Is fall your favourite season? Do you love it more than the sunny patio season of summer? Do you love it more than the winter wonderland of December? But have you ever been worried to admit it because of all the basic-ness that comes with autumn? If you answered yes to any of the above then you have found yourself reading the right article.
Blanket scarves, flannel shirts and all things pumpkin spice flavoured seem to rule the autumn season. However, there are a lot more activities in Toronto than just the basics. Fall is full of cliches, but that does not mean you have to follow the norm. I am not judging you for loving fall classics - the seasons brings out the inner basic in all of us. But why not add a non-basic alternative or two into your fall repertoire? Read on for 12 non-basic things to do in Toronto this fall.
1. Play a game of touch football in Trinity-Bellwoods.
Many people love fall because it signals one major thing: the start of football season. Whether you are a huge NFL fan or not, Sunday football is a big deal. Maybe you don't normally follow football and aren't aware of the rules or even how to play, however, you can grab some of your guy friends and make an afternoon of it. Hit up Trinity-Bellwoods or someone's backyard and play a little touch football. Who knows - maybe it will be your new favourite sport. Regardless, playing a game of touch football is the least basic fall time activity.
2. Skip the pumpkin patch and go orchard picking instead.
Pumpkins are so basic. Plus, we all know people only visit a pumpkin patch for an Instagram photo. Skip the pumpkin patch and go orchard picking at Applewood Farm instead. Not only will you actually use the apples, for baking or regular eating or so on, you also don't have to go through the tiring process of carving one. Pumpkins serve no real purpose other than being purely decorative so why waste your time driving out of the city and trudging through the fields just to find a pumpkin that will sit on your stoop? Don't. Orchard picking is the newest fall trend and way less basic.
3. Bake an apple pie after your orchard visit.
As continued from the previous point, an apple is a much more useful fruit than a pumpkin. You can make apple pie or apple tarts or apple crumble or even applesauce! Pumpkins are a lot more difficult to use in the kitchen anyways. So visit an orchard, pick some delicious apples and then bring them back to your home to make a delicious treat. Whether it is a new recipe you found on Pinterest or your grandmother's secret recipe past down from generation to generation, everyone loves a warm slice of apple pie during fall.
4. Get lost in a corn maze.
Oftentimes going to a corn maze during the fall months is overlooked because basic people are so enthralled with visiting a pumpkin patch. Although it may not be as Instagram worthy, visiting a corn maze is definitely more fun. Grab your friends and do a mini road trip to the Game of Thrones inspired corn maze at Cooper's Farm. There is no less basic way to spent a fall day than getting lost among the giant corn husks. But don't worry, there are "corn cops" to help if anyone gets legitimately lost.
5. Go to Niagara-on-the-Lake for a wine tour.
If you think wine tours can only be enjoyed during the spring and summer months, you are sadly mistaken. Whether you plan on hitting up Peller Estates or Pillitteri Estates, a wine tour during autumn is perfect for those who love both wine and the fall season. Visiting wineries in the crisp, cool air of autumn while the leaves crunch underneath your boots is far from what basic fall-lovers do. People don't normally associate wine with the fall season which makes going on a wine tour one of the best non-basic fall activity.
6. Learn to knit.
Knitting? Yes, I went there. You may be thinking knitting sounds pretty lame but what is even more lame is paying $80 for a knit turtleneck sweater that you could have just as easily made on your own. Fall is a lot of people's favourite season because they get to pull out wool socks, fuzzy scarfs and big sweaters. Okay, maybe you should start with something a little smaller and easier like a pair of socks, although, if spend some quality time this season knitting by the fireplace, you will be on your way to making a sweater in no time.
7. Forget pumpkin spice lattes and make spiced apple cider or fall sangria.
Pumpkin spice lattes are the epitome of all things basic. Plus, they aren't even that good - there I said it. A basic Toronto girl's world revolves around pumpkin spice everything. Don't be like everyone else and freak out over pumpkin spice lattes. Instead, invite your girlfriends over and brew some homemade spiced apple cider or fall sangria to sip and enjoy over some gossip and underneath a cozy blanket. Just forget about pumpkin spice lattes. Fall inspired boozy drinks are the new craze you need to get on board with. After all, variety is the real spice of life.
8. Have a bonfire with your significant other.
Think bonfires are just for the summer time? Think again! People normally equate outdoor bonfires to summer weather and cozying up next to the indoor fireplace during the chillier seasons, but that is not the case. Fall is the perfect time for an evening bonfire and cuddling up under a blanket next to that special someone. Share some of that spiced apple cider you just made from those fresh apples you picked at the orchard. Fall is the best season for a bonfire because the weather is actually just right for it. Plus, s'mores are an every season kind of thing.
9. Throw a Halloween house party.
Most likely you are thinking of hitting up one of Toronto's hottest clubs to celebrate Halloween, but that is so basic. This year, try throwing a Halloween house party instead. It is not like Torontonians to spend flashy holidays at home, yet a house party never disappoints. With fall comes cool weather and the last thing you want do is stumble home at 2 a.m. in the cold dressed as Harley Quinn (we all know those tiny shorts were not designed for warmth). Throwing a house party solves this problem, plus you won't have to cover your costume with a jacket.
10. Rent a cabin in Northern Ontario for the weekend.
There is more to cottage country than just boating in the sunshine and drinking beer. There are many perks to a vacation in cottage country during all four of the seasons, however, fall is the ideal season to make a weekend trip to Northern Ontario. Take your significant other or your best friends, it doesn't matter. There is no better way to escape from the city than doing some R 'n R in a cozy cabin, cuddled up in a blanket, reading a book and having a nice glass of merlot - basic people just don't get it. Nothing like a cottage weekend to recharge.
11. Go on a haunted house tour.
In case you were not aware, Toronto actually has multiple haunted spots you have to visit. Allotting an entire day to scaring yourself silly is definitely not basic. With some dark moments in its history and records of spooky encounters, Ontario has preserved its eerie legends in an array of haunted houses. If you are up for it, visit the Keg Mansion or the Mackenzie House and see if any ghosts are looming around. People love to focus on the cute, typical aspects of fall, like picking pumpkins or picnics in the park, but real fall-lovers love the season for the spooky elements that come with Halloween. Warning: basics beware.
12. Go for an afternoon hike among the fall trees.
When I say hike I actually mean hike. I do not mean drive a couple hours to a provincial park just to spend a few minutes taking photos. Ontario has some stunning nature reserves and along with that, some great places for a fall hike. Hit up Killarney Provincial Park or visit Bon Echo Provincial Park and enjoy the breathtaking views. Basics usually do it for the gram, but if you put your smartphone down, you will be able to enjoy all the scenic beauty Ontario has to offer. Hiking is not just good for the body, but good for the soul.