After over a year and a half of lockdown, Toronto is finally able to celebrate the holiday season! The city is home to a variety of festive events and experiences that are definitely worth getting out to enjoy. In this article, we are breaking down 7 of the best holiday activities to try out this year in Toronto!
Christmas at the Distillery District
The Distillery Winter Village, formerly known as the Toronto Christmas Market, is an annual market that runs to the 23rd and reopens on New Years Eve. In addition to the plethora of restaurants, cafes and local merchant shops that are permanently located at the desilery, you’ll find outdoor vendor and food cabins. Parking is limited so opt for taking the TTC instead. Located at 55 Mill Street, the easiest way to get here is by taking the 501, 503, or 505A streetcar from King station. If you want to avoid crowds try going on a weekday or earlier in the day. Although you can enjoy the lights more in the evening, it’s certainly worth it if you want to avoid the long line. Proof of vaccination is required for entry. Tickets are required on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays after 4:00 pm, and between December 20th – December 23rd after 4:00 pm. The huge christmas tree and delicious food are sure to get you in the holiday spirit!
Toronto has a plethora of public rinks that are definitely worth getting out to enjoy this winter. Click here to see a list of public rinks that are open all winter. If you are trying to avoid the crowds at the more popular rinks, Union Station in partnership with TD has opened a free skate rink in front of the station from now till January 2nd. Registration ahead of time is required.
Take a winter hike
If you are looking for a pandemic friendly activity for this winter, then try getting out of the city and hiking one of Toronto’s many hiking trails. Although it’s cold out, exploring Toronto’s green spaces in the winter can be a completely different experience than during other seasons. Some trails aren’t maintained in the winter so be sure to wear proper boots and tread carefully.
Here are a few parks and trails that are great for winter hiking:
Casa Loma: Holiday Lights Tour
If you are looking to see some truly breathtaking light displays then checkout the Holiday Lights Tour at Casa Loma. This self-guided walk takes visitors through the castle’s gardens and tunnels where they can enjoy stunning Christmas lights as well as live performers. This event runs from now till December 30th and tickets can be purchased ahead of time or onsite.
Image via Casalomatoronto
Holiday Hills at Stackt Market
If you are looking for a change from the traditional Toronto holiday scene, then head to Stackt Market to experience Holiday Hills. This 5-week holiday festival has 3 weekend vendor markets and 26 resident stores for holiday shopping. You can also enjoy live music, local art, holiday-themes workshops, as well as comedy shows. Santa will be taking photos from December 17-19 and on December 14th for pets. Located at Front Street and Bathurst Street, this free event will run from now until December 31st.
Bloor-Yorkville Light display
If you want to get some shopping done and see some stunning festive lights, then head to Yorkville Park. In addition to the light display and lit trees along Bloor Street, you can enjoy the various stores, cafes, and restaurants this neighborhood has to offer. There are also heated benches along Bloor Street between Church Street and Avenue Road. If you are lucky, you might get to hear carollers that will be strolling through the neighborhood. The display will be up from now till December 31st.
Image via Bloor-Yorkville.com
Sweaters and Snowflakes Pop up
Located at Bathurst Street and Richmond Street, the Sweaters and Snowflakes Pop Up is the perfect spot to get into the holiday season. This partially heated space is perfect for the whole family as it is child and dog friendly. With burning fires and pine trees throughout the market the atmosphere will surely get you into the holiday spirit. On certain nights the market hosts live music and caroling as well as every Friday and Saturday a live DJ. This free event runs from now until December 31st.
Make sure you get out and enjoy these incredible activities and events before the season flies by! Let us know what events and fun winter activities you are looking forward to attending most this holiday season!