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10 kid-friendly activities to do over the holidays, as recommended by Montreal With Kids

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Rahma Yahyaoui says she loves travelling and exploring with her two young children.

"We had our kids during COVID, and we're very outdoorsy people, me and my husband," she tells CTV News. "We were always looking for outdoor activities."

With two kids under four, Yahyaoui says she spends her days searching for new things to do together, but for the longest time, she struggled to find a single source of kid-friendly activities in and around Montreal.

So, she decided to start her own.

IN PHOTOS: Blanket of snow in Montreal

Yahyaoui created her Instagram page, Montreal With Kids, in January 2023.

In less than a year, she has amassed more than 20,000 followers.

"I always say the page that I'm trying to create now is the page that I would have loved to have as a new parent," she said. "When you have young kids, the small details make a difference."

Yahyaoui, a social worker by trade, says when sharing activities, she often considers low-income families, as well as accessibility and bilingualism.

"I've worked in the community for a long time," she said. "A thing that I love to do is look for community centres and free activities and events."

She says it isn't always easy, but she isn't above exploring on foot.

"If I can't find any activities online, I literally go to community centres and I look at the posters there because a lot of times these activities, they don't have the budget, or they don't have the capacity to share it online," she said. "They're the ones that are so underrated, and they're the most appreciated in the community."

IN PHOTOS: Blanket of snow in Montreal

In fact, Yahyaoui says sometimes the free activities are the most memorable.

"I don't think that kids need that much," she reflects. "I don't think that we need to buy them a lot of toys or buy them a lot of experiences."

Yahyaoui adds all the activities she posts on her page are tried and tested -- her little way of reassuring families who may need that extra support.

"As a parent, the idea of having to prepare kids to go out somewhere unknown can be scary," she said. "Some small details can make such a huge difference in the experience, like, is there a changing pad in the bathroom? Is there equipment that's adapted for young kids? Is it stroller friendly, because sometimes those three steps can ruin your experience."

Feedback from parents has been astounding, says Yahyaoui.

She's even started getting requests from families hoping she'll visit their neck of the woods.

"A lot of people will say, well, a lot of activities that you suggest we need a car to go there, but we want something that's adapted, like with public transport," she said.

Yahyaoui says she never expected her page to snowball the way it has.

"It's something that I love doing and that I do anyway," she said. "It's something that I've always done since my kids were born."

Here are 10 activities Yahyaoui recommends doing with your kids over the holidays:

You can rent skates and helmets on site.

The farm boasts a winter petting zoo and promises a guided, interactive and immersive visit where you can feed the animals. You must pre-register.

You can rent equipment on site.

  • Illumi (2805 du Souvenir Blvd., Laval)

Considered the world's largest light, sound and multimedia show, you can take your kids on foot or by car to explore all 19 magical universes.

Take advantage of the mountain's official free-sliding corridors when the snow falls.

Step inside Mini Mondo, a multilingual interactive world that allows children to adventure out and explore life in the city, forest or even by the river.

From construction worker to pirate, kids can explore an array of jobs to help them decide what they want to be when they grow up.

A safe space for kids -- including littles -- to run, climb and explore, there are also special events, including Santa's workshop and a Frozen-themed winter wonderland.

Tire your kids out with wall-to-wall entertainment and activities for all ages, including obstacle courses, dodgeball, basketball, arcade games and more.

This multisensory play area is open to all kids but specifically thought out for children with special needs.

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