Fun Budget-Friendly Outdoor Winter Activities

Studies have shown that unfortunately 27% of Canadians feel ‘too tired’ to explore nature, and I’m sure this feeling is even stronger in the winter months. We can’t argue the desire to stay inside where it’s warm and cozy.

While we are busy folk living in a technology era, this only means that special attention needs to be taken to ensure we all get ample outdoor-time. Kids are spending less and less time outdoors, and this trend simply has to change, even despite the winter weather. Nature Valley is helping change this with their focus on #NatureMoments campaign to remind everyone to rediscover the joy of nature.

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It only takes realizing that being too tired can be remedied with some fresh air, you simply have to open that front door and take a step.

Many times when you think of outdoor activities, they come with a cost. For instance, a weekend spent at the slopes for skiing takes budget – and with the extra spending this season, that may not be in the cards.

Yet it’s so crucial to spend the time outdoors and stay active, even in the winter months. It’s a proven fact that kids are spending less and less time outside, when compared to previous generations – yet we can change that!

Fun budget-friendly winter activity suggestions:

Outdoor ice skating: Most if not all communities have free skating areas throughout the area. Our city has one at most public playgrounds, or at least one in every subsection of the city. At no cost except bringing your skating gear, it offers exercise and fun so close to the home.

Sledding and tubing: All you need is an incline and something to sit on, and you’re set! Again, most communities in our city has hills designed into the park areas, giving many local options for sledding and tubing. Use the Nature Valley park finder to locate one near you!

Build with snow: This is one that you can do right out your front door! Collect common items inside to make a snowman, or fort – you only need some creativity and the willingness to get out there. Have a little family-friendly competition to see who can build the most creative snowman!

Have a snowball fight: Divide yourself into teams and engage in a good old fashioned snowball fight. Yet we are ‘fighting’ with kids after all, so set some rules beforehand {I always have the ‘no hits to the face one of course}. Let the laughters and so much exercise commence!

Winter bonfire: Having a fire-pit in the summer is one of our favourite things, yet this is something that can be enjoyed in the winter as well. Winter outdoor bonfires are educational, fun and then there’s the added bonus of roasting marshmallows and sipping hot chocolate. On it’s own or after another winter outdoor activity, and it’s the perfect end to the day!

Skiing – Watch for coupons and family-discounted days, or even community ski events – and this could be a budget-friendly option after all! If downhill isn’t in the budget, look for other options such as cross-country or snowshoeing.

Go for a Walk: The outdoors is there, and free for all to enjoy! You needn’t an excuse to get outside for some fresh air – just simply go for a walk right out the front door. With the holiday season approaching, going at dusk can make it more interesting with a walking light tour.


Don’t let the winter months prevent you from rediscovering nature and spending time outside. While it takes extra motivation sometimes such as choosing a dedicated activity from this list, it’s so worth the efforts.

What other budget-friendly activities does your family love to do in the winter?


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, yet as always all opinions are my own.



  1. All fun winter activities and it definitely doesn’t take a lot of money to have some fun!

  2. So many great fun winter activities, I love the bon fire one, sit out by the fire drinking hot chocolate and making smores!

  3. I was lucky, I could hardly keep my kids indoors, as soon as homework was finished off they went to play. Now-a-days kids don’t have as much free time as they used to have, so many extra things like hockey, dance, gymnastics, soccer and the list goes on and on. When I was young we could also roam to our heart’s content, even at a young age, this is no longer the case unfortunately.

  4. My kids are loving all the snow lately! Its hard to get them to come inside when its dark!

  5. We love a winter bonfire during or after some hiking & snow building. Great list of things to do Tammi! No cost activities are just as much fun.

  6. we always go sledding! It is something we do very often…my girls absolutely love it. I have never had a winter fire before. that would be really cool. I will have to try to make it happen 🙂

  7. Winter do bring a lot of free activities. I love skating outside and the snowballs fights.

  8. We live close to Niagara Falls. It’s a neat place to see in the winter because of all the ice and snow around the falls. Plus they have a beautiful light display for the holidays.

  9. Just like we did, our son and his friends went outside to “play”, which meant any number of things, including sledding on any available incline, snowball fights and spending several winters trying to build an igloo. As long as they were properly dressed so they wouldn’t get cold, they looked forward to outside play and always had fun.

  10. I loved winter when I was a kid and I remember doing all of the things you’ve got listed except skiing but I always had so much fun and I wish kids would get out there more often and have some fun

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