Health & Wellness

Winter activities for families

Courtney Rupertus
Winter activities for families

It’s around this point in the winter season that the initial wonderment of snow has worn off and cabin fever has set in. Kids are bored and parents are getting tired of having to get everyone dressed up in a million layers. There’s not much we can do about a couple more months of snow, but it can help to try new outdoor activities to avoid settling into a rut.

If the thrill of riding in the sleigh around the yard has lost its appeal, here are a few ideas for keeping kids busy and keeping your whole family active during the winter months.

The best part: all of these activities are fun and budget-friendly. Don’t forget to top the day off with a delicious mug of homemade hot chocolate.

Nature Walks

Rather than sticking to your usual route, get out and about off the beaten path. Instead of rushing your kids along, let them explore twigs and rocks. Take time to notice aloud how things change from season to season, which birds are out, etc. You could even try a little “snow-ga” while on your walk. Get your kids to try balancing on a fallen log or hanging out in tree pose amongst the other trees in the forest.

Snow Painting

Mix some food colouring and water in spray bottles so that the kids can paint the snow. This is a great way to spend time outside while letting those creative juices flow. Kids can paint pictures, write their names, or just make a good old-fashioned mess that will melt away come spring. You can even make a snow angel first and then colourfully decorate the angel.

Ice Skating

Sometimes going out for a good frozen skate takes more effort than we feel like putting in so it gets pushed to the next weekend, and then the next, and so on. That said, once you get out there, spending the day skating is so much fun! Find a good spot, like Cranberry Marsh, and of course bring some snacks and hot chocolate. Bigger kids can of course skate themselves, and parents with little ones can skate behind the stroller or while pulling a sleigh.


Another great way to burn a few calories and get everyone outside is to go snowshoeing. You can buy snowshoes for kids as young as age two (basically if they can walk, they can snowshoe). For kids who aren’t walking yet or not quite well enough for snowshoes, you can tow them behind in a sleigh or tuck them in a baby backpack.

Cross-Country Skiing

Probably a family favourite around Valemount already, cross-country skiing is a great outdoor activity for the whole family. Little ones can start skiing around five years old, or even younger if you have the right gear. Sharing these experiences can instill a lifelong joy and appreciation for the season in your children.

And there’s more…

Some other ideas for entertaining kids during the winter are tobogganing, dogsledding, horse drawn sleigh rides, ice hockey, ice fishing, building a snow fort or a snowman, or even having a supervised snowball fight.