Great adventures close to home


Summertime is the best time to pack a lunch, hop in the car and enjoy the day. With day-trippers in mind, we rounded up a list of some stellar summer activities both near and far.


Ontario Science Centre: This summer, the centre has an exciting, limited-time exhibit they’re showing off — The Science of Ripley’s Believe It or Not. Kids and kids-at-heart can learn the science behind zombie ants, take a walk through a replica of a giant prehistoric snake and discover how circus performers swallow swords safely. Anyone who has a strong stomach for science can learn more about a lesser known kind of meat, creepy crawly insects, by ordering up a virtual feast at the Bug Bistro. Including IMAX passes, general admission for adults is $28, youth and seniors are $22 and children three to 12 are $19.


Toronto Zoo: This summer, the Toronto Zoo is the place to get your fix of the cutest baby animals. The zoo is celebrating the arrival of two giant panda cubs, an Indian rhino calf, a polar bear cub and four little lions. Though the baby animals are sure to be aww-inspiring, they aren’t the only attraction at the GTA destination.

“The Toronto Zoo has over 700 acres to explore and more than 5,000 animals representing 450 species, the Zoo is one of the largest Zoos in the world,” said Amanda Chambers, events associate for the Toronto Zoo.

Though animals are the main event, the zoo also boasts a two acre water park to help kids cool down on the hottest summer days. But for those who prefer to stay dry, Chambers has an inside scoop for anyone embarking on an animal-watching adventure.

“Don’t forget to plan on taking in one of the many daily Keeper Talks,” said Chambers.

“It is a great opportunity to hear all about your favourite animals from the keepers themselves.”

General admission is $28 including taxes, children three to 12 are $18.


African Lion Safari: For adventurers looking to get up close and personal with wild animals, the African Lion Safari is the place to be. Along with its water park, shows and boat cruises, you can take a drive through the game reserve, encountering everything from lions to giraffes and zebras along the way.

“We offer the opportunity for visitors to get closer to over 1,000 exotic birds and animals comprised of over 100 different species,” said Erin Sills, marketing coordinator for African Lion Safari.

“Visitors can come face-to-face with majestic creatures from around the world, while learning about the importance of wildlife conservation.”

If you’re an early riser, Sill said the Wake Up the Wild experience is worth getting up for. Select visitors get behind-the-scenes access to the park before it opens, giving them a chance to see the lions’ morning meal, go off-roading in an open-air truck and help African Lion Safari staff feed the giraffes.


Treetop Trekking Stouffville: Adventure seekers big and small can try their hands at outdoor ropes courses and ziplining only minutes outside Markham. The Treetop Trekking Stouffville adventure park has five aerial courses that are open to anyone nine-years-old and up.

“There’s no age maximum. We’ve had people in their eighties do it, just as long as you’re young at heart,” said Mike Stiell, Ontario marketing director for Treetop Trekking

This year is the first full season for the Stouffville site’s Treewalk Village — a bird’s-eye adventure park for children two-years and older. Treewalk Village is a netted enclosure complete with forts, rope bridges, slides and tunnels.

“You don’t have to wear any safety equipment in Treewalk Village. Once you’re off the ground, you’re totally enclosed. It’s easy for younger kids to explore on their own,” said Stiell.

For adults, Treetop Trekking Stouffville has partnered with area wineries for their Zip and Sip promotion. Participants can spend some time at the course before visiting three local wineries for some wine tasting afterwards.

For families planning a day around Treetop Trekking, Stiell recommends packing a lunch and enjoying the Bruce Mill Conservation Area while taking a break from the ropes.


Whittamore’s Farm: Families don’t have to look too far for some old-fashioned farmyard fun in Markham this summer. For decades, city crowds have been flocking to Whittamore’s Farm to revel in its rural charm.

“Between the pick your own where you can pick your own fruits and vegetables and the fun farm yard where there’s probably 20 different things to do,” said Mike Whittamore, owner of Whittamore’s Farm.

Every year, enough people to fill a small city, 250,000 visitors, spend the day at the 220 acre Markham destination. If trekking in the fields isn’t your cup of tea, there’s mazes, games, play areas and tractor rides for guests of all ages.



Canada’s Wonderland celebrates its 35th birthday and the party continues with an explosive fireworks show that will light up the sky Labour Day weekend.


Wonderland has been providing lifelong memories to families and friends alike with live entertainment, special events and a multitude of rides for thrill seekers of all ages. Thirty-five years later, this season is shaping up to be the most exciting one yet with two new rides (SkyHawk and Flying Eagles) and the most elaborate line-up of special events, live entertainment and street festivals in history. Guests can enjoy an array of live entertainment including The Stars of the Peking Acrobats at the Wonderland Theatre and Acrodunk at the International Showplace.


Visit for more information including, tickets events and hours of operation.


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