If you want to experience the beautiful side of Canadian winters, then a winter getaway to the Niagara Region is perfect. Whether you are going for a weekend or you want to take in an extended stay, there are some unforgettable experiences for you to take in that celebrate winter and transport you to a real-life Winter Wonderland. From the glistening, magical ice coating on the trees from the fine mist of Niagara Falls, to snow-dusted wineries, and even a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see The Falls freeze over, here are the best ways to experience Niagara in the winter.
Niagara is known for its wine – especially The Icewine. The Niagara favourite is showcased over three weekends in January at the Niagara Icewine Festival. Whether you are a wine connoisseur, or you just want to try something new, this is a unique experience featuring over 40 wineries that you won’t want to miss. It’s a great option for a quick, romantic couple’s getaway or for a weekend with the girls!
The Niagara SkyWheel defines the skyline at Niagara Falls almost as iconically as The Falls itself. Take in the winter beauty of The Falls and all of the surrounding Niagara region from the incredible view from the SkyWheel. Don’t worry about getting cold because each fully enclosed gondola is temperature controlled so you will be toasty warm while taking in the gorgeous panoramic views.
If you’re feeling adventurous – and you don’t mind getting a little misted – going behind the falls during winter touches on all of the senses for an unforgettable experience. The 130-year-old underground tunnels lead to viewing portals and an observation deck so you can stand directly behind the falls. You can feel the vibrations of the water hitting the rocks, the fine mist hitting your face, and the almost deafening sound of the falls.
What is better than a beautiful Winter Wonderland? A Winter Wonderland with Christmas lights! The Winter Festival of Lights attracts over one million visitors every year. With over 3 million lights making up static, animated, and interactive light displays, there is something for the whole family to enjoy before settling in for a warm cup of hot chocolate for the evening.
Pick your favourite winery to visit because most wineries are open through the winter! The winery experience isn’t limited by being inside. Discover new wines through guided food and wine pairings and learn how your favourites are made. Don’t forget that Icewine grapes are harvested during the winter when they are at their sweetest and frozen on the vine!
When was the last time you laced up skates for an adventure on an outdoor rink? Now is your chance at the beautiful Wayne Gretzky Estates Winery. Cap off your day of skating on a heated patio with wine, whisky, a cocktail, or a cup of hot chocolate at this kid-friendly activity.
If hanging around outside in the winter isn’t your style, or perhaps it’s just a bit too cold, check out Bird Kingdom – the world’s largest free-flying indoor aviary. Open all year, this indoor exotic paradise will give you a break from the winter chills. There are hundreds of tropical birds and exotic animals, a rainforest to explore, and many interactive experiences.
Another indoor experience to help you escape the cold is the Butterfly Conservatory. There are over 45 butterfly species to discover from all over the world. The tropical paradise is home to over 2,000 butterflies, making this colourful activity not only Instagram worthy, but also educational.