. Largest lighted mural in the world. A stunning masterpiece that can be seen a mile away.
  • 3 Tribute to Northern Firefighters, 30 Thompson Drive. The most unique statue in North America dedicated to Northern Firefighters. A tribute to municipal firefighters, forest firefighters, water bomber pilots, helitac crews, and mine rescue teams. A Spirit Way Point of Interest.
  • GPS Wolf Hunt, along Spirit Way pathway. 35 wolf statues in Thompson. 7.5 ft (2.3 m) high. 5500 lbs (2500 kg). Painted by northern artists. Part of a GPS Wolf Hunt to track down 49 statues in Churchill, Thompson and Winnipeg. Get your GPS Wolf Hunt Passport to start the Hunt and receive your personalized certificate.


An eminently useful selection of winter boots at the Thompson Walmart

Thompson has a large retail sector, providing such things as clothing for all ages, a pet store, jewellery stores, travel agencies, vehicle dealerships, and grocery stores.


  • 1 Northern Inn & Steak House, 104 Hemlock Cres, +1 204-778-6481. Su-Tu 7AM-4PM, W-Sa 7AM-9PM. Steakhouse.
  • Hub, 111 Churchill Dr, +1 204-778-5630. Daily 11AM-10PM.
  • 2 Santa Maria Pizza & Spaghetti House, 11 Station Rd, +1 204-778-7331. 24 hours. Italian restaurant with pizzas, burgers, sandwiches and pasta. Can meet passengers travelling by train at the train station. Deliveries start at 11am.




A liberal dose of howling wolf statues in Thompson




  • Super 8 by Wyndham Thompson, 180 Thompson Dr (from the south: once in Thompson, Highway 6 will become Mystery Lake Rd, continue to the 4th set of traffic lights and take a left onto Thompson Dr N, it is roughly 500 m from the lights; from the airport or the north: go south on Highway 6 into town, Highway 6 will become Mystery Lake Rd. in the town, at the first traffic light you will take a right onto Thompson Drive N, from there it is only about 500 m; from the train station: take Station Rd south, continue until you come to Mystery Lake Rd, which will be the second set of traffic lights, take a right, then a left at the next set of lights onto Thompson Dr N, from there it is only about 500 m), +1 204-778-0040, toll-free: +1-800-454-3213. Free WiFi, fitness centre. Doubles $96-116.
  • 2 Thompson's Best Value Inn & Suites (Lakeview Inns & Suites), 70 Thompson Dr, +1 204-778-8879, toll-free: +1 877-355-3500. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. In the downtown business district. Free deluxe continental breakfast, free high-speed internet, free DVD movies, fitness centre. Wheelchair accessible rooms. Doubles $115.





The local newspaper, the Thompson Citizen, is published on Wednesdays. A free newspaper, the Nickel Belt News, is distributed on Fridays.

Stay healthy


1 Thompson General Hospital is in the southern part of the city.

Go next

Routes through Thompson
Churchill  N  S  The PasWinnipeg
END  N  S  Pisew Falls Provincial ParkWinnipeg

This city travel guide to Thompson is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.