If your first instincts involve hunkering down and hibernating as soon as the temperature drops, here are a few things to keep you up and moving all season long.
Get Away From It All
If a trip somewhere warm just isn’t in the cards, consider a weekend getaway closer to home. Wellington’s The Drake Devonshire Inn offers the quintessential place for a vacation without the travel time. Cuddle up in front of the shared fire-pit or pass the time away gazing out at your frosted beachfront view. Take in the lovely surroundings with a winter walk, and work up an appetite worthy of their restaurant’s acclaimed seasonal menus. And, if all else fails, help float those winter blues away with an early-morning restorative yoga session right in the hotel.
How about a little wine-d down weekend at Huff Estates Inn and Winery? Complete with elegant guests rooms, tasting room and on site Oeno Art Gallery showing an intimate exhibition of paintings by the much loved folk artist, Maud Lewis (1903-1970) until the end of January.
Rated one of the best breakfast spots around, the Picton Harbour Inn has rooms overlooking the picturesque snow covered Harbour and is the perfect spot for a cozy winter getaway.
Enjoy a Little Culture
If you absolutely must stay inside this winter, consider bundling up just long enough to check out the beautiful artwork on display at downtown Belleville galleries. Located within easy walking distance of each other, both Gallery 121 and the John M. Parrott Gallery in the Belleville Public Library offer regularly changing exhibits in a wide range of media and styles.
Go to the Movies
Join Quinte Film Alternative and see some excellent “out of the mainstream” entertainment every other Wednesday at the Empire Theatre. QFA members enjoy discounted admission, as well as the chance to see unique quality movies in the company of like-minded film buffs. More of a non-fiction fan? Avoid disappointment and look into early bird tickets for Belleville’s upcoming Downtown Docfest. A weekend pass buys you unlimited documentary screenings plus admission to the opening night gala.
Those who just need to get mobile but still can’t abide the notion of heading outside should check out the area’s largest indoor driving range at Loyalist Sports Dome. Featuring a FIFA and Ontario Soccer approved artificial turf pitch, this 39,000-foot air-supported structure provides the perfect spot to practice your golf swing or play indoor soccer, lacrosse, ultimate frisbee and much more. Check out their two indoor sports courts and consider signing up for tennis lessons. Rhino Sports and Playland is another great indoor facility that offers a wide range of activities like sports simulation, trampoline zone, climbing wall and a full rink.
Hit the Ice
Winter sports lovers seeking ice-time without the windchill might want to strap on the blades and take advantage of public skating sessions offered at arenas throughout the area. Facilities such as the Quinte Sports & Wellness Centre sharpen skates on-site and even offer opportunities like Learn to Skate programs and Figure Skating practice time. And the Trenton and Frankford Arenas in Quinte West have free indoor skating throughout the winter season.
Those more interested in life under the ice can while away many a wintry hour and try their hand at fishing from the comfort of a heated, ice-fishing hut. Professional outfits such as the Bay of Quinte Fishing Charters make great starting points for novice fishers seeking both the right gear and a little expert advice.
Just Do It
Enough whining already! Now is the time to embrace your inner Canadian and just get outside. Take to the slopes at Batawa Ski Hill or consider signing up for a guided snowshoeing adventure courtesy of the helpful and enthusiastic folks at Go Active. Or, how about an outdoor camping experience with Cruising Canoes? Sporty types with both feet still planted firmly in summer can buckle on their bicycle helmets and hit the trails in winter on a fat bike. Known for their wider, terrain-gripping tires and the ability to handle any surface, fat bikes make winter riding fun! Give Ideal Bike a call to inquire about equipment rental, or drop by The Brake Room to learn how to give your bike the winter maintenance that it deserves. And for those who truly just like to keep things simple, put on your woolies and head out to any Quinte Conservation Area. What better way to ease into this coolest of seasons than with a peaceful walk in Bay of Quinte’s gorgeous winter wonderland?