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Why You Should Spend an Afternoon at a Sugar Shack in the GTA

Stock up on all things maple at these sweet springtime spots

A stick of maple syrup

Spring is here and so is maple syrup season. With more than 400 producers in Ontario, a sugar shack, thankfully, is never far away. Here are five spots in the GTA where you can sweeten up the season and enjoy an array of fun family-friendly activities.

Become a maple syrup expert at Maple Town, Campbellville

Strips of maple syrup are poured over shaved ice to make taffy.

Learn the art of tapping a tree, hanging your own bucket and identifying different varieties of maples at this historic sugar shack, where producers have been making liquid gold for more than 150 years. After, don’t miss your chance to stop by the Pancake Pavilion for a stack of flapjacks topped with fresh maple syrup.

When: February 29 to April 5

Visit a heritage farm at Bronte Creek Maple Syrup Festival, Oakville

People eating maple syrup

Journey back to Victorian times, with staff decked out in period costumes teaching visitors about all things maple. Here, you’ll discover the different ways of collecting and making syrup through history, while stocking up on maple treats. Be sure to visit the Spruce Lane Farmhouse, a living museum depicting the daily hardships of life in 1899.

When: Weekends in March and during March Break

Feast on a maple breakfast at Brooks Farms Maple Sugar Festival, Mount Albert

Jars of maple syrup on a shelf

Bring your appetite and load up on fluffy hotcakes dripping with freshly tapped syrup, maple muffins and maple beans at Brooks Farms’ indoor breakfast. While there, take a wagon ride, join a tour and warm up by the camp fire. Before leaving, stop by the Farm Market for produce, homemade sausages, fudge and, of course, maple syrup.

When: March 14 to April 12

Explore the bush at Purple Woods Maple Syrup Festival, Oshawa

People paying for maple syrup

Head to this fest for horse-drawn wagon rides, scavenger hunts and pancakes smothered in maple syrup. On April 9, join the Evening Sugar Bush Lantern Tour to explore the bush and sample different grades of syrup by candlelight. The excursion ends on a sweet note, with warm apple cider and an apple dumpling doused in maple syrup.

When: Maple Syrup Festival, dates throughout March and April; Evening Sugar Bush Lantern Tour, April 9

Take CAA with you

Download the CAA App and use it for more than just requesting Roadside Assistance. The app can also be used to track gas prices, book travel, get a battery quote and even find a CAA Approved Auto Repair Services location. Here are ways to use your CAA Membership to save on local attractions, plus, some great day trips near the GTA.