Play your Staycation with IHG

Plan Your Staycation with IHG

Staycation*Disclosure: This is a sponsored post from IHG properties. All opinions are our own.*

I’ll admit it.

Our family has never been to Disney. We have never taken a trip down South. We have not even taken the family to visit their relatives in England.

Our family loves to go away for mini-aways, or staycations.

We tend to travel close to home, stay overnight in a hotel, and explore all there is to see and do in that area, right here in our own backyard.

It’s cheaper. We get to go away more often. We are supporting local businesses. And, we are having a lot of fun exploring the sights and sounds close to home.

Every Christmas, since before the kids were born (10 years ago), my husband and I have stayed over night in Halifax the week before Christmas. It’s now our annual tradition.

There is nothing more exciting for kids than to stay in a hotel, especially if it has a pool. Because we don’t have a TV at home, it’s also a grand treat for the kids because they get to watch cartoons all evening and then so we can sleep in, they can watch them in the morning, too! Kids’ paradise.

So, when we were selected to participate in the IHG staycation program, we jumped at the chance!




The timing was perfect.

It was the weekend of my 40th birthday. Definitely a milestone worth celebrating, so we decided to make it into a full weekend in Halifax.





Our first stop was the Discovery Centre to visit Sue the Dinosaur!


This is always on our list of places to visit in the city, because we have the Rural Family Pass. This is an incredible deal for anyone who lives in the Valley as it pays off after just 2 visits!


We had an hour to spare before our next adventure so we walked up to the Halifax Central Library

We spent some time reading books together. We also got a Halifax library card. The great thing is that you can check out the books there and return them at any Valley library! What an awesome system!


Our final stop in my action-packed birthday adventure was the Grafton Street Dinner Theatre in Halifax. 


I love going here, but none of my family had ever been there before. This show was all about talk show hosts (yes, that’s my dirty secret. I used to be a HUGE talk show fan!) featuring the music of the 1980s!

The food was fabulous


the atmosphere so much fun, and we all had a great time.


I even got a special birthday serenade. It’s definitely a great place to take kids!


By this point, it was 10pm and we were all tired after an incredibly action-packed day in true Churchill Duke style!

We were so thankful to have a hotel room nearby to crash at.

We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Halifax – Bedford at the Kearney Lake exit near Bayers Lake.  I was at first confused, because the Holiday Inn had been across the street, and it is now on the other side of the road where the Quality Inn was.


But, now, it’s better than ever. The Holiday Inn has been completely renovated and it is so bright and shiny when you walk in, and it has a pool and waterslide. At the time of writing, the waterslide wasn’t completely ready for opening, but it will be soon.


15 minutes from downtown Halifax and only 5 minutes from Bayers Lake, it’s the perfect location for resting our heads after a day of family fun. It’s right off the highway, making it easy to get in and out.


The room was completely redone. So bright and spacious. A gorgeous welcome basket awaited us as well, plus the staff were superb. It was actually hard to settle the kids down as they wanted to explore every nook and cranny of the room.


The next morning, there was a huge complimentary breakfast buffet. I think the boys ate for 2 hours straight… before and after swimming!

I should also mention the TV. One of my pet peeves in hotels is that you have to have a degree in rocket science to work the TV. I’m serious. I’ve called the front desk SO many times asking how to turn it on! Not here. With the remote there was a list of stations, and when I turned on the TV and entered the channel, it worked.

The beds were so comfortable, and anal me loves how the pillows are labelled soft or firm. I’m a sleep princess and need to know this.

After a filling meal and a morning at the pool, we headed home from another family adventure.

Last Christmas we also had a fun family staycation adventure at another IHG Holiday Inn. This one was in Dartmouth right across from the Dartmouth Sportsplex. Read about that family adventure here.


IHG properties are located all across Canada and most places have a pool and complimentary breakfasts included! Kids eat for free in the hotel restaurants, too. Find more IHG properties in Nova Scotia


Places to Visit on your Halifax Staycation

If you are looking to have a staycation in Halifax, here are some of our favourite places to check out.


Discovery Centre


Natural History Museum




Maritime Museum of the Atlantic



Get Air Nova Scotia

Get Air in Burnside




Glow in the dark mini golf at the Putting Edge, Bayers Lake



SpryfieldSpryfield Pool



HeartShapedPondHeart Shaped Pond Walking Trails in Bedford 



Mongolie GrillMongolie Grill restaurant, Halifax


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