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Saskatoon is a city in central Saskatchewan. With a metropolitan population of about 257,000 people, it is the province's largest city. It's a little oasis among wheat fields.


Saskatoon's downtown as seen from the University Bridge.

The name Saskatoon comes from a native word for a berry that grows along the river called missaskquahtoomina. Saskatoon is located along the South Saskatchewan River and is known as a city of bridges, which has led, along with its cultural sophistication and wealth of Art Nouveau architecture, to its nickname as the Paris of the Prairies. Saskatoon is home to the University of Saskatchewan, which is home to "The Canadian Light Source" [34] which is Canada's only synchrotron.

Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daily highs (°C) -10 -6 1 11 18 23 25 24 18 11 -1 -8
Nightly lows (°C) -20 -16 -9 -1 6 11 13 12 6 0 -9 -17
Precipitation (mm) 15 11 12 24 52 60 63 43 33 17 13 14

See the Saskatoon 7-day forecast at Environment Canada

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker Airport (IATA: YXE, ICAO: CYXE) [35] serves domestic, international and northern communities.

When flying within Canada either Air Canada [36], Jazz [37], and WestJet [38] can be flown. These airlines link Saskatoon directly to major Canadian cities such as Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Ottawa/Montreal, and Toronto. Flights to Regina are served by Express Air - a West Wind Aviation company.

When flying internationally Delta Airlines [39] and United Airlines [40] fly to Saskatoon from the United States. International flights are available to Minneapolis, Denver, Salt Lake City and Chicago.

To get to the city centre from the airport:

  • Saskatoon Transit: Route 11
  • Rent a vehicle from one of the car rental companies
  • Cab: Should run you approximately $12

By train[edit]

The Canadian is a train operated by VIA Rail that departs three times/week from Vancouver to Toronto (and vice-versa). It serves passengers from Edmonton and Winnipeg. A train from Toronto will take over two days and the prices in economy are only slightly cheaper than flying, depending when you book. Note that Saskatoon's passenger rail terminal is located in the southwest end of the city, so travel to and from the station will require taxi for those without transportation arrangements.

By car[edit]

Saskatoon is on the Yellowhead Highway branch of the Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 16) which connects to North Battleford and Edmonton to the west and Winnipeg to the east. This highway is entirely divided (save for a few minor exceptions and construction zones) between Edmonton and Saskatoon. Saskatoon eastbound on Highway 16 to Winnipeg is single lane to Portage la Prairie, Manitoba. Highway 11 connects to Prince Albert to the north and Regina to the south and the leg to Regina is divided for all but a few kilometres of its length (driving time to Regina is about 2 1/2 hours); this is the primary route for motorists heading off for North Dakota. You can also drive via Alberta Highway 9/Saskatchewan Highway 7 from Calgary, but this highway is not divided except for some very short sections; nonetheless, it is the main route for Saskatonians and visitors wishing to drive from Saskatoon to Calgary, the West Coast and the northwestern US.

By bus[edit]

Saskatchewan Transportation Company[41] connected Saskatoon to most Saskatchewan communities, but due to provincial government budget cuts, STC shut down operations at the end of May 2017.Greyhound Bus Lines[42] connected Saskatoon to most other cities throughout Canada by way of Edmonton and Winnipeg. On Oct. 31, 2018, it ceased operations in Western Canada.[43] Rider Express[44] has, as of 2018, service from Saskatoon to Regina, Prince Albert and Edmonton. KCTI Travels[45] travels between Saskatoon and Edmonton 5 times weekly.

Get around[edit]

Sasktoon Transit [46] serves most of the city. Both regular and express (DART) service is provided. Most buses go through the downtown terminal and it is very easy to get anywhere in the city from this terminal, located between 2nd and 3rd Avenue on 23rd Street. Timetables for every bus can be found at the downtown terminal or online[47]. At outlying stops, call the 'Phone & Go' line (975-7500) and use the 4-digit stop code to determine information about the routes that service that stop.

Saskatoon is a very bicycling friendly city and boasts the second highest per capita commuter cycling rate in Canada. Recreational cyclists will enjoy exploring the Meewasin Valley Trail along the South Saskatchewan River. Almost all parts of the city are accessible by bicycle and bicycle lanes and routes are marked along some key corridors... be careful because there are also a lot of bad drivers.

Walking is also a great way to get around Saskatoon. If your accommodation is in or close to the Downtown, you will be within walking distance to Saskatoon's best shopping, educational and cultural attractions.

Taxis are easy to find but generally pricey. A ten minute drive (enough to get you most places in the city if it's not rush hour) will cost $10-15. Call Blueline at 653-3333 or Radio at 242-1221, or just hail a taxi. Prices are set by the city so the cost should be equal.

All told, however, Saskatoon is a relatively compact city and outside of rush hour it's easily possible to drive across the city in 15 minutes or less. In 2013 the city completed its ring road system (Circle Drive) making it easier to travel to all parts of the city. In the fall of 2018, two new road bridges were opened to traffic: a replacement for the iconic Traffic Bridge, one of four connecting to downtown (thereby reducing traffic congestion issues since the original bridge was closed in the early 2010s), and a new bridge in the far north of the city connecting the major roadways McOrmond Drive with Marquis Drive (and, by extension, Highways 11 and 16).

See[edit][add listing]

The Bessborough Hotel overlooks the Saskatchewan River and is probably the most famous landmark in the city. Note: If you wish to replicate the famous image of the hotel seen over one of the bridges, head for Saskatchewan Crescent immediately west of its intersection with Broadway Avenue at the south end of the Broadway Bridge.

Be sure to check out the seven bridges (including two railway bridges); sadly, the city's first bridge, the Traffic or Victoria Bridge, which dated back to 1907 and was as much an icon as the Bessborough, was dismantled in the early 2010s due to safety concerns. A replacement bridge, which opened in 2018, was, however, designed to look like the original bridge.

Bessborough on an early evening from the street(s).

Do[edit][add listing]

If you have young children, the rides at Kinsmen Park cannot be beat. There is a miniature train, Ferris wheel and merry-go-round (all of which were upgraded in 2015). This attraction is near the Kinsmen Play Village, the Ukrainian Museum of Canada and across the street from the former Mendel Art Gallery, which as of fall 2015 is in the process of being converted into a children's museum. (The art gallery itself has been replaced by the Remai Art Gallery of Saskatchewan in the new River Landing development downtown.)

Saskatoon Blades - Catch the local Western Hockey League team in action at the Credit Union Centre. The Centre is located in a remote part of northern Saskatoon (a matter of local controversy ever since it replaced the downtown arena in the 1980s); although there is a bus route serving the area, expect to have to take a taxi or rent a car.


Saskatoon hosts many festivals and events during the summer. These include:

Saskatoon Exhibition. Annual fair with the usual assortment of midway rides and live entertainment. Usually held in early August.

Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan [48] - Saskatchewan's only professional theatre. Performs Shakespearian plays in a pair of large tents beside the former Mendel Art Gallery across from Kinsmen Park in July and August.

Art in the Heart - this is a great little event in the Caswell area. There is artist vendors from Saskatoon, as well as crafts, face-painting and henna. Live local music is playing all day, and there is a kid's area in the Church Basement where they can do crafts and learn a play. Truly a unique experience to check out when in Saskatoon. Late September.

SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival [49] - Major jazz festival. Combines free public performances, beer gardens at the Bessborough Hotel with major artists, and various paid performances in venues around the city. Runs from mid-June through the beginning of July.

Northern Saskatchewan International Children's Festival [50] - Children oriented activities located on the riverbank of Saskatoon in June.

Saskatoon International Fringe Festival [51] - Street performances and alternative theatre centred around Broadway Avenue in August.

Folk Fest [52] - an annual, multi-cultural festival comprised of up to 25 ethnic pavilions located throughout the city. Inside each pavilion, visitors will find cultural displays, dance, song, food, folklore, fables and skits. Runs in August.

Canada Remembers Airshow [53] - Dedicating to remembering Canada's veterans, combines ground displays of intage aircraft, WW II trainers, fighters and bombers as well as the latest in jet-powered aircraft. Has active air acts which include vintage WWII aircraft, current military aircraft, and the Canadian Forces' Snowbirds Demonstration Team. Runs in August. 2009 will be its last year of performance.

A Taste of The Saskatchewan [54] - An Annual festival in which 30 of Saskatoon's finest restaurants are featured and provide Hors d'oeuvre and live entertainment. Often taking place in the latter half of July, the festival's riverside location provides an excellent atmosphere.


Diefenbaker Canada Centre [55] - The Diefenbaker Canada Centre is a unique public facility, combining the only Prime Ministerial archives, museum and research centre in Canada. The galleries feature permanent exhibits on John G. Diefenbaker, who was prime minister from 1957 and 1963 and a fixture in Canadian politics until his death in 1979, and who grew up in Prince Albert and Saskatoon. The centre features period replicas of the Prime Minister's Office and Cabinet Room (ca. 1950's) and temporary exhibits relating to diverse topics. His grave is also nearby. Diefenbaker is honoured at a number of other locations in Saskatoon; a statue at the southeast corner of 21st Street and 1st Avenue South, across from the main entrance to Midtown Plaza, commemorates the date a young Diefenbaker sold a newspaper to Prime Minister Wilfred Laurier on that spot.

Ukrainian Museum of Canada [56] 910 Spadina Cres. E. (again along the South Saskatchewan River), ☎ +1 306 244-3800, 10AM-5PM (Tu-Sa); 1-5PM (Su, seasonal); closed Mondays. The Ukrainian Museum of Canada vividly preserves and recreates Ukrainian culture in Canada through temporary and permanent displays.

Wanuskewin Heritage Park [57] - 5 km north of Saskatoon on Wanuskewin Rd. Wanuskewin is an international visitor site to learn about 6,000 years of First Nations culture.

Western Development Museum [58] - The museum features 1910 Boomtown, the longest indoor museum street in Canada, which presents the time of pioneer settlement and farm expansion in the Canadian West. It illustrates the technological progression of agricultural and transportation practices through interpretive displays and extensive artifact displays. It also has a large collection of vintage farm machinery which is worth a look if you are interested in mechanical things. In July, the WDM hosts Pion-Era, a celebration of the past that includes demonstrations and other events. The museum also hosts other community events such as the popular Thresherman's flea market.

University of Saskatchewan [59] - Many buildings in the University have permanent, free exhibits set up. Most notable is the Biology Building, which has 2 full-size models of dinosaur bones, as well as some animals to look at.

Remai Modern [60] - Formerly Remai Art Gallery of Saskatchewan, this facility in the River Landing development in the downtown core is the city's primary art gallery and hosts many events. It replaced the Mendel Art Gallery on Spadina Crescent; the Mendel, as of 2019, is being converted into a children's museum.

Buy[edit][add listing]

There are various shopping malls all around the city. Midtown Plaza, is probably the most convenient place for tourists to go to since it is in downtown Saskatoon. It is the largest mall in the city with over 130 stores and services, with the city's largest department store, The Bay. The mall used to be home to a Sears location until the chain collapsed in 2018; that end of the mall has been renovated into a new food court and smaller retailers. The next biggest malls are The Centre at Circle and 8th on the east side of the city (created by the linking of two previously standalone malls in the 1990s); The Mall at Lawson Heights in the north, which is the closest major mall to the numerous hotels and motels in the airport area; and Market Mall, which is primarily a locals mall in the city's southeast.

So-called "power centres" featuring standalone "big box" retailers can be found at Blairmore on the west side, Stoneridge in the south, on Preston Avenue North off the northeast leg of Circle Drive, and new power centres as of 2019 are under development in Rosewood in the city's extreme southeast and Brighton on the east side. The city's largest commercial strip is along 8th Street East, beginning at Clarence Avenue and continuing east (note, however, that east of Cumberland Avenue where the main portion of the commercial strip begins, 8th Street is not pedestrian-friendly).

Individual retailers of note include:

  • Darrell Bell Gallery, 317–220 3rd Ave S, [1]. For contemporary art and craft  edit
  • McNally Robinson, 3130 8th St E, +1 306 955-3599, [2]. Large bookstore and cafe.  edit
  • Midtown Plaza, [3]. Downtown and it is one one of Saskatoon's largest shopping centres. It contains many of the usual Canadian chain stores, and has a Hudson Bay.  edit
  • Rouge Gallery, 208 3rd Ave S, +1 306 955-8882, [4]. For emerging and established Canadian artists.  edit
  • Turning the Tide. Just off Broadway (Behind Lydia's) is an excellent store with a great selection of books and videos for your (R)evolutionary media needs.  edit
  • Saskatoon Farmer's Market, 414 Ave B S. Every Saturday all year round the Farmer's Market is held in this building. Holds an array of ethnic and homegrown foods sold by locals, as well as some arts & crafts.  edit
  • The Trading Post, Second Ave (between 20th & 21st Sts). Aboriginal Art, local handicrafts, mocassins, beads and other random Saskatchewan stuff. Great place to buy gifts or souvenirs.  edit

Do go shopping along Broadway Ave. There are lots of little boutique shops worth checking out.

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Calories Bakery and Restaurant, 721 Broadway Ave, +1 306 665-7991, [5]. A intimate french restaurant with local art, focusing on French cuisine from fresh Saskatchewan-made ingredients. Has a bakery in the back with delicious desserts, and amazing cheesecake.  edit
  • Nutana Cafe, 806 Broadway Ave, +1 306 653-4562. Norm whips up the best Vietnamese Noodle Bowl. Just ask for the special. Closed for two hours during the afternoon when he picks up his kids from school.  edit
  • Homestead Ice Cream and Cappuccino, 902 Victoria Ave, +1 306 653-5588. Old fashioned ice cream parlor complete with old school outfits and a jukebox. Wide range of ice cream flavours (including some ridiculously funky ones), milkshakes, sundaes and other yummy goodness. A must stop.  edit
  • Riversdale Delicatessen & Market, 101c 20th Street West (Corner of Idylwyld Drive and 20th Street), (306) 654-3355, [6]. 10 am - 8 am. Riversdale Deli is an Italian inspired deli in the heart of Saskatoon. They offer artisan sandwiches featuring local ingredients, house made soups, and salads that reflect the changing seasons. Their Charcuterie Platters feature dry-cured meats, cheese, olives, and antipasto items. There is a large marketplace with a variety of imported and local goods including fresh produce, pasta, buffalo mozza, and imported items. Highly rated. budget.  edit
  • Dairy Queen, 1722 8th Street East. One of the last of its kind, the 8th Street East Dairy Queen is a walk-up ice cream vendor, still in the same format as it was when it opened in the 1960s (contrary to most Dairy Queen locations that later were redesigned as restaurants or confined to mall food courts). An ideal place to get an ice cream, milk shake or "Blizzard" on a hot day, this location is usually closed during the winter months. Its only drawback is there is no seating; locals generally enjoy their treats either inside their vehicles or they find a shady spot beside the building to lean their bikes.  edit


  • Various fast food places.. Easily found around the city. Also keep an eye out for small Chinese-Canadian places. They can be good at a reasonable price.  edit


  • Alexander's Restaurant and Bar, 414 Cumberland Ave, +1 306 956-7777, [7]. American (Really good veggie and hamburgers). They have a nice bar upstairs. They have the best French Fries in the city.  edit
  • Fuddruckers, 2910 8th St E, +1 306 955-7777. Only location in Canada. Great burgers and fries with a help-yourself concept to add toppings to your burger. Nice atmosphere and friendly staff. Buffalo burger recommended.  edit
  • Granada House Family Restaurant, 904 22nd St W, +1 306 664-3700. A excellent family owned Greek restaurant. Excellent lasagna.  edit
  • Broadway Cafe, 814 Broadway Ave, +1 306 652-8244, [8]. 50's themed restaurant with very good American food. Good selection of burgers, and excellent milkshakes.  edit
  • Las Palapas Resort Grill, 910 Victoria Ave, +1 306 244-5556, [9]. Mexican, Caribbean and Latin American cuisine.  edit
  • The Rook and Raven, 154 2nd Ave S, +1 306 665-2220. Gastropub in the heart of downtown.  edit
  • Taunte Maria's Mennonite Restaurant, 2210 Millar Ave, +1 306 384-3414, [10]. Mennonite restaurant with hearty breakfast and lunch items. The farmer's sausage, vareniki, green borscht and pies are delicious. M-F 7:00-15:00, Sat 8:00-14:00. Closed Sun.  edit


  • 2nd Ave Grill, 10-123 2nd Ave, +1 306 244-9899, [11]. "The 2nd Avenue Grill has a delicious selection of soups, appetizers, greens, burgers, wraps, sandwiches, pizzas, pastas, seafood, poultry, pork and beef dishes." $9-33.  edit
  • The Granary, #2806-8th St, +1 306 373-6655, [12]. "This is a must-visit restaurant in Saskatoon. The interior is decorated with objects found in the first prairie settlements. The exterior looks like a grain elevator. Nothing says "Saskatchewan" more than the Granary." $20-50.  edit
  • Moxie's Bar and Grill (Moxie's), 3134 8 St E, +1 306 374-9800, [13]. "Fine cuisine. Great for drinks in a quiet atmosphere after-hours as well" $20-60.  edit
  • Truffle's Bistro, 230 21st St E, +1 306 373-7779, [14]. Small but elegant family owned bistro that uses local products. Main courses include duck, beef, fish and vegetarian dishes.  edit
  • Truffle's Bistro, 230 21st St E, +1 306 373-7779, [15]. Small but elegant family owned bistro that uses local products. Main courses include duck, beef, fish and vegetarian dishes.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • The Yard and Flagon Pub, 718 Broadway Ave, +1 306 653-8883. A British-style, relaxed pub atmosphere located on trendy Broadway. Voted Saskatoon's best chicken wings, $4 on Tuesday. In the summer there is an amazing rooftop patio.  edit
  • Buds on Broadway, 817 Broadway Ave, +1 306 244-4155, [16]. A blues bar with live music, pool tables and lots of friendly bikers.  edit
  • Amigos Cantina, 632 10th St E, +1 306 652-4912, [17]. A Mexican Cantena. Restaurant by day (the best veggie burger in the city) and other great cuisine. At night it transforms into a hopping live music venue. Tons of bands pass through from indie to punk.  edit
  • Hose and Hydrant Brew Pub, 612 11th St E, +1 306 477-3473, [18]. If you feel like dressing up and dancing to popular radio music, this is the place to go. They also do offsale (although a little overpriced). Used to be an old fire hall.  edit
  • Vangelis Tavern, 801 Broadway Ave, +1 306 652-5173. There is live Sunday Jams, the occasional techno night, a pool table and Pac-man machine. The food is horrible, but sometimes it's a decent spot to grab a drink.  edit
  • Winston's English Pub and Grill, 243 21st St E, +1 306 374-7468, [19]. Attention Beer Drinkers: Winston's has the largest selection of imported and domestic brews. A wide range of stuff in bottles and a great selection on tap. Friendly pub atmosphere downtown.  edit
  • Louis' Pub, University Campus, +1 306 966-7000, [20]. A hot spot for young students, sometimes has live music.  edit
  • The Sutherland Bar, 810 Central Ave, +1 306 374-8873. A night club in east-central Saskatoon that is frequented by students.  edit
  • Jax Nite Club, 302 Pacific Ave, +1 306 934-4444, [21]. Night club frequented by an older crowd  edit
  • Dino's Bar and Grill, 906 Central Ave, +1 306 373-6666, [22]. Features the best Steak Sandwiches in all of Canada.  edit
  • Double Deuce Bar & Grill (The Deuce), In the Centre Mall on 8th St E, +1 306 477-7000. A very popular bar among young partiers, main night is Tuesday where they serve $2.50 drinks all night. Plays mainly top 40 mixes.  edit
  • 6Twelve lounge (612 Lounge), 612 Spadina Cres (Inside the Sheraton), +1 306 652-6770, [23]. Saskatoon's Best Lounge (Planet S) 6Twelve is a lounge where guests can experience craft cocktails and cutting edge share plates, in a warm and inviting atmosphere. Their philosophy is based on a commitment to fresh & creative drinks, music, and food, which are always presented without pretension.  edit
  • Manchester Bar & Grill (Manchesters), 110 33rd Street West, 306-955-6000, [24]. This is a lovely brasserie serving high-end beer, wine and food. A must do dinner and drink for business meeting or date night out. Outstanding environment serving only quality ingredients.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]


  • Drake Roost, 121 AVENUE J SOUTH, 3062627121, [25]. checkin: flex-able if notified; checkout: Noon. Owner occupied home that rents rooms out to frugal travelers $60. (52.1283744,-106.6901871) edit
  • Days Inn, 2000 Idylwyld Dr N Circle Dr, 306-242-3297, [26]. Accommodation choice for business, family, and leisure traveler. Located near the John G. Diefenbaker International Airport.  edit
  • Campland Rv Resort, 9.5km NW of saskatoon on Hw 16, (306) 477-7444, [27].  edit


  • The Travelodge Hotel Saskatoon, Idylwyld Dr and Circle Dr, (toll free: +1 888-278-4209), [28]. The Travelodge is on the North side of Saskatoon and is situated at the intersection of Idylwyld Drive and Circle Drive. The Travelodge Hotel Saskatoon is the largest Travelodge in Western Canada and the 2nd largest hotel in Saskatchewan.  edit
  • The Parktown Hotel, 924 Spadina Cres E, +1 306 244-5564, [29]. Established in 1958, graces the South Saskatchewan riverbank along the Meewasin Trail.  edit


  • Delta Bessborough, 601 Spadina Cres E, [30]. A four star ten-story hotel. It is built in the "chateau style" typical of Canada's other railway hotels. Many of the rooms look on to the river. The room style can best be described as "shabby genteel".  edit
  • Hilton Garden Inn Saskatoon Downtown, 90 22nd St E, +1 306 244-2311, [31]. $169-209.  edit
  • Sheraton Cavalier Hotel Saskatoon, 612 Spadina Cres E, +1 306 652-6770, [32]. The Sheraton is just across the street from the Bessborough, and looks onto the river.  edit
  • Radisson Hotel Saskatoon, 405 20th St E, +1 306 665-3322. The hotel is Saskatoon's tallest hotel with views of the South Saskatchewan River and the city.  edit
  • Saskatoon Hotel, 1301-8th Street East, +1 (306) 343-1676 (, fax: (306) 956-1313), [33]. You choose your own type of room according to your requirement. Beautifully designed rooms with special soft pillow mattress will provide you with a touch luxury and comfort.  edit

Stay safe[edit]

Saskatoon has a fairly high crime rate per capita, but this tends to be concentrated in small areas of the city.

The majority of the alphabetized avenues west of Idylwyld, from Avenue B through to Avenue Y (often referred to as "Alphabet Soup" by locals) are considered to be sketchy, with a high amount of gang/drug activity, violent crime and prostitution. It's probably best to avoid this part of town, particularly the alphabet avenues south of 22nd Street, and also immediately surrounding the 33rd Street intersection with Idylwyld. That said, it's usually relatively safe during daylight hours - and there's little reason for tourists to be in these parts of town anyway, although efforts are being made to turn 20th Street West into a destination centred on the historic Roxy Theatre, and the stretch of 33rd Street west of Idylwyld has a number of popular antique dealers.

Although it is the city's major commercial strip, 8th Street East, once you proceed past Cumberland Avenue, is not pedestrian-friendly and one must be mindful of traffic entering and exiting the many parking lots.

Downtown has garnered a reputation for hosting a number of sometimes-aggressive panhandlers, particularly along 21st Street near Midtown Plaza and 2nd Avenue.

The east side of the river has the general reputation among locals of being safer than the west side.

The usual common-sense rules apply, and you should be fine.


There is a free wireless internet network in the whole of Saskatoon’s downtown core, as well as on the University of Saskatchewan campus [61].

Get out[edit]

Routes through Saskatoon
EdmontonNorth Battleford  W noframe E  YorktonPortage la Prairie
ENDSPrince Albert  N noframe S  → Davidson → Regina

In addition to the above, Saskatchewan Highway 7 links Saskatoon to Alberta and is the primary route for those travelling to Calgary, Alberta, and southern British Columbia.

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