5 Holiday Traditions in Toronto
The countdown to the big day is in full swing and Toronto is teaming with excitement. In the past month, we’ve seen the city transform into a hub of holiday cheer. Every year there are staple events that help us get into the spirit of the season. We’ve rounded up the top five on our radar:
Skating at Nathan Phillips Square
There’s a reason the arena at Nathan Phillips was recently voted one of the best ice rinks in the world. The large rink at new city hall has been a traditional holiday and winter gathering spot for many Torontonians over the years. Now, with the addition of the Toronto sign and the newly launched Christmas Market in the square, Nathan Phillips has become the ultimate holiday hot-spot. The picturesque skating rink is open seven days a week and skates are available to rent on location.
Window-Gazing at The Hudson’s Bay
Every year it seems the window displays at The Hudson’s Bay, located at 176 Yonge Street, can’t get any grander, and yet every year, they do. From recreations of Santa’s workshop to elaborate train trails throughout the multi-window display to extravagant holiday themed scenes, the windows always leave us oohing and aahing. This year the theme of the displays is Enchanted Forest where magical and whimsical sets of wintery creatures partake in different holiday activities. You can catch the mystical displays for yourself 24/7 through the end of 2016.
Sing-A-Long Sound of Music at TIFF
While not a typical holiday event, the 1965 movie The Sound of Music has become a holiday favourite for most. In addition to the yearly television screenings of the film around the holidays, every year TIFF hosts several screenings of a sing-a-long version of the film as well. Hosted by comedian Shawn Hitchins, audience members are encouraged to dress up as their favourite character and are given queues throughout the film to shout, make noise, and sing along. Tickets are on sale now and showtimes this year are on the 26th, 30th, and 31st of December.
The National Ballet of Canada’s Performace of The Nutcracker
What would Christmas be without the Nutcracker? One of the most iconic holiday performances of all time, the National Ballet of Canada’s rendition of The Nutcracker each year is without a doubt one of the city’s favourite holiday traditions. If you’re looking for something to do with the whole family, tickets are still available to catch this enchanting show, which is on at the Four Seasons Centre until December 31st.
The Christmas Market
This may be a new Toronto tradition, but we definitely see it sticking around. Christmas Markets have taken over the city and they’ve quickly become a festive favourite. With the most popular market at the Distillery District leading the way, this year we saw a number of new Christmas markets pop up to join in on the fun. Most notably were the new markets at Union Station and Nathan Phillips Square. If you haven’t yet checked out one of the many holiday markets Toronto has to offer this season, there are still a few more days to soak up the merriment.