By Mina Todosijevic
As the semester inches to an end, daydreams about road trips and travel replace my otherwise-essay-filled thoughts.
There is no better time to take a road trip than in the winter. Under a lush blanket of snow, Ontario is transformed into postcard-perfect Canadiana. It is so refreshing to step away from the slush in the city and be able to enjoy the winter wonderland.
For those of you who don’t have access to a car, most of these places are accessible by Greyhound bus or Via Rail. Tickets are much cheaper if you buy them at least a week or two in advance, so try to plan ahead!
For those of you who aren’t from Canada, January is the perfect time to visit Ottawa. The city offers the quintessential tours of Parliament and walks through ByWard Market. Besides that, you cannot leave the city without skating on the Rideau Canal and enjoying your first taste of heaven in the form of a BeaverTail pastry.
The Great Outdoors
Skiing and snowboarding tend to be the first thing people think of when they think of outdoor winter activities. However, Ontario has a lot more to offer than Blue Mountain. Plan a day around snowshoeing (in Barrie, Algonquin and trails close by in Albion Hills and Crawford Lake), dog-sledding, or (my personal favourite) snow tubing.
For people who are looking for a weekend trip up north with friends, cottages and log cabins can be good options. Some National Parks remain open during the winter months. You can rent a log cabin for a picturesque weekend at Algonquin Park (starting at /night for two people). For more comfort, and options closer to home, airbnb is full of people who want to rent out their cottages.
La Belle Province
If you want to venture out of the province, Quebec City is full of things to see. Besides being a drop-dead stunning city year-round, it is one of only two cities in North America in which you will find an ice hotel—the Hotel de Glace. Time your trip from January 30 to February 15 to experience the Carnival de Quebec, when the city becomes filled with ice sculptures. If you have a car, Stoneham Resort offers a fantastic mountain for skiing and snowboarding just a 25-minute drive from the city.
Wherever you go, there are plenty of things to see and do!
What are your favourite places to visit during the winter? Let us know on Facebook!