Travel and Tourism

The tourism industry in Saskatchewan, which includes over 5,500 individual tourism operators and organizations providing services to the tourist, is comprised of eight major sectors: passenger transportation (scheduled and charter air, rail, boat, bus, taxicab and limousine services); travel services and travel trade (travel agencies, tour operators, other travel arrangements and reservations services); arts, entertainment and recreation (theatre companies and dinner theatres, spectator sports); heritage institutions (museums, historic sites, zoos and botanical gardens); amusement, gambling and recreation (amusement and theme parks, casinos, golf courses, marinas, skiing facilities); accommodation services (hotels, motels, resorts, bed and breakfast establishments/vacation farms, RV parks and campgrounds, hunting and fishing camps, recreational vacation camps); restaurants (including drinking places); and select retail operations (liquor stores, gasoline stations, and gift, novelty and souvenir stores).

In Saskatchewan, the tourism industry includes: 128 regional, provincial and national parks; 250 golf courses; 95 outdoor adventure operators; 600 heritage and cultural attractions; 225 museums; 52 art galleries; 6 casinos; 2 spas; 130 handicraft, antique and tea shops; 532 hotels and motels; 142 bed and breakfast/vacation farm establishments; 141 lakeside resorts; and 328 fishing or hunting outfitter camps. There are seven organized tourism regions in the province: north, west-central, Saskatoon, east-central, southwest, Regina, and southeast. There are also six major travel corridors: the Northern Woods and Water Route (Highways 9 and 55), the Trans-Canada Yellowhead (Highway 16), the Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 1), the Red Coat Trail (Highway 13), the CANAM International (Highways 35, 39, 6, 3 and 2/102), and the Saskota Flyway (Highway 9). In 2001, these businesses, organizations and regions supported almost 8 million annual trips to and within the province and over $1.3 billion in traveller expenditures. Annually, 3.5 million trips of less than twenty-four hours are made in the province; another 4.3 million trips of one or more nights are also made each year. These overnight or longer trips are made for a variety of purposes: 42% to visit friends or relatives; 34% for pleasure; 10% for business or convention purposes; and 14% for personal or other reasons.

Saskatchewan residents account for 93% of trips for less than twenty-four hours, while other Canadians account for 4% and United States visitors for 3%. For tourism purposes, the trips of one or more nights are the most important; Saskatchewan residents account for 65% of these longer trips, other Canadians for 29%, United States visitors for 5%, and visitors from other countries account for 1%. However, Saskatchewan residents account for only 45% of expenditures by those making trips of one or more nights in Saskatchewan, while other Canadians account for 35%, United States visitors for 17%, and those from overseas for 3%. Visitors come to Saskatchewan for outdoor experiences (over 1.6 million annual overnight or longer trips) and for cultural and heritage attractions (almost 800,000 trips). Key attractions include: northern fishing, canoeing and winter experiences; attractions such as Wanuskewin Heritage Park, the Eastend T-Rex Discovery Centre, the Saskatchewan Science Centre, and the four Western Development Museums in Moose Jaw, Yorkton, North Battleford and Saskatoon; six full-service casinos in Regina, Moose Jaw, North Battleford, Yorkton, Prince Albert, and White Bear Reserve; Temple Gardens Mineral Spa in Moose Jaw and Manitou Springs Resort and Mineral Spa at Manitou Lake; Prince Albert National Park, Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park, Meadow Lake Provincial Park, and Nipawin Regional Park; and golf courses such as Elk Ridge near Prince Albert National Park, Deer Valley near Regina, Evergreen at Nipawin, and the Willows and Moon Lake in Saskatoon.

Bonnie Baird