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Ontario Maple Season Guide

Celebrate the Sweetness of Maple Season


Maple season is upon us and there is no better time of year to adventure to one of our tiny cabins and enjoy all the Maple goodness the local towns have to offer!

Celebrate the sweetness of Spring by visiting sugar bushes, tapping trees, eating delicious treats, and exploring the quaint regions of Ontario while on your tiny cabin adventure!


LANARK COUNTY

In the heart of the Ottawa Valley, Lanark County is touted as the ‘Maple Syrup Capital of Ontario’ and it’s not hard to see why!

Temple’s Sugar Bush in Lanark features a Pancake House Restaurant with a Maple breakfast special, a shop and a nature trail through the picturesque surrounding forest and gardens. Visit Perth, Ontario’s Festival of the Maples on Saturday, April 27th, 2024 which boasts an artisan food market, retail attractions, and lots of live entertainment.

Plan a trip during Ontario Maple Weekend from April 6th-7th. Various producers show how syrup is made while offering free samples of fresh maple syrup and confections. Enjoy a pancake breakfast, sugarbush trails, demonstrations, taffy on snow, horse-drawn sleigh rides, and more!

Throughout the year, visitors can savour the flavours of Lanark County and enjoy the virtual Sip & Savour Trail for chocolate, craft spirits, beer/cider, fine cuisine, and delicious delicacies.

BOOK YOUR SWEET LANARK ESCAPE

HALIBURTON

If you are staying at one of our Haliburton locations in March or April, be sure to check out our Canadian Maple Experience!

For a great adventure with the whole family, pack the kids up for some March Break Maple Magic. Geared towards kids of all ages, on this 2+ hour experience, you’ll hear the ins and outs of maple syrup production, follow the impressive journey from sap to syrup, check out a real sugar shack, eat a pancake meal and of course, sample some sweet treats!

For adults, make your way to Haliburton Forest Base Camp for a sap and tap experience like no other! Hike through the sugar bush, peek inside the rustic sugar shack, and take away interesting insights from the impressive journey from sap to syrup, all while tasting various local maple products. Finish it off with a maple flavoured alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage!

BOOK YOUR HALIBURTON ESCAPE

KAWARTHAS

For a truly rural experience, the charming family-fun Roost Farm is only a few minutes away from our Cabinscape Kawarthas cabins.

Enjoy a 5km walking tour of the property while surveying their maple bush and production process. Book a Roost Experience, or enjoy shopping their fresh seasonal produce, honey, farm-made preserves and local artisan gifts and products.

BOOK YOUR KAWARTHAS ESCAPE

JONI CABIN

Our Joni Cabin in Pakenham lives right next door to Cartwright Springs Brewery where our guests can enjoy Maple Porter & Carbonated Maple Sap available starting mid-March! Opt-in for a tasting made specifically for thirsty visitors who want to try it all! Stay for an in-depth Brewery Tour where stops include their on-site maple taps. Don’t forget the Artist Fair at the brewery the first weekend of April for more seasonal events and fun!

Nearby Fortune Farms in Almonte is gearing up for its 52nd Maple season and features tours and trails, and a shop that sells everything from maple sugar to maple vinegar!

BOOK JONI CABIN

CABIN CHASER: MAPLE SEASON ROUTE

For a limited time, our popular mystery road trip & cabin-hopping experience now features sweet maple stops along the way. Enjoy every drop of this new route on this surprise 2-day itinerary.

Originally designed for groups of two, this package has now expanded to accommodate families (one additional guest over the age of 12 or two additional guests 12 and under) Consider this an exciting surprise for the whole clan!

BOOK MYSTERY ROAD TRIP HERE

Photo Credits: unguide.ca, yoursoutdoors.ca, @essoncreekmaple, roostfarm.ca, Piper’s Rescue Adventure

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Our Kawarthas Winter Adventure Guide

Kawartha Quarry Winter Header

Our Guide to Winter in the Kawarthas


Ever thought of visiting another planet? Our Kawartha cabins live on a stunning 230-acre property overlooking a quarry with a setting that feels like you’re in another world!

These cabins are less than 2 hours from Toronto and drive-in accessible all year round. Cozy and heated, they are ideal for a quick getaway to relax and unwind.


GET OUTSIDE & ADVENTURE

Hike/snowshoe 4 km of lanes and trails that meander through this expansive re-naturalized property and experience a rich variety of ecosystems, vistas and quarry relics from the past. Two pairs of snowshoes are included with your Cabinscape booking.

Balsam Lake Provincial Park is just 10 minutes from your cabin. The main park is closed for the season but Lookout Trail and Woodland Trail are open and available for winter exploration at no cost!

GET OUTSIDE & ADVENTURE

Hike/snowshoe 4 km of lanes and trails that meander through this expansive re-naturalized property and experience a rich variety of ecosystems, vistas and quarry relics from the past. Two pairs of snowshoes are included with your Cabinscape booking.

Balsam Lake Provincial Park is just 10 minutes from your cabin. The main park is closed for the season but Lookout Trail and Woodland Trail are open and available for winter exploration at no cost!

ICE-SKATING

Grab your skates and hit the ice! Kawartha Lakes is the place to be for ice skating fans and those who are eager to learn. The quarry can get thick enough for ice-skating in the winter months. Experience epic sunsets and fantastic views as you glide through the area. Or sit with a cup of hot cocoa by the private campfire and watch the skaters pass by down below.

The ice is not maintained and skating will depend on conditions. We recommend caution when walking on the ice. Use the provided shovel to clear a path for your skate!


SNOWMOBILING

For snowmobile enthusiasts, Kawartha Lakes offers 166 km of groomed trails through breathtaking snow-brushed pines and beautiful forested routes. While there is no snowmobiling permitted on-site at our cabins, finding an available route is just a click away. Check out this Interactive Snowmobile Trail Map, where you can find all snowmobile trails in Ontario. Trail users must have a valid permit, license and insurance.


There are too many trails in the area to be explored in just one day, so set aside a good amount of time at our cabins to be able to explore them all! 


VISIT FENELON FALLS, ON

A short 25-minute drive from our cabins sits the beautiful, historical waterfront town of Fenelon Falls. Known as the “jewel of the Kawarthas”, there is something for everyone including entertainment, dining, outdoor activities, and shopping. There is also the opportunity to explore arts, culture and heritage as this town has a rich history as an established route for the fur trade and settled by the first pioneers in the early 1800s.

Foodies will relish in the town’s varied food and drink offerings. The Fenelon Falls Brewing Co. is proudly Canadian with hand-crafted premium beer made in small batches in their very own brewhouse. Little Pie Shack is a local favourite that sells homemade pies, tarts, brownies, squares, ice cream, and more! The Locker at The Falls is a family-style restaurant with year-round fall side views while you are dining. They feature seasonal menus and gluten-friendly options. Ziraldo’s Italian Restaurant is a personal favourite with an incredible selection of authentic Italian food and divine cocktails with a side of amazing service.

There are so many more food options we aren’t able to list them all – be sure to visit on an empty stomach!

ICE FISHING

If you are feeling adventurous and want to spend time in the crisp air and cool sun, drop a line in one of the numerous easy-access ice fishing options around the Kawarthas. Be sure to overdress and bring lots of layers with you on any ice fishing trip. Try and visit with someone that knows the area and respects ice safety – always check ice thickness before beginning. Good equipment is necessary to make the trip a success. Our quarry lake is not available for ice fishing at this time.

Our Kawarthas Cabins

  • Bluebell Cabin
    Bluebell Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Buttercup Cabin
    Buttercup Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Callalily Cabin
    Callalily Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Yarrow Tent
    Yarrow Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Stargrass Tent
    Stargrass Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Senna Tent
    Senna Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Sorrel Tent
    Sorrel Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Cress Tent
    Cress Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Cicily Glamping Tent Fall
    Cicily Tent
    From: $169.00
  • Marigold Cabin
    Marigold Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Goldenrod Cabin
    Goldenrod Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Burdock Cabin
    Burdock Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Hawkweed Cabin
    Hawkweed Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Stonecrop Cabin
    Stonecrop Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Woodrush Cabin
    Woodrush Cabin
    From: $199.00

Photo Credits:

Get Outside – mountain-hiking.com

Snowmobiling Header -explorekawarthalakes.com

Fenelon Falls – explorefenelonfalls.com | fenelonfallsbrewing.com

Ice Fishing thekawarthas.ca

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Our Calabogie Winter Adventure Guide

Best Hiking Trails Ontario

Our Guide to Winter in Calabogie

Whether you’re into extreme sports like downhill skiing, ice climbing or snowboarding, or if a leisure ice-skate on the lake is more your thing, there’s a whole lot to see and do at our micro cabins in Calabogie, Ontario.

Located just one hour from Ottawa in the heart of the Ottawa Valley, you’ll find our Wren, Starling and Finch cabins. These cozy and heated micro cabins are suspended above Calabogie Lake, nestled in the forested grounds of Calabogie Peaks Resort (home to the tallest ski mountain in Ontario). This means premium access to some of the best multifaceted trail networks in the province. 

Grab your skis, hot cocoa and trail map to complete our Top 5 Things to Do in Calabogie during your Cabinscape stay!

HIT THE SLOPES

Calabogie Peaks Resort offers the best of what winter has to offer. Lift tickets are your key to experience the beautifully groomed mountain trails, or exhilarating runs through the terrain parks and forest glades.

New to the sport? No problem! Calabogie Peaks boasts the longest beginner trail in the province and you can register for a ski or snowboard lesson at the Adventure Centre. Equipment rentals are also available on-site!

Prefer less vertical? The Madawaska Nordic ski trails include plenty of well-marked and colour coded cross country trails to choose from. 

GRAB YOUR SNOWSHOES

Hop out your front door to the nearest trail trailhead (just metres away), or grab a chairlift up and explore your choice of snowshoe trails at the top of Calabogie Peaks. The trails are groomed, well-marked and ready for adventure!

The Manitou Mountain Trail passes through picturesque pine forests and gorgeous wilderness scenery where you’ll encounter 3 spectacular mountain top vistas.

The famous Eagle’s Nest lookout gradually climbs uphill along an old logging road through the woods, leading to a scenic lookout at the top of a 120-metre cliff.

Remember, the key to winter hiking is proper gear, warm waterproof shoes, and lots of layers!

Two adult pairs of snowshoes are included with every Cabinscape booking.


GO ON AN ICE CLIMBING ADVENTURE

ICE CLIMBING

Ice climbing is a challenging, fun and growing sport and the Canadian Shield is one of the best terrains in the world to experience it! A fun fact about ice climbing is that the ice morphs into various shapes and angles every single time you climb and you never have the same experience twice.

Ice formations vary from year to year but can usually be accessed at the Manitou Hiking Trailhead near the Calabogie Peaks ski hill. The cliffs are only a 10-15 minute walk in for some great ice climbing action! 

Eagles Nest also offers a variety of ice climbs from beginner to difficult. Please be mindful of safety around the top of ice cliffs as they are busy hiking trails. 

Proper equipment, experience and lots of layers is a must!

RELAX & UNWIND

Take a break from all the exerting winter activities and enjoy the amenities that Calabogie Peaks Resort has to offer.

Evening campfires are a tradition at Calabogie Peaks, so delight in them daily from late afternoon to evening. Pond skating is also available at the resort as soon as the water freezes over. 


DRINKS & EATS

Canthooks Restaurant is located right inside the hotel at Calabogie Peaks Resort and boasts an outdoor pondside terrace. Stop by and experience “a taste of the Swiss Alps, in the heart of the Ottawa Valley”. Their menu changes over each season and includes foraged vegetables from the mountain resort, locally caught fish, and artisan farm-to-table produce.

Calabogie Brewing Company is an award winning craft brewery, kitchen & taproom, which celebrates the beauty and spirit of Calabogie, and the spectacular land and people on which it was founded. Enjoy their long selection of craft and seasonal beers and eats. Vegan menu options available.

Our Calabogie Cabins

  • Wren Cabin
    Wren Cabin
    From: $179.00
  • Starling Cabin
    Starling Cabin
    From: $179.00
  • Finch Cabin
    Finch Cabin
    From: $179.00

Photo Credits:
Calabogie Resort/Hit the Slopes/Canthooks Restaurant images – calabogie.com
Calabogie Brewing Co. – CraftedInTheCapital.com

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Find Your Perfect Cabin Match

Choose Your Own Adventure: How Remote Do You Prefer Your Cabin Escape?


Ever wonder what a remote off-grid tiny cabin experience is like? Whether you dream of a backcountry getaway or prefer to be nestled in the woods with nearby amenities, we have a cabin suited for you!

At CABINSCAPE, we’ve made things easy. Our cabins are ranked from low, medium to high remote. Each level sets the tone for a slightly different cabin experience — choose one that matches your personal adventure style.


HIGH REMOTE CABINS

Want the feeling of a truly private getaway? Our high-remote cabins are the ones for you. These cabins are nestled further away from towns and local shops, remember to pack accordingly

Our highly remote cabins are located in harder-to-access areas. You’ll need 4WD or AWD vehicles to visit these rugged retreats (or choose to hike-in instead) as many are situated on winding roads and off-the-beaten paths. These cabins are ideal for guests wanting a “backcountry camping” experience without the hassle of setting up camp and with all the essentials at your fingertips.

In the winter and spring, these cabins are “hike-in only” which means you’ll have to park your car in a designated parking area and hike to your cabin. Don’t let that stop you from enjoying the experience though  — we provide snowshoes and a sled for the trek and the views are always worth it. Consider it a winter adventure!

Stay at our most remote cabins: Mica & Rhya in Lanark County; and Kaya, Willow, Big Rock, Quasi and Cove cabins in Haliburton Forest. * Now offering snow-mobile shuttle services at our Haliburton high-remote cabins!

LOW REMOTE CABINS

Want to experience an off-grid adventure while knowing the comforts of a traditional getaway are close by? Our low remote cabins live on their own inlets of land that provide a private experience while still being close to other CABSINSCAPE cabins and local amenities.

For instance, our Calabogie cabins are located right within the Calabogie Peaks Resort property with access to their amenities including spa and restaurants as well as their skiing and snowboarding facilities. Our Kawarthas cabins are close to the historic town of Fenelon Falls which is peppered with amazing restaurants, breweries and entertainment.

In the summer, most of these cabins can be reached with regular front-wheel drive vehicles and have drive-in access all year round. As nearly all of these cabins have other CABINSCAPE locations nearby, they can be ideal for group bookings! Our Kawarthas locations as well as Calabogie cabins are great for those who want to escape together but have their own space. 

Visit our “low” remote cabins for a fun, comfortable stay. Low remote cabins include all our Kawarathas and Calabogie cabins along with our Juniper and Joni cabins in Lanark County as well as our Base Camp cabins in Haliburton.


MEDIUM REMOTE CABINS

Our moderately remote cabins are a happy medium between our high and low-remote-level cabins. These cabins are highly private but not too isolated and easy to access with short hike-ins in the winter months. This is a perfect adventure for those wanting to have a backcountry experience while being closer to local amenities. 

Stay at our medium remote cabins including Bone, Baylight and Penner cabins in Haliburton Forest and Mason & Ember cabins in Lanark County.

You can find our “remoteness grades” on the left-hand side of each cabin page under the cabin description. Choose which one best suits your adventure style or try them all!

Photo Credits:
Main Header: @AlexisCreativeCo & @AlexisOutdoors
Header #2 & last image:  @vanhallawild
High Remote: @denimshoots, @natashainwanderland
Low Remote: @foodtraveleisure, @AlexisCreativeCo & @AlexisOutdoors, @chrisandnicole__
Medium Remote: @atlas.alexa, @theomedit, @denimshoots

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Fall in Love with Autumn

Fall in Love with Autumn: How to Take Advantage of This Fleeting Season

Fall in love with fall this year and make the most of the coziest season with an autumn CABINSCAPE adventure! From dazzling tree top adventures to fall chairlift rides, we’ve listed our Top Things to Do on your CABINSCAPE stay to make the most of autumn’s splendour!

HALIBURTON

Enjoy breathtaking views on a Canopy Tour of Haliburton Forest while staying at our 11 cabins located on site. Walk through the autumn treetops for views from 10-20 meters above the ground. At over half a kilometre long this is the longest canopy boardwalk of its kind in the world! Once you’ve come down, explore the 400km of endless all-season hiking and cycling trails and get up close and personal to the changing colours. The trails are well marked and maintained varying from easy, flat walks to more adventurous routes. 

For more seasonal fun, explore the fall calendar at Yours Outdoors for a full roster of fall activities – from a Predator Prowl, to mushroom hunting and rock hounding, there is something for everyone!

CALABOGIE

As the leaves begin to change, enjoy a Fall Colours Chairlift Ride at Calabogie Peaks! Take the chair to the top of the mountain and experience the expansive views on your way up. From there you can choose to hike your way down or hop off at the top to snap a few pictures of the sky-high view and ride the chair back down to the bottom. Running for the last two weekends of September and first two weekends in October, there’s no better way to experience the changing of the seasons. Purchase your tickets when on-site at Calabogie Peaks.

Alternatively, take advantage of some of the best hiking in Ontario and explore the best of autumn on foot. Calabogie Peaks Resort is the trailhead for a fascinating network of Ontario hiking trails that expand beyond the resort boundaries and cross over thousands of acres of Crown Land… including the renowned Eagle’s Nest Lookout!

KAWARTHAS

Pet an alpaca at the Windmill Point Alpaca Farm! Take a guided tour around the farm and learn more about these adorable animals living nearby our Cabinscape Camp Kawarthas location. The farm is currently home to 8 alpacas who are cool and curious animals the whole family can enjoy.

Meander the trails through our property or visit the nearby Balsam Lake Provincial Park, located just 10 minutes from your cabin. You’ll find numerous nature hikes and cycle routes for all skill levels. While in the area, check out the second-annual Kawartha Fall Festival at Ken Reid Conservation Area on Saturday, September 23, 2023. This free, family-friendly event will feature up-close animal encounters, a vibrant vendors market and an array of delectable food trucks!

LANARK COUNTY

During your stay at our Lanark County cabins, attend one of the many fall events in Perth! The Night Market on September 16th begins at 5pm. Wander the streets and encounter entertainers and artisans, and dine under the stars at a variety of restaurants and pubs. Shop with vendors open late as you stroll while surrounded by Perth’s heritage buildings. There are also many Halloween events here throughout the month including a pumpkin parade, zombie and ghost walks, trick-or-treating, and more!

The Perth Farmer’s Market season also runs until Thanksgiving weekend (October 7th) which includes local produce, home-baked pies, pastries and even live music. Grab some fresh eats and head to one of the many quaint parks or enjoy an autumn picnic along the Tay River.

Photo credits
Header, first image: @denimshoots, Haliburton: Haliburton Forest, Calabogie: Calabogie Peaks, Kawarthas @windmillpointalpacas, Lanark Festivals & Events Ontario

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Get Lost: Pride 2023

Get Lost: Pride 2023


How disappearing into nature was crucial for uncovering my identity.

By Tiffany Wice

When I truly started to question my gender, the world became a bit overwhelming.

Embarking on a massive journey like that, it touches literally every aspect of your life: Work, relationships, money, family, even the really mundane stuff (“Wait, does this mean I can’t buy the cheap men’s razors anymore?”).

For someone as anxious as myself, it was never a simple ‘a-ha’ moment like you see in the movies. It became an ominous feeling of impending doom, bubbling up and eating away at my brain every moment of the day. “What if it all goes wrong?”  I found myself hyper-fixating on the thousands of little reasons why I shouldn’t transition, instead of the very big single reason why I should.

It didn’t help that at that point in my life, some of the people closest to me weren’t very supportive, and in fact were actively hindering my gender journey. It’s easy to doubt yourself when someone you trust tells you there’s something wrong with you. 

The world around me was more of the same, “Be like this.” “Don’t wear that.” “Fit in”. Growing up, I had learned to internalise that neverending cacophony of shame, and I spent years hiding myself away and putting forward the least disruptive version of myself. It was safer that way.

I found myself stressed, anxious, unsure, hiding from everyone including myself, and surrounded by constant discomfort and uncertainty. A ship lost out at sea with no land in sight, slowly breaking apart piece by piece. At one point, I had to call 911 for myself due to the intensity of the panic attacks I was experiencing. It sucked, and if something didn’t change soon, I was going to implode.

I’m so lucky I was able to disappear into nature.

Whether it was just a short walk through a local park, or a week long trip to the middle of nowhere, I would find myself feeling clearer after disappearing into the woods. Thoughts that felt the size of planets back at home fit in the palm of my hand out there. It all became so obvious and simple. Of course I should do what makes me happy as long as I’m not harming anyone else. Of course I’m not a bad person for wanting what’s best for me. Of course.

I’ve always felt the most like myself when I’m out in nature. I remember as a kid pretending I was a forest explorer while out on hikes with my family, running ahead or dropping far behind to make believe I was all on my own, a fantasy hero on their way to some incredible adventure. Capable, brave, independent. Twenty-odd years later, it was those same moments, all alone and surrounded by green and brown and red and orange that I was able to breathe, to truly see myself in a way that I couldn’t among the noise and chaos of regular life.

There’s that certain kind of magic to being surrounded by nothing but trees and wildlife and earth, no signs of civilization in sight. If you’re here, I’m guessing that you’re familiar with that feeling.

The restorative elements of a visit into nature are well documented. A visit into the woods offers the rare opportunity to unplug, to look inwards without the distractions of everyday life. The forest doesn’t care what you look like, what clothes you wear, or who you’re attracted to… you can just be you. It’s the ultimate judgement-free safe space.

Out on those long summer hikes, weekend camping trips, high-altitude mountain adventures… I was always greeted by that same beautiful, magical stillness. My mind would clear, my body would relax, and I could finally hear my own thoughts. It’s like the universe was saying “It’s okay, you can come out now, no one is going to hurt you way out here”.

My first ally was, and always will be, the woods. At a time when I felt like I didn’t belong anywhere, Mother Nature opened her loving arms, took me in, and sent me back into the world with a stronger sense of who I was and what I needed. I will always be grateful for that.

My advice for anyone having trouble figuring themselves out: go out there, way out there. Get lost. Release your inner forest adventurer. Let all the burdens of modern life fall away (even briefly) and live for as long as you can in that wonderful stillness. Make that space for your mind, body and soul to speak freely, and listen to what they tell you. Your future self will thank you for it. 

Happy Pride <3

Written by Tiffany Wice – @tiffanywice
Location: Mason cabin, Lanark County
Images: Tiffany Wice & Sterling Sztricsko (@sterlinginsitu)

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Adventure Pup Kit

Adventure Pup Kit

Available at all Cabinscape cabins.

Make the most of the “dog days” of summer and treat your beloved furry family member to a kit designed to keep them prepared for backwoods adventuring! This kit was designed by and for pup owners, with help from our friends at Tickless Canada, and comes highly approved by our resident pack (Gizmo, Dallas, Gadget & Ruby). Whether this is your pup’s first Cabinscape visit or fifth, this kit will prepare your pup for more adventures Ontario and beyond!

This kit ideal for guests staying with their furry family members during their CABINSCAPE stay, and features the following inclusions:

  • Custom reversible & glow in the dark CABINSCAPE dog bandana for forest safety handmade with love by Thunder Paw Designs (three sizes: small, medium & large)
  • Biodegradable ultrasonic Flea & Tick Repeller dog tag from Tickless Canada
  • Fresh homemade CABINSCAPE pup cookie baked by Baking You Happy
  • A stick of moisturizing paw balm from Billy’s Treats to prevent your pup’s paws from cracking after a long hike or drying out after a swim
  • An outdoor collar light to help you keep an eye on your pup in the evenings
  • A spare roll of biodegradable poop bags (just in case)

Price is $55 CAD. If you would like to add this kit to your stay, please email us at bookings@cabinscape.com

Available for May 2024 reservations onward.

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Spring Fling in The Wilderness

Spring Fling in The Wilderness

Hey, springtime adventurers! If you’re ready to shake off the winter blues and explore the great outdoors, our CABINSCAPE properties are the perfect destinations for you. From blooming wildflowers to bird-watching, there’s no shortage of things to do and see this season. Grab your binoculars, lace up your hiking boots, and spring into action!

CONNECT TO WILDLIFE

Get ready to spot some amazing wildlife in their natural habitats! Apart from the beaver, loon and deer sightings, spring is the prime season for bird-watching, and Carden Alvar near our Kawarthas cabins offers an extensive boardwalk through grassland, wetland, and forest where you can spot more than 230 unique and rare bird species. Also in that region, make Alpaca friends at Windmill Point Farm for a family-friendly experience. For a thrilling wolf experience, head to the Wolf Centre at Haliburton Forest and witness the pack shedding their winter fur.

WILDFLOWER WALKS

Take a stroll through the forests and fields near our cabins to view the blooming wildflowers. Many parks and conservation areas, such as Dahl Forest in Haliburton offer guided wildflower walks that allow you to see the beautiful colours and scents of spring. For another Haliburton adventure, wildflower spotting is included in our Esson Creek Mineral Tour.

Many gorgeous blooms of wildflowers grow around our Kawarthas property – meander through the meadows of the site to experience the diverse flora and fauna. Frontenac Provincial Park near our Lanark cabins is also a great option for trails that are filled with blooming flowers of the season.

LOCAL ATTRACTIONS

Looking for unique attractions that offer insight into the region’s rich history and culture? Check out the Bonnechere Caves near Calabogie – a hidden gem that was formed over 500 million years ago. Visit the Haliburton Sculpture Forest for a unique outdoor collection of sculptures by Canadian and international artists. 

Don’t miss the Kirkfield Lift Lock– a stone’s throw from our Kawarthas cabins. This national historic site is the second-highest hydraulic lift lock in the world that lifts boats 15 meters up the Trent-Severn Waterway. Watch in awe as boats navigate this engineering marvel!

INDULGE IN LOCAL FOOD & DRINK

No adventure is complete without trying out the local food and drink scenes. Whether you’re looking for a cozy café, a fine-dining experience, or a local pub, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your appetite. While visiting Lanark County, Perth is a foodie delight with endless restaurants and patios to choose from, while Fenelon Falls near Kawarthas offers a wide range of food options to please any palate. For a taste of the Swiss Alps, head to Canthooks restaurant at Calabogie Peaks Resort, or enjoy wood-fired smoked meals and ice-cold beers at Truss Foodworks Smokehouse in the heart of Haliburton Forest.

EXPLORE THE OUTDOORS

Experience the abundance of outdoor activities near our cabins. Hike to the top of Eagle’s Nest at Calabogie, take a leisurely stroll through the meadows at our Kawarthas property, or enjoy the many trails on-site at our Lanark cabins. The spring scenery is sure to take your breath away!

GET WILD and go where the wild things grow with our SPRING SALE! Get $50 off each night of your booking – no promo code required. Sale ends May 16th!

Photo credits
Header by @joanna.crichton, Birding by Johnath, Caves by bonnecherecaves.com, Eagle’s Nest by @vanhallawild

Sale terms and conditions: *Terms: Not valid for bookings starting on or after May 16h, 2023.  Cannot be applied retroactively to existing reservations; or used in conjunction with any other promotional gift codes. Must be used for a reservation through cabinscape.com. Cannot be used towards shop items, packages or gift card purchases. Sale ends May 16, 2023 at 11:59 pm EST.

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Escape to Serenity

Escape to Serenity: 

Unwind in CABINSCAPE’s Off-Grid Retreats and Reconnect with Nature

You wake up in an off-grid cabin in the forest, the sound of birds chirping and trees rustling outside your window. Nature’s alarm clock. You make a cup of coffee and sit outside on the deck to breathe in the fresh air.  With no plans in sight, you are free to see where the day takes you. Should you take a leisurely walk? Hop in the canoe and explore the lake before the rest of the world wakes up? Or simply relax with a good book? The day is yours, free from distraction. Welcome to CABINSCAPE. 

Disconnect to Reconnect: My Weekend at Cabinscape

I spent my weekend at CABINSCAPE embracing the peace that comes with not having a packed schedule, which almost feels like an act of rebellion in a world that values constant productivity. I made breakfast in the morning and went outside to drink my morning cup. I was greeted by a family of deer at the end of the driveway. They stared at me briefly before running off, but that was the moment I really felt myself relax. I was with nature. The birds were singing, I could see the lake, and I consciously decided to do nothing for the rest of the morning. After I made myself lunch, I set out on a hike. I took time to focus on breathing in the fresh air and feeling the wind on my face. Once I got back to the cabin, I took a nap outside before dinner. I watched the sunset over the horizon of the lake before retreating inside to read my book. I spent the day being intentional about my time and energy, and it was exactly what I needed.

The Benefits of Nature: Why Spending Time Outdoors is More Important Than Ever Before

With locations across Ontario, CABINSCAPE offers the perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. With sustainability and comfort at the forefront of each cabin’s design, you will have everything you need, without the excess. A space to clear your mind and reconnect with the world around you. The cabins are solar-powered, eco-friendly, and vary in levels of remoteness to suit your preference. What they all have in common though, is immersing you in the outdoors. 

There are countless benefits to spending time in the great outdoors, from reducing stress and anxiety to improving overall physical health. Studies have shown that being in nature can reduce anxiety and depression, improve mood, and increase feelings of happiness and well-being. Simply taking a walk in the forest surrounding your cabin or sitting outside and enjoying the natural environment can have a powerful effect on the mind and body. In addition to mental health benefits, connecting with nature can also improve physical health. Outdoor activities are available nearby like hiking, paddling, and biking provide a great workout! Spending time in nature has even been shown to boost the immune system, thanks to exposure to the diverse microbes found in the earth and natural surroundings.


Nature’s Classroom: How Being Outside Cultivates Environmental Stewardship

Spending time in nature can be a transformative experience, one that can inspire us to take action to reduce our environmental impact. By immersing ourselves in the natural world, we can gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of the interconnectedness of all things and the fragile balance that sustains life on our planet. With that understanding can come to a deeper sense of responsibility – inspiring us to take action to protect the planet and become environmental stewards. So next time you have the chance to spend time in nature, take advantage of it – you never know how it might inspire you to make a positive impact on the world.

CABINSCAPE offers the perfect opportunity to unwind, recharge, and reconnect with nature. So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and escape to the forest, where the days will be yours to explore at your leisure.

Renee de Ronde is the face behind The Eco Fam. She is a wife, mother of two and environmentalist at heart. She aims to inspire others to live a more sustainable lifestyle and get outside to connect with the world around them through responsible travel. To follow her journey, find her here.

Blog & Photo Credits: Renee de Ronde
IG @theecofam
Website: https://theecofam.ca/

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Every Day is Earth Day

Every Day is Earth Day

Earth Month is a time to celebrate our planet and commit to ecological practices that protect it for future generations. At CABINSCAPE, we share this commitment to promoting sustainable tourism in some of the most beautiful and remote areas in Ontario.

Earth-conscious tourism is not just a trend but a global responsibility. That’s why we’ve made significant efforts to minimize the environmental impact of our cabins, by using solar energy, composting toilets, greywater systems, and earth-friendly products. All of our cleaning supplies and toiletries are green and biodegradable. We also provide a fully stocked kitchen with everything you may need to discourage traditional single-use camping supplies like cups, plates, cutlery, etc.

At CABINSCAPE, we also believe that eco-friendly activities can be just as fun and exciting as traditional sports. From hiking and biking to stargazing and wildlife watching, we encourage our guests to explore countless ways to connect with nature while leaving a minimal impact on the environment.

To ensure that your stay is as nature-conscious as possible, we encourage our guests to practice sustainable habits during their visit.

Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:

  • Pack light and avoid bringing unnecessary single-use items.
  • Be mindful of your water and energy usage during your stay. 
  • Practice ‘leave no trace’ principles when outside and exploring the trails.

We are proud to be a brand that is committed to promoting sustainable and responsible tourism while encouraging visitors to connect with our planet in a positive way. By choosing to stay with CABINSCAPE, our guests can have a unique and memorable experience with nature while also doing their part to minimize their carbon footprint.

Photo credits
Images by @vanhallawild

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Celebrations of Love

Celebrations of Love

Spring has officially sprung which means love is certainly in the air! Celebrating love has been an enduring theme at CABINSCAPE getaways since our inception. Located in some of the most scenic locations across Ontario, our cabins provide the perfect setting for romance and adventure.

ETERNALIZE SPECIAL MOMENTS

Whether you are celebrating a special occasion during your stay or just want a memory that will last for years to come, our Celebration Package is for you!

Commemorate your love with a full lifestyle photoshoot with a professional photographer from The Organic Moment or Allyson Elizabeth Photography with at least 50 edited images delivered directly to you.

Designed to capture your special moments in the wilderness, the package includes a bottle of sparkling wine, two keepsake Cabinscape glasses, a basket of local hand-crafted sweets, and a vase of seasonal flowers.

By popular demand, this package has now been expanded to include our Kawarthas and Haliburton cabins along with Lanark County! 

Add this package to any cabin booking (except Calabogie) or email bookings@cabinscape.com (subject to availability).

ELOPE IN THE WOODS

Escape into the wilderness with your special person for an adventure of a lifetime! Launched in spring 2023, CABINSCAPE Weddings: Elopement Experience is designed so you can celebrate your love, your way. No two love stories are the same, which is why we have designed this package with tons of flexibility – so you can celebrate in a way that is uniquely yours. All you need to do is choose the cabin meant for you and let our professional elopement curators help you bring your vision to life!

Thanks to our partners at Bowtied With Love (in Lanark and Calabogie) and The Organic Moment (in Kawarthas and Calabogie), this package includes two nights at our cabins, up to two additional guests, on-site coordination and ceremony management, an hour of photography, keepsake CABINSCAPE wine glasses, a custom wedding cake AND MORE! You can also choose from an array of custom add-ons to curate the special day of your dreams.


Email bookings@cabinscape.com for more information.

SET THE MOOD

Made specifically for couples, our Irresistible Romance Kit is the perfect way to add a touch of romance and intimacy to your wilderness getaway. The handcrafted and all-natural products included in this kit have been curated to create a sensual experience exclusively for CABINSCAPE guests. Arriving at your decorated cabin adorned with rose petals and twinkle lights helps create a cozy and romantic atmosphere to kick off your getaway. Plus don’t forget some sweet kit inclusions to enjoy!


Further details on inclusions for this kit for the 2023 Spring/Summer season will be announced shortly! Add it to your stay or email bookings@cabinscape.com for more details.

Photo credits
Header: @janita.ohara, First image: Maria Denomme Photography, Celebration Package: @janita.ohara, Elopements: @janita.ohara

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Discovering the Best Spots for Star Gazing in Ontario

Discovering the Best Spots for Star Gazing in Ontario

Ontario is a fantastic destination for stargazing. Some of the best places to look at the sky are at our cabins in Kawarthas, Lanark County, Calabogie and Haliburton. With their vast expanses of wilderness and relatively low levels of light pollution, these sites offer some of the best views of the night sky in North America. Guests can explore the properties’ many hiking trails and lakeshores for unobstructed views of the stars.

UPCOMING CELESTIAL EVENTS

The beauty of the night sky has captivated humans for thousands of years, inspiring countless stories and legends. Whether you’re an experienced astronomer or just someone who enjoys looking up at the stars, there are plenty of upcoming events to get excited about.

  • On April 8, a Total Solar Eclipse will occur (although areas near Toronto and Ottawa will only reach 99.9 and 99.8 per cent of totality) and it is the last opportunity for Canadians to view one until Aug. 23, 2044 — 20 years from now!
  • Lyrids Meteor Shower from April 15th – 29th: Peaking on the night of April 22nd and morning of the 23rd, these meteors are best seen from the northern hemisphere where the radiant is high in the sky at dawn
  • Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower from April 15th to May 27th: Peaking on the night of May 4th and early morning of May 5th, this shower is associated with Halley’s Comet and from the equator northward, produces medium rates of 10-30 per hour just before dawn
  • Perseids Meteor Shower from July 14th to September 1st: Peaking on the night of August 11th – 12th, the Perseids is often described as the best of the year, and with good reason. It’s the summer, the night skies tend to be clear and the weather is warmer, making for a comfortable night of viewing under the stars. 
  • Leonids Meteor Shower from November 6th to November 30th: Peaking on the night of November 17th and early morning of November 18th, this year the waning gibbous moon will rise during the late evening hours and sadly spoil the best viewing hours for this shower.
  • Geminids Meteor Shower from December 19th to 24th: The Geminids are usually the strongest meteor shower of the year and meteor enthusiasts are certain to circle December 13 and 14 on their calendars

TIPS & TRICKS FOR FIRST TIMERS

If you’re new to star gazing, it’s important to remember that the night sky can be overwhelming at first. However, with a bit of patience and practice, you’ll soon find yourself identifying constellations, planets, and other celestial objects with ease. 

  • Get started by investing in a quality telescope or pair of binoculars. These tools can help you see the night sky in a whole new way, and can be a great investment for anyone interested in astronomy.
  • Try an app or use a star chart: A star chart can help you identify stars and constellations, making it easier to navigate the night sky.
  • Choose a dark location & check the weather: The darker the location, the better your chances of seeing stars. Clouds can obscure the stars too, so it’s important to check the weather forecast before heading out.
  • The best time to visit CABINSCAPE for stargazing is the winter months so you can look up without your views being obstructed by trees and forests. 
  • Be patient! Seeing stars can require patience and perseverance, so take your time and enjoy the experience.

FEATURED CABINS FOR STAR GAZERS

Mason Cabin

  • The BEST skies in Ontario can be seen right from our cabin in Mountain Grove. Located near the North Frontenac Dark Sky Preserve which is one of the top places for stargazing in all of Ontario.

Ember Cabin

  • Located near Mason cabin and the Dark Sky preserve, this property has incredible views of its own.

Remote Haliburton Forest Cabins (Quasi, Big Rock, Kaya, Willow & Cove)

  • These remote cabins are unobstructed by light and the perfect spot to stare at the sky. They are forested areas in the summer so the winter is the best time to visit. If visiting in the summer months, you can view the stars from the old logging access road.

Kawarthas Lakefront Cabins (Goldenrod, Burdock, Hawkweed, Stonecrop & Woodrush)

  • The lakefront cabins at this quarry site are ideal for viewing stars unobstructed from trees year-round.

All of our cabins are off the beaten path with great views of the sky. Just remember to look up!

Photo credits
Header image: @alexisoutdoors, Tips & Tricks image of Quasi Cabin: @mrsammyg, Featured Cabins image of Mason: @anastasiianasyko, Last image: @shotbynomii

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Kid-Friendly Tiny Cabin Adventures

Kid-Friendly Tiny Cabin Adventures

With March Break quickly approaching, why not try a wilderness adventure made for the whole family? From pups to kids, bring them along for some wholesome fun! Read our guide to the ultimate activities for kids at our tiny cabins.

CABIN CHASER: FAMILY EDITION

Our popular mystery road-trip package now includes exciting route options for the whole family. This curated two-night mystery itinerary and cabin hopping experience is custom designed for each booking and includes foodie favourites, small-town farms, incredible vista views, cute local shops, and cozy hangouts to get you out and about this winter.

Originally designed for groups of two, this package has now expanded specifically for families with young adventurers. Consider this an exciting surprise for the whole clan. Pups included! We’re now offering a special Maple Syrup themed route just in time for Maple Season!

More details here.

HALIBURTON

One of the most popular attractions at Haliburton Forest and a MUST when visiting with children is the Wolf Centre. Witness and learn about the pack of wolves that live and roam freely on the reserve. Winter is the best time to see the wolves in their thick winter fur – they are typically more playful and active in the cooler weather. 

Once you’re done howling with wolves, explore the over 400 km of trails at Haliburton Forest. Many include easy routes for beginners, perfect for kids and pups. 

Read more about a family trip to Baylight cabin in Haliburton here.

CALABOGIE

Grab skis for the whole group and hit the slopes! Our cabins here live at Calabogie Peaks Resort which offers the best of what winter has to offer. Lift tickets include the longest beginner trail in the province for skiing and snowboarding – perfect for little ones to learn the ropes. If they need extra help, register for a lesson at the Adventure Centre. Equipment rentals are also available on-site.

If you’d rather hike/snowshoe, hop out your front door to the nearest trailhead (just metres away). Trails are groomed and well-marked for easy access and shorter routes. After the activities, take a break and enjoy all the amenities that Calabogie Peaks Resort has to offer. With the purchase of a family day pass CABINSCAPE guests can enjoy access to nightly bonfires, pond skating, an indoor swimming pool and a fitness centre with towels and showers.

KAWARTHAS

While at this property, kids are sure to love the otherworldly vibe. Hike/snowshoe 4 km of lanes and trails that meander through this expansive re-naturalized property and experience a rich variety of ecosystems, vistas and quarry relics from the past.

Take a mini trip to the nearby town of Fenelon Falls for entertainment, dining, outdoor activities, and shopping. There is also the opportunity to explore arts, culture and heritage as this town has a rich history. For a treat after all the fun, stop by the Little Pie Shack for homemade pies, tarts, brownies, squares, ice cream, and more!

As of March, the Windmill Point Alpaca Farm opens its doors on Saturdays to tour its pack of furry friends up close and personal for a memory that will not soon be forgotten!

LANARK COUNTY

For those wanting to stay close to home base, many of our Lanark County cabins have conservation areas, massive properties or trails to experience on-site or very close to your cabin! Take a nature walk and explore. 

Visit the town of Perth and its family-friendly attractions including the Big Red Chair and The Red Fox “Welcome to Perth” mural. Shopping includes stores focused on children, such as Spring Children and Fawn & Fox. Foodie selections are plentiful and many offerings provide kids’ menus including Michael’s Table and Maximilian Restaurant. For dessert, stop for melt-in-your-mouth chocolate from Perth Chocolate Works.

Once the activities are over and it’s time to disconnect and hunker down, enjoy maximum coziness and quality time from our mini library of books and games included at every CABINSCAPE cabin. Family approved!

Photo credits
Cabin Chaser & Lanark @lauramendesto, Calabogie: Calabogie Peaks, Haliburton: Haliburton Forest, Kawarthas @windmillpointalpacas, last image: @theomedit

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How to Beat Blue Monday

How to Beat Blue Monday and the Post Holiday Blues!

Have you been feeling lethargic, listless or even gloomy for the past few weeks? The post-holiday blues are a phenomenon that culminates in Blue Monday, the third Monday of January. Also known as the most depressing day of the year. The short days with little sunlight, frigid temperatures and the end of the holidays/festive season begin to kick in. Many have started struggling with New Year’s resolutions while some struggle with debt and credit card bills. Motivation seems to be at an all-time low. 

Whether or not Blue Monday really exists is still up for debate but it is hard to deny it can be a more difficult time for many. If you’re feeling it this season, just know you are not alone! 

Remember to take it day by day. The days are already getting longer and we are seeing more hours of sunshine. Take time daily to centre yourself and see if these tips work for you:

  • Get good sleep! Don’t underestimate the power of sleep. Experts stress the importance of 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Try and get back into a good routine after the hustle and bustle (and gluttony) of the holiday season. If you are having a tough time with sleep, try a light box. See next tip…
  • Invest in a Lightbox. I cannot stress what a game-changer this can be! The effects of using a light box first thing in the morning can be immediate and may boost low mood after only 20 minutes of use. Sunlight is also crucial to our circadian rhythm.
  • Be in nature while moving your body. Getting sunlight before noon can improve mental and physical health. Studies have also found that a mere glimpse of nature from a window can improve overall mood. Take advantage of the healing powers of nature by walking or exercising outside and adding plants/flowers to your indoor spaces. Not to mention taking a quick trip to the woods to reset your mind, body and spirit! See next tip…
  • Plan a trip and have something to look forward to. Take advantage of our reduced winter pricing and get away to the woods! From snowboarding and howling with wolves in Haliburton to hitting the slopes in Calabogie our cabins have every inch of adventure you need to bust out of the blues. Have a winter campfire or just relax in the quiet while enjoying the stillness of the season if that is more your speed. Choose your own adventure!

Resources & Recommendations:
13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do by Amy Morin
Winter Blues: Everything You Need to Know to Beat Seasonal Affective Disorder by Norman E. Rosenthal

Photo credits: @AlexisCreativeCo & @AlexisOutdoors

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Challenge Yourself to Adventure More in 2023

Challenge Yourself to Adventure More in 2023

This new year, challenge yourself to get out of your comfort zone! Adventure more. Seek thrills you never dreamed of. Spend more time connecting with nature while discovering its healing powers.

Whatever your goal, accomplish it with your next CABINSCAPE stay. Read on for our top adventures to cross off your list this season!

CALABOGIE

Did you know our Calabogie cabins live on a ski resort? Calabogie Peaks Resort is the tallest ski hill in Ontario and its amenities and trails are right at your doorstep. This location even includes some of the best hiking in Ontario! Take advantage of the resort’s pond skating rink and nightly bonfires with the purchase of a guest pass. Strap on your snowshoes and discover Eagle’s Nest lookout and the extensive trail network at Manitou Mountain. Spend your evenings reading or playing games from our little cabin library selection.

HALIBURTON

Haliburton Forest is known as Ontario’s wonderland of adventure! Hop on a sled and experience some of the best snowmobiling in North America with perfectly groomed trails and snow-laden pine trees. Howl with wolves at the Wolf Centre where you can get up close and personal with the pack of wolves that live in the forest. Ice fish the extensive lakes available to you. Listen to the stillness at some of our most remote cabin sites here.

LANARK COUNTY

Touted as the Maple Syrup Capital of Ontario, Lanark County has charming towns to explore and thrilling outdoor activities to experience! The popular town of Perth is a foodie paradise with its delightful and varied offerings. Local trails, parks and conservation areas are nearby or on-site to explore. Each cabin lives in its own unique environment, with trails varying from meandering creek walks to rugged bush walks with lookouts of the Ottawa Valley. Grab your snowshoes and explore them all at your leisure! 

KAWARTHAS

Our Kawarthas cabins are easily accessible all year round (no hike-in required) which makes it a great option for those looking for a less remote but adventure-packed getaway! Hike or snowshoe 4 km of lanes and trails that meander through this expansive re-naturalized property and experience a rich variety of ecosystems, vistas and quarry relics from the past. Bring your ice skates and explore the quarry (when conditions allow). Spend time hunkering down in front of a winter campfire. Cold weather calls for hot comfort food cooked on our stovetop, BBQ or fire. Breathe in the stillness.

Group bookings are available here.

Photo credits
Header: @shotbynomii, Calabogie: Calabogie Peaks, Haliburton: Haliburton Forest

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Candycane Chocolate Chip Pancakes Recipe

Candy Cane Chocolate Chip Pancakes Recipe

After presents, the best reason to wake up on Christmas morning is breakfast! Try this recipe for your holiday morning meal.

Candy Cane Chocolate Chip Pancakes Recipe

All you need (yields 3 medium pancakes):

  • Flourish chocolate chip plant-based protein mix (or any plant-based mix of your choice)
  • 1/4 cup of non-dairy milk of your choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
  • 1/4 cup of organic and Vegan Candy canes crushed (I used Yumearth) plus a little extra to use as toppings
  • Organic Maple Syrup for topping (for sugar-free version use Lakanto monk fruit sweetened)
  • 1/2 tbsp Coconut oil or vegan butter to coat pan

Directions:

1. Combine 1/3 cup mix with 1/4 cup non dairy milk. Add in crushed candy canes

2. Pour batter into 3 circles on a medium-hot, lightly oiled pan. Flip once bubbles form and pop(2-3minutes) and cook through (1-2 min)

3. Serve on a plate sprinkled with remaining crushed candy canes and drizzle with maple syrup.


Pictures and recipe by @livewellicious on Instagram (Photographer @mikegentilemedia, Makeup @michelerosebeauty, Hair @salonkink_bystefany)

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Vegan Eggnog Recipe

Vegan Eggnog Recipe

This traditional festive drink has a non-dairy spin! Try this recipe for a Vegan Eggnog during the holidays.

Vegan Eggnog Recipe

All you need:

🎄2 cups of oat milk
🎄2 tbsp condensed coconut milk
🎄1/4 cup coconut sugar or 2-4 tbsp of organic maple syrup
🎄1 tbsp arrowroot flour
🎄2 tsp of nutmeg
🎄1 tsp cinnamon 
🎄2 tsp vanilla extract

Toppings/Optional
🎄Cinnamon Sticks
🎄Coconut Cool Whip

Directions:

1. Prep out all ingredients.

2. Whisk: In a large pot on stove, whisk until well combined without heating just yet. Vigorously whisk until there are no clumps of starch.

3. Heat: Turn on the stove to medium-high heat, heat the Eggnog until right before it boils. You should see a few bubbles appear on top. Reduce heat to low, and whisk until it thickens, about 4-5 minutes.

4. Cool: Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Then carefully pour into an airtight glass and allow to cool down further until it’s not warm anymore before placing in the fridge to chill for 1-2 hours.

5. Enjoy: Serve with vegan Cool Whip, and Cinnamon sticks, sprinkled with extra Cinnamon on top, with or without alcohol!

Alcohol Options: If you like to make this more like a traditional nog, you can add in your preferred alcohol! Many liquors are actually naturally vegan, too. You can use bourbon, dark rum, brandy, or cognac.

BONUS! Pair with your favourite sweet treat or a seasonal charcuterie!

Pictures and recipe by @livewellicious on Instagram (Photographer @mikegentilemedia, Makeup @michelerosebeauty, Hair @salonkink_bystefany)

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Peppermint Hot Cocoa Recipe

Peppermint Hot Cocoa Recipe

Take a bite of the harsh cold weather with a cup of piping hot delicious hot cocoa. Guaranteed to combat the Canadian winters and soothe the soul with each cup. Can be made on a campfire, stovetop or BBQ while enjoying your Cabinscape stay!

The best part of this recipe is that it is completely customizable. You can pick your toppings right down to the kind of milk you prefer. Tastes great with dairy and non-dairy options – coconut milk is my personal favourite. Include the little ones in creating this recipe for some festive family fun!

Peppermint Hot Cocoa

All you need:
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
½ cup sugar
⅓ cup hot water
⅛ teaspoon salt
4 cups of any kind of milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon peppermint extract
Your favourite toppings (including but not limited to whipped cream, shaved white or dark chocolate, crushed peppermints, candy cane for a stirrer, marshmallows)
Cabinscape mug – classic camper or ceramic (optional)

Directions:
1. Whisk together the cocoa, sugar, salt, and water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir together until mixture boils and cocoa and sugar are dissolved.
2. After stirring continually for 1 minute, stir in the milk. Heat, but do not boil. Remove from the heat, add vanilla and peppermint extract and mix well.
3. Pour into your Cabinscape mug and top it off with your favourites! Serve immediately.

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Give Your Family the Gift of Adventure

Give Your Family the Gift of Adventure

Olivia Murray was voted Vancouver’s Top 30 Mom Bloggers and is a wife, mother, freelance creative director & digital strategist. To follow her journey, find her here.

 It’s an infamous theme, my suggestion to consider experiences over things. It’s right up there next to my “buy better, buy less” preference, discussed many times over the years.

We’ve been gifting the kids experiences for their birthdays for the past few years and try to implement the same mindset when it comes to other holidays, occasions and beyond.

We’ve done many staycations, little getaways and even some major travelling with our eldest but nothing has been quite like our latest experience and stay with family-founded company, Cabinscape.

Cabinscape is a Canadian-owned and operated company, offering eco-conscious cabin stays for those looking to experience intimate, off-grid stays. Locations range from low remoteness (ability to drive-in and near other cabins and/or amenities) to high remoteness (hike-in required, distant from other accommodations, towns and resources). Every one of their micro cabins is custom designed and built with everything you need while prioritizing a minimized footprint.

We opted for a cabin of medium remoteness for our first experience, especially given we would have two small children in tow.

We stayed at the Baylight Cabin, nestled in the forest of Haliburton Highlands. This location has a 300-meter hike-in come the cold season but offers a very quiet stay, tucked amidst the trees and directly on the water of a private lake.


Travelling at the back end of November meant snow was on the ground and the water was partially frozen over, so we didn’t get to make the most of the lake’s beauty or activities (cabin stay comes with a canoe for your use while there) but it still made for an incredibly serene backdrop. Lined with evergreen trees and entirely still, the kids were thrilled to find they could sit and hear the echo of their own voices.

The cabin is equipped with a gas stovetop, full-sized BBQ and fire pit for cooking or making s’mores of course. We did pre-plan simple meals that could be made with minimal effort but also go nicely with a camping-like experience. Due to the time of year, there is no running water at the cabins and so we kept that in mind when it came to cooking as well.

We packed things like soup (that we pre-made) and grilled cheese supplies, eggs with add-ins like mushrooms and tomatoes, as well the obligatory marshmallows, graham crackers, chocolate and veggie dogs/sausages for a traditional campfire dinner.


This location is truly amazing for anyone who’s a city dweller because the night sky is a serious contrast to that in metro areas – clear with nothing but an array of stars sprinkled across the scene. A beautiful backdrop to roasting marshmallows or having dinner and a drink by the fire.

In the morning, pull up the retractable window and take in the sunrise or crisp morning air over breakfast and a hot cup of your favourite. If you’re early enough and things are quiet, you might even be lucky enough to get a few of the forest’s visitors. It should be mentioned that this is a truly off-grid experience and you truly are a guest of an outdoor environment. Prepare for the possibility of seeing wild animals, big or tiny.

When not stargazing or on the lookout for animals, cabins offer a selection of games and reads for your enjoyment while there. The kids even found a colouring book, so we picked up some pencil crayons in the city (Haliburton) on one of our trips in for extra water and chocolate (a lot of s’mores were made).

*Note: Because water is not running at this time of the year, you’ll need to use bottled or stored water for all your needs: cooking, washing dishes, hygiene purposes, etc. Water is running again following winter.

Depending on your location, I highly suggest finding the nearest city/town to explore on your way to or from, or even during your stay. We loved getting to know a little bit of the area better by visiting various small businesses local to our cabin’s location. The company did a great job of including a list of nearby amenities, towns, and businesses in the welcome and instructional binder. Ours even included a pass for making the most of our time in Haliburton Highland’s, also deemed a “snow dome” and a favourite for those who like to hike, snowshoe, snowmobile and beyond.

We made sure to visit the infamous wolf family during our stay and it was an absolute highlight for the kids – us as well to be honest. I cannot recommend this enough during your stay or on any visit to the area. The wolves are so majestic, we could’ve spectated for hours. It was such a privilege to see them carry on in an environment natural to them and to witness them as a pack. I think we’ll be raving about this one forever.

Many of the experiences on this getaway were far from our norm, both as home or on any of our other stays/road trips and I can’t help but feel like it was so beneficial for the kids. To be out of their comfort zone and learn to navigate while embracing nature was such an experience that we cannot wait to visit another location in another (probably non-cold) season.

On our list for the next visit is one of Cabinscape’s new, Kawartha locations.

I hope you will follow @cabinscape and put it on your list of future considerations. I imagine these cabins as a great option for anything from birthdays to just needing a break, a girls’ trip to an anniversary getaway.

Stay tuned for some video content over on Instagram soon and consider this your reminder to return to slow and simple every so often.

x, Olivia

Our Haliburton Cabins

  • Cove Cabin
    Cove Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Big Rock Cabin
    Big Rock Cabin
    From: $189.00
  • Willow Cabin
    Willow Cabin
    From: $189.00
  • Kaya Cabin
    Kaya Cabin
    From: $189.00
  • Sage Cabin
    Sage Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Pine Cabin
    Pine Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Moss Cabin
    Moss Cabin
    From: $149.00
  • Quasi Cabin
    Quasi Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Penner Cabin
    Penner Cabin
    From: $191.00
  • Baylight Cabin
    Baylight Cabin
    From: $199.00
  • Bone Cabin
    Bone Cabin
    From: $199.00

Blog & Photo Credits: Olivia Murray
IG @theomedit
Website: www.theomedit.com