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Best Local Scene in Toronto

By: Cityseeker
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Yonge-Dundas Square

Opened in November 2003 and enjoying a super location in Downtown Toronto, the Yonge-Dundas Square is an open-air public space that hosts events like weekly farmer markets, contemporary concerts, theatrical events, promotions, fireworks displays on holidays and community events. This is a great chance to experience the real spirit of Toronto.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Nathan Phillips Square

Named after the late Nathan Phillips, Toronto's "Mayor to all the people," this architectural delight is located at the foot of City Hall. It is the focal point for many events throughout the year, including the First Night Toronto festival every New Year's Eve. During the summer it is home to many outdoor entertainers and live bands.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Kensington Market

Known in the 1930s as the Jewish Market, Kensington today is an awesome display of the city's multi-ethnicity. Here you will find shops packed with products from Europe, Middle East, South America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia and you will hear dozens of languages spoken. A visit to this neighborhood is like taking a trip around the world! With more than 100 shops in all selling everything from second-hand clothing to fresh produce, from exotic pastries to art objects and furniture, you won't go away empty-handed.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Chinatown

Although there are several Chinese districts in the Greater Toronto area, including the Don Valley Chinatown East, purists still refer to this one as the main Chinatown. On wide streets lined with bright lights, shops sell everything from medicinal herbs to take-out kung po gai ding. While some of the small shops hold form to more traditional ways, the Dragon City Shopping Mall at Dundas and Spadina is the ultimate East meets West shopping experience. The district is also restaurant rich and although some of them may look daunting to the uninitiated, the food is invariably excellent.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Path

Unlike much of the city, Toronto's financial district is compressed into a conveniently walkable area even in bad weather. That's thanks to the PATH, the "underground city" covering 28-kilometer (17-mile) of adjoining passageways under the streets and connecting to more than 1200 retail stores and services. If you are a little nervous about doing the trek alone, join one of the organized tours by private tour companies.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Evergreen Brick Works

Evergreen Brick Works is a unique and fun-filled way to experience sustainable development. A quarry and buildings have been transformed into parks, attractions, and an educational center. Evergreen Brick Works wants to educate people in an informative and interesting way. There are a lot of sites to explore, including learning how to make pottery at Clay Works, buying local produce at Evergreen Garden Market, hiking through Don Valley Brick Works Park, and the exploring the beautiful Children's Garden in Chimney Court.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Distillery Historic District

Located near the city center in Toronto, the Distillery Historic District is a prominent area of the city where the Gooderham and Worts Distillery used to operate until 1990 CE. The distillery was touted as one of the biggest facilities in the world. After its closure, the Victorian-era buildings of the property became the Distillery District of today. Today, it houses many shops, restaurants and commercial complexes. However, the historic facade of the distillery is still intact and can be seen.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Queen Street West

Just one street over from this trendy strip is the Ontario College of Art and Design, Queen Street West is one of the top shopping streets in the city. When young artists graduated and were desperate for cash, they would bring their treasures here to sell. Soon small shops stuffed with unique items began popping up on Queen Street West. Today, you can still find unusual gifts from cool clothing to antique comics either in the stores or from one of the many friendly street vendors. It's also a hot spot for restaurants and bars such as the Epicure Cafe, the Rivoli and the Queen Mother Cafe.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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Toronto Islands

A recreational wonderland that sits a mere 10-minute ferry ride away from Toronto Harbor, the Toronto Islands constitute a set of 15 small isles in the midst of Lake Ontario. The islands are connected to one another by pathways and bridges that can be traversed on foot. Sprawled across 820 acres (330 hectares) of the lake's expanse, the Toronto Islands are home to the Snake Island, the South Chippewa Island, Mugg's Island, and Forestry Island, with the Centre Island emerging as the biggest of the group. Away from the city's furious bustle, the islands offer a serene retreat with their car-free stretches, and are home to a plethora of landmarks including the Centreville Amusement Park, the clothing-optional Hanlan's Beach, a Frisbee golf course, and the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.

Toronto, ON, Canada
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