Welcome to Toronto!
A modern metropolis with a generous sprinkle of compelling history, Toronto, Canada, is a city that begs to be explored. As Canada’s largest city, there are endless activities and attractions that fit most types of itineraries. Delve into Toronto’s distinct neighborhoods as a worldwide local to uncover its charming areas and little crevices, that insiders only know about. Here is an ultimate guide to the “Six.”
Where to Begin
A needle piercing through the Toronto sky, the CN Tower is Toronto’s most iconic piece of the skyline. Previously built solely to help TV and radio signals pass through the soaring buildings, it is now a major tourist attraction. The 1,1815-foot tower offers visitors a chance to head up to its observatory to see sweeping views of the city at dizzying heights. Visit the 360 Restaurant, with its panoramic views, to take your dining experience to the next level. Even if you choose not to pay to enter the tower, its extraordinary design is a marvel to see. It is designated as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers.
Worldwide Local Tip: To see a more picturesque view of the skyline than you can get from the rooftop of any of the Toronto hotels, head over to Centre Island at night. You can take a ferry for less than 8 Canadian dollars, and the journey will only take around 15 minutes. There you can see the city lights glisten across the harbor, a magnificent postcard-worthy sight of Toronto.
To experience Toronto in its most authentic form, explore its many neighborhoods and mingle with its friendly residents. This is the perfect way to be a part of the local ambiance. Toronto is a city that consists of 140 official neighborhoods, earning it the unofficial nickname “the city of neighborhoods.” Each of its neighborhoods has a unique flair, with areas that celebrate its ethnic communities and its historic core. From the recognizable aroma of delicious food at Chinatown to the red-brick charm of the Distillery District, there is definitely a neighborhood within the city that will make you feel like you are where you belong.
Worldwide Local Tip: While Toronto’s transportation system is modern and efficient, exploring the many neighborhoods is best on two wheels. (This way, you can also avoid the rowdy Toronto Maple Leaf fans on their way home from a winning game.) With 80 stations dotted around the downtown area, you can easily rent a bike to discover the city’s quaint districts. You can rent a bike for as low as $7 for a day, or $15 for two days.
Toronto’s City Center
Toronto is a massive and sprawling city, and the Yonge-Dundas Square is at the heart of it all. A bustling open area, here is where both locals and tourists take gentle strolls past the impressive street performers and snack at the many food trucks. During nightfall, the square is flooded with bright shimmering lights from billboards and large LCD advertising. A few steps from Yonge-Dundas Square is the Eaton Center, a huge shopping center with over 200 shops from the high street brands to the small local boutique stores.
Worldwide Local Tip: For a more rustic shopping experience, head over to St Lawrence Market. Built in the 17th Century, it retains its vintage charm and sells local products from fresh produce to handcrafted jewelry. The Market Gallery also holds exhibitions on local art and culture, showcasing Toronto’s finest all in one place.
In the summer months, the Toronto weather can reach above 80 degrees, and the locals cool down by flocking to one of the city’s beaches. Take a ferry over to Toronto Islands to see Toronto’s best seaside hangouts, such as Center Island Beach and Hanlan’s Point Beach. Whether you want to pick up a tan or just have a drink at one of the beachside cafes, an afternoon of fun in the sun is guaranteed in Toronto’s beaches.
Worldwide Local Tip: If you’re at a loss for things to do in Toronto--time to go on a side trip to Niagara Falls. Around an hour and a half drive from Toronto, these are one of the most impressive natural wonders of the world. You can either organize a private tour or simply rent a car and drive to Niagara Falls.
Enjoy Your Visit!
A vibrant metropolis with neighborhoods that are rich with personality, Toronto is a unique and colorful city. When worldwide locals explore every nook of it, they discover much more than what this city is famous for.