Whether you love or hate winter, some of its characteristics can be absolutely enchanting… especially if you’re staying cozy while you take them in. Sure, it’s cold. Maybe snowy or sleety or rainy. Maybe you’re stressed from the holidays or tired from work. But there are many winter activities you and your loved ones can do to chase your blues away. Imagine a storybook winter scene for a moment…

Soft, white snow falling on the ground. Nowhere to go. A fire crackling in the background. A wall of windows that lets you take in the tranquility and beauty around you. Covering up with a cozy blanket, a cup of hot cocoa, and a good book. Sounds delightful, doesn’t it?

While you may not find the perfect version of winter, you can get pretty close by renting a cabin. By choosing the perfect cabin, planning some delicious meals, packing all the right things, and doing all of the activities you love, perhaps you’ll rediscover the kid in you who looked forward to the first snow day of the season. 

We’re here to help you chase your winter blues away by planning one of the best cabin getaways you could imagine. Here are some winter activities to inspire you:

Choose the Perfect Cabin

The first step to your getaway is finding the right cabin. Sites like AirBnB and VRBO allow you to search for a certain type of accommodation with the right amenities. There are local cabin rental agencies, and of course, individuals who also rent their properties out.

Think about what amenities would add to the experience: a fireplace; a hot tub; secluded surroundings; nearby attractions like sledding hills, ice skating rinks, or ski resorts; even trails on or close to the property. It doesn’t matter if you plan to stay indoors or venture out, there is likely to be a cabin for you. 

Winter Packing List

Now that you’ve found the perfect cabin, it’s time to think about what you need to bring. Here’s a list of essentials:

  1. Warm Clothing: Remember… it’s winter. And chances are, you’ll want to stay as warm and cozy as possible. 
    • For inside: Soft, cozy clothing, slippers, warm socks, and a robe. 
    • For outside: Extra layers, thermal socks, waterproof boots, hats, gloves, and scarves. Don’t forget to bring your bathing suit if your cabin has a hot tub!
  2. Snuggly items: Though your cabin may provide them, bringing your favorite cozy items like blankets and pillows can add to the vibe.
  3. Entertainment: Depending on your cabin (and who you’re bringing along), the quiet can get a little tiring. Bring board games, playing cards, books, a streaming device to cast your favorite movies, and even consider creating a winter tunes playlist to enhance the ambiance. 
  4. Winter sports gear: If you’re planning on outside activities, and you’re surrounded by snowy landscapes, consider bringing snowshoes, snowsuits, skis or snowboards, and sleds for some outdoor fun. But don’t forget – BUNDLE UP! 
Crockpot Chicken and Dumplings Soup
Photo credit: Delish

Winter Meal Ideas

If your cabin has a kitchen, it’s likely you’ll be cooking while you’re there. Cabin getaways are the perfect time for comforting, straightforward meals that don’t require a fully-stocked kitchen. Here are some ideas for simple, yet satisfying meals and snacks that you and your family are sure to enjoy.

  1. Loaded Potato Soup: Nothing can warm you up after a cold day like a hot soup. Though canned soup is just fine (and often preferred), there are lots of recipes out there for simple, flavorful soups. There really is something special about a baked potato soup. Put your potatoes and chicken broth together in a pot with some milk, flour, and garlic, and add your cheese and bacon when it’s time! [Suggested recipe]
  2. Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Tomato Soup: The ultimate classic cold-weather meal. You can make this as fancy or as simple as you’d like. For a fancy version, choose some sourdough bread and add a variety of cheeses, slices of bacon, or roasted garlic. Or if you prefer to keep it simple, two slices of white bread and a Kraft single will do the trick. Serve Campbell’s tomato soup, or a homemade tomato soup on the side – your choice! 
  3. Chicken and Dumplings: A hearty, filling option that is warm and satisfying. Put it in the slow cooker, or let it simmer in the dutch oven for the day. Use a rotisserie chicken or shred up some cooked chicken. Add some veggies and make your dumplings – you can used canned biscuits for a simpler alternative. [Suggested recipe]
  4. Croque Monsieur: A French take on the grilled cheese, use some French-style bread, gruyere, parmesan, ham, and a simple bechamel sauce. If you’re looking for a breakfast item, add an egg to this to make a Croque Madame! [Suggested recipe]
  5. Mulled Wine: A lovely way to wind down at the end of the night and create a sweet, warm aroma that fills the air. There are many recipes out there, but we’re partial to the one that actually tastes like wine. Grab an inexpensive bottle of Merlot, Zin, or Garnacha, pour it in a pot and set it to low until it’s steaming. If you heat it too long, it’ll get syrupy. Add some oranges, maybe some cranberries, and some cinnamon sticks and whole cloves. Cheers! [Suggested recipe]


A winter cabin getaway is a perfect opportunity to unwind, connect with nature, and create lasting memories. Whether you’re snuggled up with a book by the fire or exploring snowy landscapes, the combination of a cozy cabin, winter activities, and comforting food is sure to make your weekend escape truly magical.

So, pack your bags, leave your worries behind, and embrace the beauty of winter in the warmth of your secluded cabin retreat.

Kadi McDonald is a freelance writer, marketing strategist, and proud Cleveland sports fan.