THE DESTINATION

Toronto is a super cool city with lots of natural beauty, endless activities and one of the best food scenes I’ve ever experienced. I would recommend it if you are keen to do lots of activities and are looking for an extended city break.

THE BASICS

Time zone – GMT-5
Visa – eta visa apply before travel
Currency –  – Canadian Dollar
Climate – Mild climate. 18-30c  May to Sept. 0-14c Oct to Apr.
Best time to visit – June- August

COST

It’s roughly 1.6 Canadian dollar to 1 GBP. Toronto is about the same price as the UK for food, drinks and accommodation. The Numbeo cost of living index  is 77 (London is 83).

 PLACES TO VISIT

 Downtown Toronto – as you would imagine, this is where the action is.. you’ll find every type of food you could ever think of, hundreds of bars including lots of irish pubs, shopping malls, the CN tour, lots of attractions and thousands of ‘things to do’
Niagara– about a 2 hour train or car ride from downtown Toronto this home to Niagara falls as well as lots of attractions close by
Scarborough Bluffs – about a 30min car ride from downtown Toronto this is  an area of natural beauty situated on the shores of Lake Ontario

THE TORONTO BUCKET LIST

Explore

  • Go to the Beach – yes you read that correctly! The shores of Lake Ontario provide some vast beaches that the local and tourists flock to over the summer months. Not many city breaks give you that option!
  • Visit the CN Tour – the iconic CN Tour is a must visit attraction when in Toronto, the views absolutely epic. There are lots of things to do up there too, the tower has a restaurant & bar, a glass floor and for thrill seekers the ‘Sky Walk’ allows you to walk around the outside rim with the city below your feet!!
  • Swim with the fishes – not literally but it definitely feels like it when you walk underneath the shark tunnel! This is in the super impression Aquarium located just underneath the CN Tour.
  • Chase waterfalls – the other must do is to visit Niagara Falls, it really did leave me speechless! There are a number of other waterfalls in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area not Grand Theft Auto) here are a few more to try out: Devils Punchbowl, Inglis Falls, Borer’s Falls, Elora Gorge & Webster’s Falls.
  • Go to the Zoo – Toronto Zoo is one of the best in the world and who doesn’t love the zoo?!
  • Take a heli tour of Downtown – seriously cool, for as little as £50 you can do a 15min tour of downtown swooshing over the high rises feeling like a true VIP!
  • Catch a game – Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto FC, Toronto Wolfpack and Toronto Blue Jays.. Toronto is mad for sport! Definitely catch a game if you can and take in the atmosphere, I went to watch Toronto FC at BMO field, what a stadium!
  • Jump out of a plane – Sky Dive Toronto offer packages from just £180 they are located at Lake Simcoe, it was my first sky dive.. wow!!! Couldn’t recommend Sky Dive Toronto enough!
  • Stroll your cares away – Visit natural beauty spot the Scarborough Bluffs, beautiful gardens surrounded by sweeping cliffs and Lake Ontario
  • Go on a Food Tour – yes this exists, yest I’ll be doing lot more of them! Your personal tour guide takes you on a culinary tour of various restaurants whilst you stuff your face, I mean taste the signature dishes of each! I recommend the Little Italy Tour.

Eat & Drink

  • For an upmarket meal head to Byblos, a trendy candle lit venue serving Mediterranean inspire tapas located in downtown. Perfect for date night or in my case to just eat lots of amazing food on your own like a saddo. Get the lamb ribs oh my days!!
  • My best find of the trip was definitely Sushi House in downtown. £11 all you can eat, freshly made to order sushi. Do I need to say any more?!?! I almost missed my flight because of this place!
  • For a casual & fun night head to Tobys, they have all the sport you can dream of on the TV’s, Karaoke and pitchers for £10, I had the best night here! Personal highlight was a 67 year old Caribbean man singing 50 Cent – P.I.M.P.  on the Karaoke. Believe he got the key to the city the day after.
  • On a nice day head to Porch which has the coolest outdoor drinking terrace where you can enjoy a few cocktails surrounded by the amazing city skyline
  • Williams Landing by BMO Field is another great bar with an open roof deck that has a good crowd in on weekends and match days.
  • There are a number of areas to head for amazing food just google Little Italy, Little Portugal & Chinatown

HOTEL RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Hotels can be quite expensive in Toronto and they book up quickly so book well in advance, check Air BnB for some economical options. In terms of location I’d advise staying pretty central, aim for the CN tour and get as close as your budget will allow. The city is very easy to get around if you are a little further out though.

TOp tips

  • Get a city pass – for £40 you get access to all of the main attractions (CN Tour, Aquarium, Zoo etc.) well well well worth it!
  • Get your eta visa before arrival, simple but important!
  • If going to Niagara get the train and an Uber, it’s about the same price as the organised tours (£50) and you get more flexibility to do as you please!
  • Fly with Air Transat – I took Air Transat’s options plus package which gives you free seat selection, priority check in/boarding/baggage handling, on-board comfort kit and free drinks; it was the best decision I made all trip! I was checked in and through security both sides in 15mins! The flight itself is filled with treats, a comfort kit, free drinks, awesome food and more free drinks! I’ll definitely be upgrading again. The cabin crew were really friendly too and gave me so many tips on things to (half of the things you just read about!). You can get a return flight from the UK-Toronto from as little as £375pp (based on travel in September & October 2017), the options plus package is available from £82pp return, just Click Here to book your next trip with them!
Hold on to your mac..! Niagara Falls
Sky Dive over Lake Simcoe – hands say all good face says end this now!!
Those City Views
Sky Walk – Would you do it..?
Amazing sunset at BMO Field watching Toronto FC
I see you – The iconic CN Tour
Lake Ontario
Air Transat Options Plus – The only way to fly
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