This is an extract from my newest book called
9 Canadian Cities: Victoria to Montreal via Whitehorse and Yellowknife
Saskatoon is on the South Saskatchewan River in the Canadian Prairies. There are leafy parks on both sides of the river which make lovely places for a stroll during the day. I walked from the Riversdale area of the city through River Landing, where the Remai Modern Art Gallery is, under the bridges and along the Meewasin Valley trail to Kiwanis Memorial Park and then on to Kinsmen Park.
Riversdale is a lovely area with street art, modern renditions of old travel posters, reinvigorated buildings, a superb second-hand bookshop, and plenty of places to eat and drink for all meals of the day. The art includes musk oxen on 20th Street West, a Spirit of Alliance sculpture on a roundabout at Avenue A South, and the Egg Money sculpture on Sonnenschein Way at Avenue B. This piece is a tribute to Saskatchewan pioneer women. Commissioned by the Saskatoon German Days Committee and created by artists Don and Shirley Begg, it depicts a woman feeding chickens while two children play nearby. On the granite blocks surrounding the bronze sculpture are the names of twenty-four Saskatchewan pioneer women from varying ethnic backgrounds who came to Canada in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
The posters from the classical days of luxury travel on the French Riviera are on 20th Street West near the Magic Lantern Roxy Theatre just before Peryton Books, a wonderful used bookstore with plenty of space to walk around and where the staff have labelled the various sections of books clearly. On the opposite side of the street, one block further west, is the unassuming Park Café where you can get a filling breakfast that will last you the entire day. It’s the sort of place where the servers reserve favourite corner tables for people who eat there every Sunday of the year. From here it’s a pleasant stroll down a street full of good-looking houses towards the river and Victoria Park, which has two wonderful sights. You hear the wind chimes on the sculpture, The Coming Spring, before you see its slender curves amongst the trees. Close by is the beautifully decorated Chinese pagoda, with distinctive amber roof tiles and glorious paintings of dragons on the underside of the roof.