Occupying an entire block in the heart of Toronto's cultural district is the famous TIFF Bell Lightbox which boasts a cinema, studios and galleries which display works of art related to cinema. Visitors here are often astonished by the mammoth collection of world cinema that is screened.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Home to the Austin family for more than a century, Spadina House is now operated as a museum by the City of Toronto Cultural Services. Although some restoration has taken place, the original feel of the 55-room mansion has been wonderfully preserved, giving visitors a glimpse into a time when immigration increased and tabloid journalism had its beginnings (1918-1939). Rooms are also available for hire. The tour guides will make sure that the experience is thoroughly informative and educational while still being fun.
Canadian Sculpture Centre is the base of the Sculptors Society of Canada (SSC) which was founded in 1928 by eminent sculptors. It is also the society's public gallery to exhibit modern Canadian carved works. It also hosts walking tours, artists conversations and lectures. Every month a different artist is highlighted from their member list and also provides a platform for emerging talents.
Located on the University of Toronto campus, this hockey palace also hosts music concerts with some of the bigger names in the rock and pop industry. Home to the University of Toronto Varsity ice hockey team, the arena showcases young hockey talent at affordable prices. The cozy environment gives the feel of true hockey, with the players so close to the crowd it feels as though you're on the ice too.
The J.J.R Macleod Auditorium of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto, is a venue for many of the region's prominent lectures, programs and events on science. Christened after the great Scottish physicist John James Richard Macleod, this auditorium has seen many top scientists and physicists spread knowledge and dispel doubt in the minds of the growing learners. Besides informative events, this venue has also played host to a number of music concerts and has seen performances by both local as well as visiting artists. Balancing leisure and learning, the J.J.R Macleod auditorium plays a vital role in the cultural life at the University of Toronto.
On the student-centric Harbord street lies the Athletic Centre of the University of Toronto. This massive facility has a host of fitness and sports facilities that are state-of-the-art and in excellent condition. Among the programs and activities here are swimming, soccer, indoor and outdoor soccer, aquatics, volleyball, hockey, skating, and squash. Apart from these 'drop-in' programs, the center also has 'registered' programs like yoga, dance, fitness, pilates, and even martial arts. the Athletic Centre also rents out its spaces for community and students activities. There, among other things, a host of gyms, swimming pools, squash courts, and also a dance studio. For further information on rent and other details, please see the website.