Sault Ste. Marie (Ontario)

Travel Guide North America Canada Ontario Sault Ste. Marie



Sault Ste Marie waterfront

Sault Ste Marie waterfront

© spk99ca

Sault Ste. Marie is a city in Ontario, Canada. It is located along the shores of Lake Superior and has about 75,000 inhabitants. The area boasts rugged shores, sandy beaches, untouched forests, winding rivers, and two Great Lakes.

The history of the area involves a fascinating eclectic mix of cultures. "The Meeting Place" as it was once called, drew inhabitants from all over Europe and North American tribes. Sault Ste. Marie was established in the 1600s as a fur trading post and later in the 1900s as a site for steel making.



Sights and Activities

  • Sault Ste. Marie Museum, 690 Queen St E, ☎ +1 705-759-7278. Tu-Sa 9:30AM-5PM. Museum of local history. Adults $8, students & seniors (55 & over) $6, children (5 & under) free, family (4 relatives) $20.
  • Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre, 50 Pim St, ☎ +1 705-945-6242. Mid-May to mid-Oct: daily 10AM-6PM; mid-Oct to Mid-May: daily 10AM-4PM. Features 29 planes including the 1st Beaver float plane produced. See the movie Wildfires!, a fire fighting adventure in 3-D. Flight simulator, fire tower, and children's centre. Closed Good Friday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Boxing Day and New Year's Day. Adult $13.50, senior $12.50, student $8, can $3.
  • Sault Ste. Marie Canal National Historic Site. Daily 9AM-9PM. This canal once had the longest lock in the world and was the first one powered by electricity. It was built to allow ships to bypass the rapids. Visitor Centre, gift shop, washrooms, parking, walking and biking trails. Fat Bikes available for hourly rental (from $10/hr). Full guided site tours available.
  • Ermatinger-Clergue National Historic Site, 800 Bay St, ☎ +1 705-759-5443. Early Oct to mid-May: Tu-Sa 9:30AM-4:30PM; mid-May to early Oct: Th-M 9:30AM-4:30PM, Tu W 9:30AM-6PM. Many exhibits and interactive features in the Heritage Discovery Centre. The Ermatinger Old Stone House is restored to depict the domestic and professional life of Charles Oakes Ermatinger and other prominent residents and visitors of the House between 1808 and 1870. The Clergue Blockhouse, was relocated to the site in 1996, and served as the home of industrialist Francis Hector Clergue from 1894-1908. Adult $12.50, senior/child/student $11, children 5 & under free, family $30 (taxes included).
  • Boardwalk along the St. Marys River with lovely views of the rapids and lake steamers. Well-lit.
  • Roberta Bondar Park, 65 Foster Drive. Named in honour of Canada's first female astronaut, Dr. Roberta Bondar. There is a statue of her. It is a waterfront event space for concerts and festivals.
  • Art Gallery of Algoma, 10 East Street (on the St. Mary's River), ☎ +1 705-949-9067. Tu-Sa 9AM-5PM. Featuring local, national, and international artists, it holds a collection of over 4,000 works of art. Adults $7, students and seniors $5, children (under 12) free.
  • Soo Greyhounds, GFL Memorial Gardens at 269 Queen Street East. Ontario Hockey League/Canadian Hockey League major junior hockey team. Adult $21, senior/student $17.75, child $11.



Events and Festivals

  • Bon Soo Winter Carnival. early Feb. A ten-digit, diverse program of outdoor and indoor sports and activity events, and cultural activities including concerts, ice sculptures, and a polar bear swim.




Sault Ste. Marie has a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfb) with cold, snowy winters and warm summers that are moderated to some extent by Lake Superior. Winters are cold but are milder than some inland places. Temperatures drop below -20 °C 24 days per year. Summers are warm with a July high of 24.0 °C and temperatures above 30 °C occur 4 days per year. The average annual precipitation is 889 millimetres, which is fairly evenly distributed throughout the year; February is the driest month, and the autumn months of September to November are the wettest months. The highest temperature ever recorded in Sault Ste. Marie was 37.2 °C on 3 July 1921, while the record low was -41.1 °C on 26 January 1927.



Getting There

By Plane

Sault Ste. Marie Airport (YAM) is 20 km from downtown on the western outskirts. Airlines serving the airport include: Air Canada Express with frequent daily flights to Toronto-Pearson, Porter Airlines to Toronto Downtown Airport YTZ, Bearskin Airlines to Ottawa (via North Bay and Sudbury) and Thunder Bay, and Sunwing Airlines (seasonally) to Varadero, Cuba.

There is no bus service from the downtown area to the airport. Taxis and limos provide flat-rate service between the airport and anywhere in the city. Taxi: 7500 Taxi, +1 705-945-7500. Car rental is available from Avis and National.

By Train

Sault Ste. Marie is not linked to any other major city by passenger train.

As of 2015, Algoma Central Railway still provides passenger service north of the Sault to Hearst. This train makes all station stops and can drop off and pick up passengers at any point on the line, accommodating people heading to private camps, a wilderness lodge getaway, or to go fishing, hiking, snowmobiling, or ATVing. As there is no food service aboard the train, voyagers are encouraged to bring whatever food they will need for the journey.

There are no reliable connections with Via Rail; the ACR line crosses with the routes of the Canadian in Oba and the Lake Superior at Franz, but wait time to make the connection can be 24 hours or more. There is no station building or other shelter at either stop.

By Car

Sault Ste. Marie is served by Highway 17, which is part of the Trans-Canada Highway. The highway connects the city to Thunder Bay to the northwest and Sudbury to the east. The International Bridge also directs traffic from downtown to the beginning of the Interstate 75 freeway in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, which runs through Saginaw, Flint and Detroit.

By Bus

Ontario Northland provides bus service to and from the Sault. Eastbound buses go to Sudbury, where onward connections are available to Ottawa or Toronto. Westbound buses follow the Trans-Canada Highway through Wawa to White River.



Getting Around

Getting around is easy - you can walk, bike (if you don't mind getting clipped off by cars) or take the bus... it is a big town with a small town atmosphere. If you are driving, don't expect any traffic jams or road rage. This is a nice, relaxing place to be and it is very convenient to get around. Beaches, rugged outdoors and ski hills are less than 30 minutes away from the city centre.

By Public Transport

Sault Transit Services offers a range of public transport in Sault Ste. Marie and surroundings. It operates from a central transit terminal at 160 Queen Street East at Dennis St. There are 8 regular routes running 19 hours a day, 7 days a week except statutory holidays: New Year's Day, Good Friday, Victoria Day, Canada Day, Civic Holiday, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day. Cash fare is $2.85 for all riders (Dec 2018), and you must have exact fare as drivers do not provide change. Children 12 years of age and under ride free when accompanied by an adult; to qualify, children must be under 5 feet (150 cm) tall. You can also get a multi-ride pass with 20 rides for $45. Monthly adult, student, and senior passes are available upon advance purchase.

If paying fare by cash or multi-ride pass and you need to use more than one bus to complete your trip, ask the driver for a transfer after you pay the fare.

Request stop service, where the driver will let you off at a location along the route other than a bus stop, is available in the evenings -- either when the street lights turn on, or after 9PM, whichever is earlier. Speak to the driver a few blocks in advance, and they'll let you off as close as possible to your request, so long as they can stop safely. Exit via the front doors.

Parabus Service: Sault Transit also operates a Parabus service for passengers with disabilities. Trips on Tu-F are booked the day before; trips on Sa-M are booked by F 4PM. Same-day service is offered if scheduling permits. Call the Parabus office at +1 705-942-1404 to book a trip. Visitors are requested to call the Parabus office to make arrangements. Cash fare is $2.85; a 40-ride pass is also available for $79.




  • Ernie's Coffee Shop, 13 Queen St E, ☎ +1 705-253-9216. Tu-Sa 7AM-7PM. A family tradition - inexpensive, and the portions are very generous.
  • Mz. Vickiz Panino Express, 1177 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-759-2424. Sandwiches to go, etc.
  • Gino's Family Restaurant, 1076 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-759-8285. M-F 7AM-9PM, Sa 8AM-9PM, Su 9AM-9PM. Good steakhouse.
  • Aurora's West Side, 760 Second Line East and 300 Second Line West, ☎ +1 705-949-3000. Second Line East: M–W 11AM–9PM, Th 11AM–10PM, F 11AM–11PM, Sa 11AM–10PM. Second Line West: M–Th 11AM–11PM, F Sa 11AM–midnight, Su 4PM–10PM. Italian, pizza.
  • Bali Indonesian Restaurant, 523 Queen St E. M-F 11AM-9PM, Sa 5-9PM. Sometimes hard to notice from the outside, this family run restaurant has a great atmosphere, friendly staff, and excellent food.
  • Fratelli's Kitchen and Pizzeria, 522 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-256-1313. M-Sa 11:30AM-11PM, Su 11:30AM-10PM.
  • Mrs. B's, · 97 Great Northern Rd #3, ☎ +1 705-575-7522. M-Th 11AM–10PM, F Sa 11AM–11:30PM, Su 1–7PM. Good pizza, secret recipe. Burgers and wings, too.
  • Muio's, 685 Queen Street East (on the corner of Queen and East Streets in the downtown hub), ☎ +1 705-254-7105. Daily 7AM-8PM. Since 1961, Muio's has been home to family dining in the Soo. Chicken on a Bun, pizza, burgers, and fish & chips.
  • North 82 Steak & Beverage Co, 82 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-759-8282. Daily 11AM–11PM. Specializes in steaks, seafood and prime rib.
  • Service Grill & Sidetrack Lounge, 319 Korah Rd. M-Th 11AM–11PM, F Sa 11AM–midnight, Su 4-11PM. Pizza and sports bar/lounge.
  • Arturo Ristorante, 515 Queen St E, ☎ +1 705-253-0002. Classic Italian fare in an elegant but cozy atmosphere.
  • Embers Grill & Smokehouse, 531 Albert St E, ☎ +1 705-575-3359.
  • Giovanni's, 516 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-942-3050. M-Sa 11:30AM-11PM, Su 11:30AM-10PM. Southern Italian, with richly flavored sauces, homemade pastas, steaks, and BBQ back ribs.
  • Gliss Restaurant, 180 Bay Street, ☎ +1 705-759-0000, e-mail: Located inside the Quality Inn & Suites. Angus steaks, seafood, pasta. * Solo's Trattoria, 250 Queen St E, ☎ +1 705-254-7656.




  • Loplops, 651 Queen St E, ☎ +1 705-945-0754. W-Sa 5PM-2AM. Art gallery & martini lounge. Has live music most evenings, typically of the folk and eclectic variety. Crowd is mixed and 'upscale' in comparison to most places in town. Not easily noticed from Queen street, park in back. One of the 'Core Four' within two blocks of downtown Queen Street. Always mixing it up with artists, wine/beer tasting events, live music, not to mention great drinks.
  • Sportscenter - Sports Bar & Grill, 624 Wellington St W. Th-Sa 11AM-1AM, Su 2-10PM, M-W 11AM-midnight. Smaller and pub-ish.
  • Top Hat, 654 Queen St E. Daily 5PM-2AM. Billiards, darts, general game room. Large area. Mixed ages, often younger (under 30). One of the 'Core Four' within two blocks of downtown Queen Street.
  • Reggie's West, 306 Korah Rd, ☎ +1 705-253-1411. Daily 11AM-2AM. Full menu available. Live music Thursday Friday and Saturday, Karaoke. Known for its wings and burgers.
  • Rockstar (Algonquin Hotel), 864 Queen St East, ☎ +1 705-253-2311. 11AM-2AM. Rock & roll attitude decorated with rock & roll memorabilia, live bands, DJs, large patio, mixed age, kitchen specializing in wings.




  • Algonquin Hotel, 864 Queen Street East, ☎ +1 705-253-2311, e-mail: From $75. (updated Dec 2018 | edit)
  • Sleep Inn, 727 Bay St, toll-free: +1-855-973-7216. From $89. (updated Dec 2018 | edit)
  • Super 8, 184 Great Northern Rd, Hwy 17 North, toll-free: +1-800-536-1211. From $82. (updated Dec 2018 | edit)
  • Northlander Motel, 243 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-254-6452. A fridge, coffee maker and cable TV are standard in all of the rooms. From $71.
  • Hotel Delta Sault Ste. Marie Waterfront Hotel, 208 St Mary's River Dr, toll-free: +1-855-821-4553. Waterfront hotel featuring 195 modern rooms, full service View Restaurant+Bar, Bridgewater Health club with a large indoor pool. From $127.
  • Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, 633 Great Northern Rd, toll-free: +1-855-821-4553. Continental breakfast, free Wi-Fi, salt water pool and 24-hr fitness centre.
  • Quattro Hotel and Conference Centre (Great Northern Hotel), 229 Great Northern Rd, toll-free: +1-855-973-7216. Largest hotel in the city, largest conference facilities in Northern Ontario; full service hotel with continental breakfast included; outdoor pool and indoor pool with 5½-storey water slide, sauna, and fitness centre, Bistro Lounge, free Wi-Fi. From $126.
  • Water Tower Inn - BW Premier, 360 Great Northern Rd, ☎ +1 705-949-8111, toll-free: +1-888-461-7077. indoor/outdoor hot tubs, wading pool with waterfall, pool, Casey's Grill Bar and The Pub. From $115.
  • Quality Inn & Suites Bay Front, 180 Bay St, ☎ +1 705-945-9264. Opposite Station Mall and the ACR train station. From $98.



Keep Connected


Internet usage is wide-spread in Canada. Wi-fi is available in many locations in larger cities, sometimes free and sometimes at a cost. You will find Wi-Fi in coffee stores, some restaurants and also hotels and motels more and more offer this service for free, but with a code usually. Internet cafes are common along major streets, and and in larger cities, charge between $3 and $4 for an hour, usually in 20-minute increments.


See also International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to Canada is: 1. To make an international call from Canada, the code is: 011. Emergency services can be reached by dialling 911. This number will give you free access to Police, Fire and Ambulance services and can be used from landlines, phone booths and cell phones.

The populous areas of Canada along the border with the USA have excellent cellular and wired telecommunications, meaning that travellers are never fair from an international phone call home, a WIFI connection or an internet cafe. Depending on the mobile phone provider, coverage could be either CDMA and GSM coverage. Travellers wishing to purchase SIM cards for GSM phones should look for Rogers Wireless, Telus Mobility and Bell Mobility, which all offer nationwide availability.


Postal service is provided by Canada Post, a crown corporation owned by the government but run as an independent business. Most post offices keep hours from 9:00am to 5:00pm though in bigger places longer hourse might be available.

To format the envelope of a letter sent within Canada, put the destination address on the centre of its envelope, with a stamp, postal indicia, meter label, or frank mark on the top-right corner of the envelope to acknowledge payment of postage. A return address, although it is not required, can be put on the top-left corner of the envelope in smaller type than the destination address.

The lettermail service allows the mailing of a letter. The basic rate is currently set at $0.63 for one standard letter (30 grams or less). The rates for lettermail are based or weight and size and determine whether the article falls into the aforementioned standard format, or in the oversize one. The rate is the same for a postcard. Mail sent internationally is known as letterpost. It can only contain paper documents. The rate for a standard letter is of $1.10 if sent to the United States, and $1.85 if sent to any other destination. Oversize or overweight letters may be charged a higher fee. Larger parcels can be shipped via Canada post both domestically and internationally, the rate is dependent on the weight and destination. [1]

Federal Express, TNT, UPS or DHL also provide interntional shipping from Canada and are usually very quick and reliable though might cost a little more compared to Canada Post.



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This is version 8. Last edited at 13:37 on Dec 17, 18 by Utrecht. 3 articles link to this page.

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