Toronto is a cosmopolitan centre, featuring theatre, museums, shopping and dining. Cultural festivals can be found throughout the year in the city’s diverse neighbourhoods.
So what if you only have one weekend to spend in Toronto? Get a taste of what this city is all about with these suggestions. It’s sure to be one of your life’s most memorable trips!
DAY 1 – Day
- Saying that the sky’s the limit is usually stretching the truth, but the Helicopter Company Inc. lets you say it, and mean it! Take a thrilling tour of the city from above and get some great aerial pics to remember it forever.
- Back on land, slip on your walking shoes and get to know Toronto’s unique neighbourhoods. Queen Street West is hip, trendy and totally cool. If your style veers toward multicoloured Mohawks, high fashion, or a bit of both, this is the most eclectic shopping in the city. Walk the Danforth Avenue strip known as Greektown and discover there’s far more than just fabulous Greek restaurants to entertain. Looking for uptown chic in a relatively downtown neighbourhood? Start with Bloor Street West between Yonge Street and Avenue Road, which is lined with upscale stores like Canada’s premier luxury department store Holt Renfrew, Chanel, Gucci and Louis Vuitton. A few steps north will take you to Yorkville, a former hippie hangout that is now one of the chicest neighbourhoods in the city. Chinatown is a colourful place to be anytime of the year and actually one of six distinctive Chinatown’s in the city. Nearby is bohemian Kensington Market, where you’ll find funky vintage shops crammed into old Victorian houses and a pedestrian neighbourhood where artists, musicians, students, fashionistas and shopkeepers from seemingly every part of the world come together. The excitement goes from latté lounging to martini madness all in one day in Little Italy, and summer sees The Beach crammed with sun seekers, volleyballers and cyclists all out to enjoy the season.
DAY 1 – Night
- Cap off your busy day with dinner at one of the tallest structures in the world and experience a magnificent view of Toronto’s skyline. The 360 Restaurant atop the CN Tower offers fine dining at this must-see attraction.
DAY 2 – Day
- Pack your purse light, because after checking out some of Toronto’s hip shops, you’ll need room for all of your fun, new purchases. Shopping in Toronto is an excursion unto itself and you’ll find everything you’re looking for, from designer must-haves to retro cool vintage to one-of-a-kind home-grown fashions in Toronto’s many neighbourhoods. Visiting during the winter and can’t face the cold outside? Head underground to the PATH, a subterranean shopping concourse with some 1,200 retail shops, cafés and restaurants that weaves its way for more than 27 km/16 miles beneath Toronto’s downtown core connecting 48 office towers, six hotels and five subway stations.
- Toronto’s arts and culture scene is unlike any other. The city’s more than 100 cultures grant us a unique flair in art, theatre, architecture, music and everything in between. The Art Gallery of Ontario was redesigned by renowned architect and Toronto native, Frank Gehry. It is also home to the largest public collection of works by British sculptor Henry Moore. The bold new Royal Ontario Museum is enjoying a renaissance of its own with a redesign by architect Daniel Libeskind. The major element of the redesign, the Michael Lee Chin Crystal, dramatically transforms not only the museum, but the Bloor Street landscape on which it borders as well. Harbourfront Centre is open year-round and the place to see performances of dance, literature readings and concerts by artists from around the world. The new Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts is Toronto’s brand new opera house and the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre brings historic charm to one of the world’s remaining double-decker theatres. Classical music lovers will be enamoured with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra at Roy Thomson Hall.
DAY 2 – Night
- When night falls, Toronto beckons with a nightlife that offers limitless possibilities. Visit your favourite neighbourhood and a local watering hole to suit your taste. From English-style pubs to swanky lounges, you just may be tempted to stay all night. Gather your troops and head to the Entertainment District where you’ll get lost in a sea of night crawlers in search of the perfect nightclub. If live music is your thing, music venues across the city (notably Queen Street West) showcase tomorrow’s rockers, rappers, torch singers and cabaret performers.