Top 8 Holiday Things to Do with Kids in Toronto
The holidays are upon us, and that means that there are a plethora of meals to plan, presents to buy, and charities to support. But wait! Before you get caught up in all of the “things to do” that accompany the season, be sure to plan a bit of fun – especially if you have children in your life. From festivals to Santa sightings, here is our countdown of the top 8 places to head with the young ones in Toronto at Christmastime.
8. Christmas at the Toronto Railway Museum
What kid doesn’t love trains? They are so fun to learn about, and Christmas at the Toronto Railway Museum is the ideal time to expose children to all things railway-centric. Kids can listen to a story aboard the Nova Scotia, which is a renovated business car, and they can also make an ornament, enjoy festive treats, and do a bit of shopping along the way.
7. The Nutcracker
The Nutcracker is perfect for kids as the show is filled with imagination, wonder, and a fanciful cast of characters. Storytime for kids begins 45 minutes before the show so that kids can be familiar with and better understand the story. This show performed by The National Ballet of Canada is absolutely mesmerizing to watch.
6. Swedish Christmas Fair
If you love exposing your children to events with an international flair, then the Swedish Christmas Fair will be quite the experience. Kids can learn about traditions, eat Swedish food, and see folk dancing. There is also a dedicated children’s corner to make sure that the kids have their own activities at this unique event.
5. A Christmas Carol
You may want to leave the teeny ones at home for this activity, but A Christmas Carol is a holiday classic for children of all ages to enjoy. The Young Centre for the Performing Arts brings to life this tale of a miserly soul whose mind is changed by viewing his past, present, and future during the holiday season.
4. Family Christmas Festival
Better Futures for Kids has a dual-purpose event. Families get to have a great time while raising funds for children in remote villages in other parts of the world. What a wonderful thing to focus on during a season of giving! The Family Christmas Festival has a plethora of things to do like sing carols, decorate gingerbread men, watch a magic show, play games, have a balloon animal made, and get family photos taken with Santa Claus. Dinner is served, and there will be prizes given for the best Christmas costume, so be sure to dress up…if you dare.
3. Toronto Santa Shuffle
Adults can shuffle in this annual 5k Fun Run while the kiddos participate in the 1km Elf Walk. No matter their pace families can enjoy this annual event together. The best part is that dressing up is encouraged! Have fun getting together crazy Christmas costumes like Rudolph, Mrs. Claus, or the 3 Wise Men as you prepare to burn off a few pre-Christmas calories at the Toronto Santa Shuffle.
2. Holiday Fair in the Square
Part carnival, part Christmas market, Holiday Fair in the Square offers fun for all ages. Kids can have their photo taken with St. Nick in an outdoor setting at The North Pole. Entertainers such as stilt walkers and roaming bands make their way through the crowds, and the midway has the Great Canadian Carousel that children love to ride each year. There is a lot to do at this event, so plan on staying the whole day to really get into the holiday spirit.
And #1! Christmas Glow Toronto
If having a winter wonderland indoors seems too good to be true – it’s not! That is exactly what happens when guests visit Christmas Glow Toronto. Adults and kids alike will enjoy light displays, live entertainment, and interactive hanging lights that make the perfect backdrop for an adorable photo.
There are also a ton of child-centric attractions such as bouncy reindeer, visits with Santa, playing on the playground, and a ride on Glen the Glow-comotive. Adults can cross items off of their gift list by shopping at the artisan and boutique market booths, and families can enjoy the many food and drink options. Bonus: there is a licensed bar with seasonal beverages for those who are of age.
While you are there, don’t forget to let the little ones stroll through the light tunnel and sit on the LED swings. Christmas Glow Toronto is truly a magical place to be during the holidays as they offer a bit of something for everyone.
No matter what you choose, be sure to plan ahead to include some family fun along the way. Want an extra tip? Sing carols and look at lights while you are on your way home to make your time even more festive.