Last minute getaways don’t have to be on a jet plane! Save yourself from the stress of long-line ups at the airport and keep your hard earned dollars right here at home. There’s so much to do in, and out, of the city. Fresh air? We got it! Arts, culture, food and fun? It’s all here. Our team shares a few of our favourite spots to bring the whole “fam damily” as grampa would say! From skating through outdoor trails to stargazing to epic movie nights in plush bathrobes with room service, here are our favourite staycation spots where you can just jump in your car and go:
JW MARRIOTT THE ROSSEAU MUSKOKA RESORT: (aka JW Marriott Red Leaves) is a 2.5 hour drive from Toronto. The resort is sprawling and scenic overlooking cottage country. Families love the indoor-swim-to-outdoor pool (seasonal) and the numerous activities on site. Winter go snowshoeing or take in a wildlife or astronomy presentation. Summer also includes canoeing, kayaking, large inflatables. Great dining options onsite including a steak house, Italian restaurant, Cottages restaurant, cafe, and a great lounge for cocktails and live entertainment. Spa for parents to go and zen out.
DEERHURST INN & RESORT: This family resort located in Muskoka on Peninsula Lake rolls out an extensive March break activity calendar to keep all little guests and their families busy. Expect indoor and outdoor activities including a petting farm, magic shows, guided star light tours, arts & crafts, dance parties, kitchen tours, maple sugar shack, cross-country ski trails, skating rink, snowshoeing, family movies, karaoke and more. Phew! Several dining options on site from buffet, steak house, grill and more.
NOTTAWASAGA INN: Located just an hour outside of Toronto in Alliston. One of Ontario’s most cherished resorts just celebrated its 50th anniversary and has a fun calendar planned for March Break. With “pay as you play” families plan to make the most of the winter staycation. Each day has a few extra themed activities planned – hello cotton candy lab, anyone? Festivities include themed games, movies, ice skating, a bonfire, crafts, candy, karate, plus all sorts of high energy activities for kids of all ages. There are also family-themed dinners. In addition there’s an indoor pool, arcade, and walking trails to explore. We love the 18-hole Jungle Quest mini-golf adventure on-site – just watch out for hole #5! March Break Family Pass special offer worth checking out.
FOUR SEASONS HOTEL TORONTO: If your family is interested in a luxurious urban escape during March break, this is it! We love this hotel not only for it’s exceptional service and attention to detail, but its location makes it very accessible to many of the city’s best attractions. Go to the Royal Ontario Museum to check out the latest dinosaur reveal Zuul or get some fresh air at Evergreen Brick Works. Get a little fancy and enjoy lunch or dinner at Cafe Boulud conveniently located in the hotel (the rotisserie chicken is a hands-down favourite) or hop on the subway for a quick foodie adventure to Koreatown (Poop Cafe is a real hit – seriously but we also love FuFu Japanese Pancakes). Head down to The Beaches and explore the outdoor Winter Stations art installations. Then cozy up for the evening and request a family movie night complete with your very own popcorn and candy station in your own suite. Or warm up to a delicious hot chocolate before sinking into your plush bed. Be warned you actually might not want to leave the hotel…especially with the beautiful indoor swimming pool on site!
FERN RESORT RAMARA: Located just 1.5 hours north of Toronto on Lake Couchiching, Fern Resort offers a truly all-inclusive experience, with all meals included in the price of your room. In addition to your meals and a daily list of activities, Fern Resort offers families an indoor pool/sauna/steam room/Jacuzzi, a weight room, games room, nordic skiing, skating trail and skating rink, ice fishing, curling and broomball. Be sure to check out the Maple Syrup tapping.
CHELSEA HOTEL, TORONTO: Not wanting to leave the city? The Chelsea Hotel offers family a get away in the heart of downtown. Families can enjoy the Kid Zone which includes a family pool, kid centre, teen lounge and a 130 foot waterslide! Special buffets and kid-focused activities will be running throughout the week. Be sure to ask about special offers to near-by attractions and transit.