Cypress Hills Destination Area Located in southwest Saskatchewan, the Cypress Hills Destination Area will take you on a journey comprised of 18,000 sq kms of awesome! While some may view Saskatchewan as flat and boring, anyone who takes the challenge to drive 30 minutes or less directly south of the Trans Canada Highway will find that it is anything but.
To begin discovering a Saskatchewan you wouldn’t expect head to Grasslands National Park, located an hour south of the City of Swift Current, bordered by the Village of Val Marie. Here you can hike and camp in native prairie grasslands where Great Plains bison once again roam, or catch a glimpse of some of the many endangered species that call Grasslands home including the Sage Grouse, the Burrowing Owl and the elusive Black-Footed Ferret. Deemed as one of the most silent places on earth and one of Canada’s Dark Sky Preserves, here the hustle and bustle of your everyday busy life will simply melt away giving you the room to just breathe unencumbered.
Take part in interactive family programming, camping, guided hikes and kayaking adventures down the Frenchman River Valley or simply hike into the wilderness and camp wherever your feet take you.
Continuing on your journey of discovering what the Cypress Hills Destination Area has to offer, you’ll travel along Highway 13 through the Frenchman River Valley, where you will discover a rare mixture of Ghostowns and thriving communities offering fine-dining and accommodations, as well as camping, outdoor recreation, and one-of-a-kind museums including the T-Rex Discovery Centre, a satellite of the Royal Saskatchewan Museum and home to Scotty the T-Rex, Canada’s most complete T-Rex discovery.
Travelling to the other side of the Frenchman River Valley past the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Old Man on His Back, brings you into the Lodgepole pine forests of the Cypress Hills, known by First Nations who first visited the area as the “Thunder Hills.” Here you will discover the expansive and breathtaking Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park, which spans both Saskatchewan and Alberta. Canada’s only Interprovincial Park, no matter where your interests lie, no matter whether you want to camp, glamp or enjoy nature in luxury, you’ll find it all here. You’ll also find an abundance of wildlife species that includes: Moose, Deer, Elk, Pronghorn Antelope and the largest concentration of Cougars found in North America. All of which are scattered through the many “blocks” that make up the Park.
In the Centre Block you’ll find four-seasons of fun that include: luxurious accommodations and dining, ziplining, water sports, fishing, hiking and camping, as well as alpine sports, while over in the more rustic West Block in addition to plenty of non-serviced hiking and camping, you’ll find civilization in the area’s winery and the National Historic Site of Fort Walsh, birthplace of Canada’s Northwest Mounted Police, who later formed the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Here in the West Block you’ll also find one of the Canadian Tourism Commission’s signature Canadian Experiences through the cowboy adventures that await.
Entrance to the Cypress Hills from the Trans Canada Highway can be found in the Town of Maple Creek, Canada’s Greatest Western Town, where the past is present and the flavour of the Old West still resonates in its historic accommodations, fine-dining, and the festivals and events it hosts each year.
Over on the Alberta side of the Cypress Hills the fun and adventure of the Cypress Hills in the Town of Elkwater, where you’ll find additional resort-styled accommodations, Elkwater Lake for fishing, swimming, boating and other water sports, plenty of camping for RV’s and backcountry campers alike, and hiking and mountain bike trails, that double as alpine trails during the winter months.
Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures or indoor luxuries, the Cypress Hills Destination Area, literally has it all. Visit today and discover why we say, “It’s time to explore.”
Click Cypress Hills Region community links below or on the map to plan travel to that community.