This is the third post in my new Travel Tips series where I provide travel tips for specific destinations, whether they be cities, regions or countries. My Travel Tips guides aim to give you some of my best tips for exploring a new place and hopefully help you to save a bit of money, maximize your sightseeing time and find the most convenient ways to get around. You can find posts in this series under Destinations – Travel Tips in the menu bar. Today I’m featuring the largest city in my home country – Toronto, Canada!
Travel Tips: Toronto
Food & Drink
- Toronto has an excellent variety of cuisine – I’m sure anything you’re looking for, you can find. Japanese, Indian, Italian, Greek, Jewish, Mexican, Chinese – it’s all there.
- Toronto boasts some pretty wonderful markets. For example, the covered St. Lawrence Market (named one of the world’s best food markets by National Geographic) features 100+ vendors, butchers, bakers and artisans under one roof. The outdoor Kensington Market is an eclectic collection of indie coffee shops, restaurants, bakeries, and bars. (For an insider’s peek at Kensington Market, check out my Kensington Krawl food tour post with Savour Toronto).
- I can wholeheartedly recommend the following restaurants and eateries around Toronto: Duff’s Famous Wings for the best chicken wings of your life, Milagro Cantinas for rustic Mexican fare, Le Gourmand Cafe for croissants, buttery chocolate chip cookies, and vanilla chai lattes, Bahn Mi Boys for a modern take on Vietnamese subs, Rol San for classic Chinese dim sum, Toronto Popcorn Company for deluxe popcorn flavours, Blackbird Baking Co. for yummy fruit danishes, and Jimmy’s Coffee for a great cup of joe.
- There are lots of ways to get to and from the Toronto Pearson International Airport. I used the new Union Pearson Express (UP), a 25-minute train service that runs between downtown Toronto and the airport. It departs every 15 minutes, is super comfortable, and has free WiFi aboard – nice!
- Toronto is fairly easy to navigate. Buses, streetcars, and the subway are all accessible. The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) website has helpful information about trip planning, tickets, routes and more.
- To take the bus, a streetcar or the subway, you need a ticket, token, pass, transfer or exact cash. Learn more about buying tickets, tokens or passes here. If you need help, you can ask the TTC service clerks at the subway station collection booths or the bus or streetcar drivers. I got a helpful large and mini Ride Guide of the Toronto subway system in the subway station.
- Don’t forget to grab your free transfer after you pay your transit fare (from the automated transfer machines in the subway station after you pass through the turnstiles or from the operator on buses and streetcars).
My Top Activity Recommendations
- There’s lots to do in Toronto all year round. Popular tourist spots include the Royal Ontario Museum, Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the CN Tower, the Distillery District, Toronto Islands, and the Hockey Hall of Fame.
- If you love trying new foods and exploring neighbourhoods, I highly recommend taking a walking food tour with Savour Toronto.
- Shopaholics can rejoice at the city’s many shopping malls (including the jumbo Eaton Centre), find high end stores in Bloor-Yorkville, explore trendy boutiques on Queen West, browse furniture stores on King West, and scour the city’s popular flea markets.
- Soak in the city on the cheap by taking a ride on the east-west 501 streetcar which holds the record for the longest streetcar route in North America at 24.8 km.
For more great tips about Toronto (what to see and do, where to eat, what events are on, etc.), visit the Tourism Toronto website.
What are your top Toronto travel tips? I’d love to hear in the comments below!