Guys, I really love winter. I know I’m the minority here, but I’m hoping I can impart some snowy white love on your cold summer hearts so you can be at peace with your geographical location in the great white North. For the winter months, anyway.
Toronto literally comes to life in the winter. It takes a short hiatus from October through November, but once that fluffy white stuff starts coming down and the temperature drops below freezing, it’s time to get excited. The city has a plethora of activities planned to beat the winter blues, and if we’re lucky enough to drop below freezing (last year was a weird anomaly), these activities will keep you busy in the winter and make you forget about the island and the stunning Thompson Hotel rooftop pool (just pretend I didn’t even drag your summer-loving brain back there). Here are a few of my favourite winter activities in Toronto.
Ice skating and hockey
Toronto is home to over 55 public skate rinks that are free–35 of them being natural rinks from ponds, rivers or lakes. There’s a certain romance to skating in the darkness wrapped in the city lights, and also a competitive element if shinny is your idea of date night. If you’re looking for romance, Nathan-Phillips Square or Harbourfront is your best best. But if you’re looking for a good ol’ game of pickup, Christie Pitts or Trinity Bellwoods is where you should be headed.
Ravines and parks
I’m sorry I love winter and maybe you hate winter. But the ravines and parks in the city are simply stunning. After a fresh snowfall, the trails are bright once the snow goes down and glistening while the sun is still up. There’s less people than you’ll find in the summer, and they truly are a winter wonderland. Have a pup? It’s the perfect snowy walk.
The general glow of Christmas
Ok so lets be real: Christmas is the real reason it’s so exciting. The decorations, romanticism, hustle and bustle of the city, and the best part: endless Christmas parties. Bars offer mulled-wine or cider by the glass, and there’s a certain energy at all the bars and cafes you’ll enter.
When the Christmas magic dies down and the reality of January rears its head, there’s still tons to be excited about. January is that month where you can get caught up on what you ignored in December, and also settle back into your exercise regimen. The other great thing about January is that there’s typically enough snow to go tobogganing. And no it isn’t just for kids. Whether you grab a group of friends, organize an office party (someone has to bring hot chocolate and cupcakes) or head out with your bff, it’s a ton of fun and Toronto has a hill in literally every neighbourhood. Plus hiking up the hill will count as your gym-time for the week.