Sudbury is for explorers

Monday, July 15, 2019 8:00 AM | Allison (Administrator)
Sudbury is for “explorers”. My kids, 6-years and 4-years, loved being explorers!! Along the drive, we stopped at a rest station, that had great large rocks for the kids to climb, and burn off some energy while we waited!

Explorers get hungry

The restaurants we chose did not disappoint.

We explored Deluxe burgers. They had a delicious poutine, made with curds and their barbeque sauce! I would have liked more vegetarian options on the menu. The kids loved the chicken strips, and my husband enjoyed his hamburger. The restaurant filled our water bottles which was a nice bonus while trying to save bottles.

We explored the Laughing Buddha. The location was great – we sat on the front patio, and my children enjoyed watching the trains at the junction station across the road! We had the Feisty Feta dip and fresh veggies, and it was so good. I had the Bon-Ami Banh-Mi sandwich which was also delicious.

We explored Tucos Tacos – I was so excited to go to a full vegan restaurant. For my children, we ordered a “Baby Plate” – it was the perfect combination for them of mac & cheese, strawberries, and homemade chips – so perfect we had to order a second plate! My husband and I split the Phish tacos, and the Buffalo taco – they were delicious!! 

We explored the continental breakfast at Travelway! They had a good variety of items (3 hot foods, plus toast, muffins, fruit, cereal, etc.), coffee, tea, juice. Travelway always had a refreshment station set up for people to indulge in. They had coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and orange infused water! They had oranges available, and mints. My children enjoyed that they could have the mints.

Explorers get tired.

We explored the Pauza Den at the Travelway Inn. We picked up a pizza and ate there one night. My children enjoyed watching television in there on the couch, while my husband and I finished dinner. My daughter fell asleep, and I had to carry her back to our room!

Our room was great. They had a cot set up for my children, and they said they were going to sleep on it (they didn’t stay on it for long though and wanted to cuddle, but that’s not unusual).

Explorers explore!

We explored attractions! We went to see Super Power Dogs at the Imax theatre! It was a great movie – I was worried that my children wouldn’t like the movie, but they only didn’t like the 3D glasses! They loved watching the adventures of the dogs and all the ways they help people. My children played with other kids outside of the theatre on the “Top of the Earth” for a long time. Simple little details like that, even though my children didn’t understand how it was a scale model of  the Earth, provided a lot of entertainment.

We went kayaking at Laurentian University. I was worried as Lake Ramsey was very rough as we were getting there. It is a long walk down to the water that we kayaked on, but it was so worth it! It was a secluded little beach – some other people were there using SUP’s, another person was doing slacklining at the volleyball nets, and a few other people. Thankfully, our lake was beautiful and calm! My children tried walking into the sandy water and fishing. They did not have any luck fishing, but had a great time. After I kayaked for a few minutes by myself, I picked up my kids. The rental agency at Laurentian did not have children’s lifejackets. The ones they had were a bit big, so I stayed in water shallow enough that we could stand up. My kids enjoyed acting as a motor to my boat! Overall, it was a very pleasant way to spend the morning. We saw campus security come and check the area while we were there which was nice to see.

We were very lucky that the Northern Lights Festival Boreal was happening while we were there. We got to see Al Simmons play as part of a workshop. We arrived just as he played “The Cat Came Back” – a popular song among the preschool groupies there! The festival was well set up – the volunteers were helpful in directing us to the stage we needed, and there were free bouncy castles, so my kids were very happy! We didn’t even get to see other stages in the afternoon – we stayed near the activities at the kids tent. We treated the kids to cotton candy, and a snow cone, and found a spot in the shade. There was actually a band practicing in the shade, so it was like we got a private show while we had our break! We left, then came back to the festival after dinner. We went to the main stage and watched from a lovely grassy knoll for a while. My children were tired, but we fueled them with ice cream, and the dancing started! We love music festivals, so I am so glad my daughter and son did too!

We explored Nepahwin park for a swim. The water was lovely! There were two areas marked off, with a shallow end, and a deeper end. There was a lifeguard on duty. There was a change room and washrooms near the beach.

We explored as we walked from our hotel, to Bell park playground to meet with other Life with a Baby community managers. The boardwalk was beautiful and there were lots of things to see as we walked. There were lots of friendly dogs out walking and the trail was nice. We got to see people fishing, and if we had more time, would have grabbed the kids rods. The playground was great – it was set up on different levels, which my kids love climbing so they had a blast. We had a group photo near the flower beds. We all had children who had lots of energy, so I challenged some of them to race to the top of the flowers and back. They loved doing it and it was so cute to see! The flower bed was gorgeous, and my son loved the turtles made out of flowers.

The biggest thing in Sudbury for explorers was Science North! It has been on my to do list for many years! It did not disappoint. Based on advice from friends, we started at the top floor – my kids loved taking up the clear elevator, then watching from the outside how the gears worked. Every floor had many hands on activities to explore for kids of all ages. I tried the bed of nails, while my kids played with the black hole exhibit. The location was not busy, there were many staff members (blue coats) available who checked in with us if we had any questions. There were so many exhibits that we didn’t have any wait time to play. We watched the show about climate change, voiced by Rick Mercer, and my children love that they got “rained” on!  There was a live show with experiments by one of the blue coats, based on space travel! We got to try freeze dried fruit. On the insect floor, my husband tasted crickets! When that wasn’t enough to fill us, we had lunch at the restaurant there, they had a great veggie burger, the children had chicken nuggets and my husband had a burger and salad. The butterfly area was amazing. They have vests to ensure butterflies land on you. We did not put on the vests, but butterflies explored us, by landing on us! In addition to the blue coats helping to make our experience great, things like water stations that had step stools, and step stools in the washrooms made it easier to allow kids to have autonomy. We briefly explored the toddler play area, and even my older kids found things to play with. We loved seeing the porcupine and beaver enjoying their lunch – happily snacking on leaves! It was amazing to see the beaver swimming – I got to see how big his webbed feet were, so know why they can swim so well! We had seen lots of beaver dens along the drive up north, so it was great to learn more about them. We had intended to only explore there for a few hours, but ended up spending most of the day there. There were little areas like the kitchen and store, that my children loved! It was great for explorers of all ages!

We briefly explored Dynamic Earth, my children enjoyed the outdoor playground, and the children’s mine in the basement. They partnered with some other children – one who became the manager, who I overheard say “Staff meeting in my office!” and all the kids ran upstairs! While they played I enjoyed controlling the rock breaker 70 feet below me! We chose not to do the mine tour as we were out of time. There were blue coats there also making our experience great – explaining the different exhibits and telling my son the type of rock he purchased at Science North!

Most of our activities were based around Paris street. It made it easy to navigate around the city. Our drive home, my daughter fell asleep instantly. My son took longer, but he enjoyed counting inuksuk, and made a point to build one in our garden with rocks he has collected over the years.

Our explorations around Sudbury were amazing. It was a great mix of indoor activities and nature activities. My children enjoyed being an explorer, and was sad to hear that some other families were doing different activities, and that we wouldn’t have time to do them all! We intend to come back to try some of the other things we didn’t get a chance to explore!

You can see more pictures by searching  #LWABSudbury on Facebook.

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