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A modern, thriving city, Toronto is located on the shores of Lake Ontario in the southeastern Canadian province of Ontario. It serves as the provincial capital and is a financial and entertainment centre as well. A metro population exceeding five million guarantees visitors a plethora of Toronto ON hotels and attractions, so an exploration of the opportunities while visiting are in order.
Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) handles 30 million passengers every year, and GO Transit’s Inter-regional Train brings many visitors to the city as well. Highway 401, one of North America’s busiest highways, bypasses downtown Toronto, making the city easy to drive to and around. Toronto Transit offers subway, light-metro transit, city bus and streetcars to get people to their destinations efficiently.
Toronto’s downtown Financial District is quite busy, with a number of major Canadian Banks headquartered there, along with the Toronto Stock Exchange and a majority of the country’s corporations. The Entertainment District is found in the downtown Toronto area as well – you will know you are there when you spy the CN Tower, tallest tower in the world! Riding to its top is practically required when visiting, and you are rewarded with stunning city views.
The University of Toronto has one of its 3 campuses in downtown; this higher education centre educates over 75,000 students a year, offering a multitude of degrees ranging from undergraduate through professional. The Varsity Blues men and women represent U of T proudly in a combined 47 sports teams - and speaking of sports, Toronto is blessed to have seven major league teams! Head to Air Canada Centre for Toronto Maple Leafs hockey matches, NBA Toronto Raptors basketball games and Toronto Rock Lacrosse games, as well as big-name concerts. Rogers Centre hosts the CFL Toronto Argonauts, MLB Toronto Blue Jays and NFL Buffalo Bills games.
Exhibition Place is located just west of downtown Toronto, almost two hundred acres comprising one place for a variety of attractions, including Ricoh Coliseum, BMO Field and Queen Elizabeth Theatre. The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair is held here, as well as the Canadian National Exhibition, an annual Fair held in August and September. CNE is considered Canada's largest community event, attracting 1.25 million people! Another great event held at Exhibition Place is the annual Honda Indy Toronto race, held in July. It is great fun to watch these speed demons race through the streets!
For family fun, consider taking the whole clan to the Toronto Zoo, famous throughout the world. You can see a 5-acre Polar bear habitat, a Gorilla Rainforest and visit a Kids Zoo. Another great option is to take the kids to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), where they will be thrilled with a display of dinosaur skeletons and the Ming Tomb.
The National Ballet of Canada and the Canadian Opera Company both perform at the Four Seasons Centre. Just a few blocks away is Roy Thomson Hall, where you can listen to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra – both venues are in downtown Toronto. Other popular cultural venues include Toronto Centre for the Arts’ Broadway plays, the Sony Centre’s live performances from across the globe, and the TELUS Centre, which is the Royal Conservatory of Music’s home. Toronto is truly a culture-lover’s banquet!
A popular way of exploring Toronto is to do so by neighborhood. For upscale designer boutiques and restaurants, head to the Yorkville District. The Historic Distillery District boasts popular restaurants, shops, art galleries and theatres. Kensington Market is a multicultural neighborhood filled with eclectic shops and local eateries.
Naturally, visitors are drawn to Lake Ontario, and you will find a nice variety of beaches for summertime fun. Harbourfront Centre boasts casual dining by the water, a boardwalk, international market and great concerts. At Ontario Place, you might enjoy a concert at Molson Canadian Amphitheatre or relaxing on the sand at Lakeside Beach. Jump on the ferry to visit Toronto Islands’ restaurants and beaches.
One of the most famous events in the world, the Toronto International Film Festival is held in the Entertainment District year-round – next to Cannes, this is the best! Another popular Toronto attraction is Greektown on the Danforth, a summer street festival with over 1.3 million annual attendees. Nuit Blanche contemporary art festival brings a million art afficianados to downtown Toronto in a single night!
Have we given you enough reasons to visit this amazing city? Our Toronto City Guide gives you current, detailed information on all the Toronto attractions – spend some time reading about all that Toronto has to offer, then let us guide you to the best vacation ever!