The city of Regina is the capital of Saskatchewan, but only the second-largest city in the province, after Saskatoon. Located about 180 kilometres from the U.S. border, above Montana and North Dakota, the city was coaxed from the flat and featureless Northern Plains. Established in 1882 as a major stop on the Canadian Pacific Railway and named for Queen Victoria, Regina is now noted as an active commercial, historical and cultural center.
One of the top tourist attractions in Regina is the Wascana Centre, a 9.3 square-kilometre park full of walking trails, picnic spots, ponds and lookout points, with sweeping, scenic views. A great spot for nature lovers, Wascana Centre contains Wascana Lake and the Waterfowl Park, home to ducks and geese who winter there rather than flying south. Visitors might also spot jack rabbit, mink, beaver and red fox.
The Royal Saskatchewan Museum, also part of the Wascana Centre, features the Life Sciences Gallery, which examines the natural diversity of the region, and the First Nations Gallery, where visitors learn about the history and culture of the Native American people in Saskatchewan. Sure to delight both kids and adults, the Megamuch Exhibit features a half-scale robotic Tyrannosaurus Rex that moves and roars but never bites.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police have long had an almost mythical allure, with their striking red jackets, brown hats and black horses. Those looking for things to do in Regina can discover the real history of the Mounties at the RCMP Heritage Centre, from times when they were frontier police protecting the Northern Territory to the present, when this highly-regarded police force uses forensic science to solve crimes. These officers are not Dudley Do-Right, by a long shot.
For sports fans, one of the top tourist attractions in Regina has to be a trip to Mosaic Stadium at Taylor Field, to catch a game by the 2007 Grey Cup-champion Saskatchewan Roughriders. Expect very enthusiastic, sometimes rowdy local fans, affectionately known as the Rider Nation, cheering on the Green and White after a rousing rendition of “O Canada.” The city of Regina and the Roughriders Football Club were selected to host the 2013 101st Grey Cup Championship.
Blues enthusiasts in Regina will want to attend the Mid-Winter Blues Festival, held at different locations around Regina from late February to early March. Acclaimed blues musicians, like Canadian favourite the Powder Blues Band, play at venues such as the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, as well as local restaurants and bars.
Those wanting to test Lady Luck and experience some exciting, sophisticated nightlife can find it in at one of the top tourist attractions in Regina, the Casino Regina. Located inside the historic Union Train Station building, a National Heritage site, Casino Regina is the perfect spot for those craving non-stop action, with its 800 slot machines and 40 table games, among them Texas Hold ‘Em, Craps and Roulette. Open 7 days a week, Casino Regina features Vegas-style, world class musical performers such as Smoky Robinson, along with comedy.