Cool things to do in Toronto this winter
From outdoor adventures to cultural hotspots and foodie favourites, explore the best of Toronto this winter.
Grab your toque, gloves and coat and set out on an urban winter adventure in this world-class Canadian city.
Go ice skating, skiing or snowboarding
Canadians love to get out on the ice and Toronto is home to some of the best places to go ice skating in an urban setting. Tip: Outdoor rinks are busiest during the weekends, so plan a weekday visit. You might just have the rink almost to yourself.
- Skate past the large "Toronto" sign at the rink in Nathan Phillips Square. Located in the heart of downtown, this iconic outdoor rink sits in front of the Toronto City Hall. Rentals are available onsite.
- Experience the enchantment of skating under twinkling lights and through a partially exposed old brick factory surrounded by evergreen trees at the Evergreen Brick Works.
- Glide along the signature 220 metre, figure eight stake trail under the Gardner expressway bridge at The Bentway and past a colourful installation of woven arches inspired by the northern lights. Rentals and skating lessons are available.
- For more skating opportunities, check out this comprehensive list of indoor and outdoor skating rinks in Toronto. Several public skating rinks provide skate rentals, as well as snack bars and washrooms.
- Located northeast of downtown in North York, the downhill skiing and snowboarding centre in Earls Bales Park provides hourly and all-day equipment rentals.
Experience top shopping, sport and culture
Explore the vast world of Toronto’s retail therapy, the arts and hockey culture.
- Easily one of Canada’s coolest streets, Queen West runs through Toronto’s fashion district and is home to unique and independent shops, boutiques and galleries. The world-renowned Graffiti Alley at Augusta Avenue and Rush Lane is worth visiting.
- One of North America’s busiest shopping malls, the CF Toronto Eaton Centre spans several city blocks and boasts three levels of shops, galleries and food courts.
- Downtown Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena is where’s it’s at during hockey. Catch a Toronto Maple Leafs game and experience passion and energy of hockey mania firsthand.
- The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is one of the largest museums in North America and showcases a diverse array of exhibits and collections that span art, culture and natural history.
- A cultural hub for art enthusiasts, the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) boasts an extensive collection of over 90,000 works of art including Indigenous, Canadian, European, African and contemporary pieces.
Explore foodie neighbourhoods and festivals
Toronto’s diversity in culture and heritage is most evident in the variety of international and innovative cuisines, including several MICHELIN-starred restaurants.
- It’s easy to be captivated by the appeal of the Historic Distillery District. The historic pedestrian-only neighbourhood has the old-world charm of quaint 19th-century buildings with its cobblestone streets, local shops and cozy cafes and busy restaurants.
- Visit St. Lawrence Market, Toronto's oldest market. Open Tuesday to Sunday, it's the perfect place to explore in the winter. With lots of coffee shops, restaurants, cafes and boutiques, you’ll want to spend hours wandering around this cozy market.
- Bring your appetite for Winterlicious, Toronto’s highly-popular, fixed menu, food and drink event during the winter season. Choose from many menu options featuring an appetizer, a main course and a dessert from Toronto’s hottest restaurants. Or bundle up for the Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival in February.
Discover the best city view
What better way to view a city than from above!
- Experience the best panoramic views of the snow-covered city from the top of Toronto's tallest free-standing structure. The CN Tower is open year-round and is one of the best places to visit in Toronto.
- At 114 stories above the ground, the Main Observation Level offers spectacular unobstructed floor-to-ceiling views. An elevator ride 33 stories higher will take you to the Skypod, the highest point of the Tower for even more unique perspectives of the city.
- Enjoy the experience longer while dining at the Tower's revolving 360 Restaurant, more than 350 metres (1,150 feet) up and admire the views while savouring locally sourced menu items.
Last updated: December 15, 2023