5 Sleigh Rides in Ontario You’ll Want to Experience This Winter
Can you hear those sleigh bells jingling? Celebrate everything the season has to offer with horse-drawn sleigh rides that bring the magic of the holidays alive.
Photo: Jess Reid Photography
Armstrong’s Thunder Ridge Farm
Explore the beauty of the Almaguin Highlands from the back of a horse-drawn sleigh at Armstrong’s Thunder Ridge Farm. The property boasts 54 acres of groomed trails for daytime jaunts and evening rides under festive lights for a mesmerizing adventure. At the halfway point of the leisurely 90-minute ride, you’ll stop for a bonfire and a steaming cup of hot chocolate. In December, the farm hosts an outdoor Christmas market, as well, featuring artisanal vendors and special guest appearances from a certain jolly old elf. “It is very magical to see the kids get off the sleigh in the forest to find Santa sitting in a big chair waiting for them,” says Jodie Armstrong, who owns the farm with her husband Dan. Don’t hesitate to bring the whole family, either—each sleigh can carry up to 14 people!
Photo: Gammondale Farm
Thunder Bay, Ontario
Make this a festive season you won’t soon forget with a sleigh ride at Gammondale Farm in Thunder Bay. Here, you can take your annual holiday get-together to new heights with sleigh ride party packages for groups of 15 to over 100. The package includes a jaunt through the fields at the foot of Candy Mountain, time to warm up in the cozy log house, hot drinks and a visit to the various animals on the farm including sheep and rabbits. For a more intimate experience, couples can opt for the romantic cutter ride in a one-horse open sleigh (just like in the song!).
Check out Canada’s most magical drive-through Christmas lights.
Start a new holiday tradition at Merrylynd Farms by taking part in one of theirs. Since 1825, horse-drawn sleigh rides have been part of life here. Book a moonlit ride for an intimate group of eight or invite the entire crew for a day of pure winter fun. In addition to the outdoor campfire, ice skating and tobogganing, they also offer farm tours for an inside look at traditional food production in Ontario.
Don’t miss our roundup of must-visit Christmas markets across Canada.
Photo: Studio Light and Shade / Shutterstock.com
St. Jacobs Horse Drawn Tours
Dash through open fields and the sugar bush on a scenic 45-minute ride with St. Jacobs Horse Drawn Tours in Woolwich. A small sleigh holds up to four adults and the big sleigh accommodates up to 15—the more, the merrier, after all! Once the sleigh comes to a stop, hop off and spend a relaxing afternoon in the rustic sugar shack. Huddle up around the wood stove and sip on hot apple cider while catching up with your loved ones. When the day’s done, head over to the nearby St. Jacobs Farmers Market in Waterloo to stock up on an assortment of goodies from local vendors and artisans
Dual Acres Wagon and Sleigh Rides
Shallow Lake, Ontario
Immerse yourself in nature on Durk and Alma DeVries’ family farm in Grey Bruce, about 15 minutes from Sauble Beach, and a two-and-a-half hour drive from Toronto. For more than 20 years, the DeVrieses have been operating Dual Acres Wagon and Sleigh Rides on trails winding through their 50-acre wood lot. Wrap up your visit with a steaming mug of hot chocolate in the shack.
Now that you know where to find these magical sleigh rides, discover the best places to spend Christmas in Canada.