By Hannah

Happy almost reading week! We’ve made it almost halfway through the semester! Give yourself a pat on the back–you deserve it! You know what you also deserve? A vacation. You deserve vacation time even if you are unable to get away for an out-of-city vacation. This week, I’m going to share with you six ways to have your very own “staycation” if you’re in Toronto this reading week!

1. Make like a kid and go to a public swimming day

Hear me out–how much fun did you have as a kid in those public swims? Get a group of friends and go to the pool. It’s warm there, and you can even pretend you’re spring breaking in some tropical climate! Whatever it takes to keep you going through the winter!

2. Get cultured at the AGO!

A photo taken from inside the Art Gallery of Ontario

Photo of the Art Gallery of Ontario by Sam Javanrouh

If you’ve been putting off a visit to the Art Gallery of Ontario, now you have a week to do it. An exhibit of the works of Basquiat, a political and social artist and activist from New York, has just opened. It’s also good to note that Wednesday nights are free. Take advantage of it! If you’ve already done the AGO, check out other galleries in the city, like MOCCA and Gallery 44.

3. Eat at a restaurant in a new neighbourhood (and then explore said neighbourhood)

If you are unable to actually make it to a new city, explore a new area of this one. Pick a coffee shop, restaurant or cool trinket shop in an area you’ve never been to and then just wander around exploring the area.

4. Explore the islands!

Photo of the Toronto skyline taken from the Toronto Islands

Photo by Sam Javanrouh

Most people like to visit the Toronto Islands during the summer, but there’s a special magic in the winter. The lake is partially frozen and everything is draped in white. Just be sure you’re dressed warm, and maybe bring a thermos of hot cocoa with you.

5. Book a night at a hotel

If you’re tired of your apartment or residence and want to get away for a night, consider getting a group of friends together and booking a night in a hotel. It can be pretty inexpensive if you all split the costs. Maybe find a hotel in a new area, and merge this with tip #3!

6. Go tobogganing/skating

Go to High Park or Christie Pits and go tobogganing! Or visit Nathan Phillips Square and go ice skating. There are ample opportunities for winter fun, so take advantage of them!

I hope you’ve gotten some fun ideas if you’re going to be in the city for reading week. Are you going to try any of them? What are your reading week plans? Let us know on our Facebook page!