things to do toronto winter

50 things to do this winter in Toronto

50 things to do this winter in Toronto

Things to do in Toronto for winter 2020 have lots of events and activities worth bundling up for. Hamilton fever is about to overtake the city and you can fill up on warm foods at the new Eataly. The Toronto Zoo's new night walk casts a light in the darkness of winter and the Paradise Theatre might just be the coziest spot in town.

Here are some things to look forward to this winter in Toronto.

New this year


Shop and eat at Canada's first Eataly

Where you're entertaining, hungry for dinner or making something at home, Eataly has it all. With over 50,00 square feet spread across two floors, several restaurants, in-store food stations and a massive marketplace, everything you're looking for an more is here.

Visit newly reopened Paradise Theatre

It's been 13 long years since the Paradise Theatre on Bloor Street was open and after a huge makeover, it's back and ready for screen both old and new films, host concerts and soon include food and drinks at its in-house bar.

Hit the ice one of the city's newest skating outdoor rinks

Union Station is getting into the winter activities game this year outdoor skating rink open now until January 4 that's free to use and includes skate rentals and weekend dance parties. Elsewhere, College Park now has its own oval rink open until March 22.

Try to snag tickets for one of the most talked-about plays

Hamilton. Need I say more? The award-winning Broadway hit musical is finally coming to Toronto for its Canadian premiere. from February 11 to May 27 with each batch of tickets quickly selling out for high prices. If you can get one, you're in for a an incredible performance.

Experience a new take on a the classic production of Julius Caesar

Over the course of three weeks, the classic Shakespeare play is getting revamped into a modern-era take on the world today is as it tells the story of an authoritarian leader brought down in a time of strife. Sound familiar? You can see it at the Crow's Nest from January 7 to 26.

See how an artist captured the Toronto skyline in a huge painting

Artist Keita Morimoto took what he saw of the city and rendering a hyper-realistic, eighteen-foot triptych showing the city bathed in different lighting. Garden of Light, is on display at the Nicholas Metivier Gallery from February 6 to 29 and is worth checking out.

Catch Post Malone as he returns for another stint of his tour

Rap star Post Malone has been having on heck of a year and it doesn't look like he plans to slow down anytime soon as he makes his way back to Toronto on February 14 at the Scotiabank Arena for the second leg of his Runway tour.

Travel through time at the Toronto Zoo's futuristic night walk

Terra Lumina has finally made its way to Toronto after touring numerous cities around the world to transform the Zoo into a futuristic space that unites humans and animals while visitors walk through memorizing light displays from now until April 13.

Relive your childhood at a huge Winnie the Pooh exhibit

Pooh, Tiger, Piget, Eeyore and Christopher Robin will all be here for this huge, immersive exhibition that includes original sketches, manuscripts, photographs and more that looks to recreate the stories of our childhood from March 7 to August 13.

Marquee events

DJ Skate Nights

Saturday night's alright for skating at this ice skating party series that's already well underway at Natrel Rink on the waterfront with local DJs dropping by to spin the hits until February 15.

Solaris

Solaris is back after a one year hiatus to feature some of the biggest names in EDM, house and electro on December 26 and 27, including deadmau5, Seven Lions, Above & Beyond, i_o and lots more.

What's in the Box

Singers, songwriters, producers and DJs are all coming out for this music festival on from December 26 to 30 that focuses on showcasing local and Canadian talent for the low cost of $5 per show.

New Year's Eve at Nathan Phillips Square

New decade, new Toronto and you'll want to make this New Year's a special one at any one of the many parties happening around the city, or at City Hall's huge celebration on December 31 that features music, performances, skating, food and drink and fireworks.

Polar Bear Dip

Things are getting wet, soggy and cold in the name of charity as a folks come out on New Year's Day to wade into the freezing Lake Ontario to help raise money for a number of good causes.

Class of 2020

You never know who might be the next big thing to come out of this showcase of excellent and diverse indie bands from all over, some making their debut in Toronto for the first time between January 4 and 24.

Next Stage Festival

Back again is this theatre festival featuring 12 contemporary plays that focus on the theme of 20/20 vision; the past, present and future while each work explores personal and political aspects of society, art and life from January 8 to 19.

Generator

Chris Hadfield is back with a who slew of special guests, musicians, astronaut pals, comedians and scientists in toe for a night of performances and talks on January 10.

Long Winter

It's at Long Winter where you can catch some of the city's best underground DJs and artists as they come out of hibernation once a month to get everybody moving and grooving on the dance floor all winter long with the next one on January 11.

things to do winter toronto

Babel is one of the city's newest spots for Mediterranean food and is part of this year's Winterlicious. Photo by Hector Vasquez.

No Pants Subway Ride

Strip down and hop on as the No Pants Subway Ride returns to a Toronto subway station near you on January 12 as part of Improv Everywhere that looks to spread laugher and silliness in places all over the world.

Interior Design show

If you're looking for inspiration for your next home project, this show features the work of Canadian and international designers over four-days from January 16 to 19 talking about and showcasing the future of interior design for every kind of space.

Come Up To My Room

The Gladstone is known for its individually-designed guest rooms and that extends to the whole space during this design festival on from January 16 to 19 with designers spreading out to feature large installations all over the hotel.

DesignTO 

Winter is design festival season and one of the biggest is back from January 17 to 26 to feature designers and creatives from all over the world in a series of exhibitions, talks, showcases and more.

Toronto Light Festival

Winter need to be dark and drab so long as these installations brighten the streets of the historic Distillery District from January 17 to March 1. The works are different each year and cast a colourful glow over the space.

AGO All Hours

Get ready to party it up inside the gallery with a full day of fun on January 25 that includes music, workshops, performances, food and drink spread throughout the whole space.

Progress Festival

New and innovative works make up this theatre festival with a series of performances that explore new ideas and feature Canadian and international artists taking the stage from January 30 to February 15.

Winterlicious

It's worth bundling up and heading out for this city-wide food experience on from January 31 to February 13 with hundreds of restaurants and bars participating to feature new menus and specials.

Winter Craft Beer Fest

Break out the long johns and sky gear for this big winter beer festival with a day of Canadian-style fun with over 40 brewers dropping by to serve up the suds alongside food, games, bonfires and music on February 1.

things to do toronto winter

A light shines through the darkness of winter—several, actually, across Ontario Place's West Island during the Winter Light Exhibition. Photo by Hector Vasquez.

Toronto Tea Festival

Winter is tea season and this festival on February 1 and 2 is dedicated to the warmth and wonder tea provides with a weekend of tastings from local tea producers, shopping, showcases, workshops and more.

Icefest

The 80s are back in a big way at this year's Icefest with over 70,000 lbs of ice carved into sculptures and spread around Village of Yorkville Park from February 8 and 9. This year's theme celebrates the decade of crimped hair and Phil Collins so expect some totally tubular pieces.

Winter Light Exhibition

Ontario Place is the place to be in winter with a season of fun, including the Winter Light Exhibition beginning from February 8 to March 29 with immersive installations spread throughout the West Island.

Winter Stations

This international design competition did something different this year with two auxiliary installations, Impulse and Loop, before the actual outdoor festival from Feburary 17 to March 30 that includes large-scale, interactive pieces you can explore through.

Toronto Black Film Festival

One of the year's best film festivals returns this winter to showcase the best in Black cinema by filmmakers from all over the world from February 12 to 17. Special guests, workshops, talks and more are also part of the festival.

Rhubarb Festival

Innovative and experimental queer theatre is on at this annual festival from February 12 to 22 with ten days of works that include dance, music and performance art that push the boundaries of each medium.

Wavelength

Now entering its 20th year, this winter music and arts festival on from February 13 to 16 manages to find some of the most talented folks from all over and bring them to the city to make for one most eclectic festivals of the year.

Canadian International AutoShow

The hottest rods in the game are rolling up into the city from February 14 to 23 for this huge car show that includes old, new and rare rides brought into the city by collectors, dealers and enthusiasts.

Artist Project

Art battles, talks, workshops, exhibitions and parties are all part of this huge contemopoarty art festival on from February 20 to 23 with artists from all over the world coming by to showcase their works. 

Winterfolk

Some sweet and smooth sounds are bringing warmth to the city this winter as this blues and folk festival returns to feature musicians from all over playing at the Annex Hotel and Tranzac Club over three nights from February 21 to 23.

Sugar Shack

Indulge your sweet tooth at this festival dedicated to all-things sugar with two days of treats, including fresh maple taffy rolled in snow, food trucks, shopping, ice sculpture carving, music and more on from March 14 to 15.

Comicon

Calling all cosplayers for this huge fan festival with a weekend of exhibitions and special guests dropping by among shopping, workshops and events happening from March 20 to 22.

Indoor activities


See the new Raptors City edition uniforms at Welcome Toronto games

The Raps are back in action after their championship run last season and they're showing off their new City edition uniforms with gold OVO details they'll be playing in during special Welcome Toronto games.

Think quick at a new escape room

Escape rooms are the thing and Escape Manor is Toronto's newest one that's an huge immersive lounge where you can solve puzzles and make your way through the rooms, throw axes, drink beer and eat food—all in one place.

Practice your putting while you drink at Par-Tee Putt

Putt putt is back in a big way and this new spot where you can practice your short hand on an outrageous course that features a giant Nintendo controller and the Delorean from Back to the Future.

things to do toronto winter

See if the TTC streetcars hold up your putt game the way they hold up your commute. Photo by Hector Vasquez.

See if the new Phantom of the Opera is as good as the old one

This classic Cameron Mackintosh opera is back on tour and coming to Toronto from January 8 to February 2 in what promises to be "bigger and better than ever before" with new scenes and and tons of fabulous costumes.

Try your luck at a claw machine arcade

There's nothing more satisfying than successfully grabbing one of the plushy suckers and bringing it home to love, and with claw machines being one of the hottest and most underrated trends right now, playing with them isn't a bad way to spend the winter.

Workout and drink cocktails all in one place

Work hard, play hard. That's where the wellness trends are heading and Sweat and Tonic offers both with an on-site bar you can indulge in post-workout. And if that's not you're thing, they have smoothies, too.

Out of town


Take a day trip somewhere fun

What could be better than spending a day with some baby goats? Just outside of the city are tons of fun things to do during winter, like hike with alpacas, check out a frozen waterfall and follow a bacon and beer trail.

Try a new winter sport

While some folks like to hibernate during winter, others like to stay outdoors. If you're one for the latter, there's a few winter sports you can try that you may not be able to do inside the city, like snowkiting and ice climbing.

Treat yourself to a winter resort getaway

Resorts are one of the best places to escape the winter and feel rejuvenated with lots of places outside of the city not only offering full-service spas, but activities such as ice fishing, snowmobiling and skating.

Spend the weekend in Hamilton

Just an hour drive outside of Toronto, Hamilton has lots going on that lets you get away from the big city without travelling very far. There's lots of great places to eat, local shops and an amazing music scene. Bars, shops and art all pepper the city's cultural landscape, too.


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