17 things to do at the cottage this winter

A cottage in the mountains covered in snow

And don't forget the essentials you need to be safe and comfortable!

Summer may be gone for another year, but that doesn’t mean cottage season is over. If your cottage is winterized—or if you rent a cottagefor a frosty getaway—there are plenty of special activities that you can only enjoy in winter.

17 winter cottage activities you can’t miss:

  • Snowshoeing
  • Skating
  • Sledding
  • Cross country or downhill skiing
  • Ice fishing
  • Snowmobiling
  • Hiking
  • Campfires (marshmallows can be toasted in the winter—and they pair well with hot chocolate!)
  • Star gaze
  • Winter scavenger hunt
  • Capture the flag in the snowy woods
  • Build snow people, animals, villages
  • Make snow angels
  • Snowball fight
  • Board games, cards or charades by the woodstove
  • Read/nap by the fireplace
  • Warm up from the inside out with a bowl of hearty stew or soup

Most cottagers report that one of the best things about their retreat is escaping the chores, errands and other obligations that chase us around at home. Why deny yourself that pleasure during the winter? With a little planning and the right gear, you could have the same dreamy cottage down time you crave all winter long.

Essentials to make your winter cottaging safe and comfortable:

  • Snow tires
  • Good winter outerwear that fits and work well
  • Skates, sleds, snowshoes and/or skis
  • Hand and foot warmers to slip into mittens and boots
  • A good supply of dry firewood
  • A high-quality axe to chop it
  • Matches, newspaper and kindling to light it
  • Warm slippers
  • Extra blankets and quilts
  • Candles
  • Batteries
  • Working fire alarm and carbon monoxide detector
  • Portable jump starter (and jumper cables)
  • LED head lamp
  • Good snow shovel plus sand/salt
  • Ice augur (for drilling ice fishing holes)
  • Camp stove in case of power outage
  • Crockpot or a large stock pot for making soups, stews and oatmeal
  • Thermos for hot drinks
  • Firewood tote bag for hauling it inside

With the right supplies and a whole lot of activities to enjoy, there may only be one thing you miss about summer cottaging: mosquitos. Bundle up and make winter memories!

The content in this article is for information purposes only and is not intended to be relied upon as professional or expert advice.