Saskatchewan has always been close to my heart. For as long as I can remember, we’d take family road trips through the Rocky Mountains to visit my grandparents, camping along the way. The Rockies were spectacular, with their craggy peaks and hairpin turns, but Saskatchewan’s open skies and endless fields took my breath away. When the mountains melted into meandering foothills and finally mellow plains, that’s when I felt at home.
What to do in Saskatchewan
Haven’t had a chance to visit yet? If you’re wondering what to do in Saskatchewan, look no further. Over the years, I’ve seen a thing or two in the province and rounded up my top 5 places to visit! Whether you come for the culture or to explore the stunning scenery, the “Land of Living Skies” does not disappoint.
Go back in time at the Western Development Museum
As children, my sisters and I loved losing ourselves in Saskatoon’s Western Development Museum! Stepping through the doors was like going back in time. It’s a great way to learn about some of the province’s settler history, more specifically the “boomtown” era. Ever wondered what it was like to be a homesteader or work at the local printing press back in the day?
Experience it for yourself! The Museum’s well known for its re-creation of a 1910 era boomtown. Wander through perfect replicas of a homestead, newspaper office, dentist office, police station, bank, saddle shop and more! For my sisters and me, who were obsessed with Little House on the Prairie, this was a dream come true!
More interested in the mechanical side of things? Peruse displays of vintage cars and farm equipment.
All in all, the Museum’s a fantastic place to travel to in Saskatchewan. It’s fun for the whole family and will keep the kids entertained for hours.
Float in Little Manitou Lake
Did you know Saskatchewan has its very own version of the Dead Sea? Neither did I until last year!
Little Manitou Lake is located in the heart of Saskatchewan, near the town of Watrous (100 km east of Saskatoon). With only three bodies of water in the world like it, you’ll want to add Little Manitou to your list of places to visit in Saskatchewan!
The lake’s fed by underground springs and is rich in sodium, magnesium and potassium. Although it’s about half the density of the Dead Sea, bathers can float in it. Yes, you too can be that guy or gal reading the newspaper while floating on your back in the middle of a lake. How’s that for a profile pic?
Not only is it fun to experience weightlessness, but the lake is said to have healing properties as well. Since the 19th century, First Nations people have gathered at Little Manitou, submerging themselves in the healing waters to cure what ailed them. Nowadays people come to camp, float and use the spa.
Learn to Polka on a horsehair floor at Danceland
While you’re in the neighbourhood, why not check out the legendary Danceland? This world-famous dance hall was built in 1928 and has been providing locals with a place to get down and socialize ever since.
The 5,000 square foot dance floor is made of maple wood and horse hair. In its hey-day, people used to come from miles around to cut a rug on the famous bouncy floor! Local legend has it(and my grandma agrees), the King himself, Elvis Presley once played there! Go the extra mile and learn to polka at the Manitou Beach Fall Polkafest.
Commune with the land and people at Wanuskewin Heritage Park
On one of our yearly trips to Saskatchewan, we visited Wanuskewin Heritage Park; I was impressed. The landscape was mystical and the tour guides knowledgeable. The experience has stayed with me ever since!
Located just above the South Saskatchewan River, Wanuskewin is easily accessible from Saskatoon. Once a gathering place for the Indigenous people of the northern plains, the area contains some of the most unique archaeological finds in North America; many of which pre-date the Egyptian pyramids.
Visitors can relive the stories of the peoples who came here to hunt bison, gather food and escape the harsh winter winds. As a visitor, you’ll learn about First Nations history, the bison hunt, traditions and current perspective through culturally aware art exhibitions and tours.
Brush shoulders with Al Capone in the Tunnels of Moose Jaw
Although I’ve never been to the Tunnels of Moose Jaw, it’s on my list of places to visit in Saskatchewan! Ever since I learned that notorious gangster, Al Capone used to run his racquet here during prohibition, I’ve been fascinated with the place. To this day, visitors can venture beneath the streets of downtown Moose Jaw and experience a guided theatrical tour of the tunnels.
In the 1920s unsavoury types, including Capone himself, used the tunnels to help smuggle illegal booze into the US. Under Chief of Police, Walter P. Johnston, Moose Jaw had become a hideout and playground for American gangsters—a hotbed for gambling, bootlegging and prostitution. Rumour has it that Johnston even provided refuge to gangsters on the run…and in return they made sure the streets were free of any “serious” crime.
Whether you’re going to float in the Little Manitou’s healing waters or hit up the Tunnels of Moose Jaw, don’t forget travel health insurance. It’ll protect you if you experience a medical emergency away from home. Learn Why You Need Travel Insurance, Even Within Canada.
Have your own list of places to go in Saskatchewan? Share below! Interested in travelling to other areas of Saskatchewan or another prairie province? Check out 10 Fun Things to Do That Manitoba Does Better.