The Winter and Christmas Holidays from school are just around the corner, which means it is time for you to start thinking about what fun activities are available to do with the family during the week or two long break. Luckily, there is a lot of fun to be had in Halifax and HRM during the winter break. So, instead of spending your holiday break being bored at home this year, you should spend some time outside with family and friends exploring the beautiful city.
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I. Hatfield Farm
Spend a day out in the snow, and be a cowboy or cowgirl at Hatfield Farm. The farm is still open during the winter. Take a wagon ride through the snow, or spend some time making friends with the animals at the petting zoo.
Public Rides (Above 15 – $9 + HST per adult & $7 + HST per child 3-12) are offered on Sundays at 2pm from December 30, 2019 – March 31, 2020 and private rides are available any day by reservation.
II. Sledding Spots to Check Out
Citadel Hill is an obvious sledding spot and one of the most popular locations in the city for this specific reason. There are many spots to pick from and you just need to wait for a good snow fall. The Wanderer’s Grounds, on the hill’s west side has an extremely steep slide and a long landing area. The only disadvantage of sledding down Citadel Hill is that you can pick up too much speed at times.
Flinn Park is located on the right side of the North West arm close to the Armdale Roundabout. It is a small but reliable place to go sledding. This hill has a lot of jumps and twists, which makes it a great place to go for experienced sledders who are looking to catch some serious air.
The best place to sled at the Dartmouth Commons is near the gazebo. You just need to look around for a good hill to go sledding on.
The Mother Hill
The Mother Hill is located behind Mount Saint Vincent where the Mother House once stood. The hill is part of Clayton Park and provides a long sledding journey that takes you through the MSVU campus and the surrounding subdivision.
The Pit or Merv Sullivan Park
The Pit is a popular sledding spot and is often called the best sledding spot in Halifax. It does have a steep hill, so you do pick up speed quickly all the way to the bottom of this former quarry.
III. Skating Rinks
The Emera Oval is the place to be all year round because it is the largest outdoor artificially refrigerated ice surface east of Quebec City. The Emera Oval opens for the winter season on December 23, 2019 | 10:00 AM. You should check the Halifax website to see what dates and times that the Emera Oval is open.
If you are looking to go skating or do some walking or running inside, the Dartmouth Sportsplex is the place to visit. There are open skate times available from Monday to Saturday and the track is open every day of the week.
On Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays at noon, there is free skating at the Scotiabank Centre. The noon skate is an adult skate, and you will need to bring your own skates.
The Halifax Forum offers two skating times for you to enjoy. They have an adult and senior skate, along with a Parent and Tot skate and both skate times are free. There are a lot of dates and times available for you to skate, which will keep you busy this winter.
IV. Halifax Hurricanes
Cheer on Halifax Hurricanes, in their quest to win the championship of National Basketball League of Canada.
vs St John’s Edge on Sun, Dec-29-2019 | 2:00 PMv
vs Island Storm on Thu, Jan-2-2020 | 7:00 PM
vs St John’s Edge on Sun, Jan-5-2020 | 2:00 PM
V. Christmas and New Year’s Celebrations
Explore interactive light sculptures, stroll under 50,000 lights, enjoy delicious treats from local food trucks and breweries. Playgrounds and interactive features will entertain the kids for hours, while Glow’s illuminated sculptures are the perfect backdrop for selfies and holiday family photos.
Christmas Eve Sleigh Rides at Hatfield Farm
Go dashing through the snow on a Christmas Eve Sleigh Ride at Hatfield Farm. These sleigh rides are available all winter long on weekends. Just keep in mind that the Christmas Eve Sleigh Rides do need to be pre-booked and can take up to 30 people.
Christmas Day Buffet at Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel
The Christmas Day Buffet & Dinner is back again this year, so you don’t have to worry about cooking Christmas dinner. So, take the family out to enjoy a delicious holiday buffet overlooking the Halifax Harbour. Harbourstone sea grill & pour house chefs (Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel) prepare local festive fare including local favorites like Atlantic salmon and mussels. Reserve 902-428-7852.
Christmas Dinner Theatre
The Grafton Street Dinner Theatre offers family friendly, musical comedy “Hard Candy Christmas” with a unique dining experience. There are shows scheduled on all days except December 23 to 27, 30 and January 1.
IV. Indoor Fun
Get Air Trampoline Park
Keep active this holiday season and have fun with your family and friends at the Get Air Trampoline Park. This fun trampoline park is a popular location for kids and teens, but it is safe for all ages. They are open every day from 10 am to 10 pm. On the weekends, Club Air is open from 9 pm to midnight.
Beyond Rubik’s Cube
Have some fun inside and learn something new at the Discovery Centre. The STEAM exhibits make it fun to learn about the world. This holiday season, the Beyond Rubik’s Cube exhibit is open alongside the permanent exhibits. Beyond Rubik’s Cube is a multi-sensory, interactive experience in robotics, art, music, computer programming, and engineering that celebrates over 40 years of creativity based on the world’s most popular puzzle.
Karting and Laser Tag at Kartbahn
Challenge your friends and family to see who the best driver is at Kartbahn karting, when you race around the course for 8 to 12 minutes. Don’t forget about the over 3,000 + square foot indoor laser tag arena. So, team up with your family and friends and get ready to fight.
Get out of the house for some fun this holiday season. The Putting Edge makes mini golf fun with their unique layouts and glow golfing. There is also an arcade with many games that will test your gaming skills.
Rock Climbing at Seven Bays
Warm up at the licensed café at Seven Bays before getting active and trying your hand at rock climbing. Seven Bays is located on Gottingen Street and is close to a bus stop, which makes it easy to get to. There are new boulders every week, so there is always a new challenge for you to conquer at Seven Bays.
They also has Saturday Morning Yoga starting at 9:00 AM with a drop-in charge of $15.
The Board Room Game Café
Pick one or more of the over 500 games and warm up with a hot drink and snacks at The Board Room Game Café. If you are not sure how to play a game, ask the helpful staff and they will explain the game to you. The library of games keeps growing.
Do some holiday shopping at Halifax Seaport Farmers Market
Holiday shopping can be very stressful, and it can be difficult to find unique gifts for everyone on your list. This year, shop local and buy fresh produce and your holiday gifts at one of the many farmers market in HRM. The largest and longest running farmers market is the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market. The market is open from Tuesday to Sunday every week; however, the market will be closed on Christmas and Boxing Day.
Hope for Wildlife
If you or your family members love animals, you should visit the Hope for Wildlife rehabilitation centre. The centre takes care of orphaned and injured wildlife from across Nova Scotia. You can take a tour of the learning centre and visit the wildlife gardens to learn more about the animals and maybe even meet a few of them. The centre is open Saturdays and Sundays from 12 pm to 4 pm. Admission is free, but donations are always welcome.