During March Break, many of Toronto’s major attractions have extended hours, special programming or discounted admission prices. Kids can use their week off school to explore and create at many of the city’s museums, galleries and other attractions. Here’s a list of popular family outings.
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)
The ROM has full Maya-themed activities for March Break, running from the 10 to the 18. Kids learn about ancient Mayans, learn how to build pyramids and make their own Mayan jewelry. The ROM has also extended its hours during the week, open until 8:30 p.m. March 10 through 17, and closes at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday March 18, with discounted pricing after 4:30 p.m. each night, and after 4 p.m. on March 18.
Families can keep warm inside any of the zoo’s tropical pavilions. With a hot chocolate in hand, guests can also hear Keeper Talks and learn facts about polar bears, gorillas and more. Make sure to visit the newest polar bear cub at the Tundra Trek while you’re there. The zoo’s hours are extended to 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. from March 10 to 18.
Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)
Kids can sign up for the March Break Art Camp, where they’ll use recycled materials to make something new, inspired by the “creative compost” work of Canadian artist Iain Baxter. While making installations from cereal boxes, soap containers and more, the kids will explore the topics of consumerism, environmentalism and collaboration. Be sure to check out some of the current exhibitions while you’re there. Children under five are always free at the gallery and Wednesday evenings are free for everyone from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Bata Shoe Museum
Enjoy some magic at the BSM over the March Break, with shows from Toronto’s Magic Guy Phil Pivnick. Kids can also make a wish on a magic lantern, make magic wands and try on wizard-y costumes and shoes. There’s also a daily draw for a magic kit, and kids can decorate spell books to take home. The drop-in activities are between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (March 12 to March 16) and the special pricing is $8 each for children and $8 for the adults accompanying them.
TIFF Bell Lightbox
Don’t just watch the movies, make them! Sign your kids up for March Break camps that will give them the tips to become a mini-Scorsese. For those between the ages nine and 12, there’s Film Fun 101 that has the kids making live action short films and experimenting with stop-motion animation. For teens between 14 and 18, they’ll learn what it’s like to create a live comedy show in the vein of Saturday Night Live. The kids will be split into writers, performers and crew and present the sketch show live at the end of the week. The camps are at 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (March 12 to March 16). Also at the Lightbox, there’s the Game of Thrones exhibit for the older crowd, and the whole family can enjoy the films of Studio Ghibli.
Hockey Hall of Fame
This hockey-lover’s favourite attraction offers a chance to take shots on real-time goalies, call play-by-plays on some of the greatest goals, see hockey flicks and get up close and personal with the Stanley Cup. During March Break, the whole family can meet Toronto team Mascots, play floor hockey, meet get autographs from the Toronto Marlies and more. Between March 10 and March 18 the Hockey Hall of Fame has extended hours, 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Toronto Botanical Gardens
The gardens offer a place for kids to get their hands dirty. The day camps allow kids to cook food, do science experiments, learn about animals, paint and more. The camps are March 12 to March 16 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and are geared towards those six to 10 years old.
Toronto’s castle turns into a fairytale during March Break, with princesses and pirates. There’s short plays, a sing-a-long version of Snow White and much more. Casa Loma is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and admission is anywhere from $11.32 to $20.55. Some shows will have an additional cost ($1).
The Harbourfront Centre offers several camps over the March Break, for kids interested in fashion design, comic books, cooking, dance, the circus and more. Camps are geared towards kids as young as three and teens as old as 17 and take place on March 12 to 16.
Ontario Science Centre
The Science Centre’s March Break programming includes lots of furry friends, with presentations by the musically inclined SuperDogs, a learning lab to see why dogs behave certain ways, and a live animal presentation with reptiles and lizards. Programming runs from March 10 – 18, and the Science Centre’s hours are extended from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day.
What are your big plans for the kids for March Break? Any ideas you can pass along will be MUCH appreciated!