Toronto Stories and Tips

A trip to remember

That was the best week so far here in Canada. We got to go to the big city. Last week went by really quick since we were all excited about going to Toronto for the long weekend (Victoria's Day on Monday).

We had an early night on Friday to be ready for our early flight to Toronto. I slept over at Morgan's host's place to make it easier for David's host who was chosen to drive us to the airport (poor him). So we got up at 4am and were at the airport at 5am. I was really excited since I am terrified of flying and it gets worse everytime. Anyway we took off at about 6:15am and I had a hard time not to remember any single movie I have every seen about plane crashes. Well, after about 1.5 hours, we landed in Toronto and I was finally able to relax. Time difference from St. John to Toronto is one hour so we actually got there at 7 something.

We had a reservation at the Days Inn in downtown Toronto and we had no trouble finding it by taking first the bus and then the subway. We got a great deal for the room and only paid CA$25 per night for the whole room. They also let us check in early and, after we got our stuff sorted, we went off to explore the city and to find the CN Tower, the largest free-standing building in the world. One should think it must be easy to find the largest free-standing building in the world, but it was not so easy after all. We were walking quite around a bit before we actually got to see it, since the view from down town is blocked by skyscapers. Next to the CN Tower, you can also find the Sky Dome, which is a baseball stadium.

So when we finally arrived at the CN Tower, Morgan and David wanted to go up there to see the view by day, but I wasn't so sure if I really wanted to go up, since it really is very high and I am scared of heights. But somehow they convinced me and up we went. The high-speed glass elevator that goes up on the outside of the Tower took us up within 58 seconds to a height comparable to 100 building levels. I was really glad I went up there because the view is just amazing. Especially nice is the view over Lake Ontario and all the boats that seem so small from up there. They also have a section caled the glass floor -- the floor is actually made out of glass and you can walk on it. That is so freaky because it is just so high . . . (I know I repeat myself, but it is high). From the lookout and the glass floor, you can take another elevator that takes you even higher to the very top. That part is called the pot.

The rest of the afternoon we walked around town and went to a bar for a couple of drinks at night. We were really tired so we called it at day at about 10:30pm. Next morning we had to get up early as well since we had booked a guided tour to the Niagara Falls. The bus picked us up at around 9:15am and we went on our way. Niagara is about 75 miles away from Toronto so it took us around 1.5 hours to get there. I was not sure what to expect because normally if you expect too much, you will be disappointed. But I can tell you it was absolutely fantastic. I, for example, did not know that there are two falls, one is owned by the Americans and the other by the Canadians. And I have to say that the Canadian one is much more beautiful. Also you can see both of the falls only from the Canadian side whereas the Americans have to go to a lookout and can barely see anything, unless they go on a boat. Anyway it was much more then I expected and the tour we took on the "Maid of the Mist" (it's a boat). That took us very close to both of the falls and was pure fun. Of course, we got wet, even though they give you raincoats, but that is part of the fun. Fortunately, the weather was great and we dried quickly afterwards.

We had lunch up on the Hilton in Niagara with a view of the falls and I have to say that I really want to go back sometime in my life to see it at night because that must be absolutely beautiful.

We also went to the lookout called Tablerock where they filmed a part of the movie Superman 2 (and many others).

After the Niagara Falls, we also went to the town Niagara on the lake and spent some time in the park there, since the city was really crowded. On our way back to Toronto, we stopped at a winery and tasted some Inniskillin Icewine. Very nice and very, very expensive.

We had no energy left to go clubbing on Sunday and instead we ordered a movie and went for a drink in the hotel bar. Speaking of bars, a lot of places in Toronto are smoke-free, which made it hard for us but did not keep us from smoking.

Monday we took it easy. We went to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and after that, shopping in the Eaton Centre.

For the evening we had a table booked it the 360 Restaurant, which is the restaurant up on the CN Tower that revolves. The restaurant was very expensive, but it was definitely worth it and compared to Irish prices, it was still cheap. Besides the food, you also have wonderful view over the city by night and even fireworks on holidays.

I think I never walked that much in three days ever before in my life. My feed are still killing me. I also never spent that much money in only three days before. So as you can see, we had a brilliant time, and Toronto is a wonderful city. You have to go to see it yourself. I would definitely enjoy spending some more time there.

Thusday morning we had to catch our flight at 8:25am and we arrived back in St. John at 11am.

I also got my hair cut in Toronto, which is probably the only thing I regret about the weekend, because I will have to spent a lot of money to get it fixed . . .

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