A Family Guide to a two day stay in the Waterloo Region #KWawesome Day 1

In February my husband and I visited the Waterloo area for our first child-free getaway in 6 years! While we definitely enjoyed our alone time away from the kids, but we couldn’t help but say “the boys would really love this’ at every single stop. We were delighted to receive an invitation to come back this Summer and experience the region without the snow and cold, this time, we brought the boys along for the adventure!

Family Guide to Kitchener Waterloo

A Family Guide to the Waterloo Region

Plan to be at the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory when it opens at 10am. This will give you plenty of time to see the exhibit rooms and you’ll still be able to take your time wandering through the beauty of the rainforest. The bug exhibit was a big hit with the boys, who could not get over all the creepy crawlers! Our favourite though was the Bees! A whole colony was sandwiched between panes of glass, working away as bees do. The Queen is marked with a pink dot so you can easily spot her among her crew. A tube goes right through the wall to the outdoors which you can see from the windows and the bees roam freely in and out. Curator Doug Wilson was kind enough to show us how the bees communicate to eachother with their turns and shakes of their bodies, it was fascinating! 

Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory

The star of the show of course though is the beautiful butterflies and there are at least 2000 free-flying tropical butterflies and moths are on exhibit at any given time! Each week a shipment is sent as pupae ( in chrysallis or cacoon form) from Costa Rica or the the Philippines, they hatch right on site and we were lucky enough to be able to watch one of the butterflies come out of his cozy home for the first time! We were also able to witness the worlds largest moth, the Atlas Moth, which is rare because they only live for a couple of days! It was a great visit! The kids will love the touch table where they can feel real butterfly wings!

Atlas Moth

 

stripe pm

yellowpm

Grab so some lunch at the Paradise Garden Cafe on site, they have a great menu line up of healthy and delicious food. I had the Chicken Caesar Wrap, my husband ordered the Bistro Panini and the kids had small pizzas. Everything was tasty!

After lunch, head over to Chicopee Tube Park to let kids run off some energy! In Febuary, my husband and I loved the tubing so we were interested in what they had to offer during the Summer months. The park is open 7 days a week from 11am – 5pm and was a fun spot for the kids to try activities they had never tried before and test their bravery! Turns out, these are some pretty brave kids! 

chicopee tube park

The boys tried everything! The little boys kicked their big brothers butt climbing the spider web tower, they bounced to their hearts content on the Euro Bungy and the older two boys tried out the horizontal ropes. This was very difficult for my 6 year old, but the 8 year old sailed through it. The staff were all pretty nice but we were super lucky to have one boy in particular that seemed to move shifts at the same time we moved on to the next activity and he was with us most of our time. He was so friendly and helpful and when he spotted my oldest trying to attempt a back flip on the Euro Bungy, he walked him right through it, encouraging him along until he got it! As a mom, it’s so awesome to see staff like this when we were traveling, especially males that the boys can look up to! 

The boys favourite activity by far was the zipline! These brave little soles put on equipment heavier than they are and didn’t think twice about stepping off into thin air and sailing away! I was soooo proud of them! They would have done that all day! Seeing the boys face their fears with success, I couldn’t let them down and decided I would try to conquer the adult zip line too. Turns out, it conquered me. I had seen others on it throughout the day and was worried that the landing looked very rough, I expressed my concern to the attendant at the top of the hill and he told me I would be okay, to tuck in at the end and I did. However, my stop was extremely hard, so hard in fact that  my head snapped back so hard my helmet fell off and I experienced a pretty bad case of whiplash. I was very sore in the days to come, up to a full week afterwards. This was just my experience, but needless to say, I can’t recommend it to others. 

taco farm Collage

After a long, busy day exploring the region, make your way to the Taco Farm, located at 8 Erb Street W for a wonderful taco feast! Taco Farm is a small restaurant that quickly filled up and we could tell it was a popular spot, we soon found out why! Hubs and I each ordered a tasty Sangria to celebrate our great weekend away as we poured over the menu. With so many creative choices and the option to build your own tacos, we asked our expert waitress to help us to decide! We ended up with one of each of their custom tacos, except the fish, so we could try them all. It was so fun sampling the tasty tacos together, their shells are small, but they are stuffed full! By far, my favourite item that blew me away, was the Dip Trio, you must, must, must order this when you are there! It comes with baked chips and three dips – grilled green onion corn salsa, pico de gallo and guacamole. With a fresh salsa already on the table as well, we dug into each one with delight! Everything was soooo amazing. I’ve never even been fond of guacamole in the past, but I loved this one! I can’t wait to go back and order it again! The boys all had cheese quesadillas which came with either fresh churned ice cream or Churros for dessert! Our picky eaters didn’t complain once. 

 

tacos

Check into the Holiday Inn Kitchener Waterloo, located on 30 Fairway Road S. It is currently under construction but promises to be a beautiful location when complete in September. We had two adjoining rooms giving us plenty of space for our family of 5 and the boys took a chilly dip in the fun outdoor saltwater pool in the evening. 

hotel Collage

pool

 

We enjoyed a fabulous hot breakfast at Embers Restaurant in the morning to start the day off right! Breakfast is not included in the price of the room, but if you contact Jennifer Burton direct at 519-894-8520 and mention my blog, she will include breakfast complimentary to your reservation! 

Ready to take on your second day in Waterloo Region? It involves a must-see visit to the St. Jacobs Farmers Market, the St. Jacobs Aberfoyle Model Railway and a fun afternoon at Bingemans Park!

DAY TWO

All of the activities and accomodations were complimentary and coordinated by Explore Waterloo Region. I was not compensated in any other manner. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.

Comments

  1. This is funny. I eat my lunch at work facing Taco Farm. It’s just across the street from where I work. I’ve yet to go but have always wanted to. Looks yummy!

  2. Tiffany Steadman-Collins says:

    I never would of thought to take a family trip to Waterloo. So many great things to do and the hotel looked fab. Hope your feeling better that kind of ending on the zip line would be super scary.

  3. WOW! that looks like a great experience! One that my boys would definitely love! I loved doing ropes course so I can only imagine what they would like! That hotel and restaurant looks wonderful!

  4. Kitchener is so close to us, yet we don’t ever make a trip there unless I am visiting my lawyer or driving to the 401. (lol) Yet, it offers so much for families! I can’t wait to hear about more adventures – I love St. Jacob’s.

  5. I’ve not been to Waterloo before, but it looks like a wonderful place to visit!

  6. IS THAT A GIANT COCKROACH IN THE FIRST PHOTO?!

    I don’t have issues with 99.9% of bugs, but cockroaches?! *cringes*

    …I’d still go to Kitchener-Waterloo. Many people have told me I NEED to go to the Lancaster Smokehouse.

    One day… one day.

  7. This sounds like a great time! I have family in Waterloo and we have to go for a wedding sometime next year. I will have to check all these things out.

  8. If we lived closer, this is something my kids would definitely be interested in!

  9. Judy Cowan says:

    Looks like a fun getaway. We have been meaning to check out the Butterfly Conservatory but have yet to get around to it.

  10. This is so interesting.I am going to have to go there and see the Butterfly Conservatory.I love all this information and especially loved the bees too.

  11. A nice idea for a little getaway

  12. Florence C says:

    This looks like a great place to take ones family. Love to have one of the tacos.

  13. We had several lovely visits to the Waterloo area when we lived in Ontario. Love St. Jacobs Farmers Market.

  14. I want to take my hubby and son to Waterloo. I went to school there for 4 years, and loved the area

  15. Doris Calvert says:

    Looks like you had fun and making memories, can’t get any better!

  16. I love this area! So much to do and see. My girls enjoy going here for the weekend

  17. Here is something pretty much at my own doorstop. I frequent St Jacob’s market, but never thought of doing an over nighter. I’m usually pooped out after the market and making it a weekend isn’t a bad idea.

  18. I NEED to hit up the Taco Farm!! I live in the area and have never been

  19. Rosanne Robinson says:

    my grandson would LOVE the butterfly conservatory, we have to get there ASAP!

  20. seham merzib says:

    Looks like you guys had tons of fun!

  21. Looks like a great place to go – too bad it’s so far from me here in Edmonton

  22. Lynda Cook says:

    Looks like you and the family had an amazing weekend! I loved the whole review you wrote and those tacos sure do look yummy!!

  23. Chandra Christine O'Connor says:

    holy crammed tortillas how the heck did you wrap them.

  24. Everything looks like so much fun.

  25. Treen Goodwin says:

    Looks like a great place to visit except the bug part lol . i’m not a fan of bugs 🙂

  26. Linda Bragg says:

    This vacation looks like so much fun and very interesting all the places you visited. Being from the US and now a permanent resident of over 8 yrs now here, my Canadian hubby and I try to travel somewhere each year to a different spot so as we can see all the great places here together in this beautiful country! Both in our senior years we love getting out and about to have these experiences! This will just HAVE to go on my to do list. OH and I just have to go to that Taco place for sure!! 🙂

  27. MJ Gruenfeld says:

    Loved the butteryfly conservatory when I took my boys there

  28. Wayne Lecoy says:

    I liked your A Family Guide to a two day stay in the Waterloo Region
    #KWawesome Day 1 post.
    It looks like you and your family had fun.
    I have never been there but it looks like a great place to go.

  29. Sandi Tymchuk says:

    Great ideas for travel in the region–thank you for sharing them!

  30. wow who knew Waterloo had so many great attractions, the butterfly observatory looks like a great stop.

    Thanks for sharing

    Rob

  31. My kids tried out the Euro Bungy and loved it..

  32. I love the area and have visited St Jacobs Market once but haven’t been back since it was rebuilt

  33. kathy downey says:

    wow,sure looks like a fun time

  34. Victoria Ess says:

    The Chicopee Tube Park looks like a fun time! I used to go to school there many, many years ago and found it to be a cute city. St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market was great to visit also!

  35. Ryan Spencer says:

    Thanks for the information! Would love to visit

  36. I used to live in Waterloo – great ideas for places in the area!

  37. Looks like a really fun day!

  38. Taco farm is just a few blocks from where i live, so i’ll have to try their food sometime. Hopefully the new barns at St.Jacobs flea-market are done on your next visit.

  39. The pool looks amazing! And Churros for dessert? I would love that myself!

  40. Nena Sinclair says:

    This looks like a great place for a wonderful family vacation, there’s so many things to do and see!

  41. What a great place to visit. The Butterfly adventure looked like you had a great time

  42. Marilyn Legault says:

    Didn’t know this place existed

  43. Looks like the kids had soo much fun!

  44. Looks like a ton of fun for you and the boys 🙂 The butterfly exhibit is so cool – I have always wants to go to one 🙂

  45. Denise Klay says:

    I just moved to Windsor from The Kitchener/Waterloo area and there is nothing I miss more everyday than the wonderful places and landscapes available it is also clean and a welcome place to visit and stay, great info for families who would love to venture a visit, enjoy all!

  46. nicolthepickle says:

    It sounds like you had a lovely stay. I really like the butterflies.

  47. Elizabeth Vlug says:

    Looks like you had a blast! Will have to check out Taco Farm, my kind of restaurant. Thanks for your reveiw

  48. anyplace called Taco Farm sounds like a fun time for all

  49. kathy downey says:

    Wow,it sure looks like a great place to visit beautiful rooms,fun activities and delicious looking foods.

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