Winter – the season we Canadians love to hate. Did you know that Canadians complain about the weather the most? Yes, it’s true. I heard it on the news and had a good laugh – I totally fit the bill!
A few weekends ago I decided to quit with the whining and just embrace it all at Winterlude – cold temperatures, ice, snow, layers upon layers of clothing. I put on a fake smile as we left our comfy and warm hotel room and headed outdoors with my family – my kids must get their love for winter from my husband.
Our first stop was the Rideau Canal. Seeing people skating home from work (briefcase in hand and wearing a suit with skates!) and hearing my kids say “Skate! Skate! I want to skate!”, “I told you we should have left our helmets on instead of packing them in your knapsack, Mommy! This is going to take sooooo long to get ready!” made me feel guilty about hating the longest season in Canada for 30+ years.
There’s something magical about being outdoors with hundreds of others celebrating all things winter.
Not going to lie, but these fried pieces of dough make dealing with freezing cold temperatures a bit easier. My fake smile turned into a real one as we skated towards the BeaverTails stall on the canal.
We consumed 5 in 3 days. YES! You do what you gotta do when your kids want to spend all day outside in the cold. Did you know there is a savoury one? The garlic butter and cheese BeaverTail wasn’t our kids favourite but it was a nice change from the other 4 sugar-laden ones we ate.
Some more sweet treats – Maple Taffy – 1 for $3 or 2 for $5. We chose to split 1 and Mr. C, our 2 year old, ended up eating half on his own and left the three of us to share the other half. You have to eat these quickly as they start to melt as soon as you pick them up off of the snow.
Ice sculptures lit up at night – beautiful to see in person and fun to watch them being made too.
On our second day, we spent most of our time in Snowflake Kingdom (the largest snow playground in North America) in Jacques-Cartier Park.
Kids get annoyed by Mom who makes them sit in a big bear chair for a photo. “I need it for my scrapbook!” I tell them. They don’t care, they just want to play. Snowshoes aren’t from Snowflake Kingdom and can be found at Confederation Park near City Hall and the ice sculptures.
My husband wanted to go the ziplining (I’m still working on conquering my acrophobia) but with an hour long wait we decide to hit the ice slides instead. We probably went down these slides 10 times with the kids.
We spent some time looking at the snow sculptures before heading back to the hotel. Ottawa is excited for the Olympics! Go Canada Go!
The next morning, we headed out for one last skate on the Rideau Canal – this time with a little red sleigh for the kids to sit in (you can rent them for $28 for 2 hours) so we could get to the BeaverTails stall quickly.
Love locks found on the bridge as we say goodbye to canal skating and Winterlude. My husband and I have seen these in Asia but this is a first in Canada.
Embracing winter isn’t difficult when there’s all this fun to be had at Winterlude. I’m not 100% sold on winter just yet but I am a teeny tiny bit closer to becoming a cold weather fan than I was before.
Now, when is Spring coming? 😉
Linking to: Travel Photo Thursday at Budget Travelers Sandbox, Travel Photo Monday at Travel Photo Discovery