Regina is one of Canada’s great prairie cities – and it offers a surprising amount of space for outdoor adventuring. The Trans Canada Trail weaves its way through the historic Wascana Centre, a 1000-hectare park in the middle of the city. This beloved green space is the geographic and cultural hub of the city, and Wascana Lake – an artificial lake completed in the 1880s as an alternate source of water for the growing city – often serves as a setting for public events and celebrations.
This itinerary takes you on a journey from one side of the city to the other, covering approximately 13 kilometres on a connecting pathway through Regina. Please note that you will not finish where you started, as this is a non-looping route.
This excursion can be used as a route for a leisurely bike ride, a handcycle adventure, a more strenuous hike, or even a ski outing (if there’s sufficient snow on the ground). Whichever way you choose to tackle the Trail, be sure to pack snacks, water and protection from the elements. The prairie sun can be intense!
You may also choose to cover specific sections of this itinerary on a day when you’re looking for a shorter option.
Now, let’s begin.
In many ways, following the Trans Canada Trail in Regina is like park hopping and your adventure begins on the east side of the city in Riverbend Park. Follow the Trail; you’ll be heading south. You’ll move parallel to a small creek, passing through Harding Park and then under Arcola Avenue.
Continue following the Trail pathway, you will pass through Westminster Park, and then cross to the south side of Assiniboine Avenue East where you will head west and come upon the Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery.
Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery
Established in 1953, Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery is a quiet, park-like setting. Historians will appreciate the Veteran’s Cenotaph, which was unveiled on Armistice Day in 1926 to honour local soldiers killed in combat in the First World War.
Once you pass through Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery, you will cross Ring Road and join the Wascana Trail. Follow the path that leads you south on Wascana Trail to continue your journey.
University of Regina and the First Nations University of Canada
You will find yourself between the shores of Wascana Lake and university grounds.
On site is the architecturally stunning home of the First Nations University of Canada, which specializes in Indigenous knowledge.
Also on the grounds is the University of Regina, founded in 1911, one of the province’s intellectual and research hubs. For a meal, grab a burger or a vegan poutine at the Lazy Owl, a student-run restaurant and event venue.
As you wind along the shores of Wascana Lake in a beautiful park setting, you will come across the Saskatchewan Legislative Building and Grounds.
Saskatchewan Legislative Building and Grounds
The Saskatchewan Legislative Building is designed according to Beaux-Arts principles of symmetry, grandeur and elaborate ornamentation. Three-storeys high, the building is a steel construction, sheathed in smooth buff-coloured limestone. Learn more about the Saskatchewan Legislative Building (and the province’s history) with a free tour in English or French, available every 30 minutes from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., seven days a week.
Following the path, you will see the Albert Memorial Bridge – the longest bridge over the shortest span of water in the world! Don’t cross the bridge, though. Your route continues along the path towards Kiwanis Park.
A lovely location to stop and catch your breath. Check out the waterfall or have a snack at one of the picnic tables. Keep your eyes peeled for a variety of bird species, including the massive white pelicans that feed on river fish.
Once you’ve replenished your energy levels, carry on towards Les Sherman Park.
Les Sherman Park
One of the biggest green spaces along your Regina journey, Les Sherman Park offers a playground, shady spaces to rest, and a giant beaver. Yes, you read correctly. The big beaver – a ceramic-concrete figure created through a collaboration between volunteers and students under the guidance of Ken Tollefson – was installed in 1980 and is certainly worth a look. (It is, after all, Canada’s noble national animal.) For even more creativity, nip into the Art Gallery of Regina to see works from Saskatchewan’s most innovative minds. Exhibitions vary.
Next – head towards home plate at Optimist Park!
Who could ask for a better park name? While this park is largely devoted to baseball, we recommend stopping for a quick photo by the park sign. (Also: washroom facilities are available.)
For your seventh inning stretch, Grassick Park should be next on your list.
Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of your journey. The finish is demarcated by the official Trans Canada Trail Pavilion. On the pavilion, you’ll be able to read more about the Trail in Saskatchewan and get a sense of the thousands of donors who helped make it possible!
The Regina International Airport (YQR) connects the local community to many major Canadian cities. On the ground, Regina Transit can transport you to this journey’s starting point, or transport you from the finish point to your next destination.
Want to explore more of the Trans Canada Trail in Saskatchewan? Check out these other journeys: