Travel

Blue Mountain: A family-friendly getaway

Author: Canadian Living

Travel

Blue Mountain: A family-friendly getaway

The challenge: trying to find an affordable weekend getaway for my family that would entertain my children (Hailey, 4, Tristan, 8, and Jordyn, 12) and provide some time for my husband and I to relax and recharge our batteries. The problem is that the older kids end up spending hours on video games or tuning out with their MP3 players and my husband and I would be the entertainment for our youngest child. I had almost given up!

But after much thought and deliberation, we decided to take the two-hour drive from Toronto up to the Westin Trillium House at Blue Mountain for the inaugural Famarama weekend. We arrived at the hotel and were welcomed into a beautifully decorated two-bedroom suite, complete with two ensuite bathrooms, a full kitchen, a living room area with a fireplace and a spectacular view of the mountain. It was instant relaxation.

The next morning, the sunshine beaming through our bedroom windows beckoned us outdoors on a hot summer day. Equipped with hats, sunglasses and sunscreen, we were ready for an adventure. So we climbed aboard the gondola, traveled up the mountain and hiked over to the Scenic Caves. We took pictures of the breathtaking scenery. We descended into caves, and gripped the handrail tightly across the suspension bridge. We played a few rounds of mini golf. We talked. We laughed. No one complained. I was exhilarated. I couldn’t remember the last time we did something like this together as a family.

We were also tired, so we headed back to the hotel, straight to the Plunge, a 10,000 square-foot aquatic centre of indoor/outdoor pools, waterslides, lounge desks, hot tubs and child-friendly play areas. The kids spent most of the time dangling from the rope swing. Tarzan would have been proud. I was just happy.

Spending the day in the great outdoors and all the physical activity meant one thing – we were all hungry. We headed out to the village and into 3 Guys and a Stove, a family-friendly restaurant with a warm, inviting atmosphere. The food was delicious and the kids’ menu included appetizers, too.

In the evening, we took in a Jack Grunsky concert in the village. As we sat back on our lawn chairs, I watched the younger kids dancing and singing along to songs like "Alligator Stomp," their happy faces shouting out the words they know so well.

Back in our room, we tucked happy, exhausted children into their beds, and I came to the realization that it was possible for us all to enjoy an affordable weekend getaway together. We just had to head to the hills.

Read more:
Children and travel: How to travel with kids without going crazy
Cross-Canada travel guides
The great Canadian parks guide
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Blue Mountain: A family-friendly getaway

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