Arrival Airport: Regina International Airport (YQR)
Overnight Stops: Regina – Saskatoon – Edmonton – Calgary – Medicine Hat – Regina
What to See & Do on the Canadian Prairies?
The wide-open prairies were once grasslands with buffalos are now endless fields of wheat and canola. Start at Regina, see the home of the RCMP, and head up to Saskatoon, and then west through oil country to Edmonton, home of the massive West Edmonton Mall. Head south to Calgary, in the foothills of the Rockies, and then east to Drumheller to see badlands and our dinosaur past at the Royal Tyrell Museum. Heading back east you see more grasslands, and sand dunes, and All Capone’s reputed tunnels in Moose Jaw.
Arrive in the modern capital city of Regina (1), where you can enjoy Wascana Park, a wetland oasis in a sea of otherwise relatively dry farmland. Visit the RCMP Heritage Centre, home to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and learn about the Northwest Rebellion that caused its formation, and its role in the peaceful settlement of the West. Head northwest to Saskatoon (2), known as “River City” for its many bridges over the wide and winding South Saskatchewan River.
Travelling west along Yellowhead Highway you’ll pass through North Battleford, home of a historical fort and museum of early settler and Indian conflicts. Once here, you’re only a short trip to the border city of Lloydminster, with its significant oil and gas production, as well as the city of Vegreville, with its large Ukrainian population and the world’s largest Pysanka Easter egg.
Continue from here through the fertile farmland and oil and gas production lines to land in Edmonton (3), the provincial capital. Edmonton is also home to the exciting West Edmonton Mall, Canada’s largest shopping mall, and host to many summer festivals. Don’t forget to take in the exhibit celebrating the 1949 Leduc Oil Strike or visit one of Edmonton’s most iconic structures, the Muttart Conservatory which offers a year-round escape into the beauty of the world’s plant life.
Drive south to Calgary (4) and once in town, head up the Calgary Tower for a panoramic view of Calgary’s forest of office towers and the magnificent Rockies . The city is home to the Calgary Stampede, Heritage Park , Canada Olympic Park, the Olympic Hall of Fame , and the famous Calgary Zoo with its Prehistoric Park .
As you head east from Calgary, across the prairie, detour north to Drumheller, known for is canyons and hoodoos, to visit the Royal Tyrell Museum of Palaeontology. Continue east to see lakes south of the highway, and Canada’s longest aqueduct at Brooks , and end the day with an overnight stay in Medicine Hat (5), which was built on top of a natural gas field. The next day, continue east into Saskatchewan ending your trip back in Regina (6) where you can enjoy a few of the shops, restaurants and galleries.
From Medicine Hat you can detour south to the Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park. When you get east of the AB-SK border, you can visit prairie town Swift Current and the Great Sand Dunes just to the east, and then Moose Jaw, home of the Prohibition era underground tunnels, as well as home base to Canada’s Snowbirds aerobatic team.
The prairies are FLAT and endless. There’s so much to see and do. Did you know there is a waterpark inside West Edmonton Mall? It’s unbelievable! – Lisa