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Royal Ontario Museum incorporates a unique mix of galleries that showcase art, archaeological objects and scientific specimens. The museum, which sees more than a million visitors annually, houses a collection of over six million objects on three floors. This is the only place in Toronto where you can enjoy unravelling the mysteries of the Egyptian mummies, watch and hear an active beehive and view inspiring artwork from many different countries. When you leave, you take along memories of a unique experience.
If you like shoes, you'll love this museum devoted entirely to footwear; see shoes from various cultures and all parts of the world, from ancient times to the present. Fancy shoes and basic ones, boots and sandals, they are all in the Raymond Moriyama building, located north of the University of Toronto campus. You can view more than 10,000 pairs in all. Celebrity shoes include Queen Victoria's ballroom slippers, Elvis's blue patent loafers and Karen Kain's ballet pointes.
The new and renovated Art Gallery of Ontario holds permanent collections of art in different mediums, be it paintings, sculpture or collections of historic artifacts. This museum in the Chinatown district is one of Canada's largest fine art museums. You can view exhibits, including the 19th-century Impressionists, Henry Moore and an exclusive Canadian collection of paintings by the famous Group of Seven. In all, there is a permanent collection of over 24,000 works representing 1,000 years of European, Canadian and contemporary art. Facilities include a gift shop, restaurant and a family-oriented activity center.
Built over three years beginning in 1911, Casa Loma was born of the lofty ambitions of the Canadian financier Sir Henry Mill Pellatt. Inspired by the castles of Europe, Pellatt sought to employ the formidable resources at his disposal to build for himself a grand chateau in the heart of Toronto; an abode truly befitting the aspirations of the magnate. Built in the Gothic Revival style, Casa Loma appears to have sprung from the pages of a fairy tale, replete with hidden passages and generously adorned with exquisite art. The castle features 98 lavishly decorated rooms and is surrounded by a beautiful estate complete with its own conservatory, gardens, and stables. The Great Hall's sculptured pillars, the Conservatory's stained glass ceiling, the Library's impressive cache of books, and the subterranean tunnel to the stables outside are just a few of the many treasures that define the estate. Pellatt's triumph was short-lived, however, his businesses buckling in the aftermath of World War I, forcing him to sell his home. Today, Casa Loma is a museum and popular event venue.
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.
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.
At a dizzying height of 553.3 meters (1,815.3 feet), the slender form of the CN Tower rises high above the city skyline. One of the world's tallest towers, unmatched by any freestanding structure in the Western Hemisphere, this stunning landmark was built in 1967 by the Canadian National Railway to serve as a communications and observation facility. At that time, this man-made pinnacle was unsurpassed by any other across the world and remained as such until 2007. The Look Out Level of CN Tower grants spectacular view of the city for miles around from a height of 346 meters (1,136 feet), while the SkyPod sits an additional 33 storeys above for a unique perspective of the world. The EdgeWalk, another of the tower's attractions, is the world's highest hands-free walkway. Not for the faint hearted, walking along the open-air walkway is an experience like none other. The EdgeWalk is perched on the roof of the 360 Restaurant where dinner is served in full view of Toronto's twinkling skyline.
Ripley's Aquarium has a lot to offer its visitors, with new marine life to discover and new things to see and learn. Easily accessible as it is situated in the heart of the city, the aquarium features over 16,000 specimens of aquatic animals and other forms of sea-life. Popular exhibits include the jellyfish displays and the Touch Tanks, where guests can interact with harmless sharks and rays. If you are in the city do not miss out on an adventurous day at the aquarium with your family and experience the life underwater.
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.
Home to the Toronto Blue Jays since the 1989 season, as well as the Toronto Argonauts Football Team, this CAD 500-million-plus architectural marvel is the first stadium to have a fully retractable roof. Rogers Centre facility's versatility allows it to accommodate a variety of events suited for an arena, a domed stadium and an open-air facility. Seating more than 50,000 for baseball, the stadium boasts the world's largest JumboTron scoreboard, a 346-room Renaissance Toronto hotel with some suites facing the field, and a Hard Rock Café with field-view seating. Come late Autumn, Rogers hosts the wildly successful annual Canadian Aboriginal Festival.
Used primarily as the city's industrial docklands for decades, the Harbourfront area has been developed over the last 30 years into a recreational and cultural attraction that now draws more than three million visitors per year. Harbourfront's attraction is many things to many people. Some shop at the Queens Quay Terminal and the others take in an outdoor concert at Concert Stage or attend a festival at the York Quay Centre. While others turn out for the annual book reading events. A place buzzing with diverse activities!