Winter Traditions - Created in Banff
Enjoy Snowflakes and Snow Angels!

Winter Traditions - Banff
Winter Traditions
Winter Family Games

Banff is a winter wonderland for everyone - young and old alike!

There are so many fun things to do in the snow especially for your kids. It's time to create some new winter traditions.

It's often difficult for kids to just "get out and play." Especially in the winter when the daylight hours are shorter.

There are fewer safe places where kids can have some fun time.

Using the winter outdoors as a theme, let the kids experience some winter fun and physical activity. All you need is warm clothing and some creativity.

Get ready to Create Some New Winter Traditions

Engage your kids in the planning. Brainstorm as many outdoor winter activities as possible. Things you can do with them or with their friends. Remember to consider equipment, and safety when planning for any activity.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Create a scavenger hunt. Have the kids identify and gather items they can see from various parts of Banff's local parks.

For example: How many pine cones can you gather in five minutes? How many trees can you count? How many snow balls or snow angels can you make in one minute? How many dogs do you see in the park?

Frosty Walks

Grab a breath of fresh air by taking a walk around the quaint townsite of Banff or a nearby park. Invite everyone along. Listen to the crunch of that snow under foot....

To add some fun, have your kids estimate the time it will take them to reach a particular destination, then compare their estimates to the actual time. Younger children may also enjoy games of “Eye Spy” on the walk. This has the added safety benefit of helping them to become familiar with Banff.

Snowball weigh-in; snowball melt-out

On your winter walk around the playground or park have your kids create the biggest snowball they can. Back at your Banff hotel, weigh or measure their snowballs and record this information. You can then place each snowball in its own dish or bucket in various areas of your room (e.g. under the radiator, by the window or on the table) and monitor the time it takes for the snowballs to melt in each location and how much water each produces. If available, a little food colouring can make for fun indoor or outdoor snowball art.

Winter Traditions - Some Outdoor Fitness

Tobogganing is a good old-fashioned activity that is great fun and good exercise -- plus the hike up the hill preceding the slide down is great winter fitness. A large plastic garbage bag can do the trick if you don't have a toboggan on hand. Remind kids to look ahead to ensure there is plenty of room before they proceed down the hill.

Ice-Skating is also a great family pastime and can be done both indoors and outdoors depending on the winter weather on your vacation. Many locations rent equipment quite reasonably if you don't have it on hand. Be sure to wear head protection as well as properly fitted skates. Also, if you have the time and ability, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing together as a family are great winter workouts and time well spent together.

Group activities - Some Great Family Winter Games

If you have a group of several kids together, you can have them engaged in fun snow games -- great for winter birthday parties!

Snow pile: Groups have five minutes to build the highest snow pile.

Spoon balls: Each group is given a spoon and a snowball. One at a time, each child puts the snowball on the spoon and runs around a marker. To be particularly active, the group can continue taking turns for a specified amount of time instead of stopping after each child has gone once.

Dog sled race: Kids can take turns being pulled by their “dog teams” around a marked course on a toboggan.

Fill it up: Groups can fill a bucket full of snow using a scoop. See which team can fill the bucket the fastest or see which team has the most snow in their bucket after a certain period of time.

So get on those woolies, hike up your boots, catch some fresh air, go for a hike and make the great Canadian winter a part of your winter traditions.

If you're winter traditions include young kids and you're wondering where to go take the kids after a fun day in the snow, see some great places below:

Family-Friendly Restaurants

Tired of fast food and room service? While all restaurants in Banff will accommodate young children, there are some that are particularly child-friendly, with children's menus, high chairs and booster seats. Some of these include:

Athena Pizza
Bistro at the YWCA
Hostelling International Dining Rooms (Banff and Lake Louise)
Melissa's Mis-steak
Pad Thai
Phil's Restaurant
Spaghetti Factory
St.Jame's Gate Olde Irish Pub
Sushi House Banff
Tony Roma's(Mount Royal Hotel)

There is so much to see and do in the winter wonderland of Banff. Start your winter traditions this year.... There are some lovely Christmas Activities to check out as well!!!

Banff is the best place to spend the holidays with the kids......

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