Back in January, the New York Times listed Saskatoon as one of the top 52 places in the world to visit in 2018.
This week, the newspaper is testing that theory by sending a “52 Places Traveller” to experience the city.
Jada Yuan has been tasked with visiting every destination on the newspaper’s list, and Saskatoon is her 14th stop so far.
“It’s a really beautiful city,” she told 650 CKOM.
“I actually like that it’s really flat … and the food scene is pretty impressive.”
Yuan has been in town since Saturday night, landing in time to watch the last nine minutes of the Rush’s final home game at SaskTel Centre.
Since then she’s been trying different restaurants, getting ice cream at the Bus Stop and walking along the riverbank, meeting people as she goes.
Before coming to Saskatoon she made stops in the southern U.S., Mexico, Chile and Costa Rica.
Despite the exotic locales, Yuan said she was really excited to experience her only Canadian stop on the tour.
“Since I got the job, the people who tweeted at me the most – the people who have been the nicest to me … are people from Saskatoon,” she said.
“I was expecting something really friendly and lots of fun, and so far it has been.”
She complimented the city’s restaurant scene, saying she’s impressed by the selection and quality of cuisine.
She also commended the Remai Modern Art Gallery, the attraction which launched Saskatoon onto the New York Times’ list in the first place.
“In comparison to other art buildings, it really ranks up there,” Yuan said, noting the large Picasso collection.
The impact of the city has also left her with writer’s block while trying to finish her reviews of other destinations.
“I was writing about Chile, and I had just had drinks with a few Saskatonians,” she said.
“I was trying to think of these volcanoes and just the word Saskatoon kept popping into my head, and I couldn’t remember what they were called or what they looked like.”
Her time in the Bridge City is running out though.
After a tour and public talk at the Remai Modern on Tuesday, Yuan is planning to join a former SaskatcheWanderer in Wanuskewin Heritage Park to learn about Indigenous culture and spend Wednesday night in a teepee.
Yuan hopes to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights that night before moving on to another of her 52 destinations on Thursday.
“I wish I had another day here.”