5 Ways to See Toronto
Everyone has a different travel style and certain aspects of a city they seek out. The best part about the city of Toronto is that regardless of if you’re a foodie or art lover, there is something for you! Keep reading for five different ways to see Toronto based on your travel style.
When to visit: Toronto’s Summer month’s see some of the most exciting food festivals in the world. Taste of Danforth is by far the city’s largest festival, celebrating Toronto’s cultural diversity with mouth-water cuisine from across the world. The Taste of Danforth festival occurs over the weekend of August 11-13.
Where to Eat: A table at Yasu is one of the most sought-after seats in the city. This sushi restaurant only has one table with twelve seats. There is no menu either, guests are served whatever the chef is cooking that day, but it never disappoints!
Don’t Leave Without: Visiting the markets. Toronto is home to several unique markets featuring hundreds of unique vendors and tons of delicious food options. The St. Lawrence Market is the city’s oldest market and features everything from produce to fresh cheese. Kensington Market is less of a traditional market and more of a neighborhood spread over several blocks. The Distillery District, though technically not a market, is one of the city’s most historic sites and is home to several stores, restaurants, and a brewery.
When to Visit: There is no bad time to visit Toronto if you’re looking for adventure. In the winter months you can skate or play hockey on one of the city’s outdoor rinks, or take a day trip to a snowshoeing or dog sledding adventure. In the summer months you can paddle board on Lake Ontario from the Toronto Islands, watch the Honda Indy, or participate the ultimate heart pumping adventure: the CN Tower Edgewalk where guests stand on the outside of the CN Tower, 356m above the ground.
Where to Stay: Making Waves Boatel is the perfect place for adventure lovers who don’t want to put their adventurous spirit to bed once the sun sets. This unique floating hotel is located right in the heart of downtown and features an outdoor breakfast area with stunning views of the city.
Don’t Leave Without: Trying some of the craziest food combinations at the Canadian National Exhibition. Each year the vendors at the Ex come up with the most ridiculous snacks for guests to try. Last year some favourites included Philly cheesesteaks stuffed with cream puff eclairs, pulled pork cinnamon rolls, and churro burgers.
When to Come: For art lovers looking to experiencing some cinematic art, there is no better time to visit Toronto than during the Toronto International Film. This year the festival will be held from September 7-17 and feature 14 programmes.
Galleries to Check Out: The Art Gallery of Ontario is one of the most distinguished museums in North America. Its home to over 90000 stunning pieces and attracts millions of visitors every year. The first Thursday of every month the gallery hosts an evening show filled with performances and unique events.
Don’t Leave Without: Visiting the 401 Richmond Building. This building attracts all creative types with its studios for graphic design, music, and print making, as well as artist run galleries and a unique design store.
When to Visit: Each year the city of Toronto hosts the Heritage Ontario Festival that celebrates the heritage, culture, and traditions of our province through interactive exhibits, musical performances, and food vendors. This year’s festival will be held June 30-July 3 at Ontario Place.
Where to Eat: Enjoy an authentic historical experience at Senator, the city’s oldest restaurant. The restaurant is styled from the 1940’s with jazz-inspired décor and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Historical Sites to See: The most obvious choice for anyone looking to experience a little history in Toronto is the Royal Ontario Museum. The ROM is the largest museum in Canada and is home to thousands of art, world culture, and natural history pieces. If you’re looking for a more unconventional historical experience, check out the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse. It’s the oldest landmark in Toronto, dating back to 1808. The lighthouse is the focal point of a ghost story; legend says it’s haunted by the spirit of the lighthouse keeper who vanished in 1812. Some more popular historical sites in the city include Casa Loma and Old City Hall.
When to Visit: When to visit Toronto as a sports fan, there’s no bad time to visit! No matter what season you come in there’s bound to be a sport going on. Toronto has an NHL hockey team, an MLB baseball team, an MLS soccer team, as well as several minor teams in these sports, and football and lacrosse.
Best Sports Bars to Catch the game: Not able to watch a game live? No worries, the city is full of tons of great restaurants and sports bars that have a great atmosphere and are a blast to watch the game at. My personal favourite is Real Sports, located just next to the Air Canada Centre. This two level building has more TV’s than you can count and gets absolutely insane during games. A great spot to catch the Jays game is the Arriba. This restaurant is located in the Renaissance hotel overlooking the Jays game, so even though you’re not technically at the game, you’re still at the game. The Wheat Sheaf Tavern is the oldest pub in the city and has a great old-time atmosphere. The restaurant is also home to photos of the famous World Series winning home run that the Jays Joe Carter hit in 1993.
Sports History: The Hockey Hall of Fame is a mecca for sports fans. The museum houses the Stanley Cup as well as memorabilia from greats like Wayne Gretzky and Bobby Orr. In the Distillery District there is a Sport Gallery that features sports books, prints, and retro sporting clothes.