It’s winter break and your kids are bored… I know. I feel ya.
There is plenty to do in Buffalo and WNY!!
Here are some suggestions.
These popular outdoor spots offer plenty of outdoor activities for the family.
Canalside (canalsidebuffalo.com) is one of the hottest spots in Buffalo during the summer and it is just as cool in the winter. The 33,000-square-foot rink at Canalside is the place to be for fun for the entire family. The rink has a big city feel – and the views are fabulous. Besides, you’re sure to run into someone you know. Yes, the kids will fall down (you might, too) but, they’ll get back up and laugh it off. The rink is open daily.
If you’re up for trying something different, check out the Ice Bikes at Canalside. It seems a little crazy, but looks like so much fun (I haven’t quite worked up the nerve just yet). (winterbikesofbuffalo.com) The ice bikes are better for older kids and adults. Open weekends only; $10 for 30 minutes.
Rotary Rink (Fountain Plaza; buffaloplace.com/rotaryrink). Ah, it’s such a staple in winter. Free skating overlooking beautiful downtown Buffalo. I can’t even tell you how many memories I have from taking my girls there. Skate for a bit, then head into the heated atrium to warm up and get some hot cocoa. Open Tuesday through Sunday and on Monday holidays.
Wanna stay close to your home – without spending money? Okay, here you go!
Tifft Nature Preserve (1200 Fuhrmann Blvd.; tifft.org) is one of our favorites. You can take a hike and explore the beautiful grounds at Tifft for free every day from dusk until dawn. There are five miles of nature trails. Story time, arts and crafts and other events are offered throughout the winter. It’s very low key and the kids learn while having fun.
Delaware Park (84 Parkside Ave.; bfloparks.org) is gorgeous all year. A walk around Hoyt Lake is the perfect trek in the winter. Don’t forget your earmuffs – no, not to block out all of those kids screaming with delight, but to keep your ears warm.
Perhaps you’re looking for a mountain of fun… Okay.
Ellicottville (holidayvalley.com) is a magical place in the winter whether you ski or not. There is the shopping, the restaurants and much more. You can head over to Holiday Valley Ski Resort and check out the 58 trails packed with adventure and maybe a few bumps and bruises (at least for me). It is open daily. Prices and times vary but kids 6 and younger always ski free. Not a fan of skiing? Not a problem. Ride the Mountain Coaster and twist your way through the snow-covered trees. Located next to Tannenbaum Lodge, the coaster is open on weekends only. You also can snowshoe or cross-country ski on the free trails or take a sleigh ride through the glistening village (reservations required; 938-6313). Take the family or have a romantic ride.
At Kissing Bridge (10296 State Road, Glenwood; kbski.com), daily hours and rates vary but it is always fun to ski. Kids 6 and younger ski free.
Wanna stay indoors? Oh, okay. Got that covered, too.
Rolly Pollies (9630 Transit Road, East Amherst and 4058 N. Buffalo Road, Orchard Park, 1669 Hertel Avenue, Buffalo; rpwny.com) has plenty of hands-on fun with trampolines, climbing equipment and a ball pit that the kids tend to gravitate to. There are classes for ages 6 months to 9 years. Prices vary depending on the class. Open play is offered for kids daily. Your kids can literally run around like maniacs in a safe place. Padding, mats and instructors help kids learn how to do things the correct way. My kids are usually so wiped out, they fall asleep in the car before we get home.
Buffalo Museum of Science (1020 Humboldt Parkway; sciencebuff.org). Your kids can dig for fossils or listen to story time. The only thing my girls don’t like about the Science museum… is when it’s time to leave! Open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
In and Out…
The Buffalo Zoo (300 Parkside Ave.; buffalozoo.org) is open year-round. I used to think this was a summer-only thing to do, too. Nope. The zoo is open all year round, folks! They’ll love visiting Luna, the uber-popular polar bear as she frolics around in her “Arctic Edge” home. Or stop by and watch the Siberian tigers playing in their frigid tundra exhibit.