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.
With thousands of animals in seven tropical pavilions spread over 220 hectares (544 acres), an African Savannah exhibit and a commitment to preserve world's wilderness and wildlife, it’s no wonder this zoo is rated among the best in the world. While committed to research and conservation, the Toronto Zoo promises to provide its visitors with a memorable experience along with educating them about wildlife and nature. With that in mind, it offers everything from rare and colorful fish to pygmy hippos. The last admission occurs one hour before closing. Prices vary according to season.
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.
Riverdale Park East is a great place to escape to, if you wish for some fresh air to breathe without leaving the city. This park area makes for a great day out with friends or family as there are a gamut of activities for everyone to pick from. Sports enthusiasts can enjoy a game of baseball or football, while kids can run around at the playground. The ice rink is ideal for skating as well as ice hockey, while a swim in the outdoor pool is quite refreshing. All this activity is bound to leave you hungry; lay down for a meal in their picnic spot, and take a small hike along one of their many trails.
This expansive, 31,000 square foot museum focuses solely on Islamic art throughout the ages. Spanning over 1000 years of history, the Aga Khan Museum contains numerous artifacts like textiles, ceramics, glass and paintings that showcase the development of Muslim civilizations. Designed by an award winning architect, the museums building features a gorgeous design with a large theater, open courtyard, classrooms, exhibit galleries and even a park with lush landscaping. Exhibitions are temporary and display emerging Muslim themes, and new artistic developments.
An internationally renowned collection that ranges from 5,000-year-old pre-Columbian artifacts to 20th-century works from around the world makes Gardiner Museum one-of-a-kind in North America. The museum, located across from the Royal Ontario Museum and the University of Toronto campus, also features a boutique. Check out the Gardiner Shop, with contemporary Canadian works including books on ceramics to jewelery and bowls. Guided tours for groups can also be arranged.
To know any city inside out, you need to wander through its lanes and absorb experiences. And what could be more enriching than viewing any city on a bicycle? If you are an outdoor enthusiast and love to explore new places, then the Toronto Bicycle Tours will be the right choice for your tours in the city. With locals and expert guides on board, you can hop on to your bicycle and roam around getting to know the city better. Tours are open for all ages, and private tours can also be arranged by contacting ahead.
A pleasure zone located in the core of the city, this area, bordered by Queen Street West, York, Lakeshore, and Spadina, is rich with restaurants, theater, sporting events and live music. Some highlights include the Princess of Wales theater and Roy Thomson Hall for the performing arts. For popular dining, Alice Fazooli's and Joe Badali's hit the spot. For the sports nut, there's the SkyDome and the Air Canada Centre, and to sleep it all off the Crowne Plaza-Toronto Centre or the Holiday Inn on King.
Riverdale Farm is a place that will have you experiencing the country life, even while you're still in the city. This attraction is open for visitors everyday, and features expansive farms that are lined with woods and small water features. The farm was built on a former zoo site, and one can visit farm animals such as ducks, goats, pigs and sheep now, instead of wild animals. The historic barn on the farm must be visited, and the farm grounds are often the venue for local cultural events as well.
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.