12 things to do when a snowstorm ruins your travel plans

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In recent weeks, I have had travel plans affected by two different snow storms.  The first one was a typical winter snow storm in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.  The second one was Snowstorm Jonas in Richmond, Virginia.  Each snow storm had a different effect on my plans but neither storm ruined by plans.  They simply changed my plans.  Here are some of my favorite activates to do when a snowstorm ruins your travel plans

Take a reading day

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans
Photo Credit: Lee Ruk

Dig around in your back for the book that you always pack but have never finished.  Use the snow as an excuse to find a comfy chair and warm fire to spend the day reading.

Tour a local museum

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans

Every mid-sized town has a museum. Stay indoor by exploring a local museum or art gallery.  Every town has a history behind it. Many have a museum that celebrates or commemorates their history.

Hold a snowball fight

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans
Photo Credit: kyle tsui

Washington D.C. residents had the right idea after Snowstorm Jonas ended.  They used Facebook and planned the Snow Wars: The Snowball Strikes Back.  Find a local park and start your own snowball fight.  Give it time and I am sure people will start joining in.

Make snow cones

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans
Photo Credit: Scott Adams

Dig into the hostel kitchen or hotel and see what syrups or jellies you can find.  If you can’t find any of those things, don’t be afraid to adventure out and find some or buy some local produce and make your own syrup.

Research your next adventure

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans

With all that free time, it’s never too early to start planning your next adventure or learn more about your location.  Talk with other travelers and see what advice they have to share.  You may learn something new from them.

Try a local brew

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans

This can be coffee, tea, beer or wine.  Ask around and find a local hot spot to spend the day.  Find a seat and enjoy the local culture.

Go sledding

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans
Photo Credit: OakleyOriginals

Actual sleds might be in short supply, but there are a plethora of common objects that can be used instead.  Find some cafeteria trays, cardboard boxes, trash can lid, or cookie sheets. Bring out your inner engineer.

Enjoy the view

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans

Take a stroll and just enjoy the snow glistening on the building or countryside.

Go snow diving

Snowstorm ruins your travel plans
Photo Credit: Chris Durham

Have an adventure.  Take advantage of the temperature and practice for the next polar bear plunge. Strip down to your underwear and dive into a snowbank.

Have an ice-skating adventure


Who needs ice-skates when there are frozen sidewalks.  The 1 plus inch of ice is perfect to slip and slide on.  Practice you balance and channel your inner Kristine Yamaguchi.

Make a creative snowman

Photo Credit: Anita

Find a new take on a classic snowman.  Dig through your luggage and see what funny outfits you can create for your snowman.

Have you ever had a snowstorm ruins your travel plans?  What did you do instead?

Disclaimer:  All photos are my own unless otherwise noted.

12 things to do when a snowstorm ruins your travel plans

12 thoughts on “12 things to do when a snowstorm ruins your travel plans”

  1. Thanks, I enjoyed this.. I live in Missouri and we usually get 3 good snow falls a year. However, this year we barely got a dusting. I did want one good snow fall, but it just never materialized. Maybe next year! I do like to do a few of your activities that mentioned during the winter months.. Try a local brew is always nice. Another thing I like to do (while cabin fever is setting in) is to research new places to go. Even when you are trapped at home, your mind can take you anywhere and planning the next adventure gets your heart singing once again! At least for me 😀

  2. Beer is always the answer, you do the other things and drink the beer. Or you drink the beer and make the other things all the more awesome. Lol! I don’t think I have ever experienced a snow storm, let alone have it ruin my plans. But should it happen, totes referring to your great ideas.

  3. I’m sticking with a reading day! I am definitely in need of one and thankfully I have a cabin getaway coming up in a week. That’s all I normally do when I visit the snow, read as many books as I can under a warm blanket.

  4. Great outlook! Same concept when it is raining. You can either let it ruin your plans or find an alternative! I personally think those are the perfect days to be inside a musuem

  5. Growing up in eastern Canada, we never saw snow as ruining a day or an event. It was the event. Great tips for enjoying it. I love sledding and snowball fights even now that I’m an adult.

  6. Those are all great, fun activities to do when the snow gets in the way! I particularly like visiting new breweries and planning my next vacation!

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