Toronto Stories and Tips

Out on the Town

Toronto is a great place, there's something to do for everyone pretty much all the time. It is split up into various sections that all seem to blend into one another, such as the Historic District, Little Italy, Chinatown, the Gay Village, Cabbage Town, and lots more that I can't remember. A visit to Kensington market (near Chinatown) makes for interesting viewing, but I've never seen such expensive secondhand (sorry, vintage) clothes! The Gay Village brings a lot of colour to the city with brightly painted streets. Of course you have Younge Street, the longest street in the world, giving thousands of shopping opportunities, like the Eaton center. Also, Younge and Dundas square has various concerts, displays, markets and events on all the time. There's also the world famous Toronto pride parade around June, disputed to be the second largest in the world. Gay or not, this is a fun day with water pistols and freebies thrown to the crowd. Also the Carribana Parade fills the streets with elaborate floats and music all day long. All throughout the summer there are festivals, parades and events going on.The CN tower is a must of course, but unless you've plenty of money don't bother with the extra 9 floors or so when you get to the top, as the view is just the same, (spectacular) that is unless there's a smog alert which incidentally did happen quite often last year! The Maple Leafs Arena is good to visit but if you're after a game you need a sizable cheque book, or some good contacts to get tickets, beware of the ticket touts, you've been warned! A cheaper option is to go watch the Marleys, still excellent hockey but much easier tickets to get, still i advise to turn up early as they sell fast. They play in the historic Collisum in exhibition park. Talking of which the park itself is full of interesting places to visit and things to do. Such as horse riding, exhibitions, medieval times dinner & tournament. The ice hockey hall of fame is a must for any hockey fan, try your hand at a slapshot. The Olympic Spirit center (just behind Dundas Square) is fun for all the family, you can tryout loads of sports from sprinting to shooting.Turning left on the way out is ill advised, as the city gets a little rough in that area. The historic Union station is often used in film sets so don't be surprised to stumble upon a WW2 London bobby walking around on his mobile phone! Nightlife here can be wild or quietly romantic. There are loads of bars and clubs of every kind imaginable to keep you amused. From fetish to 80s pop, you'll find it all. The trendy bar area is on Queen Street. Live bands play most nights. But as with any city make sure you have a safe way home eg. licensed taxi.Toronto has so much to offer it's a great place to visit and with so many day trips out of town available allow yourself at least a week to fit in as much as possible. The tourist information centers offer a full range of services and are very helpful. Believe me there is so much more to Toronto than I've mentioned, so enjoy.Getting around is easy, there are two main subway lines that run east to west and north to south that will take you near anywhere you want to go. Tickets or tokens are $2.50, or buy a book and pay only $2 per token. Get a transfer ticket once inside and your $2.50 will get you as far as you need to go. Subways are very busy (think sardines) between 4.30pm and 6pm. Buses to further afield areas are cheap are run often but can get a little confusing, just don't forget your route map. Amtrak and Greyhound buses leave from Union station, and the international airport is about 30 minutes by taxi.

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