Hi friends. Welcome to the Alexia who made a decision last week to NOT stay home 24/7 until 2022. I felt myself slowly slipping into a routine that involved no socialization, no fun activities, and no outdoor time. I want to see the outdoors, explore our city, laugh with friends, and feel the magic this season.
As a Jewish family, we don’t celebrate Christmas but I’m a sucker for Christmas songs and twinkling lights. They make me feel warm and fuzzy inside – which is nice.
I figured there MUST be SOME activities to do out there. And… there are!!! I was looking for places to go as a family or mom + kiddo, but most importantly for places to go with friends or as a couple. We need to find opportunities to recharge and have adult conversations.
Most of these activities are suitable for both adults and family, if you’re like me and enjoy being a grown up child (ie: going to watch animated movies with a friend).
DISCLAIMER: I don’t have to tell you this, but things change FAST in 2020. Please call and double-check for any details, opening hours, and safety regulations before heading anywhere.
If you’re not ready to leave your pjs and comfort zone behind, be sure to check out these 10 Home Activities for Babies!
1. Christmas Markets
Montreal’s Christmas Village at the Atwater Market
WHAT: The most magical Christmas markets offers visitors the opportunity to discover talented local artisans and delicious products in a magical atmosphere.
WHEN: Open every weekend until December 20th, 2020. Fridays from 5pm-10pm, Saturdays from 11am-7pm, Sundays from 11am-5pm.
WHERE: Place du Marché Atwater, corner of Saint-Ambroise St. and avenue Atwater.
Jardins D’Hiver at the Place des Arts
WHAT: A little treasure hidden in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles, which invites discovery, in a magical and luminous fairy-tale journey. Visitors will enjoy the sweets of the holiday season, and will be enchanted between shopping sessions. * This hasn’t opened yet and the description is a little vague, let me know what it’s like if you go!
WHEN: The installations will be accessible daily, starting December 5th through January 3rd, 2021.
WHERE: In the heart of the Quartier des spectacles, at the Place des Arts, and Place des Festivals.
WHAT: The market, tucked in an enchanting little alleyway behind the Pepin Shop, is a secret little holiday escape in the city, finely decorated by the team behind the home, fashion, and design store. [excerpt from MTL Blog post Nov 10, 2020]
WHEN: Daily, 12pm-5pm.
WHERE: Maison Pépin, 378 Saint-Paul St W, H2Y 2A6
2. Escape Room
WHAT: Brain-teaser activity in which players find themselves in realistic environments full of challenges. The only way out is teamwork.
WHEN: Every day until as late as 1am. Reservation required online.
WHERE: Escaparium – 5545 Boulevard des Rossignols, Laval, H7L 5S7
3. Putting Edge
WHAT: A glow-in-the-dark golf course and arcade featuring images and sounds, this fun family activity will rock your senses.
WHEN: Open daily. Reserve online.
WHERE: Centre-Ville, Laval, St. Laurent
4. Verger Champêtre
WHAT: Verger Champetre offers multiple activities including a playground, petting zoo, and walking a miniature horse or alpaca for $15!
WHEN: Open from 9am-4pm until the end of December. No reservation needed.
WHERE: 2300 Cowie street, Granby QC
5. Quinn Farm
WHAT: At Quinn Farm the animal barn and play yard are open. Call for more information on the activities available.
WHEN: Wednesday to Monday, 9am-5pm until December 24th.
WHERE : 2495 Boul Perrot, Notre-Dame-de-l’Ile-Perrot, J7V 8P4
6. Watch Planes Take Off
WHAT: Check out this spot near the airport where you can watch planes take off. If you want to be extra (and why not) bring some camping chairs and blankets and watch the sunset!
WHERE: Parc Jacques-de-Lesseps – Avenue Jenkins, Dorval
7. Parc Omega
WHAT: Over 2000 acres which are home to over twenty species of animals living in their natural environment including bears, wolves, foxes, deer, caribous, bison, goats, and owls. There’s a 12km safari to go through by car, and certain areas where you can get out and feed deer! Parc Omega also offers a night in a chalet among the wolves for a super extra (and extra pricey) experience.
WHEN: Open year round. During the winter season it’s open from 10am-5pm.
WHERE: 399, Route 323 Nord, Montebello, Québec J0V 1L0
8. Sky Tag
WHAT: Trampolines, laser tag, and more activities. You can only reserve per household (minimum 4 people).
WHEN: Monday to Friday: 4pm to 9pm. Saturday & Sunday: 10am to 7pm.
WHERE: 77, boul Brunswick, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, H9B 2J5
9. Mini Chevaux Mirabel
WHAT: Kids get their own MINI horse to brush, dress up, and complete an obstacle course with a leash. Cost is $30 per participant/horse, and 1 parent per child gets their own mini for free. Reservations can only be made per household (via their Facebook page).
WHEN: Open daily from 9am-6pm.
WHERE: 19370 Victor, Mirabel, J7J 1P4
10. Cavendish Mall Entertainment
Get some yummy snacks at Sfingy’s while you’re there!!
11. Swimming at Your Local Public Indoor Pool
Most indoor pools are open for free swim with reservations. Kids, parents, fitness people, pregnant ladies… just keep swimming!
12. Alight At Night at Upper Canada Village
WHAT: Touring Upper Canada Village is a magical experience, transporting you back in time to the 1860s. It is one of the largest living-history sites in Canada. I visited this heritage park this summer with my grandmother and David and it was very impressive. During the summer you can tour the village and interact with “inhabitants” going about their daily lives as they were in 1866. This winter season, the tour offered is the Alight At Night. Bundle up for an evening stroll through this picture-perfect postcard setting! Over one million lights adorn the heritage buildings, trees, and fences of Upper Canada Village – a true winter wonderland!
WHEN: Specific dates from 5pm-9pm. Click below for more details.
WHERE: 13740 County Road 2, Morrisburg, ON K0C 1X0. Okay this is a little out of Montreal, but… road trip?
13. Luminothérapie at Quartier des Spectacles
WHAT: Luminothérapie is Quebec’s biggest competition for temporary public installations. It presents a yearly original and captivating interactive multi-sensory experience. These are photos from past years to give you an idea of what you might see. The first is called LOOP and it will be back this year, the rest is a surprise as it just launched tonight! Check out @quartierdesspectacles_mtl stories and posts for a sneak peek!
WHEN: December 2020, anytime.
WHERE: Place des arts, Quartiers des Spectacles
14. Ilumi by Cavalia
WHAT: Illumi is a one-of-a-kind magical nocturnal adventure that dazzles visitors with thousands of monumental light structures. There are 18 “worlds” to discover. This year you have the option of walking through the 3km path, driving through, or taking a mini train tour.
WHEN: Until January 31, 2021. Opening hours differ depending on the day. Reserve online.
WHERE: 2805 Boulevard du Souvenir, Laval, H7V 0A3
15. Learn to Surf
WHAT: At Oasis Surf you can go surfing indoors, or learn to surf (they teach kids as young as 4 years old!). Their wave technology lets you use real surfboards with fins giving you the chance to surf like in the ocean and the river.
WHEN: Open daily. Monday to Friday 12pm-9pm. Saturday and Sunday 10am-6pm.
WHERE: Quartier Dix30 – 9520 Boulevard Leduc Suite 01, Brossard, J4Y 0B3
WHAT: Indoor rock-climbing café (minus the café given the current regulations). Reservations required.
WHEN: Open daily. Monday to Friday 7am-11pm, Saturday and Sunday 9am-9pm.
WHERE: Café Bloc – 1209-1211 Boul. St-Laurent, H2X 2S6
17. Action 500 – Go Karting, Laser Tag, Paintball, Escape Room
WHAT: Action 500 offers go karting, laser tag, paintball, and an escape room – all OPEN and safe!
WHEN: Click below for details on opening hours.
WHERE: Montreal, Laval, Dorval.
18. Ice Skating
Most ice skating rinks are open with reservations. Call you local rink for more details!