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The Best Indoor Activities To Cure Your Toronto Winter Blues

Art Gallery of Ontario | © Reg Natarajan/Flickr
Art Gallery of Ontario | © Reg Natarajan/Flickr
Let’s face it – being outside in -10ºC weather isn’t necessarily an enjoyable activity. But just because the cold makes you want to curl up in a ball, it doesn’t mean you have to hibernate in your room with Netflix all winter. Here are some of the best activities to do indoors during Toronto’s winter months.
Salt Cave Courtesy of Salt Cave

Go to the spa

Winter can make your bones ache, your skin shrivels up and your stress levels soar. When this happens, the best place to refresh and relax is the spa. Get a massage, unwind in the warm and salty baths, or just lie down in the sauna and chill. Seoul Zimzibang, a Korean sauna in North York, is the perfect place to warm your bones while you enjoy a good book. For the more adventurous spirits, the Solana Salt Cave in Oakville has a great variety of salts and minerals to help clear your pores and leave you feeling rejuvenated.

Revue Cinema © Sookie / Flickr

Catch a movie

Already seen all the blockbuster hits? There are lots of indie film cinemas scattered across the city. Choosing an independent cinema means supporting the artists that put all the blood, sweat, and tears into the piece they created. And the best part? It’s warm! Bring a friend or two with whom you can share thoughts and popcorn. Some of Toronto’s greatest indie cinemas include Bloor Hot Docs, The Royal Cinema, and The Revue Cinema.

The Horseshoe Tavern © CRUSTINA!/Flickr

Check out a live band

If there’s one thing Toronto is known for, it’s the incredible music scene it thrives on. Whether you’re into pop, rock, metal, jazz, electronic, or even opera, the city has something to offer. There are hundreds of venues to choose from, and this collection means you can pretty much find live music on any night of the week. If you’re not picky and just want a cool place to have some drinks and listen to some tunes, take a walk down Queen West, as it’s sure to not disappoint. After a whisky and some rockin’ out, you won’t even remember that it’s winter. For a list of upcoming Toronto shows, click here.

Toronto Poetry Slam Courtesy of Toronto Poetry Slam

Indulge in some slam poetry

Toronto Poetry Slam nights are always ones to remember. Here, you can find some of the greatest slam poets in all of Canada yet every last person will make you feel welcome. Toronto Poetry Slam puts on the event two times a month – for a list of their upcoming performances, click here.

The Second City © Stephen Depolo/Flickr

Comedy nights

Got the winter blues? They say that laughter is the best medicine, so enjoy a couple brews and watch some stand-up, improv, sketch comedy, or whatever makes you chuckle. Toronto is home to a myriad of comedy bars, including Second City, Yuk Yuk’s, Comedy Bar, and more. On rare occasions, you can also see big-name comedy stars like Dave Chappelle.

The Cavern Bar Courtesy of The Cavern Bar

Attend an open-mic night

Open-mic events are perfect for the nights you just want to sit back with some chill music and still be able to hear your friend sitting next to you. Order that juicy pulled pork pub favourite you’ve been craving all week, sip on some craft beer, and be taken aback by the courage and creativity of those who get up on stage and perform. Maybe you will even have the guts to get up there, too… For a list of open-mic nights in Toronto, click here.

Ball Pit © Jeremy Keith/Flickr

Become a kid again at the indoor playground

Yes, you heard that correctly. Toronto has an indoor playground designed specifically for adults, equipped with a ball pit and everything. Located at Queen and Dufferin, Pursuit OCR is a playground/obstacle course meant to motivate adults to work out while having fun at the same time. Beats going to the gym, right?

Royal Ontario Museum © Umair Khan/Flickr

Head to the Royal Ontario Museum

This outing is perfect for the history buff or dinosaur lover. The ROM always has a variety of special exhibitions on to choose from and is home to some of the rarest (and coolest) historical artifacts. For those looking to party, they also host ‘Friday Night Live‘, where you get to hang out, listen to great live music, get a little drunk and take a trip through history.

Art Gallery of Ontario © Reg Natarajan/Flickr

Channel your creative side at an art gallery

The beautiful thing about art is that you don’t have to know everything about it in order to enjoy it. So whether you’re an artist hunting for inspiration or have never looked at a piece of art before in your life, a trip to the art gallery can be a wonderful experience. Toronto’s AGO has an exquisite collection of artwork and offers exhibits of selected artists every few months. And once again, it hosts a night party on the first Thursday of every month.

Netflix © Global Panorama/Flickr

Netflix and chill

If none of these options sound appealing or you just don’t feel like getting out of bed today, the cold weather outside serves as the perfect excuse to stay in and watch some Netflix. With incredible TV shows like The Office, Narcos, Orange is the New Black, and movies like The Wolf of Wall Street, The Imitation Game, and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, who wouldn’t want to curl up with some hot chocolate and watch Netflix all day?