The CN Tower is Toronto’s tallest and most defining landmark. Photos of Toronto are often defined by the building, which stretches more than 550 metres into the sky.
Today, aside from serving as a hub for telecommunications across the city, the CN Tower has become a major tourist destination. Visitors can test their courage by walking across the glass floor 113 stories above the ground. The first of its kind in the world, the glass floor gives you that dare-to-walk-on-air experience, with only 2.5 inches of glass holding you 342 metres in the air. The glass floor is actually stronger than most commercial floors and has the strength to hold 38,556 kg (85,000 lbs) or 14 hippos! Or, if you dare, travel higher up the tower to the Sky Pod, another 33 storeys above ground.
The tower’s revolving 360 Restaurant offers an award-winning wine list and a spectacular view for romantic evenings. Horizons, an upscale bistro on the Look Out Level, seats 130 and is equipped with a dance floor. If you’re not wild about heights, the Far Coast Café is a fully licensed fresh market café that serves an array of international foods and there is plenty to shop for at the base of the tower. A 10,000 sq. ft. marketplace sells uniquely Canadian souvenirs.
If the glass floor isn’t enough excitement for you, there’s the HIMALAMAZON motion theatre ride (must be 42 inches tall to ride). The Maple Leaf Cinema also plays a 15 minute film on the construction of the tower 37 years ago.
The CN Tower presents Legends of Flight 3D, a family-friendly spectacle that explores the history of aviation. From the Wright Brothers creating the first ever plane to modern day technology building jetliners and aircraft carriors, the film shows us what can make or break the art of flight.
The latest features at the tour is EdgeWalk, the world’s highest full-circle, hands-free walk. Visitors are attached through safety rails and harnesses and walk along the Tower’s ledge, 116 storeys above ground, to experience breathtaking views of the city below. EdgeWalk is open from spring through until fall, and is closed for the winter. Get more details at the CN Tower’s EdgeWalk site.
Canada’s Wonderland is Canada’s first and largest theme park featuring over 200 attractions, 68 thrilling rides, North America’s greatest variety of roller coasters, Splash Works, a 20-acre water park and live shows.
At 306 feet (93.27 m) in the air, Leviathan is the tallest ride in the park, dropping riders at an intense 80 degree angle. Across the way, Behemoth has eight extreme drops, open air seating, high speed twists, turns and loops. The daring may want to be lifted 23 stories high and then dropped at 100 kilometres per hour aboard Drop Tower. Not to be outdone are Vortex, Canada’s first suspended roller coaster, an intense corkscrew design in The Bat, Skyrider’s shark curves and side-winding helix (standing up of course), Dragon Fire’s two 360-degree loops, the trek through Wonder Mountain aboard Thunder Run, Windseeker, a 301 ft swing ride, and let’s not forget the coaster that lives up to its name, The Mighty Canadian Minebuster, the largest and longest wooden coaster in Canada.
Families can visit Planet Snoopy, where the entire Peanuts gang welcomes children of all ages to take a ride on Sally’s Loveboat, race the Peanut’s 500 track or take a ride upon Woodstock Whirlybirds.
KidZville features numerous attractions including Taxi Jam, a roller coaster parents and kids can ride together, and Chopper Chase, a monorail ride. Catch planes, trains and rocket ships in Zoom Zone, where the sky’s the limit aboard Jumpin’ Jet, while Silver Streak, Canada’s first junior inverted coaster with a helix will delight young thrill seekers who will dive, wind and swoop through its suspended, zigzagged track. If there’s more left in you, be sure to check out Splash Works, White Water Canyon Area and Action Theatre.
Harbourfront Centre is a year-round facility, featuring concerts, dance performances, readings, films and kids’ shows every weekend and many weeknights throughout the year. The centre puts a large emphasis on culturally diverse acts, and the corporate community’s involvement enables an incredible draw of international talent. Harbourfront Centre has several major venues for music, dance and cultural events, in and around two major multi-use buildings. The Queens Quay Terminal houses a wide variety of shops and services. The York Quay Centre houses an art gallery, installations, the Lakeside Terrace, a patio and an information booth. There is also a large pond that doubles as a seasonal, outdoor skating rink.
Major venues include:
-Fleck Dance Theatre (Formerly Premiere Dance Theatre)
-Lakeside Terrace (York Quay Centre)
-Marilyn Brewer Community Space
-Miss Lou’s Room
Canada’s largest museum of world cultures and natural history, the ROM has more than six million objects in its collections and galleries showcasing art, archaeology and science.
Generations of children and adults have trooped through the museum since it first opened in 1914. With six million objects in its collections and 40 galleries of art, archaeology and natural science, the ROM offers a whole world to explore. Four giant carved totem poles rise in the centre of the stairwells; the largest is 24.5 metres (over 80 ft.) tall. The hands-on Biodiversity gallery offers families a fun interactive experience about the interdependence of people, animals and plants.
The dramatic Michael Lee-Chin Crystal expansion houses six permanent collection galleries that feature many objects never before displayed, along with some old favourites. They include dinosaurs and mammals, the cultures of South and Central Asia, Africa, the American continents, the Asia-Pacific region (including Oceania) along with textiles and costumes from around the world.
To commemorate the late Elizabeth Samuel, Liza’s Garden is a contemporary secret garden of greenness and sustainability, installed on the south portion of the Philosopher’s Walk wing. Created by PLANT Architect Inc, the nearly-10,000-square-foot area offers a dynamic haven of greenery. Aside from aesthetic appeal, the garden is a practical landscape that reduces the heat island effect and provides shelter for birds and other small creatures. The garden can be viewed from c5 Restaurant Lounge, located at the pinnacle of the crystal.
The ROM also features the Gallery of Gems and Gold, which is the final stage of the Teck Suite of Galleries. On level two, this gallery of Earth’s Treasures has about 600 rare gems, gem crystals, jewellery and gold pieces.
Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament is a living link to the past where the glory, chivalry and valor of old burst to life in authentic tournament action.
Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament is a living link to the past where the glory, chivalry and valor of old burst to life in authentic tournament action. While guests enjoy a four-course banquet served medieval style, six brave knights compete in games of skill astride magnificent Andalusian stallions. Lances splinter against steel shields, broad swords spark and a champion emerges, to the cheers of the enthusiastic crowd. The spectacle unfolds nightly inside a fully enclosed European-style castle. Surprisingly odorless, (due to the crushed granite on which the action takes place), the Grand Ceremonial Arena offers seating for up to 1,400 guests.
The Knight Club, offering full bar service, comes to life each evening after the final performance giving guests the opportunity to meet the show cast, take pictures, get autographs and dance to selections from the medieval jukebox. Other features include a medieval-themed Convention Hall available for all types of corporate, school, team and special events. Vegetarian, Halal and Kosher meals available.
A visit to Black Creek Pioneer Village is a step back in time to 19th-century Ontario. Forty authentically restored homes, workshops, public buildings and farms recreate the atmosphere of life in a rural Victorian community of the 1860s. Craftspeople and workers wearing period costumes demonstrate skills such as open-hearth cooking, bread-making, looming, milling, blacksmithing, sewing, printing and more.
The Event Pavilion opens its doors to a host of possibilities for Black Creek Pioneer Village. The covered pavilion includes a stage, seating for up to 300 people and a snack bar. In the past it was home to the Métis Arts Festival and the Celtic Sounds Festival. The Bolton Shop showcases the history of photography and techniques used in the 1860s in a 19th century studio. The studio has family-friendly activities and the opportunity to strike a pose.
This heritage site next to York University contains more than forty authentic nineteenth-century houses and structures. It’s worthwhile to note that most of them have been moved from elsewhere in the GTA, as far away as Caledon and Woodbridge. But the Daniel Stong Loghouse and Smokehouse/Butchery have been sitting on their original locations for nearly two hundred years, and the whole park has been designed to recreate the atmosphere of an 1860s village.
This is where kids and adults become one and the same. Located in the forested region of northeast Toronto, the Toronto Zoo is home to more than 5,000 animals representing just over 500 species.
The Toronto Zoo is a dynamic and exciting action centre that inspires people to love, respect and protect wildlife and wild spaces. It is set in the beautiful Rouge Valley. The Main Entrance is located on Meadowvale Road, Toronto, north of Highway 401 (Exit #389 eastbound and westbound). The Zoo is accessible by car and public transit.
New for this year is the Panda Bear exhibit which opens May 18.
The Zoo has over 5,000 animals representing over 500 species.
There are over 10 km (six miles) of walking trails.
287 hectares (710 acres). One of the largest zoos in the world.
Explore the Discovery Zone, featuring the Kids Zoo, a dynamic, interactive children’s wildlife experience, Splash Island, an exciting two-acre water play area and the Waterside Theatre, home of exciting family entertainment.
There are seven gift shops and kiosks located throughout the Zoo site.
Exhibits and Layout:
The Zoo is divided into seven zoogeographic regions: Indo-Malaya, Africa, the Americas, Australasia, Eurasia, Canadian Domain and the Tundra Trek. Animals are displayed indoors in tropical pavilions and outdoors in naturalistic environments, with viewing at many levels.
There are four (4) rides: zoomobile, conservation carousel, camels and ponies.
Visit the incredible 10-acre Tundra Trek featuring an amazing 5-acre Polar bear habitat complete with underwater viewing area, the Gorilla Rainforest home to our Western Lowland Gorilla troop and newest addition Nassir, the Great Barrier Reef, and Discovery Zone* featuring Kids Zoo, Splash Island and Waterside Theatre.
Strollers, wagons and lockers are available to rent at the Main Entrance. Wheelchairs are available at no cost. ATM bank machines are located outside the Main Entrance and in the Africa Restaurant.
A thrilling experience awaits the entire family at the Hockey Hall of Fame with over 57,000 square feet of interactive games and the finest collection of hockey artifacts from around the world!
The world’s one and only! Experience the game that defines Canada and a sport that has been adopted by over 80 countries.
Much more than a sports museum, the Hockey Hall of Fame is a vibrant, innovative and interactive destination for guests of all ages and levels of interest.
Spread across 65,000 square feet, the Hall of Fame offers something for everyone: the finest collection of hockey artifacts at all levels of play from around the world; state-of-the-art games that challenge shooting and goalkeeping skills; themed exhibits dedicated to the game’s greatest players, teams and achievements; an extensive array of multimedia stations; theatres; larger-than-life statues; a replica NHL dressing room; and an unrivaled selection of hockey-related merchandise and memorabilia within our new and expanded store.
Not to be forgotten, the Hockey Hall of Fame is the proud home of the NHL’s merit trophies, most significantly, the Stanley Cup – on display for guests to explore and touch. All trophies, along with portraits and biographies of each of the 370 Honoured Members of the Hockey Hall of Fame, are displayed in the Great Hall, an awe-inspiring heritage bank building (c. 1885) complete with ornate architecture and a spectacular stained glass dome, the largest of its kind in the Toronto area.
The HHOF is located inside an extravagant, richly ornamented building that’s older than the Stanley Cup itself – the former Bank of Montreal branch at Yonge and Front, completed in 1886. Now incorporated into Brookfield Place, this opulent Beaux Arts structure features Toronto’s largest stained-glass dome and Greek-style pediments and dentils around the exterior. Look for the intricate stone carvings around the windows.
Don’t think you have to be a kid to enjoy the Ontario Science Centre, with hundreds of exhibits, there’s something for everyone.
Don’t think you have to be a kid to enjoy the Ontario Science Centre. Since opening its doors in 1969, the centre has fascinated more than 40 million visitors, including more than 220,000 students per year, with the wonders of science and technology. Visitors rave over the hair-raising electrical ball, wall of bubbles and the simulated Rain Forest.
With hundreds of exhibits in a variety of exhibition halls plus visiting exhibitions, one visit doesn’t scratch the surface. Communication, Sport, Human Body and The Living Earth are a few of the in-depth exhibits worth exploring, along with a film at the OMNIMAX movie theatre, and KidSpark, a learn-through-play area that is specifically designed for kids eight and under.
With more than 5,000 works in 110 galleries, the AGO’s recent transformation includes a physical expansion of the Gallery by 97,000 sq. ft., the addition of more than 10,000 new works of art to the already vast collection, and a 47% increase in art-viewing space.
Designed by renowned Toronto native Frank Gehry (the architectural genius behind the Disney Concert Hall and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao), the layout is open, airy and easy to navigate, with sweeping staircases that link the floors together. The extensive use of glass allows for magnificent views of the city from every direction, including Grange Park. The entrance on Dundas Street leads visitors directly into Walkers Court, the hub of the AGO, and the Grange, the Gallery’s first home.
Featured highlights include:
LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Toronto is a fun-filled Lego playground, perfect for kids to explore and create. Located at Vaughan Mills, LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Toronto is a fun-filled Lego playground, perfect for kids to explore and create. Attractions include a Model Builder Academy, a 4D cinema and the Kingdom Quest Laser Ride.
Centre Island is Toronto’s island getaway, a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the city without having to drive for hours. Just a short ferry ride from downtown, Centre Island is nestled between Ward’s Island and Hanlan’s Point. Visitors can rent bikes by the hour (standard, tandem and quad cycles) near the Pier to ride the many bike trails throughout the island. During the summer months, you can rent a canoe or kayak from the Boat Rental near the shrubbery maze, but get there early in the day as boats go quickly.
Head over to popular kids’ attraction Centreville Amusement Park and purchase a day pass or tickets for the rides. After fun-filled hours on the Ferris wheel, water slide and miniature golf course, families can enjoy picnics and train rides.
The beaches on the island’s south side are supervised in July and August. For the daring, there is a clothing-optional beach on the western Hanlan’s Point. Facilities include washrooms, drinking fountains, water taps, 21 picnic areas with six fire pits, three volleyball courts, two baseball diamonds, five wading pools, and two first aid stations.
There are numerous concession stands throughout the island, as well as restaurants such as the new Shopsy’s Island Deli Bar and Grill right beside the ferry docks with an unparalleled city skyline view, the Carousel Café near Centreville, and the Rectory Café, a hidden gem tucked in off the boardwalk near Ward’s Island.
Included in Toronto’s Best Beaches.
Rogers Centre (formerly the Skydome), home to the Toronto Blue Jays and the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts, has already had its share of sports milestones.
Rogers Centre (formerly the Skydome), situated close to Lake Ontario and the CN Tower, the world’s first multipurpose retractable domed stadium, and now a defining part of the Toronto skyline.
Home to the Toronto Blue Jays and the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts, Rogers Centre has already had its share of sports milestones — especially the baseball memories of ’92 and ’93, when Joltin’ Joe Carter smacked the “Shot Heard Round the World II” to give the Blue Jays their second-consecutive World Series championship. The dome also hosts various sporting events, concerts and trade shows. It is also home to Roundhouse Park, which is located just outside gate five. The park is a perfect venue for a variety of pre-game events, including concerts, picnics and barbecues.
To arrange a tour, call 416-341-2770.
– The roof moves at a rate of 71 feet (21 metres) per minute and takes 20 minutes to open or close. When the roof is open, 100% of the field and 91% of the seats are uncovered.
– Rogers Centre is the only facility in the world to wash 37,000 seats in addition to all areas of the stadium after each event. It takes 14 people 8 hours to complete.
– With the roof closed, a 31-storey building could fit inside.
Since 1999 the Air Canada Centre has been home to two of this city’s professional sports franchises — the Toronto Raptors and the Toronto Maple Leafs. The state-of-the-art facility features a BOSE sound system, four Sony Jumbotrons and more than 640 televisions throughout the building making it the perfect sports or concert venue. Since its first concert, a sold out show by Canada’s own Tragically Hip the ACC has hosted top rockers like Bon Jovi, The Rolling Stones, U2 and Sir Paul McCartney.
The ACC also offers tours taking you behind the scenes where only the players and artists usually go. Contact the ACC or check their website for times and prices.
Take the Gardiner Expressway East (exit on the left). Exit the Gardiner East at Hwy 11A / York St / Bay St exit towards Hwy 11 / Yonge St. Go North on York St. We are at the 3rd set of lights to your right.
Take the Subway to Union Station which connects directly to the Air Canada Centre by tunnel.
Here’s a great way to experience one aspect of Toronto life in the early 1800s, as Fort York is the country’s largest collection of remaining War of 1812 structures. Reconstructed after a major battle in April 1813, the fort now has several authentic structures still intact, including two square blockhouses, two sets of soldier barracks, two magazines, officers’ barracks and the outer gate. Built to be practical more than aesthetic, Fort York still brings history back to life.
Founded in 1793 by Lt.-Governor John Graves Simcoe, Fort York has played a major role in the development of Toronto. The original log buildings quickly deteriorated, only to be replaced in the late 1790s by new barracks, 100 metres east of the original site. Later, a home was built for the lieutenant-governor on the present fort site. From the time of the first garrison, the buildings on the property were either destroyed or fell into disrepair, necessitating rebuilding.
First constructed to guard the burgeoning city, Fort York has actually only seen one battle, but what a battle it was. On April 27, 1813, 1,700 American troops invaded Toronto, attacking Fort York. Troops were vastly outnumbered, the fort’s defenders retreated, but not before blowing up the city’s gunpowder supply, The Grand Magazine, destroying the fort and killing hundreds of the attackers. The fort has not been a part of another battle since its reconstruction. Today it serves as a museum of the largest collection of War of 1812 buildings in Canada. It is open year-round to the public and seasonal guided tours are available to the public, as well as summer animation that explores the fort’s role in the city’s past.
An unusual idea for a museum collection, but the international variety housed in this museum near the University of Toronto is vast and fascinating, ranging from the fantastical to the practical. If clothes make the man (or woman), then surely we can learn much from his or her footwear.
The museum began as a personal passion for shoes. Sonja Bata has been collecting shoes of every flavour since the 1940′s and in 1979 her collection had grown too large for her own private storage space. So the Bata family established the Bata Shoe Museum Foundation and in 1995 the shoes moved to their current home at 327 Bloor St. W.
The museum houses a variety of collections including shoes worn by North American Indigenous people, shoes representing every age of Western fashion, shoes from every corner of the world and even shoes from the ‘Walk of Fame’ worn by everyone from John Lennon and Marilyn Monroe to Donovan Bailey and Pablo Picasso.
Shoes have always reflected something of the wearer’s culture, social status, age, affiliation and needs. This collection, housed in an architecturally-unique building, includes more than 10,000 shoes, boots and sandals spanning 4,500 years and thousands of stories — stories of vanity, practicality, and a touch of mad vision.
In 1866, businessman and financier James Austin began construction on a home for himself, and his family. Today, the house is operated year-round by the City of Toronto Culture Division. Exhibits, original materials and demonstrations give visitors a taste of the four generations of Austins who have lived there.
The interior holds a collection of local and imported furniture and art. The decor is completely original and reflects the Toronto art scene of the late-19th and early-20th centuries and the Victorian, Edwardian and Art Nouveau styles that were popular in the day. The six-acre historic garden is home to more than 300 varieties of flowers and vegetables and make a lovely location for photo and film shoots, weddings, corporate events and other special events.
Yonge/University subway to Dupont subway station. Exit station and walk north to the Baldwin Steps at the intersection of Spadina Avenue and Davenport Road. Spadina is located at the top of the Baldwin Steps next door to Casa Loma.
The central hub of downtown, Yonge-Dundas Square is located directly across from the Eaton Centre and aims to attract both tourists and residents alike to celebrate Toronto. The square hosts community celebrations, theatrical events, promotions, and concerts
First opened in 2002, Yonge-Dundas Square was created to bring more life and energy to the city. The unique urban space boasts granite surfaces, a raised stage, a half-price theatre ticket booth and 22 computer-programmed fountains that emerge from the surface of the square. The square accommodates events, displays and concerts of various sizes, including very large events that close part of Yonge Street. During the summer months, the Square hosts free weekday concerts, evening movie screenings and takes part in summer festivals like North by Northeast.
When not used for special events, the square becomes an urban plaza, an open space for the public to enjoy. Weather-permitting, the fountains will be operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Buskers entertain on the square while visitors enjoy the cafe style seating.
Major events include the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, the National Home Show and the Honda Indy. From 1976 to 1989, Exhibition Stadium was home to the Toronto Blue Jays. The Jays may have flown that nest in favor of the Rogers Centre, but Exhibition Place continues to renew itself. The opening of the mammoth, state-of-the-art National Trade Centre ensures that Exhibition Place will be one of Canada’s premiere trade show venues into the next century.
You can’t miss Casa Loma, even if you try. Perched atop a hill in the north end, Casa Loma draws thousands of visitors each year who look up and proclaim, “It’s a castle in the middle of the city!” Casa Loma was built by Canadian financier Sir Henry Pellatt to fulfill his childhood wish for a castle. His dream took three years and $3.5 million to complete.
It may appear anachronistic now, but it hasn’t lost its majestic charm. Its secret passageways, breathtaking towers, sweeping staircase, 800-foot tunnel, stables and five-acre gardens continue to excite all ages.
After World War I, Sir Pellatt lost his fortune and was forced to auction off his prized possessions, including Casa Loma in order to pay off his debts. For years the stately house sat unoccupied while the city tried to decide whether to tear it down, or turn it into a museum, high school, art gallery or veteran’s home. Finally, in 1937, the Kiwanis Club of West Toronto suggested turning Casa Loma into a tourist attraction. Today, Casa Loma is owned by the City of Toronto and is operated by Liberty Entertainment Group. It is one of Toronto’s top attractions.
Admission includes the use of a digital audio guide (available in eight languages and American Sign Language) and viewing of a documentary film about the life of Sir Henry Pellatt, the builder of Casa Loma.
Toronto’s newest attraction is Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, with underwater creatures and habitats from across the globe. Over 13,500 species will be on display, including jellyfish, tropical fish, seahorses, stingrays and more. Of course, an aquarium isn’t an aquarium without a shark, and Ripley’s has a predatory shark display with long sand tiger sharks, largetooth sawfish and more, with some reaching up to 3 metres long (about 12 feet).
During the 1800s, the Gooderham and Worts Distillery was a huge manufacturing district in the city of Toronto and the largest distillery in the British Empire. Today the Distillery is not only Toronto’s only heritage district; it’s one of the city’s largest hubs for arts and culture.
Founded in 1832 by brothers-in-law William Gooderham and James Worts, the Gooderham and Worts Distillery produced millions of gallons of distilled whiskey and spirits in the 1800s. After the Great War prohibition set in and business began to slow. In 1990 after over a century and a half of continuous production the distillery ceased operations.
In 2001, the area was bought by Cityscape Holdings Inc. and in 2003 was unveiled as a pedestrian-only village entirely dedicated to arts, culture and entertainment. Set on 13 acres in downtown Toronto, The Distillery is the largest and best preserved collection of Victorian Industrial architecture in North America. Aside from tours, the area boasts about 15 art galleries, and several performing arts theatres. There is also a sophisticated shopping district with interesting boutiques for every kind of shopper as well as a variety of restaurants and cafes.
Throughout the year, the Distillery hosts celebrations and special events such as Artisans at the Distillery Craft Shows, the Contact Festival, which is a showcase of photography that runs from May 1-31, 2011, and Luminato, a celebration of theatre, music, dance, food, literature, fashion, film, visual arts and magic. This year, the Distillery will be an additional venue for the TD Toronto Jazz Festival, running from June 24 to July 3, 2011 with performances on the Distillery District’s main stage and at the Boiler House patio.
Located on Centre Island, Centreville Amusement park delights both children and adults. More than 600 acres of parkland surround 30 rides and attractions. Children will enjoy fun-filled hours on the Ferris wheel, antique carousel, bumper boats, pony ride, water slide, swan ride and twirling teacups.
Children with steel nerves will enjoy the scary Haunted Barrel Works while both adults and kids will enjoy the Sky Ride, which provides a magnificent view of Centreville. When kids get hungry, they can choose from over 14 food outlets in Centreville. After the rides, play a game of miniature golf or stroll through the nearby animal farm.
There is no admission fee to Centreville. However, you need to take the Ferry across to Centre Island.
The only way to get to Centre Island is by ferry. The Toronto Ferry Docks are located at the foot of Bay Street and Queen Quay. For more information on ferry schedules call 416-392-8193
Mel Lastman Square is a busy and influential area, that offers activities year round. While it is surrounded by North York’s bustling business sector, the square serves as a daily retreat to relax and eat lunch.
Tucked away from busy Yonge Street, the square is located in an ideal spot for city activities. The sunken location is intended to provide shelter and segregation, so that activities can take place away from the busy traffic on Yonge Street.
A man-made stream runs from the fountain under a large sign at Yonge street down into the large concrete square. Planters, trees, shrubs and wooden benches surround the area. A large pool is located in the center of the square that serves as a relaxing focal point in the summer and a great winter skating rink.
Summer events include: outdoor concerts, a farmer’s market, cultural festivals, family events, Canada Day festivities.
Winter events include: ice skating, Winterfest and numerous family events.
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Located in front of City Hall, Nathan Phillips Square is an events landmark in the centre of the city. During the summer, the square is in motion daily, with people watching concerts and dance performances, viewing art at outdoor exhibitions, shopping for fresh produce at the farmers’ market one afternoon a week, attending weekly children’s events or sitting mesmerized by the fountain, eating lunch. The Peace Garden is a small green haven in the square, ideal for quiet contemplation or reading. In the winter months, the reflecting pool becomes a skating rink, with skates available for rental.
Ice skating during the winter months runs from mid-November to mid-March each year. For more info on other skating rinks in the city.
If it’s hip and it’s Canadian, you might just find it at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA). The gallery was originally founded by the Art Gallery of North York and, in 1999, changed its vision to promoting contemporary Canadian art that reflects all things relevant to our times. The gallery features the works of a wide range of contemporary Canadian artists in a variety of mediums.
Though its home was at 952 Queen Street West, it recently moved to 158 Sterling Road.
Free / pay what you can
Before opening on Mercer Street, Second City was at the Old Fire Hall on Lombard Street. It was at the old location that people like Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Joe Flaherty, Eugene Levy, Andrea Martin, Michael Myers, Catherine O’Hara, Gilda Radner, Martin Short and Dave Thomas jump started their careers.
Other Second City alumni’s include Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, Steve Carrel, Rachel Dratch, Jason Sudeikis and Mike Myers. The Mercer Street locale is north of the Rogers Centre and next door to Wayne Gretzky’s Restaurant. The building has a 316-seat main stage and remains an intimate setting. The venue is opened seven nights a week and has both a food and drink menu. There is special pricing for students and groups along with occasional shows meant for families and late-night shows with visiting troupes and comedians.
Woodbine Racetrack has plunged head first into the business of gaming. With the modernization of its two racetracks and the introduction of 1700 slot machines, Woodbine has become a multi-purpose gaming facility.
The complex also offers several dining alternatives. Favourites, Champions Bar & Patio and the Finish Line Bar are popular among race enthusiasts. On the gaming floor, there’s Willows Dining Room and Hoofbeats. And the newly-designed food court or concession stands provide an outlet for those interested in grabbing a quick bite.
For more information call 1-888-675-RACE.
With the world’s largest lilac collection and a rare Carolinian forest, the Royal Botanical Gardens receives international praise and admiration. The landscape, framed by the Niagara Escarpment and Lake Ontario, is the perfect backdrop for flowering plants, hedges, roses and magnolias.
Enclosed in the garden’s 2,700 acres is a thriving wetland and intricate ecosystem that includes deer, coyotes, muskrat and blue heron. Even the youngest children enjoy the bright colours and abundant wildlife. They can also learn about plants and nature at the children’s discovery garden.
Canada’s largest water park, Wild Water Kingdom, offers 100 acres of water slides, wave pools and sports facilities. This is every water baby’s dream park.
For thrill-seekers, Canada’s largest water park offers The Midnight Express. Barrel down high-speed drops and accelerate through dark tunnels and spiral around tight 360-degree turns at hurricane speed. Plunge from daylight and disappear into darkness on The Abyss, while on The Night Rider, plummet into darkness and zoom through high bank twists, freefall drops and back-to-back turns. Dolphin Bay welcomes The Big Tipper, where it’s you against 800 gallons of water.
The daring will also find their thrills on two seven-story “speed slides,” and a half-acre tidal wave pool, while the lower-key float slowly down the quarter-mile Lazy River. The Dolphin Bay playground is the best place to introduce younger children to the water and the whole family can enjoy batting cages, miniature golf and bumper boats. The park features 15 heated waterslides, two giant whirlpool hot tubs, and three heated children’s waterslides.
One of the park’s more popular attractions, Caribbean Cove, is a 6000 sq. ft swimming pool surrounded by landscaping and waterfalls. Sip your favourite drink, sway to island rhythms, play beach volleyball, relax and bask in the warm sun and let a gentle breeze caress you in this makeshift tropical paradise. Spend your day in high comfort by renting a Private Cabana for the day, which includes a shaded cabana, lounge chair, Muskoka chair, luncheon table and chairs, and food and beverage service.
African Lion Safari, just an hour outside of Toronto, holds all the wonders of Africa. With doors locked and windows up, a one-hour drive through the reserve takes families past grazing giraffes, exotic birds and majestic lions. You can also leave your car parked and take a guided bus tour through the safari for an additional fee.
Check out live animal performances including the Parrot Paradise Show, Birds of Prey Flying Demonstration and Elephant Round-Up, or watch the Elephant Swim in the recreational lake. African Lion Safari also provides picnic areas, the “African Queen” boat tour, the “Nature Boy” railway, and Misumu Bay water play area for the kids.
Opened on April 14, 2006, Great Wolf Lodge is a family resort in Niagara Falls. The rustic woodsy themed resort features more than 400 nature-themed rooms , fully-licensed restaurants, an 18-hole mini golf course, an Aveda Concept Spa, an arcade and over 100,000 square feet of indoor water park.
Bear Track Landing is one of the largest indoor water parks in North America and is only available to those staying at the resort. It features 13 waterslides, including everything from a water roller coaster to a tunnel family raft ride, to little slides made especially for children. Kids can also play in Fort Mackenzie, a water treehouse with a huge tipping bucket. Indoor and outdoor pools are both available, as well as a wave pool, lazy river and whirlpools.
Featuring a 40,000 square foot indoor complex and more than 200 attractions, rides and simulators, Playdium is the ultimate high-tech, interactive, virtual and physical entertainment centre.
Test your skills and play to win prizes in our Redemption and Prize Zone.
Our 11-acre outdoors includes 1.2km Go-Kart Track (one of Canada’s longest), 18 whole Mini-Golf, and Bungee Trampoline & Water Wars. The Baseball Dome features 9 variable speed Batting Cages.
NEW! Is the Spin Zone Bumper Cars (open year round) & MaxFlight Roller Coaster Simulator.
Grab a bite to eat at Megabytes Diner featuring a full menu of delicious Meals, Snacks and Beverages or sit back and relax at our 2nd floor licensed Mezzanine lounge.
Located on the waterfront of Lake Ontario, this world-class attraction has been entertaining families and kids since 1971, and is still a must-see.
Due to revitalization, several key features of Ontario Place are closed, such as The Ontario Place grounds, Cinesphere, waterpark, rides, attractions and restaurants.
Remaining open are The Ontario Place Marina, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre and Echo Beach, Atlantis Pavilion and the Ontario Place Parking Lots.
From the east: Exit the Gardiner Expressway at the Spadina Avenue exit and drive West along Lake Shore Blvd. Follow the signs to Ontario Place.
From the west: Exit the Gardiner Expressway at Jameson Avenue and drive east along Lake Shore Blvd. to Ontario Place.
Take the 511 Bathurst streetcar service from Bathurst Station. From Union Station, take the 509 Harbourfront streetcar.From Wilson Station or Dufferin Station take the Dufferin 29 bus south.