When you’re in Toronto on business, vacation, or just moved there, you’ll want to see as many of the sights as you can see within your time there. You’ll find that there is plenty of places to keep you entertained from historical sites, museums, and other attractions that you’ll find yourself wanting to visit numerous times while you’re in the town. So, here is a list of 15 attractions you’ll want to visit in Toronto by yourself or with your family or friends. You never know what might inspire you and leave you with a lasting memory of this great city.
1. CN Tower
The tallest tower within the city limits that stretches more than 550m high. While it provides most of the telecommunications to the city, you’ll find that this attraction is also highly appealing to tourist each year. The first reason is the glass floor you can walk around as you look down 113 stories to the ground. Talking about walking on air! If you’re still feeling adventurous, you can continue skyward to the Sky Pod, which is 146 stories from the ground. You can also enjoy dining in the restaurant, Horizons, on the Look Out Level or you can keep your feet solidly on the ground and enjoy the Far Coast Café at the base of the tower while also doing some great souvenir shopping.
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2. Canada’s Wonderland
If you like the thrill of an amusement park, you won’t find one better than Canada’s Wonderland, which is not only the first and largest park in Canada but also features a great water park with live shows. You can enjoy rides, such as the Leviathan or the Behemoth. You can even try out the Drop Tower, Vortex, The Bat, Skyrider, or even Dragon Fire. With over 68 thrill-seeking rides and over 200 attractions, you won’t be disappointed with your time spent at this theme park. There’s even areas more kid-friendly, including Planet Snoopy and the Splash Works.
3. Harbourfront Centre
This Centre offers some of the best concerts, dances, readings, and shows from local venues as well as international ones. You’ll find that you can see something different each weekend and even some weeknights. No matter how long your stay in Toronto, this Centre is one you won’t to miss as you take in a show or a dance performance. You can also enjoy several shops, an art gallery, and the large pond the Centre has that works wonderfully as an ice rink in the winter. If you like the arts, this is a definite stop on your list of places to visit.
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4. Royal Ontario Museum
The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is one of the oldest museums in Canada, having been built in 1914, and offers its many visitors each day an exciting look into its collection of six million objects. You simply won’t be able to see it all in one day. With over 40 galleries of art and other fascinating areas like natural science and archaeology, you’ll find yourself in a whole new world of exploration. Dinosaurs, totems, textiles, and costumes around the world are stunning to see along with the Biodiversity gallery where you can watch the interaction between people, animals, and plants.
5. Medieval Times Toronto
If you love the days where knights and chivalry reign, then you must see the Medieval Times. You’ll find yourself propelled back in time as you watch a true showing as knight’s fight for the honor of their banners. With a building shaped like a European castle, you know you’re in the right place as you partake of a four-course meal served banquet-style. With select packages, you can be up-close and personal to the action as you cheer for your knight and watch as he falls or rises to glory.
6. Black Creek Pioneer Village
This is the best village you’d want to see if you’d like to go back to the days of our Canadian ancestors from the 1860s. With 40 restored homes for authenticity as well as workshops, public buildings, and farms of that period, you’ll find yourself right back in this time period, living the life of a rural Victorian community. You’ll even find some great craftspeople and workers hard at work, dressed in costumes of that period as they prepare meals over an open hearth, make bread, loom, mill, blacksmith, and so much more. You simply won’t want to miss such an historic setting in your travels to Toronto.
7. Toronto Zoo
What is there not to love about a zoo? With the Toronto Zoo, you can enjoy gazing upon over 5,000 animals from over 500 different species while walking over six miles of trails. As one of the largest zoos in the world, you’ll find that this zoo offers a Discovery Zone, which combines an interactive area for your children, a water play are, and an area for family fun and entertainment. Add to this, you have enjoy the neat gifts available in the gift shop along with rides and even some must-sees like the polar bear habitat or the gorilla rainforest. With so much to see, you’ll want to plan an entire day just for this great attraction within the Toronto city limits.
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8. Hockey Hall of Fame
If you’re the biggest fan of hockey, you don’t want to miss seeing the Hockey Hall of Fame, the world’s one and only. You won’t just find a museum when you come to the Hall of Fame, but rather a place to challenge your skills as a hockey player, theatres, and other attractions, including the memorabilia of hockey itself. You’ll also find that this is the home of the infamous Stanley Cup as well as the home for all of the Hall of Fame’s honored members (all 370 of them). Located within an old Bank of Montreal branch, you’ll find that these 65,000 square feet dedicated to hockey are worth a peek as you journey to Toronto.
9. Ontario Science Scene
With more than 40 million visitors since its doors opened in 1969, the Ontario Science Scene has garnered the fascination and attention of students of all ages. When you can see the electrical ball that raises hair, the wall of bubbles, and the simulate rain forest, why wouldn’t you want to stop in and check out all of these fine offerings and more? With many exhibits to see, you won’t want to stop until you’ve seen them all. Don’t forget about the OMNIMAX theatre or the KidSpark, a great place for children under 8 to learn and explore.
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10. Centre Island
If you find yourself in need of an island getaway from the hustle and bustle of the fine city of Toronto, you won’t find a better option than Centre Island. You can rent bikes of all styles after you’ve taken the ferry to this fine little island and ride along one of the many bike trails. You can even rent a canoe or kayak in the summer and peruse your way around the island, but you’ll want to get there as soon as you can or you’ll find all the boats are gone. There’s an amusement park for the kids to enjoy as well as some great beaches (even one for those wanting a clothing optional beach). Enjoy the concession stands or one of the few restaurant options on the island.
11. Historic Fort York
Fort York was one of the fundamental developers of the great city of Toronto as it stands today. First established in 1793, it’s major function had been in the protection of the new city, but it’s actually only ever seen one battle when 1700 American troops worked to invade Toronto in 1813. While the battle resulted in somewhat of a catastrophe, it hasn’t seen battle since, but its reconstruction now serves as a museum, containing the largest collection you’ll ever find from the War of 1812 buildings in Canada.
12. Spadina Historic House and Gardens
The original home of James Austin and his family built in 1866 has since become an exhibit run by the City of Toronto’s Culture Division. You can see what the home as it was for the four generations of Austins that once resided in this home, including art of the local Toronto scene during the late 1800s and early 1900s. You can also find furniture reminiscent of the Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Nouveau styles. Along with the home, you’ll find that there is six-acres of garden attached, covering over 300 species of flowers and vegetables.
13. Casa Loma
If you’ve ever wanted to see a castle in the middle of a city, you’ll get your wish with the Casa Loma. Built by Sir Henry Pellatt, he spent three years and a grand total of $3.5 million to see his dream of owning a castle come true. You’ll love the secret passageways, the towers, staircase, stables, and gardens he’d built into his home and land. It came into the possession of the city after World War I and was eventually decided to transform it into a tourist attraction in 1937, becoming one of their top attractions today.
14. The Second City
If you want a place you can go to see where some of the greatest comedians and actors of our time have gotten their starts, you’ll want to visit The Second City located on Mercer Street. You can enjoy an intimate setting as you enjoy the show while dining on a fine menu of both food and drinks. You can see the place where the likes of Dan Aykroyd, Eugene Levy, Michael Myers, Martin Short, Stephen Colbert, and Jason Sudeikis all became part of our lives through their on-stage performances. You never know who you might see during your time here that will become a greater act in our lives later as they begin their career at The Second City.
15. Wild Water Kingdom
If you want to see the largest waterpark in Canada, you won’t find any larger than the Wild Water Kingdom. Over 100 acres of water slides, wave pools, and sports facilities, you won’t find yourself bored for any moment that you’re here. If you like dark tunnels and fast slides, you’ll love the Midnight Express or the Abyss as part of the Night Rider. If you rather like the contentment of slower waters, there’s the Lazy River. For younger children, you can visit the Dolphin Bay area. With so much to do, you won’t possible get through them all in one day.
With these top 15 attractions and so many more to offer you, you won’t find yourself bored for one second during your time in Toronto. You may not even want to leave once you start visiting each of these attractions and experiencing every facet of Toronto’s history and exciting present options. In Toronto, you’ll find that there is something for everyone, whether you’re on your own or with your family or some friends. So, take some time to get out there and explore some of these attractions during your next visit to Toronto and create some fun memories for everyone involved.