The Best Things to Do on Christmas Day

Inspired ways to make the most of the holiday.

Family ice skating
Photo: Shutterstock

Things to Do on Christmas Day

Hit the ice

Kicking off our list of things to do on Christmas Day is the popular winter pastime—skating! From Ottawa’s Rideau Canal to Toronto’s Nathan Phillips Square, Christmas is the perfect time to lace up those skates and try out your fanciest skater moves. Triple salchow, anyone?

Check out the best outdoor rinks across Canada.

Things to do on Christmas Day - food delivery
Photo: buryakphoto /

Order takeout from your favourite restaurant

A lot of restaurants around Canada are open for takeout and have special holiday menus. From your local diner to a super fancy spot, why deal with dirty dishes when you don’t have to?

Explore the country’s most unique restaurants.

Things to do on Christmas Day - Winter hike with dog
Photo: Jaromir Chalabala /

Take a hike

Throw on those hiking boots or sneakers and hit a winter hiking trail to experience the beauty of nature this Christmas Day. What’s a better gift than relaxing in the great outdoors, which you’ll likely have all to yourself!

Woman watching Netflix
Photo: Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock

Enjoy a Netflix marathon

Baby, it’s cold outside! Stock up on your favourite snack foods, stay in your pyjamas and start up Netflix to binge-watch Gilmore Girls, Schitt’s Creek or Arrested Development. 

Check out the best Christmas movies on Netflix Canada now.

Things to do on Christmas Day - couple window shopping
Photo: Shutterstock

Window shop

Take a stroll and enjoy the stunning holiday window displays. Big city stores are known for their fabulous and whimsical Christmas displays and smaller town centres often have fun displays, too.

Check out the best places to spend Christmas in Canada.

Things to do on Christmas Day - online shopping
Photo: Shutterstock

Snag some deals online

Get a leg up on those incredible Boxing Day bargains by starting your shopping on December 25. Just make sure you follow these safe online shopping tips, and take these measures to stop porch pirates from snatching up your purchases.

Christmas in Canada - Toronto Christmas Market at Distillery District
Photo: Jason Vermes /

Hit up a Christmas Market

After the last few years in which holiday celebrations were hampered by lockdown conditions, Christmas markets are back in a big way. Take a peek at some of Canada’s best Christmas markets.

Things to do on Christmas Day - Skiing at Mont Tremblant, Quebec
Photo: Maridav /

Enjoy a winter wonderland

Add a festive trip to the ski slopes to your list of things to do on Christmas Day. Throughout Canada, many mountains are open for fun snowy activities like skiing, snowboarding and tubing. And you’ll likely have your choice of slopes, with a minimal wait for the lift! Just make sure you purchase tickets online ahead of time, if necessary.

Check out the most magical winter resorts across Canada.

Things to do on Christmas Day - Mixing cocktail at home
Photo: Arina P Habich /

Master a mocktail (or cocktail) at home

Even if you don’t have a local pub or an upscale hotel bar just down the street, who says you can’t bartend at home? Festive suggestions include a champagne cocktail, a hot toddy, or a hot buttered rum. (Psst—this is the proper way to serve a Baileys and coffee!)

Eggs Benedict
Photo: Shutterstock

Treat yourself to brunch

The only thing better than sleeping in on Christmas Day? Waking up to a delicious brunch spread! No trip to the store required—just dig into last night’s leftovers. Now that’s a real holiday treat.

Here are 30 small-scale Christmas dinner recipes to try this year.

Drive-through Christmas lights - People in car driving through light tunnel
Photo: Illumi

Cruise through Christmas lights

Too cold for a walk? You can still enjoy the spirit of the season from the comfort of your own car—check out these drive-through Christmas light displays across Canada.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest