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Don't Miss These Top Things to Do in Toronto

Toronto, celebrated for its cultural diversity and vibrant atmosphere, is Canada's largest city and also one of its most beautiful. It's often on lists of the world's best cities, and it's easy to see why. Millions of people flock to Toronto every year, attracted by its wide range of activities and sights.

The city is a hub for shopping enthusiasts and food lovers alike, offering a variety of stores and restaurants that cater to every taste. Art lovers are also in for a treat, with numerous galleries scattered throughout the city, showcasing everything from modern art to historical pieces. One of Toronto's most striking features is its skyline, a stunning mix of modern architecture set against natural beauty.

Toronto is a city full of life, where every neighborhood has new and interesting aspects to discover. It has something for everyone, whether you want to explore unique neighborhoods, enjoy the local culture, or just see the sights. You'll find that Toronto's beauty, diversity, and energy make it a truly special place to visit.

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01 Edgewalk at the CN Tower

The glass floors, floor-to-ceiling windows, and glass elevators of Toronto's CN Tower make it a spectacular engineering marvel. It towers over Toronto, providing mind-blowing 100-mile views of Lake Ontario, Niagara Falls, and the Toronto Islands. In a mere 58 seconds, rocket up to the top floor to find the EdgeWalk, where you'll spend about 30 minutes taking in the stunning environment and beauty everywhere you look. It's the ultimate thrill.

02 Spend the day at Kensington Market

Kensington Market is a diverse neighborhood with a vibrant but laid-back vibe. The colorfully painted residences and shops create the perfect backdrop for exploring this eccentric but fun and entertaining locale. Street musicians excite the crowds outside of the neighborhood's vintage shops, artist studios, and patio cafes, alongside fishmonger and outdoor fruit stands. Stop at one of the multiple restaurants and bars for phenomenal food and drinks. Some of the many worthwhile places include Amadeu's Restaurant, Fresco's Fish and Chips, Last Temptation, Wanda's Pie in the Sky, and Seven Lives.

Shop on Kensington Avenue at Kensington Market, in Toronto, Ontario Jon Bilous / Shutterstock

03 Play at the Hockey Hall of Fame

It's no surprise that Toronto is home to the Hockey Hall of Fame, a magnificent museum that pays homage to all things hockey. The visually stunning collections and multimedia exhibits will undoubtedly spark the hockey lover inside of you. Shoot pucks at video-projected famed goalies, duck virtual pucks via a 3D film, and see the world's most extensive collection of hockey artifacts dating back to the game's origins. Admission is free for kids who are 3 years old and younger and start at $15 and up for youth, general admission, and senior tickets. The museum is open daily with extended hours during the summer.

04 Stroll Edwards Gardens

Edwards Gardens shares the site with the Toronto Botanical Garden. It features exquisite views in every direction, including of wildflowers and roses. The stunningly peaceful and beautiful former estate garden is open daily, making it a popular site for leisurely walks along its paved pathways.

edward botanical gardens Orchidpoet / Getty Images

05 Queen Street West Art Crawl

Beyond the Toronto museums are even more incredible examples of creativity ranging from indoor galleries to outdoor murals, especially in the Queen West neighborhood. Gallery 1313, Paul Petro Contemporary Art, and John B. Aird Gallery are only a few Queen Street West spots you'll find in this imaginative area. The annual Queen West Art Crawl (QWAC) Outdoor Art Exhibition in September pays homage to the colorful Queen West. Support the artists and get inspired to dive into creating your own masterpiece when you return home.

06 Take in historical architecture

Travelers fascinated by the stories behind a city's buildings won't be disappointed when they see the eclectic combination of architectural styles in Toronto. There's plenty to explore, from Georgian to postmodern architecture. Take the opportunity to investigate some of the city's lesser-known yet fabulous neighborhoods and historical structures.

Building in downtown Toronto - Ontario, Canada diegograndi / Getty Images

07 Check out the footwear at Bata Shoe Museum

As home to a collection of 13,000 artifacts, the Bata Shoe Museum is a must-see for every shoe lover. Whether you're inspired by vintage shoes, like a pair of women's Parisian-made shoes from 1875, or you're into footwear worn by celebrities, you can't help but appreciate all the different colors, shapes, and styles. Care and support workers, Indigenous visitors, and children 4 years old and younger pay no admission fee. Additional ticket prices are $5 and up.  

Bata Shoe Museum EQRoy / Shutterstock

08 Get classical at Toronto Music Garden

Add the Toronto Music Garden to your itinerary if you love music and the outdoors. The garden, inspired by Yo-Yo Ma, is on the harborfront. Its design is an homage to Bach's Suite No. 1 in G Major for unaccompanied cello and is one of the most inspired outdoor spaces in the city.  

Trees and gardens along a walkway at the Toronto Music Garden Jon Bilous / Shutterstock

09 Hang out in the castle at Casa Loma

You've probably seen this remarkable mansion in films like X-Men and Chicago without knowing it was Casa Loma. The 200,000-square-foot Edwardian castle, built in 1914, is one of Toronto's most treasured landmarks. The admission fee starts at $25. Dine at The Gardens of Casa Loma, the on-site alfresco patio on which you can enjoy fantastic food.  

Casa Loma, Toronto DebraLee Wiseberg / Getty Images

10 Indulge your foodie side

The city has become a foodie destination thanks to its thousands of restaurants. Dive into cuisines from across the globe, including Greek, Italian, Spanish, French, and Chinese. Visit the most well-known spots, but don't forget to check out the smaller hidden gems. Make it a real foodie adventure by trying dishes you would normally pass on in favor of more familiar options. Should you want a little assistance with deciding where to go, several companies offer Toronto food tours, including Secret Food Tours and Culinary Adventure Co.  

Close up of light brunch food arrangement FOTOGRAFIA INC. / Getty Images

11 Explore the Distillery District

The Distillery District is a wonderful collection of coffee shops, galleries, restaurants, art studios, boutiques, and performance spaces. You'll find no corporate ownership or franchises here, only businesses such as Blackbird Vintage Finds, Donut Princess, and Greco & Dunn. The Victorian influences add to the distinctive historical aura.  

The Distillery District Gilberto Mesquita / Shutterstock

12 Experience Toronto's nightlife

Travelers into the after-dark experiences of a city will be thrilled with what they find in Toronto. The young population here has thrown its support into making the city a center for all things entertainment, including live music venues, hardcore rock establishments, dance clubs, and even secret bars. Coda, El Convento Rico, and Montauk Bar are only a few of the places you'll want to explore. The biggest complaint about Toronto's party scene is that it's hard to choose between the vast number of great options.  

13 Get cultural at the Royal Ontario Museum

Every great city needs an amazing museum, and Toronto has one of the best. The Royal Ontario Museum is Canada's largest thanks to its millions of artifacts and specimens. Explore the Daphne Cockwell Gallery, which celebrates the cultural heritage and artwork of Canada's Indigenous people. Don't miss the Bat Cave, a realistic recreation of the St. Clair Bat Cave in Jamaica, housing a collection of more than 20 different bat specimens. The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday.  

Royal Ontario Museum JHVEPhoto / Shutterstock

14 Visit Scarborough Bluffs

The nearly 10 miles of bluffs along Lake Ontario feature parks, trails, beaches, gardens, and recreational facilities. Swim at Bluffer's Park or follow the trails at East Point Park or Sylvan Park to the lakefront. Take in the views, breathe the fresh air, and enjoy the wonder of the natural environment. Scarborough Bluffs is the result of sedimentary deposits from more than 12,000 years ago. Today, it's a gathering place for people of all ages for picnicking and other outdoor activities.  

Toronto, Scenic Scarborough Bluffs facing Ontario lake shore Joseph Oropel / Shutterstock

15 Ferry over to Toronto Islands

The Toronto Islands, also referred to as Toronto Island Park, is made up of 15 small islands in Lake Ontario. A short ferry ride from downtown Toronto will take you to the Toronto Islands from Jack Layton Ferry Terminal. Marvel at the view of the Toronto skyline, stroll on the beautiful beaches, do a little fishing, enjoy a hike, and so much more. One of the most interesting aspects of the Toronto Islands is that no cars are allowed, so make sure to sport comfortable footwear so you can walk or bicycle where you want to go. Ferry schedules change seasonally.  

Ferryboat Arriving at Centre Island R.M. Nunes / Getty Images

16 Ripley's Aquarium of Canada

Dive into the deep blue world without getting wet at Ripley's Aquarium of Canada. Home to over 20,000 marine animals, this aquatic spectacle offers an immersive experience like no other. Glide through the underwater tunnel as sharks, rays, and colorful fish swim overhead. From the hypnotic dance of Pacific sea nettles to the playful antics of penguins, every exhibit is a unique encounter. The aquarium's commitment to conservation and education also shines through, making it a must-visit for both the curious and the conscientious. It's open every day, allowing ample time to explore.  

Mother and her toddler looking at lion's mane jellyfish in aquarium Cavan Images / Getty Images

17 Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)

Step into a world where art and culture intertwine at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Housing a vast collection of over 90,000 works, the AGO offers a visual journey through the ages and across continents. From exquisite Canadian landscapes to European masterpieces, there's something to captivate every art enthusiast. The museum's striking architecture, a blend of classic and modern, adds another layer to the artistic experience. AGO is open Tuesday through Sunday. Members, individuals who are 25 and younger, and indigenous visitors don't pay an admission fee.  

art gallery Charley Gallay / Getty Images

18 Day Trip to Niagara Falls

Escape the city's hustle and bustle with a day trip to the awe-inspiring Niagara Falls. Approximately 1.5 hours from Toronto, Niagara Falls offers a spectacular example of nature's raw power and beauty. Feel the mist on your face from the viewing deck, or take a boat tour for a closer look. The surrounding area adds to the allure. There are several distilleries, wineries, and breweries to explore, including Niagara Brewing Company, Monastery Cellars, and Lundy Manor Wine Cellars. A visit to Niagara Falls is a refreshing and exhilarating experience that resonates long after the trip.  

Niagara Horseshoe Falls from aerial point of view FilippoBacci / Getty Images

19 Entertainment District

Toronto's Entertainment District is the city's vibrant heart, pulsating with the latest shows, culinary delights, and sporting events. This district always delivers the excitement, whether you're catching a captivating theater performance, enjoying a gourmet meal, or cheering on your favorite team. Its eclectic mix of historic charm and modern sophistication reflects Toronto's diverse spirit. As the sun sets, the district's nightlife comes alive, offering everything from cozy pubs to high-energy nightclubs.  

Toronto Ontario Canada AmArtPhotography / Getty Images

20 Toronto Zoo

Embark on a global safari at the Toronto Zoo. Home to over 5,000 animals, Canada's largest zoo offers a remarkable opportunity to see and learn about wildlife from around the world. Wander through the intriguing exhibits where each is meticulously designed to replicate the animals' natural habitats. From the African Savanna to the Tundra Trek, the zoo is a testament to the planet's biodiversity. With daily shows, educational programs, and walking trails, it's a destination that delights all ages. The zoo is open every day, but check the website or call ahead of time for current hours.

Gorilla Resting on the Ground Wirestock / Getty Images

21 St. Lawrence Market

Savor the flavors of the world at St. Lawrence Market. This Toronto landmark is a feast for the senses, with vendors selling a variety of fresh produce, artisanal cheeses, exotic spices, and more. It's the epitome of a foodie's paradise, whether you're grabbing a sandwich for breakfast, picking up ingredients for dinner, or sampling international cuisine. The market is also a great opportunity to shop for foods you have never tried but always wanted to. A bustling atmosphere and friendly vendors add to the charm, making every visit a delightful experience.  

Bunch of fresh green asparagus in market Alexandre MOREAU / Getty Images

22 Toronto Island Park

The Toronto Islands, also referred to as Toronto Island Park, is made up of 15 small islands in Lake Ontario. A short ferry ride from downtown Toronto will take you to the Toronto Islands from Jack Layton Ferry Terminal. Marvel at the view of the Toronto skyline, stroll on the beautiful beaches, do a little fishing, enjoy a hike, and so much more. One of the most interesting aspects of the Toronto Islands is that no cars are allowed, so make sure to sport comfortable footwear so you can walk or bicycle where you want to go. Ferry schedules change seasonally.  

Toronto Skyline - View from Island Park eyfoto / Getty Images

23 Ontario Science Centre

Ignite your curiosity at the Ontario Science Centre, a place where science comes alive. This interactive museum offers a hands-on approach to learning, with exhibits covering everything from the human body to outer space. Watch a live science demonstration or explore the planetarium. The center's dynamic blend of education and entertainment makes it a hit with visitors of all ages and is a journey into the fascinating world of science and technology. It's open every day, with members and children 2 years old and younger getting in for free.  

science centre FOTOGRAFIA INC. / Getty Images

24 High Park

Experience nature in the heart of the city at High Park, Toronto's largest public park at 399 acres. This sprawling green space offers a plethora of activities for outdoor enthusiasts. Hike along the scenic trails, play a game of tennis, or take a leisurely paddle on Grenadier Pond. The park's zoo, playgrounds, and picnic areas make it a family-friendly destination. In spring, the cherry blossom trees provide a spectacular display, while the fall foliage is equally breathtaking. High Park is a year-round oasis offering a respite from city life.  

Toronto's skyline with urban architecture buildings and garden Elton Law / Getty Images

25 The National Ballet of Canada

Experience the grace and beauty of ballet at The National Ballet of Canada. As Canada's premiere ballet company, it showcases a repertoire that ranges from the classics to contemporary works. Each performance is a testament to the dancers' skill and artistry, the stunning costumes and sets, and the power of storytelling through dance. Whether you're a ballet aficionado or new to the art form, a performance by The National Ballet of Canada is sure to captivate and inspire. It's not just a show but a celebration of creativity and human expression. View its website for a current show schedule and corresponding ticket prices. There's parking available underneath the Four Seasons Centre for a cost of $25, or you can park under Nathan Phillips Square in the GREEN P lot, also for an additional charge.  

national ballet of canada Jack Mitchell / Getty Images
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