When it comes to Canadian travel destinations, the city of Saskatoon often gets overshadowed by its more famous counterparts such as Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. However, those who venture into the heart of the Canadian prairies are in for a delightful surprise, as Saskatoon is brimming with unique experiences and hidden gems. This picturesque city, known as the “Bridge City,” has a little bit of something for everyone – from nature enthusiasts and history buffs to foodies and art lovers. In this article, we will unveil some of the most unique things to do in Saskatoon that you won’t want to miss during your visit.
Unique things to do in Saskatoon 2023
1. Meewasin Valley Trail
The Meewasin Valley Trail stretches along both sides of the South Saskatchewan River, offering beautiful views and a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. This extensive trail network caters to walkers, joggers, bikers, and nature enthusiasts alike. While the trail is stunning year-round, visiting during the fall season provides a remarkable display of vibrant autumn colors. Some must-see stops along the trail include the Beaver Creek Conservation Area, the Meewasin Northeast Swale, and the beautiful riverfront parks.
2. The Berry Barn
The Berry Barn is an iconic Saskatoon institution that offers a delightful combination of delicious homemade food, beautiful scenery, and unique shopping. Located in a charming red barn overlooking the South Saskatchewan River, this family-owned establishment is famous for its homemade pies, hearty breakfasts, and delectable berry desserts. After enjoying a scrumptious meal, visitors can explore the gift shop, which features a wide variety of handcrafted items, local art, and unique souvenirs. During berry-picking season, guests can venture into the fields and pick their own fresh berries.
3. Wanuskewin Heritage Park
Wanuskewin Heritage Park is a national historic site and a testament to the rich Indigenous history of the region. This cultural center allows visitors to explore the fascinating history, art, and traditions of the Northern Plains Indigenous peoples through interactive exhibits, interpretive trails, and guided tours. Guests can also participate in traditional workshops such as tipi raising, traditional dance, and bannock making. Don’t forget to dine at the on-site restaurant, where you can sample authentic Indigenous cuisine and enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding landscape.
4. Black Fox Farm & Distillery
The Black Fox Farm & Distillery offers a one-of-a-kind experience that blends agriculture, spirits, and beautiful scenery. This family-owned and operated farm and distillery specializes in producing small-batch gin, vodka, and whiskey using locally sourced ingredients. Visitors can enjoy guided tours, where they can learn about the distilling process and the unique ingredients that go into each bottle. After the tour, guests can indulge in a tasting session and even take home a bottle or two of their favorite spirits. Seasonal events, such as the annual flower festival and pumpkin harvest, add extra charm to the experience.
5. Remai Modern
The Remai Modern is Saskatoon’s premier destination for contemporary art. This stunning museum, which opened in 2017, is an architectural masterpiece with an impressive collection of more than 8,000 works, including pieces by renowned artists like Picasso, Emily Carr, and the Group of Seven. The museum’s exhibits change regularly, ensuring that there’s always something new and exciting to explore. Visitors can also participate in workshops, attend artist talks, or simply relax in the on-site café, which offers stunning views of the river.
6. Prairie Lily Riverboat Cruise
A Prairie Lily Riverboat Cruise offers a unique and leisurely way to explore the South Saskatchewan River and Saskatoon’s picturesque riverfront. The Prairie Lily is an elegant riverboat that takes passengers on a scenic journey through the heart of the city, offering captivating views of the iconic bridges, lush parks, and vibrant neighborhoods that line the riverbanks. With both sightseeing and dining cruises available, visitors can choose the experience that best suits their preferences. During the warmer months, special themed cruises such as sunset voyages and brunch cruises add an extra touch of enchantment to the experience.
7. Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan
Each summer, Saskatoon comes alive with the magic of Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, an annual festival that presents the Bard’s classic plays in an idyllic outdoor setting. Nestled along the banks of the South Saskatchewan River, the festival’s main stage offers an intimate and immersive experience for audiences, who can enjoy Shakespeare’s timeless works under the vast prairie sky. In addition to the mainstage performances, the festival offers a variety of ancillary events, such as workshops, lectures, and musical performances.
8. Western Development Museum
The Western Development Museum offers a fascinating journey into the history and heritage of Saskatchewan. This vast museum features numerous exhibits that showcase the region’s agricultural, industrial, and social history, with a particular focus on the impact of technological advancements. Visitors can explore a reconstructed 1910 Boomtown, complete with historical buildings, artifacts, and even a vintage steam locomotive. Interactive exhibits and special events, such as the annual Those Were the Days festival, make this a memorable experience for visitors of all ages.
9. The Night Oven Bakery
A visit to The Night Oven Bakery is an experience in itself, as this local gem combines traditional baking methods with a passion for locally sourced ingredients. The bakery’s owner, Bryn Rawlyk, uses an old-world, wood-fired oven to create delicious artisan bread, pastries, and pizzas. Made with organic and heritage grains, the bakery’s offerings are not only delicious but also showcase the unique flavors of the Saskatchewan terroir. The bakery’s cozy atmosphere, coupled with its commitment to sustainability, make it a must-visit destination for food lovers.
10. Stoked Centre
For those seeking an adrenaline rush, the Stoked Centre offers an array of exciting activities that cater to adventure-seekers of all ages. This indoor adventure park features a trampoline park, a ninja warrior course, a climbing wall, and a parkour area. Whether you’re looking to test your strength and agility on the obstacle course or practice your flips on the trampoline, the Stoked Centre promises hours of fun and excitement for everyone.
From breathtaking natural beauty to rich cultural experiences and unforgettable culinary delights, Saskatoon offers a wealth of unique attractions that set it apart from other Canadian destinations. With its blend of urban charm and prairie hospitality, this vibrant city is truly a hidden gem that deserves a spot on your travel bucket list. By exploring these unique things to do in Saskatoon, you’ll be sure to create memories that will last a lifetime.
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