Presented by Breakaway Experiences
December always arrives with a little Ho, Ho, Ho and a whole lotta Ha, Ha, Ha! The city is primed for December with plenty of events and activities for families to escape together, create memories together and simply enjoy being together.
Inspired by classic European holiday markets, the Toronto Christmas Market runs daily (except Mondays) until Sunday, December 23 at the Distillery Historic District. A giant Christmas tree, Santa, handmade crafts, music, delicious food and even mulled wine awaits! Admission is free of charge on weekdays until Friday at 5 pm. Starting at 5 pm on Fridays, and all day Saturday/Sunday, there is a $6.00 admission fee except for children under two who are FREE.
All the quintessential Christmas Market regulars you expect, combined with the excitement and glamour of a winter festival at the Holiday Fair in Nathan Phillips Square! An artisan village, complete with crafts and Christmas treats, food trucks, so you don’t go hungry, a revolving selection of local performers for live entertainment and a Holly Jolly Midway with a carousel and other classic rides. All this, topped off with a beautiful light display, is FREE! The Market runs December 1st to 23rd (closed Mondays).
Tucked away on the East Island of Ontario Place this month is a winter wonderland full of magic and joy. Purported to be the largest winter festival in Canada, the Aurora Winter Festival features outdoor skating on the frozen pond, a tube park, 60’ Ferris wheel, train rides, creative light displays, a Christmas Market, carnival rides, food market, enchanting characters, and much more. Enjoy Aurora until December 30.
Have a Nutcracker Christmas at Casa Loma, daily from Dec 1 to Jan 6th, 2019. It’s worth visiting this gothic castle just for the stunning and elegant holiday decorations highlighted by 8 Christmas trees, including one 40’ tall giant in the Great Hall. But you’ll also get to enjoy entertainment by famed illusionist entertainer Professor Wick and ice skating performers Glisse on Ice. Kids will get taken in by the magic of visiting Santa in his castle workshop, creating crafts, and decorating treats. Watch out for special appearances on weekends by members of the Paw Patrol gang!
Or make a night of it and visit Casa Loma after dark (Dec 17-23 only) to get the full effect of the dazzling light display in the gardens, an outdoor holiday Christmas Market and live performances by the Casa Loma Holiday Orchestra.
Speaking of the Nutcracker, The National Ballet performs The Nutcracker December 8—30. In this version of the perennial Christmas, the setting is rural 19th-century Russia where a brother and sister, Misha and Marie, experience their Christmas Eve dream journey through spectacular world adventures, the glittering realm of the Snow Queen, ending at the magnificent palace of the Sugar Plum Fairy.
45 minutes before the show, go to Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre at the Four Seasons Centre for Nutcracker Story Time! Intended to increase children’s understanding of the tale, Nutcracker Story Time is an interactive telling of the magical holiday story, setting the stage for kids to fully appreciate and follow along with this splendid ballet.
There will be plenty of Bah Humbug, in a good way, at the Soulpepper production of A Christmas Carol. Ebeneezer and his ghosts grace the stage at the Baillie Theatre at The Young Centre December 7 – 24
Many of us binge watch holiday movies during December, but you’ll have a chance to see 2 classics on the big screen with Cineplex Family Holiday Favourites. Best of all, tickets at $2.99! Catch Elf on December 1 and Polar Express 3D on December 8 at select Cineplex theatres. Click here to find one near you!
If your favourite holiday movie is Home Alone (Its definitely a classic in my house!), then you can’t miss Home Alone in Concert presented by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. The film plays on the big screen behind the musicians, and the Resonance Youth Choir will sing along during the movie a the Roy Thomson Hall December 6 to 8.
Another chance to hear live music with a favourite film as the backdrop is at the screening of the animated classic The Snowman, with Orchestra Toronto and special guests on December 9. It may be chilly outside, but inside, the George Weston Recital Hall will be filled with warmth and harmony.
Check out Jingle Boots – The Big Yellow Boot Holiday Show! Join the entire Big Yellow Boot family – Splash, Boots, Charlie, Chef Brock Lee and our very own Jumping Jack Granny as they celebrate the holidays. Shows are December 23 in Toronto and December 27 in Mississauga.
It gets so dark, so early in December that once can’t help but be drawn to the magical glow of Christmas lights. Bundle up and head towards the lights! Here is a list of the Best Places to See Christmas Lights in Toronto throughout the whole month of December!
Need a little break from all the Christmas themed fun? The Bravo Academy’s Teen Troupe presents Disney’s NEWSIES at the Studio Theatre on December 14-16. It’s NYC in the early 1900s where Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy fights back against unfair bosses who want to take advantage of him and his “Newsies”. Songs, dance and non-stop thrills ensue!
It’s Pirate Day in Adventure Bay, and Mayor Goodway is getting ready for a big celebration, but not before Ryder and the pirate pups rescue Cap’n Turbot and discover a pirate treasure map! Of course, the mystery must be solved, and the PAW Patrol set out over land and sea to find the treasure. PAW Patrol Live! The Great Pirate Adventure arrives at the FirstOntario Concert Hall in Hamilton December 1 & 2 and if you miss those, head farther afield to the Meridian Centre in Saint Catharines for two shows December 11 & 12.
Cirque Du Soleil – Corteo arrives at the Scotiabank Arena Toronto with the usual Cirque pomp and circumstance for performances December 12 to 16. This show should be subtitled “Celebrate Life!” In typical over the (big) top Cirque fashion, this story is a parade of memories where friends gather to remember the clown Mauro.
The Wizard of Oz is a favourite family musical at any time of the year! You and your children will be clicking your heels to the dances, tapping your feet to the music, laughing uproariously at the jokes, at the edge of your seat, literally, because this show includes audience participation! Head off to see the Wizard at the Elgin Theatre. The show runs various dates in December until Jan 5.
Times have changed, and so has gift giving. In our digital era, more and more people are avoiding the crowds and hassles at the mall and buying their gifts online. People are also turning away from consumerism that values the acquisition of stuff and favouring the importance and desirability of experiences, building memories with people they love. We’re realizing that the things you collect rarely bring you as much pleasure as time well spent.
This Christmas, Breakaway Experiences offers an alternative to traditional gifting, with over 1000 unique, “once-in-a-lifetime,” and “bucket list” experiences. With events like spa days, gourmet food tours, helicopter flights, or mermaid lessons, you don’t have to buy another sweater or gadget that will be thrown to the back of a closest in January. Find a speciality experience that will give someone the chance to relax, discover, have an adventure, and most importantly, create incredible memories that they’ll always cherish. Last-minute? No trouble! It’s easy for you, too: order online, print (or email) the certificate, and your shopping is done. Worried they might not love the experience you chose? Breakaway Experiences also offers hassle-free exchanges or gift certificates, so they can pick their own experience. Gift certificates never expire, either, so your loved one can work around a busy schedule. The hardest part is simply choosing what amazing thing to do.
Although we do our best to provide you with accurate information, all event details are subject to change. Please contact the facility to avoid disappointment.