I can’t lie, I was a little apprehensive when we first moved to Canada in early November. I’d always dreaded winter; the short days, the prolonged chill, the seemingly endless wait for Spring….now, living in Canada, these things don’t seem to bother me so much anymore.
Don’t get me wrong, I still look forward to the days getting longer and the weather warmer, but winter in Canada is actually pretty fun! Here are eight seasons that may just convince you too that winter in Canada is pretty awesome.
Snow and ice = unlimited outdoor fun
Of course, skiing and snowboarding are top of the list for most if asked about winter in Canada. But wait, there’s more! How about ice fishing, snow tubing, skating and the less technical sports of tobogganing and snowman making.
Never underestimate the enjoyment gained from a perfectly crafted snow creature. If you have a good tent, camping is an option too. No tent? Build your own snow cave or igloo!
The perfect homebody excuse
If you’re a homebody, winter in Canada gives you the perfect excuse to stay inside, stay warm and drink hot chocolate.
There’s no pressure to leave home for anything non-essential, and, best of all, you can join the wonderful winter tradition of cheese fondue without judgement. But if you do feel like getting out there then…..
Get some exercise, a different way
While snow-shoeing and cross-country skiing are two more super fun winter activities, they also provide some winter cardio. It may look easy from afar, but the average person burns 400-500 calories during an hour’s cross country skiing (slow speed).
I love to go snowshoeing when I’m looking for something a little more low key than snowboarding. A walk in the woods can do wonders!
Not feeling energetic?
Try dogsledding, skijoring (skis pulled by horses or dogs) or a skidoo/snowmobile ride, and let others do the work for you. There are even dogsled races and skidoo displays if you want to watch the experts instead.
Nature’s own entertainment
The Northern Lights are best seen in the winter. I would love to see these; living on Vancouver Island, the Aurora Borealis does not appear much here. Keep an eye on the Aurora Watch to see if you’re going to get lucky.
City life can still be enjoyable in winter too
There are dozens of events happening every month across the country during winter in Canada. Some examples are the Quebec City Winter Carnival, Ottawa’s Winterlude and Calgary’s Winterfest.
Quebec City is also home to North America’s first ice hotel. Montreal has a huge ‘underground city’ to lessen the need for walking the city streets in winter. In Canada’s capital city, Ottawa, the canal freezes over for around a month and is used to get to work as well as for fun.
A ‘proper’ winter in Canada
If you’re going to be anywhere in winter, why not do it properly? Embrace the cold, crisp mornings and beautiful snow scenes of winter in Canada; you can shovel the driveway later.
In some places, it’s not even that cold
Vancouver Island, where we live, rarely receives snow in winter at sea level. Over on the mainland, Vancouver’s winters are known more for endless rain rather than freezing temperatures.
Here, people continue a lot of their ‘summer’ activities, such as mountain biking, running and hiking. Snow isn’t too far away though, with various mountain resorts within easy reach, such as Mount Washington (on the Island), Grouse Mountain (North Vancouver) and Apex (Okanagan Valley in BC’s interior).
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