How to get your kids to love cross-country skiing

Did you know 19 of our parks have cross-country trails, about half of them groomed?

Cross-country skiing is a great way for families to get outdoors and enjoy the winter together! It’s less expensive and safer than alpine skiing, it helps keep kids fit, and it’s a skill they’ll have their entire life.

Here are our top seven tips for getting kids hooked on cross-country skiing:

Continue reading How to get your kids to love cross-country skiing

Where to skate in Ontario Parks

The air is crisp and clean. The evergreens are covered with snow. If you’re lucky – and observant – you might spot a cardinal, a finch, a waxwing or a blue jay as you glide along the ice.

And when the sun goes down, you can huddle around a big bonfire with a cup of hot chocolate and warm up before relacing your skates and heading back out to skate under the stars.

It’s simply magical.

This winter, plan a skating trip to these four provincial parks:

Continue reading Where to skate in Ontario Parks

A nature-lover’s New Year’s resolutions

Today’s post comes from Alistair MacKenzie, Natural Heritage Education Supervisor at Pinery Provincial Park.

Alistair at PineryAs we begin a brand new year, many of us make personal resolutions to try to better ourselves, or to help our families and communities.

I’ll be making several personal resolutions (darn sour-cream-glazed dougnuts!), but in addition, I am choosing 2017 as the year to make some resolutions for parks and protected areas. 

As I work and play in Ontario Parks’ many incredible landscapes, most of my efforts will take effect there, but I am not planning on limiting my efforts…I’ll include any green spaces I can find!

I’m just one person, so I would encourage you to help.  You may want to create a different list for yourself, but our parks can certainly use the help, so please consider giving back to our protected areas.

Continue reading A nature-lover’s New Year’s resolutions

January vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)

Start 2017 off right with a cozy winter staycation!

Stay warm and cozy at Ontario Parks this January in one of our roofed accommodations! We’ve got lots of cabins, cottages and yurts available all month, especially for midweek visitors!

Accommodations featured below were available as of 3:30 pm, December 21, 2016.

Continue reading January vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)

December vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)

Ever celebrated the holidays surrounded by nature?

Stay warm and cozy at Ontario Parks this December in one of our roofed accommodations! We’ve got lots of cabins, cottages and yurts available all month, including several weekend openings!

Accommodations featured below were available as of noon, November 16, 2016.

Continue reading December vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)

Owl-induced whiplash

In today’s post, Alistair MacKenzie, Naturalist Heritage Education Supervisor at Pinery Provincial Park, recounts a dramatic encounter with an eastern screech owl.

We desperately needed to confirm breeding evidence for eastern screech owls in our survey squares for the Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas back in 2005.

It was our last chance given that the atlas was wrapping up the collection period and I was frustrated since I confidently knew that screech owls did indeed breed in the park, but sadly we just hadn’t managed to be in the right place at the right time to confirm it.

Continue reading Owl-induced whiplash

November/December events at Ontario Parks

Many of our parks hibernate through the winter, but for others, the fun’s just getting started!

From Victorian farmhouses to dryland dogsledding, we’ve got some exciting events this November and December!

Continue reading November/December events at Ontario Parks

November vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)

Imagine spending a crisp autumn night under the stars in a heated yurt. Or how about watching a thunderstorm roll in across Lake Ontario from your waterfront cottage?

Stay warm and cozy at Ontario Parks this November in one of our roofed accommodations!

Accommodations featured below were available as of noon, November 1, 2016.

Continue reading November vacancy highlights (roofed accommodation)