Winter is here! And with it comes an exciting array of fun outdoor activities for kids and adults in Ontario. At every corner of the region, you will find people having a great time in the snow, on the ice, and everywhere in between. With so much to do, how do you go about finding your favorite activities and giving them a go? By using this guide, of course! Use this list to track down awesome things to do with your family, then prepare your vehicle and hit the road.
Walk Through the Windsor Sculpture Park
Although the Windsor Sculpture Park is open year-round, the wintertime is one of the best times to visit as the snow makes it an amazing sight to behold. This is especially true as the snowflakes fall all around while gazing up at the 35 large-scale works of art in this outdoor museum.
No matter the weather, kids are particularly drawn to the:
- Dancing Bear
- Morning Flight
- Flying Men
- Penguins on a Waterfall
So, make sure to check them out as you walk through the sculpture park at your leisure.
If walking does not fit your fancy, or you just want to know more about the art all around you, take the guided tour aboard the Art Cart. This free service is first come, first served, so there might be a wait. You can also make reservations outside of public tour hours for a fee to take a scheduled ride through the park.
Try Ice Fishing at Lake Simcoe
With the lakes frozen over, it is the perfect time to try your hand at ice fishing and introduce your kids to this fun pastime. Lake Simcoe harbours plenty of trout, whitefish, and herring for all, along with monster perch lurking just below the surface.
With a heated ice hut rental, you can stay cozy and warm while aiming to bring in the big one. The rentals are even available for overnight excursions if you want to keep the fun going through the weekend. Many companies provide gear rentals and a bucket of minnows to new fishermen, helping everyone have an excellent time while out on the ice.
Go Tubing at Chinguacousy Park
With its winterized tennis courts, skating trail, and more, there are endless outdoor activities for kids and adults to enjoy at Chinguacousy Park. But it is the ski and snowboard hill that garners the most attention, especially from those who love going tubing.
The tubing season runs from January through March, giving everyone a chance to race down the tube hill to their heart’s content. For safety’s sake, kids must be 42-inches tall to ride on the tubes, but there is also skiing and snowboarding for those who do not make the cut.
Experience the Barrie Winterfest
Every February, the Barrie Winterfest delights locals and tourists alike with its many exciting activities and performances. Running from February 1st through the 2nd, this festival brings in talented individuals from near and far, ready to strut their stuff in making ice and snow sculptures galore. There will also be a battle of the chainsaws, winter kite demonstrations, and lumberjack shows.
Designed to keep families well-entertained are the Mabel Moon singalongs, visits from the Snowflake Princess, and maple taffy samples. During this event, the City Hall Outdoor Rink and Barrie Public Library will be holding additional events to keep everyone having a blast.
Check Out the Rideau Canal Skateway
For even more ice skating fun, there is the Rideau Canal Skateway, which everyone should try out at least once in their lives. This skateway features 165,621 square metres of ice, winning it the biggest naturally frozen skating rink designation from the Guinness World Records.
Since it is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, until early March, you have plenty of time to skate your heart out. If you and your kids do not own any ice skates, you can find gear rentals from several kiosks and rental centres along Fifth Avenue. You also have the option to rent a large sleigh that can be pushed along the ice by a single skater.
When you are done skating, hit the heated changing rooms and get ready to go out on the town. Around the skateway, you will find pastry shops and other interesting eateries, ready to fill your bellies with delicious treats of all kinds.
Although there are plenty of awesome outdoor winter activities in Ontario, you can set your sights on other provinces to get your fill of fun. To get a jump on creating your itinerary, check out our list of fun outdoor activities for kids and adults in Alberta.