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Home » North America » Toronto

TORONTO Itinerary • MUST READ! (2024)

A dynamic metropolis with an abundance of cultural activities and attractions, Toronto is an incredible city to visit! Whether you’re planning a trip to Toronto in summer or winter, there’s more than enough to keep you occupied.

If you’ve only got 2-3 days in Toronto, don’t stress. It can be difficult to plan a short holiday to fit everything in – but we’ve got you covered!

This Toronto trip itinerary includes all the best Toronto has to offer, come rain or shine. Whether you want to visit art galleries, head to the Hockey Hall of Fame, wander around the Royal Ontario Museum, sail to the Toronto Islands, climb the CN tower or just explore Downtown Toronto or indulge at Kensington Market. There’s so many Toronto attractions, it can be stressful to plan it all out!

Visit lush parks and the enormous entertainment district, marvel at the cultural and historic artefacts at Toronto’s best museums, and try all the delicious local cuisine!

You’ll experience every side of Toronto and all without breaking a sweat with our perfect Toronto itinerary.

toronto tour itinerary

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Toronto itinerary

Little Bit about this 2-Day Toronto Itinerary

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Toronto is a large city but is a lovely place to walk across. Many of the attractions are in the same area in Downtown Toronto, so you can walk between them. Furthermore, the neighbourhoods themselves are so interesting and diverse that a little ‘slow travel’ between them is a wonderful way to experience the city.

The public transport in Toronto is also fantastic. You can buy a day ticket – or if you’re spending more than 3 days in Toronto, a weekly pass – which then applies to all public transport. You can use your ticket to catch a bus, subway or streetcar.

You can buy the ticket at one of the city’s subway stations, or as you climb onto a streetcar or bus. We suggest you also pick up a free Toronto transport map if you visit a station. It will make travel easier!

The city is also improving its cycling infrastructure. So if you want to rent a bicycle to get you around during the day, or join a cycling tour, that’s another great option! However, if you choose this means of transport, always keep safety in mind. Drivers don’t always look out for cyclists, so the onus is on you to stay safe.

Whether you’re on the vacay of a lifetime or backpacking around Canada, a visit to Toronto is a must and there’s plenty to keep you entertained both in and around the city. So here we go, let’s get on with it!

2-Day Toronto Itinerary Overview

  • Day 1 in Toronto: Lake Ontario | Royal Ontario Museum | Kensington Market | CN Tower | Royal Alexandra Theatre
  • Day 2 in Toronto :  Woodbine Beach | Casa Loma | St. Lawrence Market | Hockey Hall of Fame | The Art Gallery of Ontario | Eaton Centre | Hockey Game
  • More Places to See in Toronto :  Historic Distillery District | High Park | Toronto Islands | Allan Gardens Conservatory| Niagara Falls Day Trip

Toronto’s sights and attractions are spread across the central city! This means that many of the charming neighbourhoods are great options as the best place to stay in Toronto.

Where to stay in Toronto simply depends on the type of experience you’re looking for when you visit Toronto. The neighbourhoods differ greatly, and Toronto has even come to be known as ‘the city of neighbourhoods’ because of their unusual range! If you walk for 10 minutes you’ll find your view changes greatly.

where to stay in Toronto

One of the best neighbourhoods with easy access to the best Toronto points of interest is Harbourfront. This beautiful suburb sits on the shores of Lake Ontario, where you can catch a ferry to the islands, or around the city. This area is also a great place to find lovely cafes, theatres, and parks. It’s the perfect location for a cultural, laid-back vacation in Toronto.

For a livelier holiday, stay in The Annex. This neighbourhood is situated right next to a university, so the bars and cafes will always have some fun locals. You’ll also find some great museums and concert venues, making it the perfect destination for some Canadian fun and history!

There are also a lot of cool, well-situated Airbnbs in Toronto priced to suit all budgets. They tend to be spread out across the city and not so much in Downtown Toronto.

Be sure to stay here public transport and particularly the subway for easy assess to Toronto Pearson International Airport. It will also make it easy to plan out your perfect Toronto itinerary if you can get around as easily as possible.

Best Hostel in Toronto – The Only Backpacker’s Inn

Toronto itinerary

Vibrantly colourful and bright, this cheerful hostel is a fantastic place to spend your holiday! There are great shared spaces inside and out, with a comfortable homey atmosphere.

You’ll get a free daily breakfast, and you can pop down to the in-house pub and cafe for a drink with your fellow travellers!

If the Backpacker’s Inn is closed, consider one of these other great hostels in Toronto!

Best Airbnb in Toronto – Cozy Modern Condo

Cozy Modern Condo

Modern, comfortable and plush, this downtown Toronto apartment is in a super central location with all the amenities you could need for a relaxing city stay. Spend your days exploring all the sights of the Canadian hotspot with a chic and bright home to return to. Air Canada Centre, Rogers Centre and the Harbourfront Centre are all just steps away!

Best Budget Hotel in Toronto – Hotel Ocho

Hotel Ocho

Situated in Chinatown, Hotel Ocho provides cosy rooms at a good price. They are stylishly decorated with exposed brick walls and industrial-style furnishings. The hotel offers an on-site bar and restaurant, as well as bicycle hire.

Best Luxury Hotel in Toronto – Hotel X Toronto

Toronto itinerary

With phenomenal views and a whole new level of service and amenities, Hotel X is exquisite. Facilities include tennis, fitness and wellness spaces, a gallery and theatre, a rooftop pool, and greenhouse-style dining!

Enjoy views over the lake or the city, and the perfect location in Downtown Toronto.

Every map that you see in this article includes a hyperlink to an interactive version on Google Drive. After clicking the map image, the interactive version will be opened in a new tab.

Day 1 of your 2-day itinerary in Toronto is the perfect day to spend strolling between stops! Grab a map and enjoy a self-guided Toronto walking tour. Everything is in or near the Entertainment District, so you can dedicate all your time to the stops themselves!

9:00 am – Stroll beside Lake Ontario

Lake Ontario Toronto

Lake Ontario is one of the 5 Great Lakes of North America! With some of Canada’s biggest cities formed along its banks, it’s one of Canada’s most important landmarks. The best way to start off a trip to Toronto is to explore a strip of the lake, and admire how it has shaped the city!

Since the rest of our day 1 itinerary is sprawled across the Entertainment District, we suggest you stroll along the Waterfront Trail, right here!

However, if you want to experience the lakeshore with a quieter, more natural atmosphere, start the day at Scarborough Heights Park! This gorgeous lakeside park is the perfect place to enjoy a leisurely morning before things get started. It gets busy later in the day, but you’ll be sharing it with ducks and the occasional dog walker in the morning!

Cost  – Free How long should I stay here?  1 hr Getting there –   Head to Bay St at Harbour St South Side or Queens Quay West at Harbourfront Centre.

10:00 am – Royal Ontario Museum

toronto tour itinerary

If you travel to Toronto for any length of time, this is a necessary stop! The massive museum has everything and exhibitions from all over the world. Interactive and educational displays, art, culture, and natural history it’s all here. Any holiday in Toronto simply has to include a trip to the Royal Ontario Museum!

Whatever you’re interested in, this museum will have it. There are over 30 galleries!

Grab a map and stroll through the exhibitions, discovering new things about the natural world, and art you’ve never imagined. Some of the best galleries in the museum explore African art and ancient civilization, Roman art and culture, the age of dinosaurs, and Chinese sculpture! There is simply so much to see.

At this carefully curated museum, cultural heritage is explored, delving into the greatest civilizations in history. The diversity of life is contrasted with human similarities across time and place. It’s an adventure!

Cost  – $23 USD general admission How long should I stay here?  2 hrs Getting there –   Take line 1 on the subway to Museum Station.

11:00 am – Explore Kensington Market

toronto tour itinerary

After spending a couple of hours in the museum, a bit of fresh air is just the ticket! Stroll over to Kensington Market, Toronto’s most interesting and unique shopping neighbourhood!

Explore the many art spaces in the area – including the walls of many of the structures. Stop at vintage boutiques and quirky stores. There’s a great array of cafes, bakeries and speciality stores, you’ll want to turn in to every door.

This is a brilliant place to enjoy some window shopping and people-watching. Locals love this area, and it’s well frequented by hipsters and unusual types.

The market itself offers both indoor and outdoor shopping and browsing. It’s colourful and vibrant, making it a lovely space to spend an hour or two! Even if you only have one day in Toronto, we recommend you experience this city hub! It’s a great place to grab some lunch too.

Cost  – Free How long should I stay here?  1.5 hrs Getting there –   Take the subway to Queen’S Park Station and change to the tram at College St at Queen’s Park, get off at College St at Major St.

2:00 pm – CN Tower

Toronto CN Tower

Enjoy the best views of Toronto at CN Tower! You’ll have seen the tower from other spots on your Toronto itinerary – it’s so tall, you can see it from many places in the city and it’s an iconic part of the Toronto skyline.

The CN tower experience is a thrilling one. The LookOut Level is your first stop, where you’ll have phenomenal views – see if you can spot all of the stops on day 1 of your itinerary for Toronto!

From there you can choose to walk on the world-renowned Glass Floor and see everything right below you. This was the first of its kind when it opened in 1994, and continues to be one of Toronto’s top attractions! On the same level, you can step outdoors and check if the air is thinner up here, on the SkyTerrace of the CN tower.

If you’ve timed day one of your Toronto itinerary so that you can be here at sunset. Watch the sky change colour and the buildings glow golden at this most beautiful time of day. It’ll also make for some truly fantastic pictures! But either way, whatever time you head up the CN tower you’ll have awesome views of Downtown Toronto and beyond.

Cost  – $38 USD general admission How long should I stay here?  1.5 hrs Getting there –   Take the Line 510 tram to Queens Quay West at Rees St and it’s a 5 min walk from here.

Insider Tip: This stop may be too intense for those afraid of heights, so if you don’t think you can handle it, rather give it a miss! If you’re going with friends or family, chill out at the Olympic Park just next door while you wait for them.

5:00 pm – Royal Alexandra Theatre

toronto tour itinerary

Opened in 1907, this historic theatre is an incredible place to see a show! The style follows 19th-century British theatres, designed to be the finest theatre in North America. The building has so much character and class.

Plays are performed at the theatre most days of the week – but keep in mind that weekends are substantially pricier, with Tuesday being the cheapest day!

Cost  – $110 USD + depending on seat and day How long should I stay here?  As long as the play/ a few hours. Getting there –   This is a 10 min walk from the CN Tower.

toronto tour itinerary

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With 2 days in Toronto, you’ll spend your second day exploring Toronto’s impressive cultural offerings. These are the very best places to visit in Toronto!

9:00 am – Woodbine Beach

Woodbine Beach Toronto

This lovely lakeside beach is a great place to start the morning. Unless you’re here in summer you may find it too chilly to swim, but there’s a lot more to enjoy. You can enjoy a breakfast picnic on the beach, or simply grab a coffee and sit on the shore, admiring the view.

You can also play a game or two of volleyball with the locals to get a bit of exercise in. This way, maybe you’ll even want to take a dip despite the chill in the air?

If you don’t like to get sandy, stroll along the boardwalk. Especially in summer, it’s the perfect Toronto stop.

Cost  – Free How long should I stay here?  1 hr Getting there –   Take Line 501 tram from Queen St West at York St to Queen St East at Coxwell Ave.

Insider Tip: If you’re an early waker, get here before sunrise! The pink sky above the lake is incredibly beautiful, and will really set the tone for the rest of your day.

10:30 am – Casa Loma

toronto tour itinerary

With 98 ornate rooms, stables and a wonderfully curated garden, Casa Loma is an incredibly unique stop in Canada. The Edwardian-style castle is built on a hill overlooking Toronto. While it bankrupted its millionaire financier, it remains well-maintained and very impressive!

While it may look like a 19th-century British castle, the project was only begun in 1911. It’s designed to mimic the castles Sir Henry Pellatt, it’s former owner, loved as a child traveling in Europe. It took over 300 men 3 years to complete, at a massive expense!

The Castle is now open to visitors and can be explored with the aid of audio guides for a self-guided tour at your own pace. There’s a lot to explore, and you can spend the whole day here, enjoying the luxurious extravagance of a castle that was enjoyed by its owner for less than 10 years before it bankrupted him!

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  1.5 hrs Getting there –   Take Line 501 tram from Queen St East at Coxwell Ave to Queen St West at University Ave. Transfer to Osgoode Station and take line 1 to St Clair West Station.

12:30 am – St. Lawrence Market

St. Lawrence Market Toronto

Experience traditional Canada at this fantastic Toronto market! The vendors are really varied, with fresh foods, creative cuisines, and some good old Canadian classics. Bring cash and explore the large market for an hour or two, tasting different options and enjoying the friendly laid-back atmosphere.

There are lots to see here and the smells are always amazing! Enjoy the delicious selections and find some fantastic deals. The crowds can be big and busy, but it remains comfortable and pleasant even in the middle of the day, crowd and all. It’s a great spot to grab lunch before the rest of the day.

Cost  – Free How long should I stay here?  1 hr Getting there –   Take line 1 subway from St Clair West Station to King Station and walk 8 mins.

Insider Tip: Bring cash! Many vendors don’t have card machines. Also keep in mind that the market is open most days, but not on Sunday and Monday.

1:30 pm – Hockey Hall of Fame

toronto tour itinerary

Both an ice hockey museum and a hall of fame, this is the most Canadian stop you can imagine. Ice hockey dates back to the 19th century and remains an extremely popular – and pretty violent – sport.

The Toronto hall of fame is dedicated to the interesting history of ice hockey in the country – the people who have made it great.

You’ll find exhibits about players, teams, and memorabilia like the Stanley Cup! While hockey may not be your favorite sport, or even something you think about outside of Canada, this is a worthwhile stop either way. It’s such an important part of Toronto culture and a lot of fun. If you are a hockey fan, this place will blow your mind!

The Hall of Fame is much more than just a museum. It has two theatres, where you can feel the thrills watching hockey’s first 3D film! You can also go up against animated versions of the world’s greatest goalies! It’s something you certainly can’t do outside of Canada.

Cost  – $20 USD How long should I stay here?  1.5 hrs Getting there –   The Hall of Fame is an 8 min walk away.

3:00 pm – The Art Gallery of Ontario

Art Gallery of Ontario Toronto

The Art Gallery of Ontario, or AGO, hosts an eclectic mix of brilliant art! The large national gallery is never dull, with ever-changing exhibitions and events. Even the architecture is really great!

The atmosphere at the gallery is serene and peaceful, and you’ll find that your fellow gallery-goers tend to be wonderfully respectful, and everyone’s having a great time. Entrance is free both for younger people and all indigenous peoples!

AGO has a fantastic combination of sculpture, photography, and art always on display, and introduces some incredibly talented new artists to the scene, as well as showcasing classic works!

They even have workshops every week. So if you fancy the idea of painting with water-colors in the park, or combining art and writing in a guided exploration, check out what’s on offer for the rest of your time in Toronto.

Cost  – Free for under 25s, $25 USD for older How long should I stay here?  1.5 hrs Getting there –  Head to King Station and take the line 1 subway to St Patrick Station and walk 8 mins from there.

Insider Tip: If your Toronto itinerary overlaps with a Wednesday, be sure to visit the gallery after 6 pm for a fantastic free evening!

4:30 pm – Toronto Eaton Centre

toronto tour itinerary

This fantastically large shopping centre is the perfect place to find everything you need. Bring back specialty chocolates as gifts for the folks back home, or get some new gear for that great Canadian journey.

You’ll find all the Candian brands at this vast mall! The atmosphere is vibrant and fun, the mall filled with enthusiastic Canadians and tourists.

With an arching glass roof and innovative design, the Eaton Centre is a truly impressive sight. While you’re strolling past stores, you won’t be able to help but look up and appreciate the grandeur of the place!

Cost  – Free How long should I stay here?  1 hr Getting there –   Take line 505 tram from Dundas St West at McCaul St to Dundas St West at Bay St and walk 5 mins.

7:00 pm – Watch a Hockey Game

Hockey Game Toronto

Now that you’ve got a better understanding and appreciation for this great Canadian game after stop 4, it’s time to watch it played! You can watch a game every Wednesday and weekend in Toronto through most of the year, whether it’s during NHL season or not.

This is a full-contact sport, and can get quite violent. It’s also incredibly fast, as the ball gets shot across the ice, and the men hardly move any slower. Whether you have no prior interest in ice hockey, or you love the sport, it’s a thrilling thing to watch!

There are a number of arenas in Toronto. You can choose your game based on where it’s played, or who’s playing! Grab a hotdog and a beer, and settle into your seats (safely behind the glass panels). This will be a perfect end to your 2-day itinerary in Toronto!

Cost  – $30+ USD depending on seat and season How long should I stay here?  3 hrs Getting there –   Take Line 320 bus from Yonge St at Shuter St to Bay St at Front St West South Side and walk 4 mins.

Toronto itinerary

The Only Backpacker’s Inn

Vibrantly colorful and bright, this cheerful hostel is a fantastic place to spend your holiday! There’s great shared spaces inside and out, with a comfortable homey atmosphere.

  • Free Breakfast

If you’ve got 3 days in Toronto or more, check out these further Toronto itinerary stops! Whether you choose to do them over a long vacation in Toronto or fit them into one more day, they’re sure to make your holiday ever better.

1. Historic Distillery District

toronto tour itinerary

For all art lovers, cultural enthusiasts, or hipsters, the Distillery District is a fantastic place to explore! You’ll find outdoor sculptures and spontaneous dance performances among the cobblestone streets.

You’ll also find some fantastic art galleries hosting local artists and theatres with musical and stage performances. Step into Young Centre for the Performing Arts and see what’s on at the moment! The arts centre has 4 venues for theatre, music, and dance – there’s usually something going on.

We suggest you visit the Distillery District in the evening, as it comes alive at night, and there’s even more to see and do!

This is the perfect area for some chilled-out bar hopping. It’s also a superb place to meet new people and make some interesting friends. The Victorian industrial buildings form the setting for some interestingly modern attractions, contrasting old with new!

The whole area is filled with fantastic food and trendy, unique restaurants. Our favourite is Balzac’s Distillery District! Set in an 1895 pump house, the exposed-brick interior and matching decor is the perfect place to enjoy some delicious pastries and coffee.

We love that this whole district is reserved for pedestrians! It means you can enjoy strolling with no concerns and transports you back in time to when the district was just set up – but with better food and service. If you’ve got 3 days in Toronto then be sure to check out this area too.

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  1-2 hrs Getting there –   Take the Line 72 bus from near the CN Tower and walk 7 mins.

2. High Park

Toronto High Park

Wondering what to do in Toronto for free? High Park, Toronto’s largest recreational area, is a must-see on your Toronto itinerary! There is so much to do here, you could spend the whole day without getting bored. If you’ve got 3 days in Toronto then definitely try to check it out.

A visit to the park is best on sunny days when you can enjoy the myriad activities in the best conditions.

The park has various picnic spots and lovely eateries, so you can choose between bringing your own perfect meal, or grabbing something healthy and tasty right here.

You can paddle around the lake, or trek one or two of the gorgeous hiking trails which take you through Toronto’s natural vegetation. Easy access to public transport makes it an ideal stop for everyone depending on busses and trains to get around!

Visit the Chinese garden, which covers everything in pink during the cherry tree blooming in April – March. Find ducks, geese, and squirrels along the Grenadier lakefront. You’ll even come across a charming little zoo with llamas and peacocks – and admission is free!

Whether you’re hiking, picnicking, or playing some laid-back sports match with the locals, it feels like you’ve left the city far behind, relaxing in the countryside.

It’s so big that the crowds never get too much, and you’re bound to find something you love doing! It’s also the perfect place to enjoy some free activities when your money’s running a little tight.

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  2 hrs Getting there –   Take the train from Toronto Union Station to Bloor and walk for 20 mins.

3. Visit the Toronto Islands

Toronto Island

Also referred to as ‘The Islands’, the Toronto Islands are a wonderful green space you can explore in a variety of ways. Leave the city behind – right behind – and catch a ferry from Downtown Toronto. It only takes 15-minutes and if you’ve got 3 days in Toronto then they are worth the time for sure.

The islands are connected by a series of pathways and bridges, enhancing the natural beauty of the area even more! Together, they stretch for 5km. You can rent a bicycle and ride along the waters-edge paths, or simply take a stroll. It’s the perfect spot to enjoy a picnic.

The sandy beaches are pristine and ideal for swimming. You can also rent a kayak here. We suggest you do. An hour or two rental will allow you to explore the islands from the most beautiful angles. You can also rent it for half a day, and moor your little vessel at a few of the more secluded beaches. It’s the ideal laid-back day in Toronto !

The Island is basically a gorgeous park, with a great many activities and sights for people of all ages. The funny thing is, it wasn’t always an island as it separated from the mainland only in the last 100 years due to flooding in the lake.

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  2-3 hrs Getting there –   Head to the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal at Bay Street on Queens Quay and take a ferry to Hanlan’s Point, Centre Island or Ward’s Island.

4. Allan Gardens Conservatory

toronto tour itinerary

Nestled away in this uniquely beautiful structure, you’ll find exotic jungle and desert plants blooming year-round! Even in Toronto’s freezing winters, you’ll find these plants alive and thriving!

The gardens were founded in 1858, with the first hall constructed in 1979. It is one of the oldest parks in Toronto and remains exquisitely beautiful. The last hothouse was added in the 1950s, moved here from Toronto’s Exhibition Park. Whether you’re visiting for a love of plants or architecture, you’ll adore it.

The conservatory nurtures rare tropical plants from around the world inside a full five greenhouses. The so-called ‘cool-house’ even has a waterfall and a small pond. Be sure to also see the Cactus House – the strange desert plants are amazing.

Allan Gardens is also fully free to the public. Check if they have any seasonal shows when you’re in Toronto – they’re famed for them!

If you’re touring Toronto, you simply have to visit this gem, and spend some time exploring the magical hothouses!

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  2 hrs Getting there –   Take the Line 1 subway from St Andrew Station to College Station and walk 10 mins.

5. Niagara Falls Day Trip

toronto tour itinerary

No trip to this area of Canada would be complete without visiting this magnificent natural wonder. Sure, Niagara Falls is a bit touristy but it’s for good reason and you’ve just got to visit if you get the chance. Taking a day trip here is the perfect way to get out of the city and see some of the natural sides of Canada that the country is famous for. Be sure to see the falls from the Canadian side too as it’s better than the view from the US!

Cost  – $30 USD How long should I stay here?  All Day Getting there –   Take the ViaRail from Union Station or the GO Train which is seasonal. An organised tour is also a great way to visit.

Toronto is a rainy city – on average, over a third of the year experiences rainfall. But it tends to drizzle rather than come down in a deluge, and there are many days with no rain at all. When to visit Toronto depends on what you’re looking for!

If you’re interested in sunny days and street markets, summer (June – September) is the best time to be in Toronto Canada. The city is vibrantly busy and cheerful at this time, and you can do more outside.

When to visit Toronto

If you’d prefer to avoid the crowds and the summertime prices without experiencing that winter chill, we suggest you go in spring (March – June), or fall (September – November)! It’s still lovely although you might miss the great summer markets.

Winter is a very different experience in Toronto, and often the way people picture Canada! Freezing cold, and often snowy. If you don’t mind the cold, we love this time of year! The indoors are warm even though it’s cold outside, and you can get back to your accommodation and curl up in front of the fire with fluffy socks and a toasty hot chocolate!

Toronto has a great transport system that runs across a subway, streetcar and bus and is known as the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). This network is extensive and covers many of the different neighbourhoods and suburbs.

You’ll have to buy a pass or a token to ride on the TTC. Be sure to buy a day pass for CA$12.50 or a week pass for CA$43.75 if you plan on using the TTC a lot.

The subway also connects the city to the Toronto Pearson International Airport.

The Ferry also connects the city to the Toronto Islands and Union Station is connected to all major cities in Canada as well as many in the US.

Toronto is one of the safest places in the world! It’s considered to be the safest large city in North America and competes globally for the same title. So there really isn’t much to be concerned about – night and day, it’s a great place to be.

Still, there are certain safety precautions that never hurt. Like any city, there are pickpockets and dangerous people. So if you walk alone at night, avoid quiet, unlit streets. Stick to places with other people. And if you do walk back to your accommodation alone, keep pepper spray on you! It’s always a good thing to buy whenever you land somewhere new.

To avoid pickpocketing, keep your bag securely closed and on your person.

In such a safe, positive place you have little to worry about. But it’s always good to be careful.

You should also consider what season you’ll be visiting Toronto in and pack accordingly. Toronto is somewhere that experiences relative extremes of weather compared to what most of us are used to. From super cold in the winter to warm and sunny in the summer.

Don’t Forget Your Travel Insurance for Toronto

Don’t get caught out in the excitement of booking your trip and forget about the most important bit, travel insurance! It might not be the most fun part of planning your adventures but if anything should go wrong then you’ll be glad you took the time.

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing .

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

toronto tour itinerary

SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

Click the button below to learn more about SafetyWing’s setup or read our insider review for the full tasty scoop.

Find out what people want to know when planning their Toronto itinerary.

How many days are enough for Toronto?

Spending 2-4 days in Toronto will allow you to check out the city’s top attractions as well as take some day trips.

What should you include on a 2-day Toronto itinerary?

No trip to Toronto is complete without checking out these iconic attractions: – The CN Tower – Kensington Market – St. Lawrence Market – Watch a Hockey Game – Distillery Historic District

Where should you stay for your Toronto travel itinerary?

Staying in Downtown Toronto will put you in a good area to jump on public transport or even walk to many areas. Here there are lots of places to eat too.

What are the best day trips from Toronto?

There are a few you can take but the most popular and must do is a day trip to Niagara Falls on the border the the USA.

Canada is growing as a fantastic tourist destination, due to its unique culture and range of activities. We’ve put together all the best Toronto attractions and points of interest. You’ll leave the city has seen and experienced all the very best Toronto has to offer!

Whether you’re spending the weekend in Toronto or the month, there are lots to keep you entertained. We suggest you try to go during the middle of the week, or the weekend, as this is when most events are open to the public.

Go on day trips to the surrounding countryside and nearby cities, visit iconic Toronto landmarks, and enjoy the fusion of diverse nature with a modern metropolis. It’s the perfect destination for a family holiday, a romantic rendezvous, or a solo backpacking trip! Pack for rain and shine, and book those flights!

toronto tour itinerary

And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links . That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!

Sheridan Cahoon

Sheridan Cahoon

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2 Days in Toronto Itinerary: Best Itinerary for First-Time Visitors

Tyler Last updated: November 8, 2023 Canada Leave a Comment

2 Days in Toronto Canada

Toronto is the crown jewel of Ontario and the most visited city in all of Canada. This 2 day Toronto itinerary will allow you to enjoy all the top sites of the city while still giving you room to breathe. From museums, a castle, and rooftop bars, this itinerary has it all.

Table of Contents

Toronto Itinerary Day 1

CN Tower, Old Toronto, & Toronto Islands

9:30 am: CN Tower

The CN Tower is arguably the most iconic skyscraper in the Toronto skyline. Standing at a little over 550 meters tall, the tower is the tallest building in North America and was named one of the seven civil engineering wonders of the world.

On a visit to the CN Tower, you can tour the two observation decks, have lunch or dinner at the revolving 360-degree restaurant, and step out onto the outdoor terrace and glass floor walkway.

The views from the Main Observation Level are fantastic, where you’re able to look out over the entire city of Toronto. On the same level are a few different food stalls and tables if you’d like to grab a bite and enjoy the views.

CN Tower View | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

The view from the Main Observation Level | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

The Skypod is the higher of the two observation levels, located 33 stories higher than the Main Observation Level. The views are amazing and on a clear day you’ll even be able to see as far as Niagara Falls.

Looking for more of a thrill while in Toronto? The CN Tower also features the Edgewalk, a hands-free walkway for guests to traverse 116 stories above the ground. Guests are secured with nothing more than a cable as they get to experience the views from a more upfront point of view.

PRO TRAVEL TIP: If you plan to do the Edgewalk, be sure to purchase tickets a few months in advance, as they sell out early. You can find tickets online here.

Hours and Admission Costs

Hours: 9:30 am – 9:00 pm Main Observation Level: Adults ($43 CAD) Youth & Seniors ($30 CAD) Adding on the Skypod adds an extra $10 CAD Edgewalk: $199 – $225 CAD, depending on the day Website: Get updated pricing and hours here.

10:45 am: Hockey Hall of Fame

From the CN Tower, it is a 15-minute walk to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Hockey Hall of Fame is the world’s largest public collection of hockey memorabilia, and home to the Stanley Cup.

Hockey Hall of Fame Building | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Hockey Hall of Fame | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Stanley Cup | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Stanley Cup

Featured are exhibits showcasing relics dating back to the beginning of the sport to modern jerseys and gear. There are also plenty of fun and interactive exhibits that are well worth your time to check out. From the biggest hockey fans to those who know very little about the sport, you’re bound to learn something new and have fun in the process.

Website: Get hours and pricing on the official website.

12:00 pm: Gooderham Building

As you continue your tour of Old Toronto, make sure to check out the Gooderham Building, located only a block away from the Hockey Hall of Fame.

This historical site is one of the most picturesque buildings in the city. The Gooderham Building also bears a striking resemblance to the Flatiron Building in New York City.

Toronto Building | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

The Gooderham Building | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

12:15 pm: Grab a Bite at St. Lawrence Market

Continue one block past the Gooderham Building to the St. Lawrence Market.

St Lawrence Market Toronto

St Lawrence Market | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

St Lawrence Market | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Inside the St. Lawrence Market

Located in Toronto’s historic old town district, St. Lawrence Market is one of the top foodie destinations in the city. The indoor market consists of a variety of stalls where vendors offer fresh products from the region. You’ll find fresh cuts of meat, delicious seafood, fruits, cheese, and wine. Whatever you’re craving, you’ll find it at St. Lawrence Market.

Hours: Click here for updated hours.

1:30 pm: Visit the Distillery District

From St. Lawrence Market, it is a 15-minute walk or a quick taxi ride along The Esplanade to the Distillery District.

Located on the edge of Old Toronto, The Distillery District is a collection of shops and restaurants on the outskirts of Toronto’s old town district, famed for its Victorian industrial architecture and hub for culture and entertainment. The neighborhood was originally a whiskey distillery in the 19th century and was ultimately transformed into what you see today.

While you’re here, settle for a more relaxed vibe as you wander the neighborhood and take in the history. You’ll often find live entertainment here as well.

Distillery District Toronto | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Toronto’s Distillery District | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Distillery District Peace Sign

3:00 pm: Wander Toronto’s Harbourfront

A trip to Toronto would be incomplete without strolling around the city’s harbourfront. Featured here are a great range of restaurants, bars, and shops. Breathe some fresh air at Harbour Square Park and catch a ferry to the nearby islands!

From the Distillery District, it is a 30-minute walk to get here. To save your steps, hire an Uber or taxi.

4:00 pm: Toronto Islands

For the best views of the Toronto skyline, look no further than the Toronto Islands Park. This is a hotspot in Toronto during the summer months, where visitors can spend time on the beach, on the water, or out for a picnic. The islands are roughly 3 miles from end to end, and connected through a series of pathways and bridges.

This itinerary gives you several hours to wander the park and really soak in the views of the skyline. Trust me, these views never get old. If you’re visiting in the winter months you’ll even be able to catch the sunset (although be prepared for some pretty cold weather).

Toronto Skyline | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

The view of the Toronto skyline from the ferry ride | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

For more information about things to do on the islands, visit the official website. You can also get the ferry schedule here.

For information regarding the ferry, click here.

You can also take this bike tour of the Toronto Islands, which includes your ferry tickets and bicycle rental.

6:30 pm: Dinner at Goodman’s Pub & Kitchen

Located only a few minutes walk away from the ferry station, Goodman’s Pub & Kitchen is the perfect spot to end your first day in Toronto. This restaurant gets amazing reviews and offers stunning views out over the harbourfront.

Goodman

Goodman’s Pub & Kitchen | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

This is the end of your first day in Toronto, so if you’d like to allocate more time at one of the previous sites that is completely possible. Just be prepared for a later dinner, but that becomes a personal preference. Don’t forget to get some rest in preparation for day 2 of this Toronto Itinerary.

Toronto Itinerary Day 2

Casa Loma & Downtown Toronto

9:30 am: Casa Loma

We begin our day at one of the only full-sized castles in North America. It was constructed in the early 20th century for Sir Henry Pellatt as a mansion located in midtown Toronto. The house has since become a historical exhibit for the public to enjoy.

Arriving at Casa Loma is a memorable experience in itself. You’ll be in the middle of a neighborhood on the outskirts of Toronto, and without warning a castle appears right in front of you. It’s one of the most memorable experiences Toronto has to offer.

At surface level, Casa Loma appears to be an impressively constructed mansion that’s oddly placed directly outside Toronto’s city center. But a full visit here will reveal a lot more than just fancy ballrooms. You’ll find a movie theater, secret tunnels, and even a wax museum! The castle also features three hidden passageways, one of which has never been found. Will you be lucky enough to discover the final one?

Casa Loma | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Casa Loma | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Inside Casa Loma

Inside Casa Loma | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Casa Loma Hall | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Hours: 9:30 am – 5:00 pm, open daily. Last admission 4:30pm Cost: Adult $40CAD Website: Get updated hours and pricing on the official website.

12:00 pm: Royal Ontario Museum

The Royal Ontario Museum is the largest museum for world cultures and natural history in Canada. From dinosaur fossils to historic artifacts and works of art, the ROM has it all. We found that there was no shortage of cool stuff to see here and had a blast spending a few hours walking between exhibits.

This itinerary gives you 2 hours to fully experience the museum. Enjoy your time at the ROM!

Royal Ontario Museum

Royal Ontario Museum | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

Hours: Open Tues-Sun from 10:00am – 5:30pm. Closed Mondays Cost: Adult $23CAD, Child (4-14yr) $14CAD

2:00 pm: Lunch at Hemingway’s Restaurant

Hemingway’s was one of our favorite restaurants in Toronto. Located a block away from the Royal Ontario Museum, this restaurant is a New Zealand inspired rooftop bar and grill. Hemingway’s has a great selection of food and beer, and also isn’t on the pricey side. Their kitchen is also open everyday of the year until 2am!

Hemingway's Toronto

Hemingway’s | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

PRO TRAVEL TIP: Hemingway’s and the ROM are located near each other. You have the option to switch the order and have lunch before visiting the Royal Ontario Museum.

4:00 pm: Art Gallery of Ontario

Another great museum to spend an afternoon at, the Art Gallery of Ontario is Toronto’s largest collection of art and one of the largest museums in North America. For any and all art-lovers out there, this museum is highly recommended.

Hours: Opens 10:30 am, closes between 5:00 pm and 9:00 pm depending on day. Cost: Adult $25CAD, ages 25 and under receive free admission Website: Get updated hours and pricing on the official website.

To get here from the ROM and Hemingway’s, it is a 30-minute walk. If you have a car, you can drive and park in the city center or hire an Uber.

5:30 pm: Yonge-Dundas Square

Referred to as the “Times Square of Toronto”, Yonge-Dundas Square is a hub of shops and entertainment. Browse the nearby stores and watch the street performers at work!

Yonge-Dundas Square

Yonge-Dundas Square | JHVEPhoto/shutterstock.com

6:30 pm: Nathan Phillips Square

Found right in the center of downtown Toronto, Nathan Phillips Square is the colorful and picturesque heart of the city. Take a picture with the Toronto sign, with the Toronto City Hall set as a backdrop. The fountain that sits in front of the sign is converted into an ice rink during the winter season, so make sure to strap on some skates while you’re here!

Toronto Sign

Nathan Phillips Square | 2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

On the edge of the square, you’ll also find the Toronto Old City Hall, another notable landmark with its clocktower.

7:00 pm: Dinner at The Carbon Bar

For the final stop on this itinerary, make sure to grab dinner at The Carbon Bar. Only a 5 minute walk from Nathan Phillips Square, this restaurant and bar specializes in some pretty exceptional barbeque. This spot gets excellent reviews and is the perfect way to savor the end of your trip while leaving you wanting more.

How to Get Around Toronto

Most of the sites on this itinerary are all located within walking distance. However, Toronto is a very accessible city with plenty of different public transportation options.

While we were here, we visited some sites that were a bit further from the city center via the city’s streetcars. The city also features a subway and bus system. This site has schedules and maps of everything you need to know about public transit in Toronto.

Where to Stay in Toronto

LUXURY: The St. Regis Toronto. With a spa, indoor pool, gym, and bar and restaurant on the 31st floor of the hotel, this is one of the top hotels in the city. Some rooms have spectacular views of the Toronto skyline.

UPSCALE: The Omni King Edward Hotel. Located in the city center, this hotel features massive rooms and suites that are beautifully decorated. It is within walking distance of the CN Tower, St. Lawrence Market, and some of Toronto’s best restaurants.

MID-RANGE: Sonder at the Liberty. This hotel has an excellent location in the city center. Rooms are modernly decorated and come with a kitchenette. Room types range from deluxe suites to one, two, and three-bedroom suites.

MID-RANGE: Stylish Downtown Toronto Residential Hotel. This is also located in the city center, a little farther away from the CN Tower and harbor than Sonder at the Liberty. This boutique property gets exceptional reviews. Rooms are spacious studio suites that come with a kitchen and washing machine.

BUDGET: The Rex Hotel Jazz & Blues Bar. With an excellent location, it’s possible to stay in the city center and not spend a lot of money. Rooms are basic and can accommodate between one and four people.

Tours of Toronto

Here are several highly rated tours of Toronto that can easily be added onto this itinerary, including sightseeing cruises and helicopter rides for fantastic views of the city.

If you have any questions about this Toronto Itinerary let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to Canada

NIAGARA FALLS: Niagara Falls is just a short drive from Toronto. Learn how to spend 48 hours in Niagara Falls.

NEW YORK CITY: Let us take the guesswork out of planning a trip to New York City with our 5 Days in New York City Itinerary . We also have a New York City Hotel Guide and an article that covers the top sights in New York City.

BOSTON: For information about Boston, read our article Best Things to Do in Boston . We also have a detailed guide on how to day trip to Plymouth, Lexington, and Concord from Boston.

MORE CITIES AROUND THE WORLD: Visit more cities around the world with our guides to Rome , Paris , New York City , London , Barcelona , and Athens.

Read all of our articles about Canada in our Canada Travel Guide.

2 Days in Toronto Canada

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3 Days in Toronto: The Perfect Itinerary (First Time Visit)

How to spend 3 days in toronto: the best itinerary + where to stay.

You’re planning to spend 3 days in Toronto ?

Great idea!

In order to help you plan your stay , I have prepared for you the perfect itinerary to visit Toronto in 3 days.

I will start this guide with my best tips to avoid the long waiting lines in front of the CN Tower and other Toronto must-see attractions.

Then, I will give you my optimized and detailed 3-day itinerary to make the most of your stay in Canada ‘s largest city.

In addition to the best places to visit and activities for each stage of your itinerary, I will also give you all my best tips and accommodation suggestions depending on your budget.

So, what are the best things to do in Toronto in 3 days? Where to stay?

Let’s find out!

1. The Toronto City Pass

2. skip-the-line tickets for toronto’s tourist attractions, one last tip for a perfect 3-day stay in toronto, a. kensington market / chinatown, b. the distillery district, c. st. lawrence market, d. ripley’s aquarium, e. cn tower, a. casa loma, b. the royal ontario museum, c. the toronto islands, option 1 – stroll and sightsee in toronto, option 2 – excursion to niagara falls, where to stay in toronto, visiting toronto in 3 days with family, more things to do and see in toronto in 3 days, map of your 3-day itinerary in toronto, 3 days in toronto: flight prices, you’re traveling in canada these articles will help you, my best tips to save time at toronto’s must-see attractions.

Toronto, along with Montreal and Vancouver , is one of Canada’s most significant cities.

Many tourists treat themselves to a quick stay in Ontario’s capital during their Canadian itinerary , even if it’s just to check out the famous Niagara Falls !

Regardless of the time of year, you’re bound to face long lines at major tourist spots like the iconic CN Tower or the Royal Ontario Museum .

But fear not! I’ve got 2 straightforward tricks to skip the queues and get the most out of your 3-day Toronto trip. Let’s dive right into them!

The first solution you should go for to save money and avoid the queues during your 3-day Toronto stay is to purchase the Toronto City Pass .

You just need to click on the green button below to grab it. Simply enter the number of adult or child tickets you need to get your Toronto Pass with all the attraction tickets emailed directly to you .

You can simply show them on your smartphone or have them printed out . It’s hassle-free and convenient! Once activated (when you visit the first included site), the Pass is valid for 30 consecutive days .

When making the reservation, there’s no need to choose a specific date, the Pass just needs to be used in the year of purchase.

The Toronto City Pass includes access to 6 must-see places during your 3 days in Toronto :

  • The CN Tower – Slated for the 1st day!
  • Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada (also on day 1)
  • Casa Loma – Schedule this for day two of your 72-hour Toronto adventure!
  • The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) – Also on day 2
  • Toronto Zoo (for the last day)
  • The Ontario Science Centre (also on the final day’s itinerary).

As you can see, this Pass is truly the best solution to explore Toronto in 3 days!

Book your Toronto City Pass now by clicking the button below:

The second solution to avoid long waits at attractions is to purchase skip-the-line tickets on a case-by-case basis .

You’ll have the flexibility to tailor your selection according to your own 3-day tour program in Toronto. It’s all about making the choices that suit you best!

You also have the option to book guided walking tours or Segway tours , other activities like a cruise or a helicopter ride, as well as a trip to Niagara Falls for instance.

There are loads of super cool things to do in Toronto in 3 days .

To save you the hassle of searching, I’ve already compiled a list of priority access tickets and tours that I recommend in my itinerary.

You just need to click the links to book them , and I’ll also mention them throughout this article:

  • The Royal Ontario Museum
  • Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada
  • Guided walking tour of the Distillery District
  • Segway tour of the Distillery District
  • Gourmet tour at the St. Lawrence Market
  • The Art Gallery of Ontario
  • Guided tour of Kensington Market and Chinatown
  • 3-hour bike tour of Toronto
  • Cruise around Toronto Islands
  • A helicopter flight over Toronto
  • Excursion to Niagara Falls
  • Helicopter ride over Niagara Falls
  • Skylon Tower observation deck
  • Journey Behind The Falls
  • Zip-lining at Niagara Falls
  • BATA Shoe Museum
  • Little Canada
  • Hop-on, hop-off bus tour
  • A harbor cruise with lunch, brunch, or dinner included
  • Private guided walking tour with a local 
  • A night tour themed on ghosts 
  • Guided beer-themed tour  

Feel free to check out all available tickets by clicking here: Book your tickets and guided tours in Toronto .

If you already know your travel dates (or as soon as you will have them!) , you should really book your accommodation.

As Toronto is one of the most touristic cities in the world , the hotels offering the best value for money are often fully booked months in advance.

As a seasoned traveler, I can assure you that it’s always by planning as far in advance as possible that I’ve found the best hotels or apartments deals.

You agree that it would be a shame to somewhat ruin your stay in Toronto by ending up in a not-so-great hotel that costed you a fortune, right? 😅

So your best bet is to take 5 minutes now to have a look at  traveler’s favorite hotels in Toronto.

And if you like one of the hotels you find, book it!

It’s fast, it’s easy and most accommodation offer free cancellation. That’s the best way to protect yourself from the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.

To check the best hotels deals in Toronto, simply click on the green button below:

After securing your dream stay, it’s time to continue reading this guide!

Visiting Toronto in 3 days: the best itinerary

It’s time to reveal my 72-hour itinerary for Toronto . All you have to do is follow this day-by-day sightseeing schedule to ensure an awesome time.

When creating this route, I presumed that you’ll be spending a full three days in Toronto and have chosen the Toronto City Pass or skip-the-line tickets to get the most out of your daily visits.

And hey, if you have any questions or need assistance in planning your stay after reading this post, don’t hesitate to seek advice in the comments section!

So, what should you see in Toronto in 3 days ?

Toronto Itinerary – Day 1

Day 1 in 3-day visit to Toronto

Day 1 visits:

A. Kensington / Chinatown B. The Distillery district C. St. Lawrence Market D. Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada E. CN Tower

I recommend kick-starting your 3-day Toronto itinerary by exploring Kensington Market . This neighborhood holds the distinction of being one of the oldest and most renowned in the city.

It has a super cool vibe, with a hippy and bohemian style . You can browse through the numerous thrift stores and vintage shops , where you’ll find products from all over the world .

There are also plenty of health-oriented restaurants offering organic, vegetarian, and vegan dishes.

Once you reach the intersection of Spadina Avenue and Dundas Street West , continue your leisurely stroll into the vibrant streets of Chinatown that adjoin Kensington. Chinatown is just as cosmopolitan as its neighbour, with its grocery stores selling exotic products and various Asian oddities.

You’ll also find the cheapest souvenirs in the whole city here! It’s time to buy the traditional postcard and fridge magnet to complete your collection.

Also, Chinatown is home to excellent restaurants serving traditional noodles, chicken soups, and dumplings.

While you’re in the area, I suggest you check out Graffiti Alley, a street perpendicular to Spadina Avenue. The walls of this street are completely covered in graffiti for about a hundred meters, some of which are by renowned artists.

To visit Kensington and Chinatown , you should opt for a guided tour . It’s the best way to not miss a thing and enjoy local stories and anecdotes about the two districts.

The tour lasts 2 hours , after which you can continue your day following my itinerary.

You can book this guided tour in Toronto by clicking on the button below:

Kensington Market

Next on your 3-day tour of Toronto is another historic neighborhood: Distillery District .

You’ll find it in Old Toronto , approximately 45 minutes walk from Graffiti Alley , but if you don’t feel like walking, you can also take the tramway there .

The Distillery District consists of several typical red-brick buildings, which once belonged to one of the largest distilleries in the world.

Completely renovated and transformed into a pedestrian zone , the area has kept its tradition as many establishments offer tastings of local beers , but it has also morphed into a trendy zone with hip coffee shops and unique stores .

And if you’ve chosen to spend 3 days in Toronto at the end of the year, you’ll also find the Christmas market there!

To discover all the secrets of this iconic district , nothing beats a guided tour with an engaging guide. Book it using the button :

And for a mix of history with a fun experience , this guided tour is also available on Segway !

The Distillery district

After a morning of exploring Toronto, I bet you’re starting to feel a little hungry. Head to the St. Lawrence Market for a delicious lunch break!

From the Distillery District, take “The Esplanade” street which runs along several parks for about a kilometre, and you’ll arrive right at the market.

In this charming covered market, steeped in authenticity for over 200 years , crowned the world’s best market by National Geographic, you’ll discover an array of fantastic local products that you can even sample right on the spot.

If you’re interested in delving deeper into its fascinating history, you can also take part in guided tours that include tastings . You can book this activity by clicking on the button below :

While you’re in the area and en route to your next destination, make sure not to overlook the Gooderham building , also known as the Flatiron Building . This striking red brick structure is an iconic symbol of the city and definitely worth a stop to capture some memorable photos.

St. Lawrence Market

I suggest you continue your afternoon by visiting Ripley’s Aquarium of Toronto . From the market, it’s only a 20-minute walk or a short tramway ride .

If you’ve visiting Canada with your kids , get ready for them to go wild with excitement as they discover a whole bunch of cool animals living in this zoo.

Even if you’re not usually into this kind of stuff, Toronto’s aquarium, which happens to be the biggest one in Canada , is actually pretty awesome. They’ve done a great job with it, and it’s definitely worth checking out.

Plus, the visit is free with the Toronto City Pass !

If you haven’t already purchased your city pass, I highly recommend grabbing your skip-the-line tickets right below to avoid any waiting time at the entrance. Trust me, it’s a game-changer.

Ripley's Aquarium of Canada

CN Tower , THE must-see attraction of the city, is an essential part of your 3-day Toronto stay!

Luckily, it’s right next to the aquarium.

My tip? Head up there just before sunset to enjoy the daytime view of the city and then soak up the night-time panorama with the buildings all lit up .

At a dizzying 533 meters high , the CN Tower was once the tallest tower in the world . It has since been toppled by the likes of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai and Taipei 101 tower located in Taiwan .

But don’t worry, its height is plenty for a clear view of all of Toronto and a little thrill as you walk on its transparent glass floor ! Especially since the observation deck at 346 meters high is accessed by a glass elevator !

If you’re still in need of an adrenaline fix, no problem, I suggest you try the Edge Walk attraction . Strap on a harness and take a stroll along the tower’s external ledge.

Just bear in mind, given the price for the 30-minute experience, you’ll want to be sure you’re not going to chicken out!

To end your first day on a high note, you could also dine in the tower’s restaurant where the panoramic platform rotates during your meal, giving you the best view in the house.

A trip up the CN Tower is included in the Toronto City Pass .

You can also buy your tickets in advance on the official website .

CN Tower

Day two in Toronto: What to see and do?

Day 2 in 3-day visit to Toronto

Day 2 visits:

A. Casa Loma B. The Royal Ontario Museum C. The Toronto Islands

For your second day in Toronto, start by visiting Casa Loma .

The easiest way to get there is by taking the subway to Dupont station and walking the rest of the way.

Once there, you’ll be surprised to find that Casa Loma showcases quite unique architecture for Canada. With its turrets and raw stone walls , it looks very much like the medieval-style castles prevalent in Europe.

Built in 1914 by a wealthy industrialist, this magnificent structure took almost three years and required the labor of 300 men at a staggering cost of $3.5 million (equivalent to a hefty sum in today’s currency). Once inside, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the interior , which showcases a hundred lavishly appointed rooms , including an impressive library .

You can also enjoy one of the best views of Toronto from the castle’s turrets .

Next, enjoy a stroll through the 2-hectare park adorned with magnificent sculptures , fountains , and beautiful flower beds.

Entry to Casa Loma is free with the Toronto City Pass, and you’ll also get an audio guide in several languages .

If you don’t have a City Pass, you can buy your Casa Loma entrance ticket by clicking on this green button:

Casa Loma Toronto

Next, take the subway from Dupont station to Museum station.

That’ll bring you to Canada’s largest museum: The Royal Ontario Museum , also known as the ROM.

Here too, its exterior architecture is particularly striking and a bit controversial: a modern structure of glass and aluminum embeds itself in the old stone facade . Pretty much impossible to miss!

The ROM exhibits cover world cultures and natural history . Personally, I loved the section on the history of Canada’s First Nations and the impressive collection of dinosaur skeletons.

It’s a great idea for a visit with kids!

Entry is included in the Toronto City Pass .

Otherwise, the only way to skip the line at the entrance is to buy your skip-the-line ticket in advance here:

The Royal Ontario Museum

For the remainder of the day, why not escape the bustling city and indulge in some well-deserved relaxation on the Toronto Islands ?

Hop back on the subway at Museum station and get off at Union station .

From there, take the tram to the Queens Quay Ferry Docks Terminal where you can catch the ferry which takes just 10 minutes to reach Ward’s Island or Centre Island.

While you’re on your way, don’t forget to take in the stunning panorama of the skyline and the CN Tower . Trust me, it’s totally worth it! And if you have the opportunity, make sure to do the return trip at night for an even more impressive view.

The Toronto Islands are car-free, so you can walk or cycle around (guided tours are also available, you can find more info by clicking here !).

You’ll find several beaches and charming 1920s-style houses there.

For details on ferry schedules and things to do on the islands, I recommend you check out this website .

If you’ve been busy exploring the city’s museums and don’t have enough time to visit the islands, don’t sweat it! Simply hop on an island boat tour instead.

The guided cruise lasts 1 hour and offers a great opportunity to admire the islands. You can book it by clicking the button below :

Toronto

Day 3 in Toronto: Places to Visit

For the last day of your 3-day trip to Toronto, here are the 2 best options :

  • Stay in the city and finish up visiting the main points of interest
  • Or take a trip to Niagara Falls.

Let me break it down for you!

Day 3 in 3-day visit to Toronto

If you’re keen to continue your 72-hour Toronto circuit by staying in the city, here’s the morning itinerary I’d recommend:

  • Visit the Art Gallery of Ontario , which showcases all forms of art: photography, sculpture, and painting.
  • Stop by Nathan Philippe Square to admire Toronto City Hall .
  • Go shopping at Eaton Centre , Toronto’s largest shopping mall that houses all the American brands (Abercrombie, American Eagle Outfitters, etc.).
  • Check out Toronto’s mini Times Square: Dundas Square (located on the north side of the Eaton Centre).
  • Take a harbor cruise with lunch included (book it here!).

For the afternoon, it all depends on what you fancy:

  • For history buffs, head to Fort York , a historic site featuring a variety of period military installations . It’s an easy tram ride from downtown.
  • For a breath of fresh air, I suggest going to High Park , a massive 160-hectare park with a miniature train, playgrounds , and a free mini zoo (access by tram).
  • For an educational yet fun experience, visit the Ontario Science Centre which tackles tons of topics in a super playful way: nature, music, science, astronomy… Entry included with your Toronto City Pass .
  • In the evening, you can opt for a night tour themed around ghosts (book by clicking here!) to uncover the most chilling tales of Toronto!

If you’ve got kids, you can also use this third day to take them to the Toronto Zoo , which is a 30-minute drive from downtown.

Entry is of course included in the Toronto city pass .

City Hall Toronto

The second option, for those who don’t fancy staying in the city, is to explore the surroundings .

And if there’s one ultra-famous site not to be missed around Toronto on your Canadian trip , it’s Niagara Falls ! They’re just a 1.5-hour drive away from the city.

Once there, you’ll get the chance to to (click on the orange links to book your activities):

  • Take the traditional cruise at the foot of the falls donning your best poncho!
  • Take a thrilling helicopter flight over the falls for an absolutely extraordinary experience!
  • Climb to the top of the Skylon Tower to admire the falls from the panoramic terrace
  • Take a unique gondola suspended above the rapids of the falls.
  • Stand at the foot of the falls with the Journey Behind the Falls attraction
  • Take a zip-line descent over the falls

If you don’t feel like driving all the way, you can also book a day trip . The best one for a stress-free, all-inclusive day is offered by GetYourGuide .

They even pick you up straight from your hotel and drop you back off in the evening.

The day includes:

  • The bus ride
  • A visit to Niagara-on-the-Lake
  • A photo stop along the Niagara Parkway
  • The famous boat cruise to the heart of the Falls
  • 3 hours of free time to wander and make the most of the day
  • Optionally, you can even choose to live an extraordinary experience by flying over Niagara Falls in a helicopter!

To book this excursion , click on the green button below:

Niagara Falls

If you’ve decided to visit Toronto in 3 days with kids, here’s a recap of the absolute must-do family activities :

  • Ripley’s Aquarium 
  • Boat tour of Toronto Islands
  • Bike or walk on the Toronto Islands
  • Toronto’s Ontario Science Centre
  • Toronto Zoo

I haven’t mentioned it in this post, but you could also take them to the Legoland Discovery Centre , which offers several attractions on the Lego theme and replicas of Toronto monuments in small bricks.

You can book the entry tickets right here:

If you’re on the lookout for a fun family evening activity , you gotta check out the Medieval Times Canada show . You’ll get to enjoy 2 hours of epic medieval tournaments , an incredible bird flight demonstration, and the best part? The ticket also covers your meal and drinks .

When it comes to getting around, you can definitely follow the exact itinerary I just laid out for you.

If your kids are tired of walking or too young, the city is superbly served by public transport . You can always take the tram or metro .

Want to tweak my 3-day Toronto sightseeing itinerary a bit? Add more activities?

Then I recommend you read my other post, a complete tourist guide listing all the things to do and see in Toronto . With this, you’ll be able to craft your own itinerary for these 3 vacation days in Toronto.

It’s super easy, just click on this link: All the Best things to do in Toronto !

To help you visualize your itineraries for these 3 days in Toronto , I’ve created a map listing the places to visit day by day .

You can display the map legend by clicking the button with a small arrow located in the top left corner. That will also allow you to visualize the itineraries for each day.

Flight prices to Toronto vary greatly, so it’s a good idea to compare them as soon as possible. For this, you can use our flight comparison tool, in partnership with Skyscanner. This ensures you get the best price.

Discover all my articles about Canada : All my articles to help you plan your trip to Canada are listed there.

  • 20 Best Things to do in Canada
  • 20 Best Things to do in Quebec – All best places to visit in the French-speaking province!
  • Itinerary: One week in Canada: The perfect itinerary to visit Canada in 6, 7 or 8 days!
  • Itinerary: 10 days in Canada: All my best tips for organizing your 10-day trip to Canada
  • Itinerary: 2 weeks in Canada: How to visit Western Canada in 15 days.
  • Itinerary: 3 weeks in Canada: My epic itinerary to visit Western and Eastern Canada in 21 days
  • Itinerary: 1 month in Canada: How to visit Eastern Canada in a month!
  • Itinerary: One week in Quebec: How to visit Quebec in 6, 7 or 8 days, with all my best tips!
  • Itinerary: 10 days in Quebec: An amazing 10-day itinerary in Quebec
  • Itinerary: 2 weeks in Quebec: All my best tips to visit Quebec in 14, 15 or 16 days
  • Itinerary: 3 weeks in Quebec: the perfect 3-week road trip in Quebec !
  • Road trip in Canada: The best itineraries for 7, 10, 15, 21 days and 1 month
  • Road trip in Quebec: The best itineraries for 7, 10, 15 and 21 days
  • Calgary : Top 11 things to do during your visit
  • Montreal : 33 best things to see and do
  • Ottawa : 15 epic places to visit
  • Quebec City : Top 17 things to do and see
  • Toronto : The 17 things to do during your stay
  • Vancouver : Top 25 places to visit and activities
  • Toronto in 3 days – The perfect itinerary to visit the city in 72 hours!

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visit Toronto what to do and see

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

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Forever Karen

An Epic 3 Day Toronto Itinerary For First-Time Visitors

Toronto's waterfront

Whether planning a long weekend in Toronto or traveling as part of a Canada tour, having the perfect Toronto itinerary helps complete your bucket list. 

Scouring the web for all the Toronto must-dos and discovering some hidden gems, I created a busy schedule with all the best places to see with three days in Toronto.

I accompanied my husband, Brian, on a business trip to Toronto. While Brian was born in Toronto, it was my first time visiting Ontario, and I didn’t know what to expect. Since Brian was in a conference all day, I could explore downtown Toronto in the cold October weather.

Brian’s company paid for his flight and hotel and gave him a food allowance. By tagging along, I needed to purchase a flight and food.

By booking our  flights with WestJet , I purchased a “companion ticket” using their WestJet rewards for CAD 99 plus taxes. Traveling from Vancouver on the west coast, this was a deal I couldn’t pass up.

Quick tips on traveling to Toronto

Top picks for hotel stays:

Fairmont Royal York – Has luxurious rooms, superb service, like its other Fairmont hotels.

Shangri-La Hotel   – Offers a sustainable property with Asian flair.

Need a rental car?

Get your inexpensive  rental here.

Arriving at Toronto Pearson, I was shocked by the difference in weather. Even though I hadn’t packed warm clothing, I stuck to my 3-day Toronto itinerary, determined to experience the best of this east coast city.

Where To Stay In Toronto

Visitors to Toronto can choose from a large selection of hotels suited to different budgets. We stayed at the Westin Harbour Castle (1 Harbour Square), within walking distance of the convention centre.

Casa Loma and the Distillery District in Toronto, Canada

We had incredible views of the CN Tower, Toronto Island, and sweeping vistas of the city. Other Toronto downtown hotels include:

Toronto’s Fairmont Royal York is a historic property with timeless elegance. With just a few minutes’ walk to all the action, the location couldn’t be more perfect. The grand hotel exudes a great atmosphere with magnificent views.

For top-notch service, the Shangri-La Hotel offers an elegant Asian-inspired décor. The rooms are luxurious, the amenities fabulous, and the afternoon tea spectacular.

The Radisson Blu Toronto Downtown has a tranquil lakefront setting. The rooftop pool is perfect in summer, and the fireplaces in some rooms are ideal in the colder winter months. 

Hotel X Toronto is more of a resort than a hotel. Sports and fitness fanatics will love their fitness studio, indoor tennis courts, and choice of two swimming pools. The urban oasis also has a cinema and rooftop bar close to Ontario Place and the waterfront.

Even if you live in Ontario, some Canadians spend a long weekend in Toronto to enjoy the downtown vibe, attend a sports event, or enjoy its many attractions. Even if you have a shorter or longer itinerary, you can substitute places that suit your needs.

Toronto Itinerary, Day One

On your first day, start the morning at the Royal Ontario Museum in the University of Ontario district.

Royal Ontario Museum

  • Location:  100 Queens Park

Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto

The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is a museum that houses collections of art, world culture, and natural history. With over one million annual visitors, it is the largest museum in all of Canada and one of the most visited in North America.

The exterior of the building is as interesting as what’s inside. Resembling a giant crystal, the museum is known to many as “the crystal.”

As one of Canada’s premier cultural institutions, the ROM is beloved for its diverse collections, exhibitions, and cultural programs. Depending on how much you read, you can expect to spend up to a couple of hours exploring its exhibits.

The ROM offers an immense array of amazing exhibits for all to explore, learn and enjoy!

Legislative Assembly Of Ontario

  • Location : 111 Wellesley St W

Legislative Assembly of Ontario

Walk south through Queen’s Park to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. You can enjoy a complimentary tour to see inside the old government building.

Free tours are offered on weekdays in 30-minute time slots. Be prepared to go through a rigorous security check to enter the building.

The building has stunning architecture, beautiful stained-glass windows, and lovely paneled wood. Your tour will include the chamber if it isn’t in session.

In the legislative chamber, elected officials make decisions and pass laws for the province. The tour guides are very knowledgeable and will answer questions on the legislative process.

An alternative to visiting the government building is exploring the Art Gallery Of Ontario instead. Located at 317 Dundas St W, the five-story gallery has over 90,000 sculptures, models, paintings, and artworks.

Inside the Legislative Assembly of Ontario

Ontario Science Centre

  • Location:  770 Don Mills Road

The Science Centre makes an ideal place to visit if you’re traveling with kids or want to be inside. The never-ending interactive and learning exhibits provide hours of fun for all ages.

The centre features an OMNIMAX Theatre with up to six films showing daily. During your visit, you can learn about flight and what’s new with drone technology, see flying toys, and enjoy special events which are constantly changing.

Even if you’ve visited before, there’s always something new to discover at Ontario Science Centre.

Visit Toronto Islands

From the Toronto waterfront, take a ferry to Toronto Islands. In the summer, you can enjoy one of its many beaches, including one that’s clothing options (at Hanlan’s Point.)

The islands have many parks with diverse wildlife, and you’ll get a unique perspective of Toronto across the water. If it’s warm, pack a lunch and take advantage of the picturesque picnic areas at Gibraltar Point Lighthouse Park.

Gibraltar Point Lighthouse, Toronto Island

Located on the south shore of Toronto Island, this park offers stunning views of Lake Ontario, a popular spot for family picnics and evening barbecues. Don’t forget to visit the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse while you’re here!

If you’re traveling with children, take the kids to the Centreville Amusement Park. Built to resemble an old western town, the thrill-seekers’ park offers over 30 amusements and rides.

Biking is one of the most popular activities on the islands. Cyclists will enjoy the 20 kilometres of paved pathways, running from one end to the other at a total distance of 4.5 kilometres.

You can bring your own bike on the ferries for no extra fee or rent one from Centre Island Beach — bikes come in traditional styles, tandem bikes, or four-seater quadricycles!

Dinner At The CN Tower

No trip to this Canadian city is complete without visiting the iconic CN Tower near Union Station in the entertainment district. Since it was my first visit to Toronto, Brian surprised me with a romantic dinner at CN Tower.

View from the CN Tower

If you’re planning to eat dinner at the 360 Restaurant, reservations are recommended and expect to pay a hefty price for your night out.

The two-course dinners cost CAD 70, and the three courses CAD 85, but diners may choose a la carte too. Remember that the price includes access to the observation deck after your meal.

Arriving for dinner, we received an intimate table for two next to the window. Since I’m celiac and lactose intolerant, I stuck with the two-course meal, and Brian had the a la carte 14 oz rib-eye steak (his favorite).

Before the elevator ride, photographers take souvenir photos offered for purchase during dinner. The service was beyond amazing, and the food was delicious.

As we dined, the 360 Restaurant revolved slowly, allowing us to enjoy the twinkling lights of Toronto.

It was the perfect recipe for a Toronto date night, and even though the entire evening set us back almost CAD 350 (photos included), it was worth every penny.

Upon completing our meal, we descended to the observation deck to walk over the glass floor and enjoy the views of Toronto one more time. If dining at the CN Tower is out of budget, visit the observation deck during the day to admire the city views.

Toronto Itinerary, Day Two

On day two, start the day at the Distillery District.

Distillery District

  • Location: 55 Mill Street

Located east of downtown, the Distillery District offers a mix of residential and commercial spaces. Its heritage buildings, cobblestone streets, and winding walkways contrast the concrete jungle only blocks away.

Love locks, Distillery District, Toronto

While many original buildings date back to the 19th century, the developer preserved many old wooden beams, ironwork, stone, and brickwork. It took a skilled team of tradesmen many years to complete the visionary dream, and the Distillery District opened in 2003.

Once an old distillery district owned by Gooderham and Worts, it’s now a trendy destination for locals and tourists. This pedestrian-only zone houses an array of restaurants with outdoor patios, interesting antique boutiques, art galleries, and a vast collection of art installations.

Being an artist, I was mesmerized by the giant spiders, love lock installation, and creative art structures dotted around the entire area.

You will not find any chain stores or popular franchises in the Distillery District. Instead, you can discover a unique gift for the hockey fan at The Sport Gallery. Or how about a colorful pair of trendy socks at Floorplay Socks?

If you love shoes, John Fluevog has a fabulous collection of styles to satisfy every discerning buyer. If you’re a foodie, dining at the Distillery District is a must. It was terrific to see Balzac’s Coffee Roasters and Arco Coffee instead of your traditional Starbucks.

Distillery District, Toronto

If you’re a chocoholic like me, check out Cacao 70, where every moment of the day is the sweetest. At Cacao 70, they invite you to crunch, sip, slurp and savor your way to a state of chocolate heaven. That’s music to my ears, haha.

Many dining venues offer outdoor patios with fire pits and lanterns. These patios provide the perfect spot to enjoy a pint or two or another date night.

St. Lawrence Market

  • Location: 93 Front Street East

Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market is a Toronto city landmark that has been offering goods to Torontonians for two decades. Reminiscence of  Vancouver’s Granville Island , the historical marketplace was a treat for the eyes and nose.

Walking into the two-story building, I delighted at the smells of delicious food. St. Lawrence Market is the place to be when you’re hungry. 

The choices are vast, with peameal bacon sandwiches, Portuguese egg tarts, lobster rolls, and endless selections to tease your taste buds. This is a great place to grab lunch.

Exotic meats at the St. Lawrence Market, Toronto

Food ingredients are fresh, with incredible cheeses, seafood, meats, and fresh produce. I even found a vendor selling ostrich thighs, kangaroo loin, camel striploin, emu burgers, and crocodile filets.

Tourists should not miss this Toronto hotspot with a fantastic atmosphere, ready-made food, and unusual ingredients.

Gooderham Building

  • Location: 49 Wellington Street East

As iconic as the CN Tower, Toronto’s Gooderham Building occupies a triangle plot of land at Church Street and Wellington Street E. Also known as the Flatiron Building, the historic 19th-century red brick building give so much character to Toronto’s modern skyline.

Gooderham Building, Toronto

The building is best recognized for its pie shape with four and a half stories, arched windows, and a copper roof.

Built by the wealthy Gooderham family, who owned a distillery business, the Toronto landmark is now a historical site protected by the Ontario Heritage Trust.

Today, visitors can’t access the office building but can enjoy lunch at the Flatiron & Firkin Pub in the basement.

Whether you have a few days in Toronto or just one day, capturing that iconic photograph of the wedge-shaped structure looking down Front Street is worth a visit.

Also, walk around the building as the wide end features a stunning trompe l’oeil mural. Added in 1980, the façade incorporates the building’s windows into the faux fabric, draping beautifully from the contrasting red brick.

Gooderham Building mural, Toronto

Nathan Phillips Square

  • Location: 100 Queen Street West

Nathan Phillips Square attracts both locals and visitors alike. The open-air attraction hosts many events, from musical performances and festivals to ice skating and Christmas markets in the winter.

But most who visit come to take selfies of the larger-than-life Toronto sign. In the evening, the city illuminates the giant sign, which colors the area. During my trip to Toronto, the city drained the fountain for renovations.

There is so much history in the buildings surrounding the square in the downtown core. The old city hall and Ontario Court of Justice contrast significantly against the Toronto skyline.

Osgoode Hall

  • Location: 130 Queen Street West

Next to Nathan Phillips Square, Osgoode Hall may look out of bounds with its iron fencing. However, it’s open to the public and completely free. After a security screening similar to that at the airport, I was free to do a self-guided tour.

The building reminded me of a  stately palace in England  with spectacular Victorian architecture. Currently, the Law Society of Canada uses the structure for law studies. 

Walking into its two-story hall, I was blown away by the stained-glass ceiling, old paintings, and feeling of grandness.

The corridors leading to different building sections seemed to go on forever, but everything was well-signed. The pinnacle of Osgoode Hall is the law library on the second level. 

Inside Osgood Hall

The larger library features etched glass windows, an exquisite plaster ceiling, and a spiral-iron staircase.

Visitors can take photos in Osgood Hall without a flash in the library. Since law students study throughout the day, Osgoode Hall is not an ideal stop for families with children.

Toronto’s Graffiti Alley

  • Location: between Portland Street and Spadina Ave

Located in The Fashion District, Rush Lane or Graffiti Alley might seem like an odd place to visit. However, I was intrigued by the fantastic artwork of Toronto’s talented street artists.

Although the graffiti spans just a few short blocks, treasures are everywhere. The walk was immensely inspiring and a photographer’s paradise.

One of the best things about the area is that art constantly changes. However, some artwork pieces have stood the test of time, like the famous “fish wall.”

If you’ve ever googled Graffiti Alley, you will remember the orange and yellow fish wall where everyone takes a selfie on the bricked-up window.

This famous mural was the brainchild of Uber5000, one of the most prolific street artists in the city. It’s also one of the most Instagrammable spots in Toronto.

Mike Kennedy mural, Graffiti Alley, Toronto

One of the most touching murals is the tribute to Mike Kennedy (aka Wunder), a veteran graffiti artist. He inspired a lot of people with his fantastic artwork.

Nick Sweetman & Wales Ack created the impressive mural of Mike Kennedy. Next to the mural, a smaller art piece depicts Mike’s beloved dog.

Graffiti Alley was busier than I’d imagined. It’s not unusual to see locals conducting tours, artists gathering inspiration, and students studying the giant murals. So, if you’re looking for something out of the ordinary while visiting Toronto, Rush Lane is an unexpected gem.

Chinatown/Kensington Market

  • Location:  Spadina Ave and Dundas St W

Situated close together in Toronto, Chinatown and Kensington Market provide a vibrant cultural experience. In Chinatown, explore the countless shops, bakeries, and eateries–all infused with the busy energy of one of the biggest Chinatowns in the world!

Afterward, stroll down to nearby Kensington Market and check out its collection of bohemian boutiques and counterculture enterprises.

Trendy bars, restaurants, and cafes attract hipsters who enjoy the free-spirited vibe.

Toronto Railway Museum

  • Location: 255 Bremner Blvd

Located near the CN Tower and Ripley’s Aquarium, the Toronto Railway Museum features an old roundhouse, a small indoor exhibit, and a larger outside space containing the train engines.

Engine at the Toronto Railway Museum

The engines and cars make a fun outing for those who love trains or families with children. While the indoor exhibit charges a small fee, the outside area is free.

It was fascinating to learn the history of Ontario’s railway and the operation of the roundhouse. A miniature train ride provides excellent entertainment for both young and old.

Nearby, the Rogers Centre hosts baseball games if you’re a sports fan.

Eaton Centre

  •   Location: 220 Yonge Street

After dinner, we walked briskly to Toronto Eaton Centre, a large downtown retail mall. The giant mall has more than 250 stores spanning a couple of blocks. As a shopping center goes, it has all the usual shops and eateries.

While I’m not a shopper, I admired its architecture and flying geese artwork suspended from the ceiling.

Toronto Itinerary, Day Three

We rented a car for our last day in Toronto since we wanted to see places further away. After checking out of our hotel, our first stop was Casa Loma, a 20-minute drive away.

Having toured numerous English castles, I was intrigued to see how a Canadian castle compared to those in Europe.

  • Location: 1 Austin Terrace

At 64,700 sq feet, Casa Loma rivals some European castles with its Gothic Revival style and 98 rooms. Built by multimillionaire Sir Henry Pallett in 1914, the castle took CAD 3.5 M and three years to complete, a sizable amount at the time.

Casa Loma, Toronto

Henry and Mary Pallett only lived in the castle for nine years. After the war and facing bankruptcy, Pellatt auctioned the estate to pay his debts. The structure and its belongings brought in a fraction of their value.

Today, the City of Toronto owns the property, bought in 1933 for the cost of its back taxes. Once the city took ownership, they planned to demolish it.

However, the Kiwanis Club proposed to operate it as a tourist attraction, securing its future in Toronto. Four years later, the estate opened to tourists and remains one of the only real castles in Canada .

Touring the estate, I relived Pallett’s dreams of this castle with the help of an audio tour. With heavy bronze doors, opulent chandeliers, 21 fireplaces, and 30 bathrooms, it wasn’t money well spent.

Casa Loma bedroom

Pallett spared no money decorating the rooms with the finest furnishing, priceless artwork, and the highest quality of materials. Even the mahogany stables with tile floors cost a staggering CAD 250,000 in 1914, with the horses’ names added to the stalls in 18-karat gold.

Seeing the over-extravagance, it didn’t surprise me that Pallett lost his fortune. Outside, the gardens and fountains add interest to the property.

The views of downtown Toronto are spectacular from the castle towers and gardens. Expect to spend a few hours to half a day touring Casa Loma.

Niagara Falls

Our three days in Toronto allowed me to check one thing off my bucket list, Niagara Falls. We didn’t linger too long at Casa Loma because we had a three-hour road trip to Niagara Falls.

While the drive from Toronto was long, it didn’t dampen my enthusiasm for  going to Niagara Falls . Arriving at the falls, I was blown away by the spectacular scenery. I was surprised that it was warmer in Niagara Falls than in downtown Toronto.

As it was early October, we didn’t have to battle any crowds, and we enjoyed the walk along the Niagara River to the Niagara Falls viewpoint.

Not wanting to get soaking wet on the Hornblower cruise (it was October, after all), we chose to tour the Journey Behind the Falls instead. Traveling 150 feet below Table Rock, I found the experience behind the falls interesting, loud, and wetter than I’d imagined.

Visiting Niagara Falls

Like the Hornblower cruises, the visitors center gives plastic ponchos to guests, which are needed when venturing onto the observation decks. You should not miss the tunnels behind the falls. Here, you can imagine the effort it took to drill these out of the rock.

Standing at the two portals behind the falls, the thundering sound of the water was deafening. I learned a staggering 154 million liters flow over the falls EVERY minute.

Hearing its fury and experiencing its spray made me wonder why individuals choose to go over the falls in a barrel.

Walking out onto the observation decks, we both got wet, even with ponchos. So, if you’re using a cell phone for pictures, protect it with   a plastic pouch . Also, DSLR cameras need a  rain sleeve  to prevent water damage.

After a wetter-than-expected adventure, we strolled to Clifton Hill, an overly commercialized area with amusements. Reminiscent of a theme park, I felt the development spoiled the natural beauty of Niagara Falls.

Staying At Niagara Falls

Being a top tourist attraction, don’t expect hotel bargains at Niagara. Since we only stayed one night before our flight the next day, Brian chose a pricey hotel overlooking the falls.

The Oakes Hotel Overlooking the Falls gave us incredible views of the Horseshoe Falls right from our bed.

Niagara Falls sunrise

At night, the falls illuminated beautiful tones which continuously changed. I could have watched its changing hues for hours. The colors correspond to events—for instance, red and white for Canada Day.

Morning at Niagara gave me a better appreciation for this incredible natural beauty as the sun peeked over the horizon. The sunrise was breathtaking and left me speechless.

That amazing sunrise ended my 3-day Toronto itinerary as I journeyed back to Toronto Pearson International Airport for my flight home.

Final Thoughts

While my three-day itinerary in Toronto was jam-packed, I got to accomplish everything on my to-do list.

At the end of our short Toronto trip, Brian was impressed I saw places he didn’t know existed. Next time, I’ll be his tour guide, even though he grew up in Toronto.

If you plan to visit Ripley’s Aquarium, CN Tower, Royal Ontario Museum, Casa Loma, or the Toronto Zoo, consider purchasing the Toronto City Pass.

The pass includes admission to five attractions, saving you money. Since Toronto experiences four seasons, what you decide to do may depend on the time of visitation.

Do you have any unique places you visit when in Toronto? Leave a comment below.

Happy travels ~ Karen

The CN Tower in Toronto, Canada

Saturday 24th of June 2023

Greta article. We’re visiting at the end of august. Where did you watch the sunrise at Niagara?

Forever Karen

We watched the sunrise from our hotel. We had a room overlooking the falls.

Tuesday 14th of September 2021

Toronto, Ontario is one of the best place to visit.

Privacy Overview

3 Days in Toronto: Perfect Itinerary (From a Local) | 2023 Travel Blog

Planning a trip to Toronto? If you have 3 days in Toronto or less, we have the perfect itinerary written by a local to make the most of your short visit. Read on for the best things to do, where and what to eat, where to stay and other insider travel tips.

3 Days in Toronto Itinerary (2023)

3 Days in Toronto Itinerary Travel Blog

-Written by Liliane of My Toronto, My World –

Toronto’s an enormous city and many don’t know that it’s actually the 5th largest city in North America after Mexico City, New York City , Los Angeles and Chicago . There’s a ton to do across all 6 boroughs (hence we’re nicknamed the six) and despite having lived here for over 15 years now I definitely haven’t done it all. There are always events going on and new restaurants going up and without exaggerating I think you could easily spend 2 weeks in Toronto without getting bored but 3 days is a great taste of what the city has to offer in terms of food and sights and will you give you an opportunity to see what Toronto has to offer.

Day 1 in Toronto: Downtown Core & West End

36 to 48 hours in Toronto Queen Street West Mural

Queen Street West is one of the hippest areas in Toronto and one that reflects the culture of Toronto perfectly so it makes for a great start to your first day. The area is full of restaurants and unique stores and is home to one of the best parks in Toronto (Trinity Bellwoods Park) and a collection of fantastic murals. The brunch scene in Toronto is fantastic and you’ll find a few great places to start your day within the Queen Street West area. Many of the restaurants have sites like this Nella Toronto site, to get all the best electricals, and gadgets to provide the best service to customers, so they are lucky really! Perhaps that is why everything looks so clean and new and classy. Find out for yourself! Early Bird Coffee and Kitchen is great if you want a sit-down meal but go early because lineups are quite common for most of the Toronto brunch restaurants. If you don’t want a proper meal then there’s a number of local coffee shops to chose from if you just want to grab something to go. Start your exploring off with checking out some of the stores in the area. My favorites are Curiosa (a great shop of odd things that makes for great gifts), Crown Flora Studio (super beautiful flowers) and FloorPlay Socks (some super funky socks with great prints).

Make sure to take a look at the side of the buildings because Queen Street West has some of the best murals in Toronto and you’ll want to grab some pictures of these. Once you’ve digested some of your breakfast make sure to grab some ice cream because the area does have some of the best ice cream in Toronto . My absolute favorite is Bang Bang Ice Cream & Bakery but majority of the ice cream places in the neighborhood are delicious! To wrap up Queen Street West head to Trinity Bellwoods Park with your ice cream to relax and do some prime people watching!

After you’ve finished up with your ice cream continue onto Graffiti Alley which is further east on Queen Street. It’s one of the free things to do in Toronto which is great because the city can be on the more expensive side. Graffiti Alley is aptly named because it’s literally an alley filled with some of the greatest street art that Toronto has to offer. Make sure to get some pictures here and if you’re lucky you may even see a new piece being created!

Once you’ve gotten that great selfie with the murals you’ll end up in much China Town. Toronto’s China Town is one of the biggest in the world and you can definitely see some of the multicultural aspects of Toronto here. There are tons of shops and restaurants here so take your time looking around. If you’re looking to get some cheap souvenirs for friends/family then China Town is definitely the place to do it! While the restaurants in China Town may be tempting you’re going to want to save your appetite for your next stop. Sign up for a walking tour of Chinatown here .

A short 15 minute walk from China Town you’ll find Kensington Market . This has to arguably be one of my favorite places in all of Toronto. It’s a mix-up of virtually every kind of culture and it’s all reflected in the food. You can sign up for a walking tour of Kensington Market here .

While there are cool stores and markets here the real sell is for sure the restaurants and Kensington Market is where I highly recommend you stop for lunch. You can get everything from Mexican Tacos to Caribbean Jerk Chicken to Dutch Fries to Swedish Pastries and Japanese Pancakes and so much more. I would recommend trying 2-3 places and ordering small plates instead of full sized dishes. A lot of the places are take out style so you won’t be wasting a lot of time. My personal recommendations are tacos from Seven Lives, the Vanilla Cardamom donuts from Dipped and a burger from Top Gun Steak & Burger.

where to eat in Toronto kensington market tacos

After lunch it’s time to check out one of the more well known spots in Toronto in the form of a museum/gallery. Because you’ve only got 3 days in the city I think you have to pick either the Art Gallery of Ontario of the Royal Ontario Museum to enjoy in order to give either the justice it deserves. If art is your thing then the Art Gallery of Ontario is definitely where you want to go. The gallery has some stunning interior architecture and multiple levels worth of art to explore. They’ve also got rotating exhibitions that are worth checking out. You can check out their hours and ticket prices here . If history and classic museums are more your thing then you’re definitely going to want to head to the Royal Ontario Museum . Their ticket prices and hours can be found here .

Once you’ve finished with either the museum or the gallery, head on over to Queen’s Park to explore the St. George Campus of the University of Toronto. It’s got a very Harry Potter feel to it and it’s great to walk around because it’s so centrally located but is still somewhat of an oasis in the middle of the city.

End your day with checking out the more lit up spots of Toronto. The Eaton Centre is one of the biggest malls in the city with a number of great stores but you’re headed there to check out the great interior architecture of the mall and the statues within it. On either corner of the Eaton Centre you will find Nathan Phillips Square and Yonge-Dundas Square. Yonge-Dundas Square is essentially Toronto’s version of Times Square but obviously on the slightly smaller side. It’s worth passing by and the square often has events going on in the summer. Nathan Phillips Square is where you can find the giant Toronto sign that you absolutely have to get a picture with!

Day 2 in Toronto : Harbour Front & The Toronto Islands

Your second day in Toronto is where you get to visit some of the great and more well known landmarks of the city and you’ll get to enjoy one of the best parts of Toronto over at the islands.

St. Lawrence Market is a fantastic place to start your day. In 2012 it was voted the best market in the world by National Geographic and is constantly included in must visit markets! It’s a great place to grab something small for breakfast. The most well known item is the Peameal Bacon Sandwich from Carousel Bakery . It’s the one Anthony Bourdain had during his visit to Toronto and one he absolutely loved! Do note the bakery is cash only.

St Lawrence Market is a must on any 2 or 3 days in Toronto Itinerary

From St. Lawrence Market you will walk to Ripley’s Aquarium/CN Tower which will take about 20-25 minutes. This is of course a ride that you could take in an Uber but you’ll miss out on some nice landmarks if you do. While walking from St. Lawrence Market you’ll first come across the Gooderham Building which is Toronto’s flat-iron building and then you’ll pass the lovely dog fountain in Berczy Park before passing the Hockey Hall of Fame and Union Station.

Next on your list is the CN Tower and Ripley’s Aquarium . These two are located right next to each other (and right next to the Rogers Centre). They do both require tickets which you can check out here . If you are planning on visiting both attractions I’d highly recommend just getting the combination ticket for $58 dollars unless you’ve already gotten the CityPass (more on that below). Aquariums aren’t for everyone and that’s fine. If they aren’t your thing then before heading to the CN Tower area check out the Hockey Hall of Fame and the Financial District.

Either way once you’re satisfied with this area you’ll be heading to Harbour Front to explore the Harbour and grab some lunch! A must do is the Beaver Tails located right by the harbour but make sure to walk around and explore the parks and the beaches and of course all the sculptures and events going on before heading to the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal.

Harbour Front one day in Toronto

From the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal the Toronto Islands are only a 10-15 minute boat ride away. There are 3 islands that the boats go to but they’re all accessible and you can walk between all of them so it doesn’t really matter which one you go to. Once you’re on the island you’ll have plenty of things to do including paddle boarding, canoeing, an amusement park, multiple beaches and so much more! Even grabbing some food to go from one of the stores along the harbour and bringing it along as a picnic is a great way to explore the islands. Pro tip is to make sure to take a look at the Toronto skyline from the boat , it’s one of the best shots you’ll get of it!

Once you’re tired out from your adventures make sure to stay and watch the sunset around the harbour because you definitely won’t regret it! (You can also join this scenic harbour cruise .) Head back to your hotel afterwards and grab dinner in the area you’re staying in.

Day 3 in Toronto: East End & Distillery District

Toronto travel blog Distillery District

The third day of your visit will be to explore the Distillery District and the east end of Toronto. Toronto is large like I said and if you’re up for it you should head to the Scarborough Bluffs which is about an hour commute from Union Station but if you’re not willing to go that far then Evergreen Brick Works is a nice alternative. It’ll take you about 35 minutes to get to Evergreen Brick Works using the subway and their shuttle .

Start your morning by grabbing some breakfast on the go from Tim Hortons for your commute. Regardless of whether you opt to go to the Bluffs or to the Brick Works you’ll be heading to the subway station to get there and it’s worth exploring Union Station before you do if that happens to be the area that you’re staying in. There’s a great food court and some nice shops and the original train hall is beautiful!

Scarborough Bluffs Toronto travel blogs

If you opt to go with the Scarborough Bluffs you definitely won’t regret it. It’s some of the most beautiful nature you can find within Toronto and the cliffs and beach will most likely blow you away. By visiting in the morning you’ll avoid some of the crowds of the afternoon and you’ll be able to walk around freely and explore as much as possible. There’s usually an ice cream truck around and there is also a restaurant if you want to grab some lunch but otherwise just exploring for a few hours before heading back downtown is also a great option!

The Evergreen Brick Works is a part of Toronto that many visitors don’t get to explore because they don’t know about it. It’s a great piece of Toronto history that’s now been re-purposed for use by everyday citizens. There’s a huge park/trail area behind it to explore but the Brick Works itself is also open to exploring and you can read about how they used to operate and even take a look inside of it! There’s some local businesses that operate out of Brick Works now and there’s typically some kind of event going on so it’s a great, way less known side of Toronto to explore on your last day in the city! ( This bike tour is a a great way to explore the area).

Depending on how strenuously you enjoy the nature at either the Bluffs or Brick Works you may want to head back to your hotel to freshen up for a little bit before we head to your last stop in Toronto which is the Distillery District.

The Distillery District is a pedestrian only area of Toronto that retains a lot of what Old Toronto used to be like. It’s full of cobble stoned alleyways, beautiful brick buildings and lots of public art installations. If you enjoy guided tours, a walking tour or a segway tour is a great way to explore the area.

The area has a number of restaurants and independent shops to stroll through and if you decide to do dinner in the Distillery District I highly recommend El Catrin for some fantastic ambiance and great Mexican food. Make sure to take your time exploring the area. Pose for a picture with the Love Sign or place your own lock on the sign if you want to! The Distillery District is home to many festivals throughout the year so depending on when you’re visiting you may be able to partake in some festivities.

Where To Stay in Toronto

The obvious place to stay in Toronto would be in the downtown core but if it’s a little out of your price range I’d recommend staying anywhere along the subway line for quick access to downtown.

If you’ve got money to splurge the Fairmont Royal York (located right by Union Station) is highly recommended. Their location is unbeatable and their pool is lovely! We did a fantastic staycation there once and thoroughly enjoyed it. The location is pretty prime and it’ll give you quick access to transit.

where to stay in Toronto Royal York pool

While I haven’t stayed at the Drake or the Gladstone they are hotels that come highly recommended and are unique and artsy which reflect the personality of Toronto so well.

A safe and tried method is obviously airbnb and you’ll find lots of options all around the city!

Toronto Travel Tips

Toronto can be quite an expensive city to visit but there are a ton of free things to do in Toronto and a fair amount of museums offer free admission so if you’re looking to visit them do check out when they’re free (typically Wednesday evenings!)

If you’ve got more than 3 days in Toronto then odds are you’ll be including the Toronto Zoo on your list in which case I’d consider the City Pass which includes the Toronto Zoo, the ROM, the CN Tower, Ripley’s Aquarium and & Casa Loma.

Toronto’s got a number of cheap restaurants and while the fine dining scene is incredible you definitely can save a lot of money by eating cheaply.

Toronto’s beautiful in the summer and in my opinion it’s when you should visit. We’ve of course got plenty going on throughout the year but in the summer is when you’ll really be able to truly enjoy everything the city has to offer.

Because you’ve only got 3 days in Toronto, a lot of this itinerary is focused on the downtown core in order to minimize travelling. If you’re staying in the downtown core, the itinerary is designed in a way to minimize having to spend money on public transit so you don’t necessarily need to buy a day pass or anything for this. Toronto’s incredibly walkable and both Uber and Lyft are available in the city and super reasonably priced.

3 Days in Toronto itinerary travel blog

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savvyglobetrotter

I’ve always fancied seeing Toronto and I’m a big fan of street art, it seems Toronto has a fair bit. The Harbour Front looks like a lovely place to relax too!

I was in Toronto 2 years ago, and loved every second. The distillery district is so interesting, and we even saw a filming there! Id like to see the Toronto Islands the next time we’re back.

This is such a great itinerary to start with for first timers like me to Toronto. I didn’t realize how big of a city it was. I appreciate that many of the activities are downtown so that public transportation doesn’t have to be utilized if your accommodation is downtown of course 🙂

Toronto is somewhere I definitely want to visit, and this is a great little itinerary to start with! I didn’t realise that Toronto had such beautiful nature so close to the city. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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Toronto Itinerary 7 days – How to spend 2-7 days in Toronto

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Toronto – our first home in Canada. We have tons of amazing stories and places to show you from our years living in Toronto. We were living there as students and as young professionals (for a brief period of time), but we have had the MOST incredible time in that city. We actually keep thinking of moving back to Toronto some day. Anyhow, this post is all about having a great time in Toronto. We have handpicked the attractions, tours and experiences for Toronto Itinerary 7 days. This itinerary and guide will be helpful for first time visitors to the city as well as regular travelers as we share some of our insider tips. Feel free to customize the itinerary according to your taste and time in Toronto.

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Toronto Itinerary 7 days – How to spend 2-7 days in Toronto

7 days in Toronto Itinerary

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you click one of them, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

Getting to Toronto Ontario

Toronto is the commercial capital of Canada. Canada’s capital city is Ottawa (if you didn’t know that already, but it is located in the same province of Ontario). Toronto is serviced by the Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ), one of the largest in the country, by passenger volume. If you are flying to Toronto internationally or from any American airport, you will arrive here.

Distance from Toronto Pearson to Downtown Toronto is about 30 kilometres.

Light Rail  – Connectivity via light rail is fastest and easiest to get from the airport to the city centre. It takes 45 -50 minutes and will cost $3.50 CAD. Carry exact change or buy tickets at the station. The trip is not straightforward and involves a few transfers as the airport is located in Mississauga, a suburban city.

Drive  – You can rent a car and drive from the airport. Under normal conditions you will arrive in 35 minutes.

Express Shuttle  – There is an express shuttle available for $24-25 CAD. It takes 30 minutes

Taxi  – Taxis are available from terminal 1 and 3 and will cost around $50-75 CAD depending on the downtown zone. The cab ride is for 30-35 minutes.

Private transfers  – Private transfers are a great way to reach Toronto downtown without the public transit hassle and if you are pressed for time. Private transfers take 30 minutes to get to your location in Central Toronto. BOOK YOUR TRANSFER HERE

Toronto Itinerary in 7 days

Where to stay in Toronto Ontario?

Toronto is HUGE. There are many suburban areas where you can find good accommodation and the light rail makes it easier to commute. For a short trip to Toronto, staying in the central area is a good idea. You will be close to all the sightseeing areas and awesome restaurants and bars.

GTA or Greater Toronto Area is the most densely populated area in the city. It comprises of Toronto downtown, and 25 regional/surrounding municipalities. If this is your first visit, you can avoid a few areas like Scarborough and Brampton. Some areas in Markham and near Mississauga (close to the airport), you will be able to find decent hotels. 

Here are some recommended hotels for your visit

Luxury Options in Downtown Toronto

  • Close to CN Tower and other sightseeing attractions.
  • Indoor and outdoor pool. Beautiful rooms. Free breakfast.
  • BOOK YOUR STAY HERE
  • Good location. Close to sightseeing spots
  • Free breakfast and wifi. Indoor and Outdoor pool

Mid Range Hotel

  • 2-minute walk from King Station subway stop, a 7-minute walk from St. Lawrence Market and 2 km from the landmark CN Tower.
  • Good value for money. Free parking in downtown hotel. Free breakfast

Toronto Airport Hotel (mid range)

If you are planning to stay close to the airport, choose a hotel in Mississauga or Etiobioke area. Here is a recommendation 

  • Free breakfast and free parking. 
  • Hotel offers fitness centre, Starbucks, pool on site.  

Search for more hotels in Toronto

Best time to visit Toronto

Toronto experiences all the 4 seasons and it is very hard for me to actually choose one, as I love the city in all of its seasonal colors. But…but if I REALLY have to pick one, it has to be fall or autumn. The mesmerizing orange maple leaves on the ground will melt your heart and you will just wanna stay here (well, that’s what happened to us)

Toronto Archives on an autumn day

  • Autumn/Fall:  Autumn or fall starts from September to November. It is time for pumpkin spice lattes and booties. The weather is neither too hot nor too cold. Schools and colleges start their semesters in September, so you can expect less crowds in sightseeing areas. It is shoulder season so good deals for hotels and flights.
  • Winter: Winter is from December (sometimes late November) to early February. Temperatures drop to – 15 degree Celsius (could be higher with windchill). If you have been to New York City in winters, our winters in Toronto are similar. Winter packing essentials are important. Perfect time to visit for Christmas markets and festivities, hot choco and new years celebrations at the Harbour front. Read our guide to visiting Toronto in Winter
  • Spring:  Shoulder month as well. Spring months are from late February to May. Weather is slowly getting warmer and days longer. Only problem is that as the snow is melting you will experience slushy sidewalks and roads. If you have to visit during this season, plan for Aril or later.
  • Summer : Of course, like most places in the world, summer is full of fun and festivities (and crowded too). Great time to be outdoors, enjoy patio brunches, camping at provincial parks or soak the sun at beaches/harbour front. Book your trip ahead of time, so that you don’t miss your preferred area of stay. It gets BUSY around this time of year!

toronto tour itinerary

What to pack for Toronto?

Here are some of the travel essentials for your trip to Toronto

  • Light Cardigan – A light cardigan in a neutral color will match with most of the outfits. Black and beige are my favorites. LOVE this cozy cardigan, click here to find out
  • Comfortable Walking shoes – You will be exploring downtown areas including the harbour front, so comfortable shoes are a MUST > Buy cute walking shoe
  • Universal Adaptor – If you traveling from US you can skip this. If you are traveling from Europe, get a universal adaptor. > Buy your adapter here
  • Day-Pack for your essentials – Buy yours here
  • Travel Document: Organize your travel documents in an RFID protected organizer > Buy a travel document organizer wallet here
  • Camera: Shop our favorite mirrorless camera here

If visiting in winter, read our winter clothing guide . Include winter jackets, gloves, warm hat, winter boots, etc.

Click to shop my travel favorites!

Pro tip 1:  Canada uses Canadian dollars as currency (CAD$). Some restaurants might accept USD$. Credit cards are widely accepted and you can easily find a debit machine to take out cash.

Pro Tip 2 : For sightseeing (and budget), here are 2 options for you

  • Toronto City Pass – For sightseeing for all 7 days, Toronto City Pass is a good idea. You will get access to most of the Toronto attractions for free. BOOK YOUR TORONTO CITY PASS HERE
  • Toronto Hop on and Hop off – We use hop on and hop off buses a lot. As we were new in the city, we took the train to downtown and then rode the sightseeing bus. It was convenient without having to remember the bus stops or walk miles. Remember hop on and off are not guided tours – they are sightseeing buses (like transit) and you are at will to get down when you like and where you like! You can choose between 24 or 48 hour bus ticket (rest of the days, you will be exploring other areas, so yes this is a good value ticket). BOOK YOUR HOP-ON AND HOP OFF TICKET HERE (24 or 48 hours)

You can explore Toronto without a car. Use light trains, buses, add a few day tours and guided walks and you are GOLDEN!

In order to customize this itinerary, here are a few suggestions. (You can check the detailed itinerary below)

Toronto Itinerary 7 days

  • For a 2 day Toronto trip – Opt for day 1 and 2 OR day 1 and day trip to Niagara Falls
  • Visiting for 3 days in Toronto – Choose day 1,2 and Niagara Falls
  • 4 days in Toronto –  Choose Day 1 through 4 or switch out day 3 (Toronto neighborhoods) or day 5 (Toronto Islands)

DAY 1 TORONTO ITINERARY – BEST OF TORONTO

Cn tower, casa loma, hockey hall of fame, harbour front, dundas square or night tour.

Welcome to Toronto. We are so excited to show you this amazing city! 

First day in Toronto should start with the city’s FINEST! 

CN Tower is an iconic symbol of the city of Toronto. Its name “CN” originally referred to Canadian National, the railway company that built the tower. Currently its known as  Canadian National Tower.

The tower was completed in 1976, becoming the world’s tallest free-standing structure and world’s tallest tower at the time. It retained this position for close to 32 years. Currently, its world’s number 7th tallest tower.

Toronto Itinerary 7 days - CN Tower

The CN tower is a communications tower, located in downtown Toronto. You can access the tower through its high speed elevators to reach the observation deck and enjoy stunning views of the city of Toronto. You can also enjoy a thrilling walk on the gorilla glass floor. 

When you access the observation deck, you will also receive a interpretive guide to learn more about the tower’s history and how it was constructed.

CN Tower and Canada Flag

CN Tower also has a thrilling attraction called the EdgeWalk. The EdgeWalk is the first of its kind in North America. It is the world’s highest full-circle hands-free walk on a 5 feet wide ledge encircling the top of the CN Tower’s main pod – at 116 storeys above the ground. If you love this adventure, take this walk outside – around the circumference of the roof of the CN Tower!

There is a restaurant on the same floor (revolving restaurant named CN Tower 360 restaurant ). There are additional bistros and cafes inside the tower complex. 

CN Tower is open everyday except for Christmas Day.  CN Tower has an admission fee of $58 CAD for adults for tower experience. 

toronto tour itinerary

Our second stop for the day is the Casa Loma. Did you know that Toronto has a pretty castle in the heart of the city? The answer is YES – Casa Loma. 

The Casa Loma is a castle built by Toronto businessman Henry Pallet in 1911. Its style of architecture is Gothic revival style. Casa Loma means “Hill House” in Spanish.

Casa Loma Toronto

Today you can explore the castle, which is now a historic house museum and a Toronto landmark. The castle shares stories from the family of Henry Pallet. It has many rooms, gardens, underground cellar and stables to explore.

We spent a couple of hours in the castle. I really liked the castle (well, anything with history fascinates me- big or small). 

Casa Loma

There is an entry fee for the castle – $23 – 33 CAD for admission. They are open daily from 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m local time. 

Hockey Fall of Fame

Hockey Hall of Fame is located on Yonge Street in Toronto. Its dedicated to the history of ice hockey, it is a museum and a hall of fame. It holds exhibits about players, teams, National Hockey League (NHL) records, memorabilia and NHL trophies, including the Stanley Cup.

If you wish to explore the stadium or the museum, there is an entry fee of $20 CAD for adults.

Harbourfront

Located in core downtown Toronto, Harbourfront neighborhood is iconic landmark of this city. The neighborhood is located on Lake Ontario and it provides stunning views of the CN Tower and the downtown skyscrapers.

Toronto Harbourfront

It was almost dusk when we reached the Harbourfront. Its a great place to hang out and spend a romantic evening! 

If you prefer, you can spend the entire evening here. You will find tons of bars and restaurants in and around the area for dinner. 

Dundas Square 

Yonge-Dundas Square is located within the Downtown Yonge Business Area. Its a space/square wherein public performances and other events are hosted on a regular basis. There are many cafe’s, restaurants and shopping areas close by. The square has seating areas and fountains and gives quite a metropolitan-feel in the evenings!

We had dinner at a nearby Hard-Rock Cafe and spent the rest of the evening/night in the Yonge-Dundas area.

Dundas Square at Night

Toronto Nights Tour

This awesome nights tour of Toronto – covers the Harbourfront, Dundas Square and also takes you top of the CN Tower to view sunsets. If you want a convenient way to explore the CN tower as well as some of the other Downtown Toronto highlights, then consider booking this tour. BOOK TORONTO NIGHTS TOUR

DAY 2 TORONTO ITINERARY – MORE OF TORONTO

Royal ontario museum, art gallery of ontario, saint lawrence, queen west, haunted tour.

For day 2 of Toronto Itinerary, let’s more of the historical and arts side of the city with museums. 

Royal Ontario Museum

Royal Ontario Museum, popularly known as ROM is one of the largest museums in North America AND the largest one in Canada. It is known for its architectural beauty and its collection of arts displays. 

Royal Ontario Museum is a museum of art, world culture and natural history. 

Skip the lines and access the museum here. BOOK YOUR ROM TICKET HERE

Ultimate travel guide to Toronto Itinerary 7 days. Check out how to spend 2-7 days in Toronto with city highlights, day trips and experiencing local life

Arts Gallery of Ontario

Another museum and gallery close to ROM is the Arts Gallery of Ontario. Its a massive gallery with about 45,000 square meters, making it one of the largest galleries in North America.

The Arts Gallery has arts displays, a library, student space, gallery workshop space, artist-in-residence, a high-end restaurant,cafeteria , research centre, theatre and lecture hall, and gift shop. 

BOOK YOUR TICKET TO THE ARTS GALLERY OF ONTARIO HERE

Arts Gallery of Toronto

After the museums and gallery, its time for FOOD and PORK! So the story is that the city of Toronto was historically known as “Hogtown”. Hence it only makes sense to try some pork delicacies in the city. 

Saint Lawrence Market and Queen West Street (sightseeing and food tour)

St. Lawrence Market is a vintage culinary neighborhood of Toronto. The market is known for its peameal bacon sandwich which can be found here. Take a food tour to explore the beautiful market and learn about its history.

In this tour, you will get to taste a Southern American spin on a classic Canadian dish, as well as some popular German street food with a Canadian twist. A street car ride is also included. 

BOOK A FOOD TOUR AT ST LAWRENCE MARKET

If food tour is not your thing, we still recommend taking a stroll at the marketplace and then settling in for a relaxed lunch. You will find cuisines of all kinds here as well. 

Queen Street 

Queen Street is a major thoroughfare in Toronto. It is often compared to New York City’s Soho. The Queen street is full of trendy pubs, restaurants and quirky sights with graffiti in various houses and lanes.  

It is a hip and happening street. You can easily walk around and browse many boutique stores from high end shopping to casual items. 

The Toronto City Hall is located on Queen street west. The famed “TORONTO” letters can be found at the Nathan Philips Square (in Queen street west).

Optional Haunted Tour

Okay, we took a haunted tour once during Halloween and LOVED it (Salil did more then I did. I am scared and I shake even if a paper flies lol). So if you are into haunted stuff, this tour is worth checking out. 

There are three seasonal guided tours: the original 90-minute Haunted Walk, the Campus Secrets and Spectres, or the Ghosts and Spirits of the Distillery that is offered. In these tours, you will learn about the chilling tales about the darker side of Toronto’s history. 

BOOK THIS 90 MINUTE HAUNTED NIGHT TOUR

DAY 3 CULTURE AND FOOD TORONTO

Downtown exploration, kensington market, chinatown, distiller district.

We love exploring, walking around downtown/core areas of major cities. That’s our kinda hiking!

Toronto didn’t disappoint us. Skyscrapers, malls, lights, side-cafes, busy-people everywhere. In every corner of downtown Toronto, there are historical insights and amazing architecture. You can sign up for free walks around certain important areas like Union Station, Bay Street, Yonge-Dundas, University Ave, etc

Kensington Market Scenes

Keeping that in mind, let’s take you to a colorful marketplace. Kensington Market is a pedestrian friendly bohemian neighborhood. This Toronto area is characterized by colorful buildings, indie shops, vintage boutiques and arts spaces. 

The Kensington Market is home to many specialty grocers, bakeries and cheese shops. There are trendy bars, cafes and restaurants to suit every traveler. 

A walking tour with a local guide is the BEST way to explore this neighborhood. This recommended 2 hour walking tour also takes you to Toronto Chinatown. CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE WALKING TOUR OF KENSINGTON MARKET AND CHINATOWN. 

Kensington Market

After the tour, explore the area a bit more and then settle down for lunch. Don’t drink yet, as we will be heading to the Toronto distillery district next.

Distillery District

Distillery district presents a slice of Victorian and British legacy in Toronto Ontario.  At the Distillery District, you will see Victorian buildings and cobblestone streets that are full of history. Guess what, you will be at a British whisky distillery site here.

Today these vintage spaces are occupied with indie restaurants, bars, boutiques, and theaters.

BOOK AN HOUR TOUR OF DISTILLERY DISTRICT

You can also explore this neighborhood with a segway tour. Check out the segway tour of the Distillery district here

Shopping in Toronto

In the evening, its time to SHOP. Toronto is great for shopping. Yorkdale Mall, Toronto Eaton Centre, Scarborough Town Centre, Fairview Mall are some of the shopping malls that I love! If I have to pick 2, it has to be Toronto Eaton Centre and Scarborough Town Centre. Eaton Centre is located in Downtown and Scarborough Town Centre is located in the Scarborough area. Both the malls are easily connected by Toronto LRT. 

Toronto also has an outlet mall area. So if shopping is a BIG ticket item on your list, them consider spending half a day at the premium outlet malls. There are bus shuttle services available to take you from Toronto downtown to the outlet malls and back. See, you don’t a car!

BOOK YOUR ROUND TRIP SHUTTLE TO OUTLET MALLS FROM TORONTO CENTRE.

DAY 4 TORONTO ITINERARY – Day Trip to Niagara Falls from Toronto

There are many places in and around Toronto, that are very easily accessible and worth visiting. Bruce Peninsula (4 hrs), 1000 Islands (3.75 hrs), Niagara Falls (2 hrs), Ottawa (5 hrs), Montreal (6 hrs) – are some of the cities/areas that are worth visiting in your trip to Toronto.

Niagara Falls is a MUST visit when you are in Toronto for more then 2 days. And trust us, the Canadian side of the Niagara falls are MORE stunning than the American side. Don’t trust us? 

Views of Niagara Falls

Well, let’s take that DAY TRIP TO NIAGARA!

You can rent a car and drive to Niagara in 2 hours (one way) from Toronto. Many also cross the border at Niagara Falls to head to the US.

Greyhound also operates daily buses to Niagara. Once you reach the bus depot in Niagara, you will have to walk a little to reach the Niagara Falls (city). 

Niagara Falls District

There are many day tour services available from Toronto to Niagara Falls and undertaking this trip with be worthwhile. This recommended Niagara day tour takes you to the three falls  – the Horseshoe Falls, American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. You can also take an optional cruise to the base of Horseshoe Falls. You will explore a vineyard and sample some wine!

READ: Niagara Falls Day trip from Toronto

Niagara Falls District

Tons of free time for photography, relaxation, souvenir shopping, including the observation deck of the mighty Whirlpool and Rapids and Niagara-on-the-Lake. You can check it out here – BOOK NIAGARA DAY TOUR FROM TORONTO.  

At the Niagara Falls, you can also take a horse carriage, enjoy the “ maid of the mist ” ride or view evening lights over the waters. Definitely take some time to eat and wander through the entertainment district. The Entertainment District has bowling alleys, haunted houses, Ripley’s believe or not, cool bars and TONS of free entertainment to keep you engaged! 

BOOK AN EVENING LIGHTS AND CRUISE TOUR OF NIAGARA FALLS 

MORE NIAGARA TOURS FROM TORONTO 

DAY 5 TORONTO ITINERARY – CENTREVILLE Toronto Islands and nearby attractions

The Centreville Amusement Park is a park located on Centre Island, which is a part of the Toronto Islands. This place is a must visit during summer season with over 30 rides, picnic areas, etc. We spent an entire day here, enjoying the Toronto sun. We took a ferry ride to the Centre Island from Queen’s Quay West.

Get your beach wear on, as you can experience the blue waters here.

CentreVille Toronto Islands

About Toronto Islands – The Toronto Islands (formerly known as Island of Hiawatha and also known as Menecing , meaning “On the Island” ) are a chain of small islands in Lake Ontario, Canada. The islands are home to parkland, the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, several yacht clubs, Centreville Amusement Park and Hanlan’s Beach. The island community is considered to be the largest urban car-free community in North America. 

There are tons of options for food, souvenirs shops and activities. If you wish a beach experience, greenery and nature around, this is a perfect place. There are picnic tables by the water side (with geese around) as well.

The Toronto Island also includes the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse which is considered to be the oldest existing lighthouse on the Great Lakes and one of Toronto’s oldest buildings. The murder of its first operator, German-born John Paul Radelmüller, at the site in 1815; makes for one of the most intriguing murder mysteries. That case was never solved and at this point, it probably never will be. As the story goes, he died at the hands of a couple of soldiers from Fort York looking to get their hands on moonshine. 

Toronto Harbourfront

Stay here until the sun goes down to see amazing views of the Toronto skyline!

DAY 6 TORONTO ITINERARY – Neighborhood Exploration (Chester, Christie and Old Mills and dine at Gerard Street) OR Canada’s Wonderland

On your day 6 of Toronto itinerary, explore some lesser known areas, travel in local (light rail/LRT) trains and relax in the green space that this mega city has to offer. (We also have a plan B, if neighborhood exploration doesn’t excite you). 

Toronto has great trails, neighborhoods and history in its every nook and corner. Toronto Transit and LRT lines are easy, convenient and economical ways to explore this amazing city.

Old Mills

Chester, Christie, Old Mills, Dine at Gerard Street

Chester, Christie and Old Mills are 3 subway stations that has great trails, amazing eating areas and shopping venues to explore. 

Chester is a subway station on the Bloor–Danforth line in Toronto, Canada. The station is located on Chester Avenue just north of Danforth Avenue.

Christie is a station on the Bloor–Danforth line of the subway system in Toronto, Canada. It is located on the east side of Christie Street just north of Bloor Street West, and opened in 1966 as part of the original segment of the subway line.

Old Mills is a subway station on Line 2 Bloor–Danforth in Toronto, Canada. It is located at Old Mill Terrace and Humber Boulevard.

Old Mills

Danforth Avenue (located along Bloor- Danforth subway line) is also popularly known as Greek Town. Every year there is a Greek Food Festival, held here called the Taste of Danforth. 

Toronto Lake Shore

If you travel by the Bloor-Danforth line – you can get off at Chester and it will take you to a peaceful neighborhood with school grounds, shops and greenery all around. 

Chester area has a look-out area, that is worth visiting. Its very romantic and quiet there. Old Mills has Lake Shore that offers stunning views of Downtown Toronto and CN Tower. It also offers great site for photography and light strolls, including picnic during summers and bird watching. 

toronto tour itinerary

In the evening, head to Gerard Street in city centre area. Gerard Street is full of fantastic East Indian/Pakistani restaurants. So a must visit if you like Indian food. Food is affordable and delicious! 

If neighborhood exploration is not your thing, then plan B for you is to explore Canada’s Wonderland. 

Canada’s Wonderland

Canada’s Wonderland is a theme park based in Vaughan, Ontario, which is about 40 kilometers from Downtown Toronto.

toronto tour itinerary

Canada’s Wonderland is a major attraction and is usually busy during the summer months. There are joy rides, shopping arenas, entertainment galleries within the theme park. To access the rides and the park you will have to purchase an entry pass. You can either purchase an annual or seasonal or per entry pass. 

You can spend a full day here – there are SO much to do. Take a ride at the Leviathan and the Behemoth – Canada’s tallest and fastest roller coasters! We would love to show you our “scared” facial expressions from the Behemoth, but that’s for another day, we still have one more day of the Toronto itinerary to cover 🙂 

Learn about Canada’s Wonderland here

DAY 7 TORONTO ITINERARY – Day trips to the surrounding areas OR pick a local event in Toronto

Toronto is more then the tall buildings and fancy distillery district. We have many provincial and national parks nearby that are worth visiting during your trip to Toronto. You can pick and choose one day trip from the suggested ideas below or if you prefer to stay in Toronto, check out some of the local events in the city.

Things to do in Peterborough Ontario

Day trips from Toronto

  • Activities : Hiking, camping, tubing, museum
  • Activities :  Scenic walks, lift lock cruises
  • Norfolk County – Suburb in Southern Ontario. 2 hours drive from Toronto. More about Norfolk County

Local Events:

A great way to experience local life is attending participating in local events. Lots of options to choose from like live music events, food fest, literary fest, hockey nights, Christmas Markets, etc

To access the local events at the time of your visit, check out this website . Here are some of our favorites

  • Doors Open Toronto:  This event offers free and rare access to more than 130 architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings across the city. This event is organized by Ontario Heritage Trust each year. Typically this event commences and ends in the month of May (summer months).
  • Danforth Food Fest/Taste of Danforth: Read more about Taste of Danforth here .Its an annual 2-3 day food festival
  • Nathan Philips Square : Christmas and Toronto Fair in December to celebrate the holiday season 
  • Downtown Events : Corona Paint Party

Hope you found this itinerary useful. We have included more resources for other Canadian cities below. 

More Canada Resources

Visiting Canada on an extended tour, explore some of the other major Canadian cities

  • Montreal in one day itinerary
  • 2 Days in Vancouver itinerary
  • 3 days in Winnipeg Manitoba
  • Calgary mini guide 
  • Banff National Park in 5 days
  • Find out Free things to do in Toronto

Last Updated: June 30 2019

Mayuri is the founder & editor of ToSomePlaceNew. An Indian-Canadian globetrotter, she has traveled to over 100 cities and 35+ countries. Mayuri has a graduate degree in History and is an MBA. She loves traveling the world, capturing historical nuances, and discussing that over a cup of coffee with her husband, Salil. She currently resides in Edmonton, Canada, and plots travel plans to Europe, the Americas, and beyond. 

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Taylor's Tracks

How to Plan the Perfect Toronto Itinerary (1-4 Days + Tips from a Local)

By: Author Taylor Lorenz

Posted on Last updated: 10/25/2023

How to Plan the Perfect Toronto Itinerary (1-4 Days + Tips from a Local)

Home to over 5 million people in the city and surrounding area Toronto is a diverse and very multicultural city, filled with hip bars, lot’s of shopping, and all of the typical tourist destinations every big city offers like an aquarium, sports stadiums, art galleries, and museums, all great additions for any Toronto itinerary.

It is, in my opinion, the best city in Canada, though a lot of people in Vancouver will disagree with that! I compare it to Melbourne for its trendy streets, art scene, districts, and street art. When you visit Toronto you might just think the same.

There are so many things to do in Toronto , the city was basically built for entertainment with new events and festivals happening almost constantly. This Toronto travel guide will have you fully prepared for a short or long weekend Toronto trip.

So whether you’re on a cross-Canada road trip or visiting as a weekend trip to Toronto I’m sharing a detailed itinerary for a Toronto trip in 1-4 days plus what to do in Toronto on each day to maximize your time.

Table of Contents

Toronto Itinerary

Toronto is a massive city so as a bare minimum I recommend spending 2 days in Toronto. However it time allows plan to spend 3 days in Toronto or even 4 to do more than just scratch the surface. Toronto in a day can’t really be done but if you have to squish in the best sites from the days below and make sure you eat lots of food (Toronto has an amazing selection of international cuisine).

DAY ONE:  Get touristy on the first day and get Toronto sightseeing. Make your way up the Toronto CN Tower, one of the modern 7 Wonders of the World for epic views over the city (from 553m high!). You can stand on a glass floor and see all the way to the ground or be daring and do the Edge Walk outside along the tower. You can also choose to dine in the tower as it rotates and you can see just how far the city lights expand at night.

Then you have a choice. You can cross the street (Bremner Blvd.) to take a tour and try tastings at the Steam Whistle Brewery. Of if you love sports you can catch a Blue Jays game (one of the most typical Toronto activities) at the Rogers Centre right beside (tickets can be purchased before the game for as cheap as $15). Or if you’re with kids the  Ripley’s Aquarium which is just below the tower is one of the best places to visit in Toronto.

From the tower make your way up to Queen Street where you can then catch a streetcar or start shopping your way down the street. Further down Queen Street West you’ll find Kensington Market, a bohemiam and hipster neighbourhood filled with vintage shops and many ethinic cuisines. It’s a great spot to stop for lunch or you can wait as you make your way to Chinatown.

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Chinatown is back in the direction you came from but is only a short walk away. Chinatown in Toronto is huge and worth a stop if you want to try some exotic foods. You can also do a combined tour of Kensington Market and Chinatown .

Spend your afternoon in the AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario) where you can see numerous collections of art from around the world and the largest Canadian art collection.

There are so many things to do in Toronto so next up is Nathan Phillips Square where you can take a picture with the iconic Toronto sign and see the new city hall. The Old City Hall is just to the right, an old Romanesque building. If you’re visiting in the winter you can go skating in the square for free.

The last area of the day is Dudas Square which is like a mini Times Square. Here you’ll find the Eaton Centre, the city’s largest mall and plenty of restaurants. Across from the Eaton Centre there are some restaurants a few storey’s up where you can grab a place on the patio and overlook all of the action in the square.

To end your night with some drinks or dancing I recommend heading to the Entertainment District (around King and John) where you can find an abundance of restaurants, bars and clubs.

DAY TWO: If you’re only spending a weekend in Toronto start your second day by visiting Toronto Island. It’s filled with paths for walking and biking and is where many locals just chill out and where you get a great view of the city’s skyline. There are beaches on the island but know in advance that Hanlan’s Beach is a nude beach. You can catch a ferry to and from the island.

After the island make your way to the Distillery District, an area packed with lots of shops that sell art, clothing and jewellery. The buildings are from the 1800’s and are industrial Victorian style. The area also comes alive at nights with restaurants and entertainment.

I personally think one of the best things to do in Toronto is visit the St. Lawrence Market . It was named one of the best food market’s in the world and has been around since 1803. It houses over 120 vendors so I recommend stopping by here for lunch.

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After or before lunch (as this is close by) you should stop by the Hockey Hall of Fame because it is one of the most Canadian things you can do. Inside you can pose with a replica of the Stanley Cup.

One of the coolest places to go in Toronto is the ROM (Royal Ontario Museum) which is one of the largest museums in North America. The dinosaur exhibit is pretty cool even if you’re not a kid and the ROM often hosts really cool exhibits.

After the ROM it’s time to head to a rich area in Toronto, Yorkville. Along Bloor Street you’ll find all of the high-end stores, some that are fabulous for window shopping. Yorkville was once where the city’s artists, writers and musicians used to gather and today is home to pretty streets and Victorian homes.

If the Victorian homes weren’t enough for you then stop by Casa Loma, Toronto’s very own castle. Built in the early 1900’s it is now a museum and a landmark that you can explore with decorated rooms and secret passageways.

For the evening you have a few options. One is to have a dinner and show at Medieval Times (seriously it’s even fun if you don’t have kids). You eat your 4-course dinner with your hands like they would have in the 11th century and you get assigned a team to cheer behind for you knight during the tournament. Make sure to buy tickets in advance .

Or you could dine at one of the many cool restaurants in Toronto. Try a unique experience like O.Noir where you dine in complete blackness. After dinner check out one of the hip bars in the city (there’s even a Harry Potter themed bar !).

DAY THREE:  The first two days are really packed so I would recommend taking it easier on your third day. You can opt to visit the Toronto Zoo or the Ontario Science Centre. However, I highly recommend doing a bit of research to see what is happening in the city as Toronto almost always has some kind of event or festival on.

For the evening find some entertainment at The Second City, a comedy club where a number of Canadian comedians and actors first started. Or watch a play at one of the many theatres in the city.

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DAY FOUR:  Your last day in the city is perfect for some Toronto day trips. If you’re up for some thrilling rides then head over to Canada’s Wonderland which is the best amusement park in the country that is equipped with a water park for hot summer days.

If you’re a wine lover then a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake is a no-brainer where you can taste test wines from one of Canada’s best wine regions. The region is most famous for ice wine, a sweet dessert wine that you must try!

The most popular trips from Toronto are to  Niagara Falls which is the most visited attraction in all of Canada. It’s no surprise as it really is a sight to see. The Canadian side of the falls are known as the Horseshoe Falls and are over 50 metres high and have 2,271,247 liters of water pushed over the edge every second.

Best Time to Visit Toronto

Toronto experiences four distinct seasons and while the city has constant activities to do through all of them it’s best to visit during the off-peak tourist season. You’ll find most tourists crowding the city and locals pouring off of the patios in the summer (June-August).

Summers can reach above 30°C or higher with the humidity while spring and fall temperatures are around 5°-15°C. Winters can be brutally cold or mild with temperatures reaching as low as -25°C (or colder if it’s a bad winter!). Toronto also gets a fair amount of snow.

The best time to visit Toronto is during the shoulder seasons spring (April-May) and fall (September-November). From personal experience I would recommend September when the weather can often still be warm, the prices have dropped off from peak tourist season and there is less of a chance of rain or snow than in the spring.

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Toronto Budget

All prices in this post are in Canadian dollars.

Toronto is unfortunately not a cheap city like all big cities aren’t. It is, however, worth it. By staying in hostels, cooking for yourself and taking public transit you can survive on a daily budget of $75-100.

Hostels start at $28 and up with some offering free breakfast and Wi-Fi is always included. Budget hotels can be found for around $90 a night while nicer hotels will cost you upwards of $400.

Food can get costly in Toronto but if staying for longer you can buy groceries and spend $50 a week or more depending on your tastes. A meal out at a sit down restaurant will set you back $18-25 while at nicer restaurants expect to pay $30+. Alcoholic drinks are $8 or more but happy hours have beers for $5.

Toronto Transit

Getting around the city is easy with the public transit, TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) so a car is not necessary nor recommended due to the extreme traffic in the city. Many locals will complain about TTC as it is often late but it does the job. For the most part Toronto is a very walkable city if you stay in the city centre but even downtown can be big and depending on what you want to see and do you will most likely take transit at some point (and it is recommended that you do for this itinerary).

Getting around Toronto: Toronto has subways, streetcars and buses. You’ll be able to get to all of the major attractions by subway or streetcars. If you plan on using transit a lot the easiest way to pay is by getting a day pass that is unlimited and valid on the first day you use it until 5:30AM the following day. The cost is $12.50. A single ride is $3.25 if paying by cash (exact change is required) while tickets or tokens are $3 and must be bought in quantities of 3 or 5. You can pay upon boarding all forms of transit or purchase tokens or tickets at subway stations or authorized TTC retailers. You can find up to date fare information and retailers here .

Toronto Airport to downtown Toronto:  The easiest way to get from Toronto Pearson International Airport to the city centre is taxi but it is also the most expensive. Uber is available at a minimum of $66 with pick up points at door A outside terminals 1 and 3.

The cheapest option is by public transit but it will take over an hour and multiple transfers, buses and subways. You can find the routes that serve the airport from terminal 1 and 3.

The best way to get to the city centre from the airport is the UP Express that takes 25 minutes to Union Station, a hub for transit and close to many popular hotels. Tickets cost $12.35 one-way and can be purchased in advance online or at the airport.

Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport to city centre: This airport is located on one of the Toronto Islands and serves national flights and international flights from the US.   Free shuttles are available from the airport to Union Station. The airport is so close to the city centre that it won’t cost you a fortune to grab a taxi. Uber is also available.

Where to Stay in Toronto

I list the best Toronto accommodation for all budgets (Toronto is a great city to splurge in) in my detailed post on the best places to stay in Toronto for any budget .

Toronto Canada | Toronto Canada things to do in | Toronto Canada travel | Things to do in Toronto | Toronto travel | Toronto trip | Toronto travel guide | CN Tower | 3 days in Toronto | 2 days in Toronto | What to do in Toronto in a weekend | Toronto itinerary

You’re all prepped to visit Toronto because you know where to go in Toronto, the top Toronto tourist attractions and where to stay in this amazing city. Find more helpful articles below and enjoy your time in one of my favourite cities!

Heading to Toronto? You’ll love these posts

  • 10 Things to do in Toronto
  • 7 Free Things to do in Toronto During the Holidays
  • Niagara Falls for All Ages

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links which I earn a small commission from and are at no additional cost to you. See my disclosure policy for details. Thank you for supporting my small business!

Disclaimer: Taylor’s Tracks is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.Com and affiliated sites.

Canada Crossroads

Perfect One Day in Toronto Itinerary & Guide

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Need to make the most of your one day in Toronto? We have the perfect Toronto Itinerary for you, written by ‘once upon a time local, who wants to go back’!

Toronto is the shining star of Canada’s urban players. This city is filled with multi-cultural corners to skyrise downtown buildings, tons of work opportunities (yes it is competitive and the fittest one survives!), a lot of art and history, and an amazing infrastructure which makes it quite accessible to other cities in North America and the world. 

So here is what you must explore on a one day Toronto itinerary.

Table of Contents

One Day in Toronto Itinerary

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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you click one of them, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Arriving in Toronto Canada

Toronto is located in the Canadian province of Ontario. It is one of the largest and most populated cities in Canada. If you are flying into Toronto, you will arrive at the Toronto Pearson International Airport, located in Mississauga. 

  • Toronto Transit Centre also known as TTC operates and manages public transportation network of buses and Light Rail Trains in the city
  • Public Transport : You can get to Toronto city center or downtown via LRT/subway station from the airport. You can buy a TTC Day pass for the day (or two) to get to your hotel and then to sightseeing attractions. Cost : $3 CAD. Time : 75 minutes 
  • Union Pearson Express : This is a fast transit line, connecting Pearson to the Union Station in downtown. Cost : $24 CAD. Time : 25 minutes
  • Private transfer from the airport to your hotel is also an option. Cost : $60 CAD. Time : 30 minutes

Commuting within Toronto/GTA

To maximize your time in Toronto, we highly recommend staying in a downtown hotel. You can easily walk to various attractions from there.

If you have to stay away (from the downtown area), ensure you buy a TTC day pass to save money on commute. Transit Passes can be purchased in various denominations from one day to 2-day weekend pass and monthly passes. You will be able to buy passes or single tokens from various subway stations including the Union Station. 

CN Tower & the Canadian Flag

Start your day in downtown Toronto

As you only have a day in Toronto, it is wise to stick to the city’s highlights – the downtown area and nearby. Toronto Downtown is easily connected by LRT (light rail transit), buses, and taxis to reach.

Once you reach downtown head to Eggspectation for a yummy breakfast of eggs, and coffee. You can get down at either Nathan Phillips Square or Toronto Eaton Centre, and then walk to Eggspectation. 

Nathan Phillips Square

Toronto Nathan Philips Square

Nathan Phillips Square and the colorful image of “TORONTO” is quite popular. It is a large urban square in the downtown area, and is the lobby or forecourt to the new Toronto City Hall. 

Don’t forget to snap a photo here! Tons of annual activities from New Year celebrations, to Remembrance Day, Christmas, and more are hosted at the square and attended by Torontonians and visitors. 

This square is located at the intersection of Queen Street West and Bay Street. And from here most of the day’s itinerary activities are within walkable distance, through the urban jungle. 

Check out Eaton Centre

I love visiting big shiny malls and the Eaton Centre is super fabulous! If you are a shopper, you will love it here, and can spend an entire day. However it may not be wise if you only have ONE day in Toronto. 

But feel free to drop by, window shop (or shop) a little, grab a cup of coffee (Tim Hortons may be), and then continue on exploring!

For fashionistas: You can also shop at Yorkdale Shopping Mall (Dufferin St) or head to the Yonge street (near Yonge-Dundas square) at 10 Dundas Street. This is a lovely spot to hang out in the evening with live entertainment and glittering lights, shops, and eateries!

Dundas Square at night

Financial District

As you wander through Downtown Toronto, you will find sky rise buildings – housing corporations, law firms and the stock exchange offices. This is the Financial District – the heart of Canada’s finance and banking industries! 

Very elegantly, this area is lined with tons of cozy cafes, restaurants and luxury Toronto hotels and condos! 

Explore St Lawrence Market

Up next on the itinerary is St Lawrence Market. This is a large public market building, where you can buy local souvenirs or try some local produce and delicacies.

Some of the popular items to try out here are Potato Pancakes and Peameal Sandwiches! Grab a bite before exploring more attractions.

Lawrence Market is only open five days a week. From Tuesday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday from 5:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. It is closed on Sundays and Mondays.

The Hockey Hall of Fame

The famed Hockey Hall of Fame  is located just a few minutes away from the St. Lawrence Market.

The Hockey Hall of Fame is an ice hockey museum, which is dedicated to the history of ice hockey. It also has exhibits about players, teams of the National Hockey League, their records, memorabilia, and trophies, including the Stanley Cup. 

For hockey lovers, you can spend an entire day. At the quickest, you can visit the museum in 1.50- 2 hours. It has an entry fee of $20 CAD for adults, and the tickets are valid for the entire day. 

Visit the Art Gallery Ontario 

Swanky building, the Art Gallery Ontario is a must visit for all art lovers. The gallery boasts of over 90000 exhibits, and is one of the finest museums in the whole of North America. It is located on Dundas Street West, and can be accessed via LRT or just walk down from St Lawrence Market or the Hockey Hall of Fame.

AGO has an entry fee of  $25 CAD. Learn more about their opening hours here

We highly recommend visiting the museum, even if it’s from the outside (if you are short on time), as it’s super stunning to look at. We are sure you won’t be disappointed. 

Royal Ontario Museum

Located just 5 minutes away from the AGO is another stunning museum complex – the Royal Ontario Museum. It is an art, culture, and natural history museum, and is considered to be one of the largest and the most visited museums in Canada. 

Visit ROM to see life-size dinosaurs, mysterious mummies, gems, and other treasures on display. The entry fee to ROM is $23 CAD for adults.

Kensington Market

Kensington Market is a quirky, trendy, and colorful neighborhood in Toronto. We actually reached the market by accident and were impressed with the bohemian decor on stores, cafes, and marketplaces. 

Kensington Market

The Market is home to a wide array of specialty grocers, fish stalls, bakeries and cheese shops. 

If you are a travel photographer, this is your spot for capturing the hustle-bustle of the city (after the stunning harbourfront skyline, of course). 

Enjoy an EdgeWalk at the CN Tower

The CN Tower beautifully adorns the Toronto Skyline. Even before I visited Canada, I knew I had to come here. The CN Tower is one of the tallest buildings in the city, it held the record for the world’s tallest free-standing structure for 32 years until 2007. 

toronto tour itinerary

I was super excited as this was my first time experiencing such stunning views from 446.5 m (1,464.9 ft) high, and walking on the glass floor. I am not very comfortable with heights, but I did it anyway. Compared to this my experience at the Calgary Tower was super easy.

CN Tower was built to serve the Toronto area, as a prime telecommunications tower. Today it is an iconic landmark to the city, and also offers a signature ‘EdgeWalk’ Experience, where you or participants can walk the top of the exposed 356m-high CN Tower.

Cost of EdgeWalk Experience is $195 CDN + tax ticket price, and it also includes access to other attractions inside the tower. CN Tower also has a stunning revolving restaurant. Although a bit pricey it is perfect for any celebrations, big or small! 

Located very close to the CN Tower is the Rogers Centre – home to the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball.

Soak in sunset views at Toronto’s HarbourFront

Toronto HarbourFront is one of my favorite spots to hang out in the city. You also can soak in those stunning blue waters from the viewing floor of the CN Tower. And once you have explored the tower, it’s time for a walk or a segway tour to enjoy the harbourfront.

Toronto Harbourfront is bustling with activities, especially during summer months. There are walking trails and galleries nearby. If you have additional time, you can take a ferry from here to the Toronto Islands for exploring Centreville and nearby beaches.

Sunsets in Harbourfront Toronto

This neighbourhood looks really nice and lovely in the evening. It is also a photographer’s delight to capture the sun go down on the Toronto Skyline! Don’t miss this!

Chill out at the Distillery District Toronto

After spending some time at the Harbourfront, head over to the Distillery District. 

The Distillery District is a unique and quaint spot in Toronto. The district is set in a 19th-century building where a whiskey distillery was once housed. 

You will find pretty cobblestone streets, and there are cozy bars, restaurants, and boutiques nearby. We highly recommend taking a guided food tour in the evening, that way you can explore the Distillery District and learn about its history, and also finish the day with dinner. 

The District has tons of things that you can do – from art and crafts to culinary delights, music, and entertainment. If you are visiting Toronto in the winter, be sure to visit the district for the popular Toronto Christmas Market. 

More than a day in Toronto? 

Now we have to include more of our favorite spots in Toronto, after all, it was our home for 2 years, and we enjoyed exploring and eating out almost every day in the city. So here are some of the must-do activities in Toronto, if you have additional time

Casa Loma 

Casa Loma aka Spanish Hill is a stylish Gothic Revival castle in the city. It used to be a residence for a wealthy businessmen/financier Sir Henry Pellatt. 

Casa Loma Toronto

Casa Loma complex consists of the main residence/mansion, wonderful gardens, a cellar, and stables. There are many rooms located inside the building, which are open for visitors to explore like the home office, bedrooms, living room, etc.

There is a museum on-site as well, and there are special decorations set up for Christmas every festive season. 

Casa Loma Toronto

There is an entry fee for Casa Loma, which is $30 CAD for adults. Although a little pricey, we enjoyed our time exploring such a Gothic castle in Toronto. The gardens are lovely and make for amazing photo backdrops. 

Ontario Science Centre

The Ontario Science Centre is a premier science museum in Toronto, showcasing hundreds of interactive and passive permanent exhibits, from geology, astronomical sciences, human anatomy, communication, and other artifacts of science.

Day Trip to the Niagara Falls 

The stunning Niagara Falls should be on everyone’s bucket list . These iconic waterfalls were historically formed by the Wisconsin Glacier thousands of years ago, and the meltwater filled up the basins to create the mighty Great Lakes. 

These waterfalls can be witnessed from the US side as well as from Canada. You can get a glimpse of America from the viewing platforms in Canada. 

Niagara Falls Canada

It is easy to embark on a day trip from Toronto to Niagara Falls (Canadian side or US both). It takes about 1.50 hours (one way) to reach the waterfalls from Toronto by car. You can also opt for a day tour or use public transportation to explore Niagara Falls.

There are tons of things to do at the Falls. Some of our favorite things include

  • Viewing those stunning waterfalls
  • Embarking on a Maid of the Mist boat tour, and see/feel the waterfalls up close and personal
  • Hang out at the Entertainment District, eat, go bowling
  • Stroll the gardens located at the Niagara Falls site
  • See the stunning colors/ light show in the evening. This is an amazing experience where you can see dazzling lights on the waterfalls at night. 
  • Soaking in views from the Niagara Skylon Tower. It is an observation tower that overlooks both the American Falls New York, and the Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side of the Niagara River

Niagara On the Lake

Located only 20 minutes away from the Niagara Falls, is the wonderful town of Niagara On the Lake. The town is filled with flower beds, quaint 19th century buildings and wineries!

You can embark on a wine tour on Niagara On the Lake.

Toronto Centre Island

Toronto Centre Island is a lovely getaway located just minutes away from downtown. You can take a ferry ride from the HarbourFront to Centre Island. 

Toronto Centre Island

Centre Island is one of the three primary Toronto Islands. It is located in between Ward’s Island on the east and Hanlan’s Point on the west. The Centreville Amusement Park is a popular tourist spot in Centre Island.

There are biking paths and a nice beach where you can hang out. The Island also has a petting zoo, which you can access for free. 

We love going on voyageur canoes to chase sunsets, and at the Centre Island you can too!

Danforth 

Danforth is the lively Greektown in Toronto. This neighborhood has a ton of international culinary cafes, and bars, especially of Greek flavors and pastry shops. Every year in August, there is a food festival, called the Taste of the Danforth, where you can relish delicious food, and swing to live music and dancing.

The Danforth neighborhood is also home to many green spaces including the Riverdale Park, Withrow Park, and the East Lynn Park. They are perfect for a leisurely stroll or a morning jog. The Chester Lookout point is a nice spot to take in the city views and the greenery around. 

Peterborough 

Lift-lock cruise Peterborough

Peterborough is a city located on the Otonabee River, about 1.50 hours away from Toronto. It is a perfect day trip getaway option where you can enjoy small town vibes, and go on a liftlock cruise.

The Peterborough Lift Lock is a boat lift located on the Trent Canal, and it has been existing for decades. You can enjoy a tour of the lock’s dual lifts, and see the highest hydraulic boat lifts in action.

Need more ideas? Read our post on top road trips to take from Toronto!

Sightseeing Map: Toronto One Day Itinerary

We have included a Toronto attractions map for you. The magenta spots are for the exact one day itinerary listed here, and the blue spots are additional activities to consider.

Additional Tips: Visiting Toronto for a day

Here are some important tips for preparing for your trip to Toronto

Travel Documents

Travelers with valid USA and the EU passport can visit Toronto without a tourist visa for a set period of time. However, all travelers are required to complete an Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA) before boarding their flights to Canada, including Australian passport holders. 

  • For USA Passport holders: A valid U.S. passport, passport card, or NEXUS card is required when crossing the border + eTA
  • EU Passport holders : All European Union nationals are considered visa-exempt for stays up to six months. Valid passport required + eTA
  • Indian Passport holders: Travelers visiting on an Indian Passport (without a permanent resident card) must apply for a tourist visa from the country of residence, and prior to arrival. 

Best time to visit Toronto Ontario

Toronto experiences all 4 seasons – spring, summer, fall and winter. So here is how each season looks like

  • Spring (March to May): Spring is a nice time to be in Toronto. The weather starts to get warmer, and you can relax in parks and see flowers blooming in the city. In early spring, carry a waterproof jacket with you. 
  • Summer (June to August): Summers are warm and busy in Toronto. It is a great time to visit for outdoor activities, concerts, and events. However, it is peak season so expect hotels to be expensive and attractions (and public transportation) busy and crowded.
  • Fall (September to November ): Fall is our favorite time to be in Toronto, especially with all stunning orange-y vibes and Pumpkin Spice Lattes. Being an off-season, you will find hotels at relatively cheaper rates, and attractions will be less busy as the school year begins in September. Closer to November, expect the winter to kick-start with cooler temperatures and the start of Christmas markets across the city.
  • Winter (December to February): Toronto winters are similar to most places in eastern Canada, and east coast USA like New York. So pack warm clothes during your trip. There will be snow, windchill and temperatures can drop down to -16 degree Celsius or lower.  Read : Ontario winter getaways bucket list

We hope you enjoyed this jam packed one day in Toronto Itinerary. Have fun in this wonderful city!

Pin: How to spend a day in Toronto Ontario

Pin for how to spend one day in Toronto itinerary guide

Mayuri K is an Indian Canadian traveler, writer and photographer based in Alberta. She moved to Toronto as a student in 2009, and has been calling Canada home ever since. She started the blog - Canada Crossroads - to share her travel and living experiences in the Great White North!

A History graduate and an MBA, Mayuri is a destinations marketing expert. She loves traveling with her husband, Salil and soaking in experiences across Canada, India and Europe.

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Local Itinerary: How To Spend 10 Incredible Days In Toronto, Canada

Travelers can see all of the best attractions in Toronto and surrounding areas in just 10 days with this jam-packed itinerary!

Read update

How Long Should You Spend In Toronto, Canada?

  • Spend at least 7 days in Toronto to fully explore the diverse and large city, with 10+ days being the sweet spot for a true vacation experience.
  • Visit popular attractions in the downtown core and take exciting day trips to beautiful neighborhoods outside of Toronto, CA.
  • Plan your trip according to the best time of year to visit, avoiding peak periods like summer for lower prices and less crowded attractions.

Toronto, Ontario, is the largest city in Canada , with a population of more than 2.5 million people. The city is spread out over a vast area with a densely populated downtown core and charming neighborhoods further East, West, and North of Lake Ontario.

Wondering how to spend 10 days in Toronto? No worries; it’s possible to see all the major attractions downtown, plus squeeze in some exciting day trips that take travelers further outside this area to beautiful neighborhoods in Toronto . Follow this itinerary created by a local Torontonian to spend 10 exciting days seeing the best Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area has to offer.

Upon arrival in Toronto, purchase a PRESTO card at the nearest transit station. PRESTO cards allow travelers to tap on any TTC (Toronto Transit Commission) vehicle and continue riding anywhere in the city for 2 hours at a time for just $3.35 per adult. PRESTO cards also work for the GO Train and Bus services departing Union Station daily.

UPDATE: 2023/11/18 15:22 EST BY NOAH STAATS

This article has been expanded with the best amount of time to vacation in Toronto, as well as the best time of year to visit. Whether someone wants to spend Christmas, New Year's, spring break, or even summer in this Canadian culture hub, there is always SOMETHING to do.

11 Day One: Arrival And Dinner At 360 Restaurant

Most travelers will arrive at Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ). From there, it’s possible to take the UP Express to Union Station, which situates travelers in the heart of the city. Book any of the budget-friendly or five-star hotels in Toronto (the downtown area, specifically) for easy walking access to the major attractions.

After checking in, it’s time to start exploring. Make a reservation in advance for an unforgettable dinner at the top of the CN Tower at 360 Restaurant. The views are incredible!

  • Highlights Of The Day: View from the CN Tower
  • Transportation For The Day: TTC or Uber

10 Day Two: Explore The Downtown Core

For the first full day in the city, visit the highlights of Toronto’s downtown core. Start the morning by exploring the St. Lawrence Market. It’s located on Front Street in the historic Old Town Toronto, with more than 120 vendors to shop from.

There is hot food, groceries, and fresh produce available. Have lunch here before heading to Ripley’s Aquarium or the Hockey Hall of Fame for the afternoon, both of which are some of the top attractions in Toronto.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Ripley’s Aquarium, Harbourfront Centre, St. Lawrence Market, Hockey Hall of Fame
  • Transportation For The Day: TTC and walking

Buckle Up & Enjoy The Ride: 10 Best Summer Day Trips From Toronto, Canada

9 day three: day trip to the toronto islands.

On day three, head to the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal in downtown Toronto and board a boat to cross part of Lake Ontario. The ferry ride is just 13 minutes long and takes travelers to the main three islands of the chain known as the Toronto Islands.

Ward’s Island, Centre Island, and Hanlan’s Point are the ones to visit. Centre Island is home to Centreville, an amusement park geared towards families with kids. Adults can spend their time swimming or sunbathing at Hanlan’s Point Beach or exploring Ward’s Island.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Ward’s Island and Hanlan’s Point Beach
  • Transportation For The Day: Ferry and walking

8 Day Four: Head North To Casa Loma And Spadina Museum

On day four, hop on the TTC or take an Uber to explore a part of the city located north of downtown. Travelers who choose to take the subway from Downtown will travel on the Yonge-University line to Dupont Station. From Dupont Station, they can walk to the scenic castle known as Casa Loma.

The castle was built in 1914 and took three years and 3.5 million dollars to construct. After touring the historic castle, also pop over to the Spadina Museum next door.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Casa Loma and Spadina Museum

10 Amazing Things To Do In Toronto, Canada, This Summer

7 day five: kensington market food tour and visit chinatown.

On day five, walk or take the street car toward Kensington Market for one of the most unforgettable food tours in Toronto. The market streets boast tons of top-tier restaurants with cuisines from around the world.

In the afternoon, explore nearby Chinatown and have dinner at one of the best dim sum restaurants on Spadina Avenue (Rol San or Mother’s Dumplings).

  • Highlights Of The Day: Kensington Market, Rol San, Mother’s Dumplings
  • Transportation For The Day: TTC or walking

6 Day Six: Art Gallery Of Ontario And Distillery District

The next morning, hop on the TTC or take an Uber to the famous AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario). The AGO is home to work by Canadian and International artists, with exhibits that showcase diverse talents. With more than 90,000 works of art, the AGO is one of the most prestigious art museums in North America.

In the afternoon, head south to the Distillery District. This historic area of the city has romantic cobblestone streets, brick buildings, and string lights. It’s the perfect place to have dinner at an upscale restaurant or grab a pint.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Art Gallery of Ontario and Dinner in the Distillery District
  • Transportation For The Day: Walking or TTC

10 Best Tourist Spots In Toronto You Should See This Summer

5 day seven: the royal ontario museum and yorkville.

Start day seven by touring the Royal Ontario Museum (the ROM), which features collections and exhibits that are interesting to people of all ages. From there, walk, or take public transit to Yorkville. This ritzy neighborhood of the city is home to some fantastic restaurants, high-end shops, and experiences.

Have an Italian meal for lunch at Eataly and then catch a movie at the cinema or go shopping. For dinner, there are countless options in this area, such as Hemingway’s Restaurant and Bar, Trattoria Nervosa, or Bar Reyna.

  • Highlights Of The Day: The ROM, Eataly in Yorkville, and Cineplex Cinemas Varsity

4 Day Eight: Day Trip To The West End

On day eight, hop on the streetcar at Queen Street and venture into Toronto’s West End. Travelers will pass through the lively area known as Queen Street West (they can get off to explore before hopping back on the street car).

It’s approximately 30–40 minutes west via streetcar to the entrance of High Park. Explore the park, enjoy the walking trails, the petting zoo, or grab an ice cream cone. The best time of year to visit High Park is spring for the cherry blossoms or autumn for fall foliage.

Depart High Park via the subway (other park entrance) and then take transit to Dundas West Station to explore Little Italy. This charming part of Toronto’s West End feels like a piece of Italy in Canada. There are pizzerias, trattorias, and gelato shops.

  • Highlights Of The Day: High Park and Little Italy

3 Day Nine: Experience The East End

On day nine, travelers can venture to the opposite side of the city to see what Toronto's East End can offer. Start the morning at the Scarborough Bluffs for a picturesque sunrise and view of the lake.

In the afternoon, visit Evergreen Brickworks for some hiking and outdoor education. On Saturdays, there is a farmer's market.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Evergreen Brickworks and Scarborough Bluffs

Always adhere to signs for safety at the Scarborough Bluffs. Never stand close to the edge of the bluffs, as they are unstable.

2 Day Ten: Take The GO Train To Niagara

Spend the final full day in Toronto exploring one of the most scenic and top attractions in Canada. Hop on the GO train at Union Station and ride the rail to Niagara Falls. Spend the day viewing the Canadian side of Niagara Falls , shopping, and exploring attractions on Clifton Hill, or embark on a journey via Maid of the Mist.

In the evening, take the WEGO Bus, which is a shuttle from Niagara Falls to Niagara-On-The-Lake . Tour some of the wineries in the area and have a relaxing dinner with views of the water.

Wrap-up time in Toronto by taking the train back to Union Station and preparing for departure the following morning. Alternatively, spend the night in one of the hotels close to Toronto Pearson Airport for early morning flights.

  • Highlights Of The Day: Niagara Falls (Canadian Side), Clifton Hill, Niagara-On-The-Lake
  • Transportation For The Day: GO Train (from Union Station)

Niagara Falls is one of the more visited attractions in Canada, near the US border, so expect long lines, traffic, and limited parking during peak summer vacation periods. That said, if you take public transport to the park or Uber/Lyft, that can help cut down on pricing for parking passes.

1 How Many Days Should I Spend In Toronto, Canada?

Because Toronto, Canada, is such a diverse and large city, most people benefit from staying here for seven to 14 days. Generally, a week is enough for a true Toronto vacation, although 10+ days is the sweet spot. Depending on the season, there may be new events or festivals happening, as well as pop-up shops and attractions throughout this world-class city. Moreover, Toronto, CA, boasts 244 square miles of hotels, restaurants, shopping, parks, and more.

Around the holidays, Toronto also lights up with Christmas magic, making for an even better winter getaway lasting 10+ days. There's no technical limit on how long someone should spend here, although getting a glimpse of every attraction, like the museums, can take visitors some time. Toronto has even been voted the most festive place to celebrate Christmas this year , making it worth considering.

Canada is known for putting on perfectly cheery Christmas displays, starting in November throughout the city and suburbs. Coming here during winter might also bring cheaper flights and hotel stays, as the weather isn't at its "prime" warm temps. Don't be afraid to take advantage of that when you book your vacation.

It's also worth mentioning peak vacation periods (like spring break and summer: June, July, and August ) see more people, higher prices, and longer wait times for public transport services and attractions, so that is something to be wary of.

  • How Long To Spend In Toronto : At least seven days
  • Busiest Time Of Year : Summer (June, July, and August)

Rudderless Travel

48 Hours In Toronto Itinerary: How To Spend A Weekend In My City

48-Hour-Toronto-Itinerary

  • Pinterest 442

What to do in Toronto for a weekend? Read on as I share all my favourite places to visit and things to see. 

After so many years of travelling, I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to assemble a 48-hour Toronto itinerary. It’s where I was born, and it’s where I live, work, and play; you’d think it would be easy to put together a list of where to go in Toronto, right? Well, it is, and it isn’t. 

Toronto is a world-class city in its own right, but when I return from a trip, I want to relax and slowly try to get back into the groove of the daily grind. But as a travel blogger who creates short trips, mini-breaks, business travel, and weekend getaway itineraries, I must create an itinerary for Toronto.

All that said, I live in a massive city, so I decided to stick with the downtown attractions instead of things to do near Toronto. Some are tourist spots, while others are hidden gems that only a local like me would know.

Also, our national airline Air Canada allows you to hook up a stopover for up to 7 days in Toronto on your way to Europe or Asia. Sweet! 

You can bookmark this itinerary for when you get here. Hell, I’ll even welcome you at the airport with open arms. This article is now available as a mobile app. Go to GPSmyCity to download the app for GPS-assisted travel directions to the attractions featured in this article.

Now, let’s get into what to do in Toronto for a weekend…

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Table of Contents

Toronto History

  • Toronto is the capital of the province of Ontario and the most populated and  famous  (I forgot to remove my bias) city in Canada. This probably is the reason why most Torontonians think that Toronto  IS  Canada.  
  • Despite Toronto’s population, popularity and Torontonians’ feelings on the matter, It is not the nation’s capital. That would be  Ottawa , the seat of Canada’s federal government.
  • The name Toronto or “Taronto” once referred to a water channel between Lake Simcoe and Couchiching, listed on maps as early as 1675. The name eventually travelled South to a fort at the mouth of the Humber River. Fort Toronto was the first settlement in the area, thus becoming the name of the most magnificent city on earth, Toronto (again forgot to remove my bias)

toronto tour itinerary

Getting To Toronto

Toronto has two main airports Toronto Pearson International Airport and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Toronto Pearson is Canada’s principal airport, with flights to every continent and over 76 scheduled and charter airlines. Canada’s flagship airline is Air Canada, which allows you to hook up a stopover for up to 7 days in Toronto on your way to Europe or Asia.

You can take a taxi, Uber or public transportation from the airport to Toronto. Still, the fastest and most cost-effective way is the UP Express ( Union-Pearson Express ). UP Express is a rail service that connects Toronto’s central train station ( Union Station ) with Toronto’s main airport.

Billy Bishop, Toronto City Airport , is located on Toronto Island, minutes from the downtown core. A short ferry ride or a quick stroll through the pedestrian tunnel under Lake Ontario will get you into Toronto. Both Porter Airlines and Air Canada serve the airport.

VIA Rail  and  AMTRAK  will get you into the city’s heart via Toronto’s Union Station. Union Station is connected to both Toronto’s Subway ( TTC ) and the underground walking network ( PATH ) 

GO Train  connects Toronto with several other cities and towns around Ontario, including Niagara Falls. 

Several highways, including Highways 2, 401, 407 and the Queen Elizabeth Way, link surrounding cities to Toronto. The nearest Canada-U.S. border crossings are at Niagara Falls, Fort Erie and Windsor.

The Toronto Coach Terminal once called the Gray Coach Terminal, is Toronto’s central bus station. It is connected via the underground PATH and sits between two Subway Stations. The terminal is used by Coach Canada ,  Greyhound Canada , and  Ontario Northland  bus lines.

toronto tour itinerary

How To Get Around During 2 Days In Toronto

How do you get from point A to point B on your Toronto weekend trip? I’m glad you asked; here are all the options and how to make the best of them.

Foot.  Walking or even  crawling  will probably get around the downtown core the fastest. Luckily, most of the popular sites on this Toronto Itinerary are within walking distance or require minimal public transportation.

Another option is The PATH, a massive underground pedestrian walkway that spans over 30 kilometres. In the PATH, you’ll find restaurants, shopping, services, entertainment and connections to public transit.

Check out the map  HERE .

Biking, rollerblading, skateboarding or electric scooter/bike around the downtown core is the best transportation option. 

Please don’t. Unfortunately, with copious construction and a poorly planned city, traffic is horrendous. It takes one hour to get from Toronto to Toronto in any direction –  on a good day, any day, any time. 

Give yourself at least an hour (not including travel time) to get to your destination. Best case scenario, you’ll arrive an hour early, worst case scenario, you’ll arrive on time. Parking is no better and presents its particular piece of hell.

Parking is at a premium, and in addition to the lack of available spaces, it’s quite expensive in private parking lots. Whenever possible, look for  GreenP parking lots or GreenP street metered parking  as it is run by the City of Toronto and cheaper than private parking.

You could use the  GreenP  app to find and pay for parking if you could score a spot.  

Public Transportation

The subway should technically be the perfect solution. Well, it’s not. It’s better than nothing, but it’s often crowded, severely underserves a city this size in capacity and coverage, and it’s a constant work in progress.

It is currently in the middle of a much-needed extension, but it’s a pain point. The bus and streetcar/tram surface routes (except for two specific streetcar lines) are subject to the same traffic issues as the cars.

I tried to fit a boat tour into the itinerary, but unfortunately, it was one of the things I needed to cut. One of the best ways to see Toronto’s beautiful skyline is from Lake Ontario or the Toronto Islands.

From the Toronto harbour, you can book: 

  • Mariposa Cruises
  • Toronto Harbour Tours
  • Empress Of Canada

Or the traditional 165-foot three-masted schooner (which you’ll find engraved on Canada’s ten-cent coin), the Tall Ship Kajama .

toronto tour itinerary

How to Spend 48 Hours in Toronto

Hopefully, you’re starting your day early, loaded up on some good coffee, and ready to explore! Here’s the ideal day in Toronto plan.

Baldwin Steps

The first stop is Casa Loma, but to get up the hill, we need to use the Baldwin Steps, which are a public outdoor staircase that dates back to the 19th century. They are named after a former landowner of the area, the Baldwin family, which included Robert Baldwin, a former premier of Ontario.

toronto tour itinerary

This 98-room castle was commissioned by Sir Henry Mill Pellatt, a Canadian soldier and investor who founded the Toronto Electric Light Company in 1883. Sir Henry Mill Pellatt ordered Toronto native and architect E. J. Lennox to design Casa Loma.

The 3.5 million dollar castle began construction in 1911 and was finally completed by 1914. Today Casa Loma is used as a filming location, a museum, and a venue for weddings. It is also one of Toronto’s most famous landmarks.

toronto tour itinerary

Royal Ontario Museum (R.O.M.)

The Royal Ontario Museum is one of North America’s largest museums and Canada’s largest museums. The ROM is regarded as a “preeminent field research institute and an international leader in new and original findings in biodiversity, paleontology, earth sciences, the visual arts, material culture, and archaeology.”

toronto tour itinerary

Philosophers Walk (*Hidden Gem)

The Philosophers Walk is a scenic footpath located on the St George campus of the University of Toronto.  It runs north-south along what was once natural water called Taddle Creek, which was buried during the industrial age and now flows underwater.

toronto tour itinerary

University of Toronto (Campus)

The University of Toronto was founded in 1827 as King’s College and the first institution of higher learning in Upper Canada. The university is comprised of twelve colleges. The University of Toronto also has two satellite campuses in Scarborough and Mississauga.

toronto tour itinerary

Baldwin Street, Restaurants (*Hidden Gem)

Yes, you might have guessed it’s the same Baldwin family who owned the land where the steps used to get to Casa Loma are built. This small Toronto enclave is located in Toronto’s Grange Park neighbourhood.

Baldwin Village is famous for its small shops and restaurants like Shawarma and Falafel Place, Chardise, Sid’s Deli, and many other favourited restaurants in Toronto.

toronto tour itinerary

Kensington Market

Kensington Market is Toronto’s self-proclaimed “most vibrant and diverse neighbourhood.”  This bustling Toronto neighbourhood serves as a fine indicator of Toronto’s multicultural diversity. No establishment in Kensington Market is the same. Vendors, shops, and restaurants of all sorts of ethnicities make up the melting pot that is Toronto’s “most vibrant and diverse neighbourhood.”

toronto tour itinerary

Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)

The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) is home to over 90,000 artworks and is lauded as one of North America’s most distinguished art museums.  This massive museum carried works of art ranging from the Renaissance to contemporary art pieces. Aside from being an astonishing physical museum, AGO also has launched its social media website, Collection X, which grants users access to a digital art forum open to artists and art lovers.

toronto tour itinerary

Grange Park

Right beside the AGO is OCAD U (The Ontario College of Art and Design University), and right behind is Grange Park, which happens to be my local park. Many-a-blog-post was conceived in this park!

There are two large sculptures by world-famous sculpture Henry Moore and 14 nature-related, inscribed granite paving stones from famous Canadian authors. 

toronto tour itinerary

Queen Street West

Named “the second coolest neighbourhood in the world” by Vogue magazine, Queen Street West is in downtown Toronto’s most celebrated (fashion) district. Queen Street West is a hip, urban strip that extends for two kilometres (1.25 miles) between Bathurst and Gladstone and comprises some of the city’s most trendy boutiques, art galleries, bars, and restaurants.

toronto tour itinerary

Graffiti Alley (*Hidden Gem)

One of Toronto’s most surprising artistic accomplishments is just south of Queen Street West: Graffiti Alley. Graffiti Alley stretches for approximately one kilometre (.6 miles) and is teeming with urban art that is (legally) painted each summer by an artistic troupe called Style in Progress.

If you’re looking to explore Toronto in hopes of finding a hidden gem that reflects the urban and artistic capabilities of the city, then Graffiti Alley is that and more. Read more about Graffiti Alley from my Toronto’s Graffiti And Street Art post:

toronto tour itinerary

King Street West | King West Village

King West Village is one of Toronto’s fastest-growing communities. With waves of young professionals moving into the neighbourhood, Kings West Village has experienced a boost in its economy and social scene.

Aside from the rapidly changing demographic of the neighbourhood, King West Village is well-known for its landmarks, 19th-century buildings, and iconic brownstones.

toronto tour itinerary

Rogers Centre (a.k.a. The SkyDome)

Opened in June 1989 and originally named the SkyDome, Rogers Centre is a multi-purpose indoor stadium that holds some of Toronto’s wonderfully exciting venues. Notably, the Rogers Centre is home to the Toronto Blue Jays (MLB) and has served as the venue for various events: sporting events, concerts, auto shows, circuses, Disney on Ice, and more.

toronto tour itinerary

Architecturally, the stadium is well-known for being the first to have a fully retractable motorized roof, an annexed 348-room hotel attached, and the last dual sporting major-league stadium in North America (MLB and NFL).

toronto tour itinerary

Toronto Railway Museum

The Toronto Railway Museum, a mainstay attraction of downtown Toronto located in Roundhouse Park,  is “dedicated to preserving the physical legacy, history, and experience of rail transportation in Toronto and Ontario.”

The museum offers lots like a railway simulator, in-depth historical displays, and interactive displays. Check out the gift shop and go on a Miniature Train ride before you leave!

toronto tour itinerary

CN Tower | 360 Restaurant

Often viewed as the pride and joy of Toronto, The CN Tower is a spectacular architectural and engineering feat that captures the city’s livelihood. This national icon and landmark are well-known for its (cost-efficient) state-of-the-art LED lighting system and recently being on the cover of Drake’s critically-acclaimed album “Views.” 

Aside from its stature as a cultural and urban icon, the CN Tower is home to the revolving 360 The Restaurant.  This world-class restaurant is managed by Executive Chef John Morris and General Manager of Restaurants and Events Cameron Dryburgh, who helms the culinary team at the award-winning restaurant.

toronto tour itinerary

Day 2 of Your Weekend Trip To Toronto

And for the final leg of seeing Toronto in 2 days, today is another jam-packed day, with a few restful stops along the way.

Distillery District 

Despite its name, Toronto’s Distillery District is known as “Canada’s premier arts, culture and entertainment destination.”  The district gets its name from the 47 buildings formally known as the Gooderham & Worts Distillery.

Since 2003, the Distillery District has offered locals and visitors a “hip, cool dynamic” comparable to New York City’s SoHo or Chelsea. Check out the Distillery District’s unique shops, galleries, studios, restaurants, cafes, theatres, and more!

toronto tour itinerary

St. Lawrence Market

St. Lawrence Market is an encompassing, nostalgic shopping destination in Toronto. The market comprises three main buildings that each provide unique services and products: The South Market, the North Market and St. Lawrence Hall. The South Market is known for vendors selling fresh produce, meat, fish, grains, baked goods, dairy products, and non-food items.

The second floor of the South Market, home to the Market Gallery, serves as an exhibition space for the City of Toronto’s Cultural Services. The North Market is well-known for its Saturday Farmers’ Market, Sunday antique dealers, and rental spaces. St. Lawrence Hall comprises various retailers on the ground floor, city offices on the second floor, and auxiliary rooms for special events on the third floor.

toronto tour itinerary

Gooderham Building

Toronto’s Gooderham Building, also known as the Flatiron Building, is one of the city’s historical landmarks. Located in Toronto’s Financial District, the Gooderham Building was completed in 1892 as a premature model of its current architectural state. Now, the building serves as an office building and a historical landmark that adds to Toronto’s pizzazz.

toronto tour itinerary

Cathedral Church of St. James

Opened on June 19, 1853, the Cathedral Church of St. James is one of the most significant Toronto-built buildings. The Cathedral was constructed to replicate Gothic Revival architecture. The cathedral is well-known for its 92.9 meters (305-foot) tower and pointed spire.

toronto tour itinerary

Yonge-Dundas Square

Yonge-Dundas Square is Toronto’s equivalent of New York City’s Times Square. This bustling, vibrant square experiences fluxes of tourists and locals who relish the square’s open space and eccentric ambiance. Yonge-Dundas Square’s myriad LCD displays bring a unique luminescence to Toronto and capture the city’s animated downtown vibe.

toronto tour itinerary

Eaton Centre 

Located in downtown Toronto, the Eaton Centre is Toronto’s only mega shopping centre. This massive shopping centre is home to over 230 national and international retailers and offers patrons many dining and entertainment options.

toronto tour itinerary

Old City Hall

Old City Hall is just one of four city halls constructed in Toronto. The building boasts a Romanesque style of architecture and a distinguishable clock tower. Since 1984, Old City Hall has been designated a National Historic Site of Toronto.

toronto tour itinerary

Toronto City Hall | Toronto Sign

Toronto City Hall, also known as New City Hall, is the home of Toronto’s municipal government.  Despite its round base, Toronto City Hall comprises two curved towers and stands at varying heights. Toronto City Hall’s courtyard, Nathan Phillips Square, serves as the primary host of various festivals and events in Toronto.

toronto tour itinerary

Centred around Yonge-Dundas Square is Yonge Street. As is typical of the streets of downtown Toronto, Yonge Street is lined with heaps of restaurants, bars, and shops. Yonge Street is one of Toronto’s main streets. It is the longest street in the world and divides the city between East & West.

toronto tour itinerary

Hockey Hall of Fame

In typical Canadian fashion, Toronto is home to the Hockey Hall of Fame (HHoF). The Hockey Hall of Fame building was established in 1943 on Yonge Street. The HHoF houses 15 various exhibit areas that cover 60,000 square feet.

Visitors of the HHoF can view trophy displays, memorabilia, and player equipment worn during special games. The Hockey Hall of Fame also has an interactive display called “Be a Player” that allows patrons to use and shoot real pukes against a simulated legendary goaltender, Ed Belfour.

toronto tour itinerary

Harbourfront | Harbour Centre

The Harbourfront Centre is a nonprofit cultural organization that organizes events and activities to enrich and enhance downtown Toronto. Located at 235 Queens Quay West, on Toronto’s waterfront, the Harbourfront Centre is a must-visit destination for all those looking to enjoy the cultural diversity and creativity of Toronto right on the water.

toronto tour itinerary

Amsterdam BrewHouse

Located on the Harbourfront, Amsterdam BrewHouse offers patrons craft beers and delicious eats. Amsterdam BrewHouse’s ideal location is the perfect place to enjoy local craft beers, delicious local foods, and a lakeside view of Lake Ontario.

Visit my post, The Best Harbourfront Restaurant in Toronto, to learn more about this fantastic place!

Also, while at the Amsterdam BrewHouse, I got out with a good friend and fellow travel blogger, Danielle, from the Thought Card. She’s a pro at cost-effective travel, so if you’re curious about budgeting a trip to Toronto, she wrote a great post called Toronto Budget: How Much Does A Trip To Toronto Cost?  

toronto tour itinerary

Places To Stay For Two Days In Toronto + Map

Enjoying Canadian hospitality is one of the best parts of a weekend in Toronto. So book your bed at one of these cozy spots and feel at home during your stay. 

Most of my itinerary suggestions are in Downtown Toronto, so I suggest you stay Downtown. This will cut down on any unnecessary travel time in your short schedule.

toronto tour itinerary

Fairmont Royal York Hote l

Fairmont’s historic ballroom is legendary, and the hotel is a city icon.  Its spacious rooms feature floral accents and include designer bath toiletries and robes. It has a skylit indoor pool and five on-site dining options. It’s across the street from Union Station, with a shuttle bus to both airports.

toronto tour itinerary

1 Hotel Toronto

The Hotel has a rooftop pool and bars with views of the city and CN Towers – I could stop there. But it has designer linens and bath amenities. Fully stocked minibars, 24-hour concierge, on-site valet and a 10-minute walk from the bars and restaurants of King West.

toronto tour itinerary

Hyatt Regency Toronto

Located in the entertainment district in the centre of Toronto – trust me, there is no better place to be. It’s a modern hotel with flat-screen TVs and Apple docking stations, an on-site sauna, and an outdoor pool, and its King Street Social Kitchen and Lounge serves regional cuisine.

toronto tour itinerary

Toronto Weekend Travel Tips

Living in Toronto gives me an exclusive backstage pass to everything happening in the city. From that, I’ve gathered a wealth of knowledge for travellers needing a little help or inspiration. Here are some often-asked questions about the city, but if you have any more, please reach out and let me know!

Are 2 Days Enough In Toronto?

Two days in Toronto may be enough to see some of the city’s highlights, but it depends on what you want to do and see. If you’re interested in exploring the downtown core, visiting major attractions, and trying out some of the city’s culinary delights, two days should be sufficient. However, if you want to delve deeper into the city’s neighbourhoods, explore its numerous parks and green spaces, or take day trips to nearby attractions, you may want to budget more time.

Is Toronto A Good Weekend Trip?

Toronto can be a great weekend trip destination! With its bustling downtown core, diverse neighbourhoods, world-renowned attractions, and vibrant food and entertainment scene, the city has plenty to see and do. 

What Month Is Best In Toronto?

There isn’t a bad time to visit Toronto. But if you visit between April and May or September and October, you’ll get to miss the crowds, still enjoy pleasant weather, and even catch a festival or three.

toronto tour itinerary

Things To Know About Toronto

  • Construction. Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first. Toronto’s development has its year-round season; Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter & Construction. Looking around, you can see dozens of cranes cluttering the skyline with condominiums being built at an alarming speed – which most consider a good thing. But with growing pains come water central repairs, street repairs, bridge repairs and subway extension projects. Getting around the city by car and, at times, public transportation can be challenging. (As mentioned above) 
  • Pronunciation. “Chrrr-runo” is the way we pronounce Toronto. We can usually tell who’s not from here as visitors emphasize the T’s.   
  • As mentioned above, Toronto is the best-known city in Canada, which usually leads to other cities, towns and villages hating us and our sports teams – especially the Toronto Maple Leafs (hockey). The Blue Jays and the Raptors (baseball and basketball, respectively) are exempt as they are Canada’s only National teams. 

  • As mentioned above, Toronto is the best-known city in Canada, which usually leads to other cities, towns and villages hating us and our sports teams – especially the Toronto Maple Leafs (hockey). The Blue Jays and the Raptors (baseball and basketball, respectively) are exempt as they are Canada’s only National teams.
  • Speaking of the Toronto Raptors, they were the 2019 world champions! “WE THE NORTH!”
  • Neighbourhoods. One of Toronto’s greatest treasures is its communities , which sometimes can be looked at as mini-cities or mini-countries. Unofficially known as “the city of neighbourhoods.” we have 140 neighbourhoods officially recognized and about 240 official and informal communities within the city. French is Canada’s official second language, but not everyone speaks French without getting into the country’s ugly colonial past involving the French & English empires and the mistreatment of indigenous peoples. Some tensions remain between French and English Canada (often represented by Quebec and Ontario). Sometimes the language difference rares its ugly head culturally, politically and definitely during hockey games. In Toronto, however, we speak English.
  • Diversity Equals Great Food. Not all Torontonians are friendly people. We are not as aggressive as NYC, but we are not that far off. What is considered “polite” here in Toronto is more like the American Southern Insult – Good Bless Your Heart. Almost nothing will unite Canadians faster than if someone comments on certain similarities between Canada and the United States. Quietly defining their distinctions from their southern neighbours has been a part of the Canadian experience of national identity since 1867. Yes, some Canadian accents may sound similar to some American ones. On the surface, a megacity such as Toronto might reflect the generic “look” of a North American city, but historically, politically. Socially, Canadians are proud of their country and its differences.
  • Raccoons. Raccoons rule the city, and in fact, I’m not opposed to having our national animal the beaver being replaced with a raccoon. For they are smart enough to get past border security at Toronto Pearson International Airport. 

toronto tour itinerary

Toronto Day Trips

If the hustle and bustle of Toronto is proving too much and you’re craving that small-town feel I strongly recommend Port Perry, Ontario . In about an hour’s time you can be sitting in the middle of a frozen lake (Lake Scugog) with friends, ice fishing, drinking beer and eating apple fritters the size of your head.

Often used as a filming location because of its small-town “American”, Port Perry’s historic downtown is one of York Durham’s prettiest little towns. With loads of boutique shops that line the Victorian streets starting from Lake Scugog with its Old Mill – Canada’s oldest grain elevator, up towards the Town Hall Theatre.  

toronto tour itinerary

toronto tour itinerary

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Toronto Journeys

6 Days in Toronto 2024

Visit toronto in 6 days.

Toronto, the largest city in Canada, is a vibrant metropolis that offers a unique blend of modernity and history, culture and nature, and excitement and relaxation. As a local, I’ve had the privilege of experiencing the city’s many facets, and I’m thrilled to share my insights with you. In this 6-day itinerary, I’ll guide you through the best that Toronto has to offer, from its iconic landmarks to its hidden gems. Whether you’re a history buff, an art enthusiast, a foodie, or a nature lover, Toronto has something for everyone. This guide is designed to help you immerse yourself in the city’s diverse culture, explore its rich history, and enjoy its stunning natural beauty. So, get ready to embark on an unforgettable journey through Toronto, a city that will captivate your senses and leave you with lasting memories.

6 days in Toronto Itinerary

6-day Toronto Itinerary – Our Proposal for Toronto in 6 Days

What to do in Toronto in 6 days? Here’s an overview of the perfect Toronto itinerary 6 days.

  • Day 1 in Toronto –  CN Tower and St. Lawrence Market
  • Day 2 in Toronto –  Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and Kensington Market
  • Day 3 in Toronto –  Casa Loma and Black Creek Pioneer Village
  • Day 4 in Toronto –  Toronto Islands and High Park
  • Day 5 in Toronto –  Yorkville and Entertainment District
  • Day 6 in Toronto –  Chinatown and Little Italy.

Day 1: Downtown Toronto

  • CN Tower : My visit to the CN Tower was unforgettable. The elevator ride to the top was thrilling, and the views of the city were breathtaking. I even dared to try the EdgeWalk, where I walked along the edge of the tower, secured by a harness. It was an adrenaline-pumping experience!
  • Ripley’s Aquarium : The aquarium was a magical experience. I was mesmerized by the colorful marine life, especially the jellyfish and the giant Pacific octopus. The highlight was the underwater tunnel, where I felt like I was walking on the ocean floor.

Afternoon :

  • Harbourfront : The waterfront was a peaceful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. I enjoyed watching the boats and the seagulls while sipping on a cup of coffee from one of the cafes.
  • St. Lawrence Market : The market was a food lover’s paradise. I sampled some local delicacies like peameal bacon sandwiches and butter tarts. The atmosphere was lively, and I enjoyed chatting with the vendors.

Day 2: Cultural Exploration

  • Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) : The ROM was a treasure trove of history and culture. I was fascinated by the Egyptian mummies and the dinosaur fossils. The museum’s architecture was also impressive, with its modern crystal addition.
  • Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) : The AGO was a feast for the eyes. I was captivated by the works of famous artists like Van Gogh and Picasso. The contemporary art section was thought-provoking and inspiring.
  • Distillery District : The Distillery District transported me back in time. The cobblestone streets and the red brick buildings were charming. I enjoyed browsing the unique boutiques and art galleries.
  • Kensington Market : Kensington Market was a burst of color and energy. The street art was vibrant, and the shops were eclectic. I indulged in some delicious street food and listened to live music.

Day 3: Historical Toronto

  • Casa Loma : Casa Loma was like stepping into a fairy tale. The castle was grand, and the gardens were beautiful. I explored the secret passageways and the towers, feeling like royalty.
  • Spadina Museum : The Spadina Museum was a glimpse into Toronto’s past. The mansion was elegantly preserved, and the guided tour was informative.
  • Black Creek Pioneer Village : The village was a nostalgic experience. I learned about life in 19th-century Toronto and tried my hand at some traditional crafts.

Day 4: Natural Beauty

  • Toronto Islands : The islands were a serene getaway. I rented a bike and explored the scenic trails, the beaches, and the parks. The views of the city skyline were stunning.
  • High Park : High Park was a green oasis in the city. I enjoyed hiking the trails and watching the animals at the zoo.

Day 5: Shopping and Entertainment

  • Yorkville : Yorkville was a shopping haven. I splurged on some designer brands and spotted a few celebrities.
  • Entertainment District : The district was buzzing with energy. I watched a Broadway-style show and felt the excitement of the audience.

Day 6: Toronto’s Multicultural Side

  • Chinatown : Chinatown was a sensory experience. The aromas of the food, the colorful shops, and the lively atmosphere were captivating.
  • Little Italy : Little Italy was a taste of Italy in Toronto. I savored some authentic pasta and gelato and enjoyed the lively atmosphere.

Local Tip :

  • Toronto’s public transportation system , the TTC, is efficient and connects all major attractions. Consider getting a weekly pass to save on transportation costs during your stay.
  • Toronto is known for its diverse culinary scene. Don’t miss trying some local specialties like peameal bacon sandwiches, butter tarts, and poutine.
  • Check the local event calendar for festivals, concerts, and other events happening during your visit.

How to Get from / to the Airports of Toronto

Note : The travel times and availability of services may vary depending on the time of day, traffic conditions, and other factors. It’s always a good idea to check the airport websites or transportation service providers for the most up-to-date information.

Where to Sleep in Toronto for 6 Days

Toronto offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit every traveler’s needs and budget. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious hotel, a cozy bed and breakfast, or a budget-friendly hostel, you’ll find it in Toronto. Here are some recommendations for where to stay in Toronto for 6 days:

Downtown Toronto

The heart of the city, Downtown Toronto is the ideal place to stay if you want to be close to the action. You’ll find a plethora of hotels, restaurants, shops, and attractions within walking distance. Recommended hotels in this area include the Fairmont Royal York, the Ritz-Carlton Toronto, and the Delta Hotels by Marriott Toronto.

  • Fairmont Royal York: A historic and luxurious hotel located in the heart of downtown Toronto, offering elegant rooms, fine dining, and top-notch amenities.
  • Ritz-Carlton Toronto: A 5-star hotel offering upscale accommodations, a spa, and a rooftop lounge with stunning city views.
  • Delta Hotels by Marriott Toronto: A modern hotel with comfortable rooms, a rooftop pool, and a prime location near the CN Tower and Ripley’s Aquarium.

This upscale neighborhood is known for its high-end shopping, fine dining, and art galleries. It’s a great place to stay if you’re looking for a more luxurious experience. Recommended hotels in this area include the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto, the Hazelton Hotel, and the InterContinental Toronto Yorkville.

  • Four Seasons Hotel Toronto: A 5-star hotel offering luxurious rooms, a spa, and fine dining in the heart of Yorkville.
  • Hazelton Hotel: An upscale boutique hotel with elegant rooms, a private screening room, and a renowned restaurant.
  • InterContinental Toronto Yorkville: A stylish hotel with comfortable rooms, a rooftop terrace, and a prime location near the Royal Ontario Museum.

The Distillery District

This historic area is known for its cobblestone streets, unique boutiques, and vibrant arts scene. It’s a great place to stay if you’re looking for a more bohemian vibe. Recommended hotels in this area include the Hotel X Toronto and the Novotel Toronto Centre.

  • Hotel X Toronto: A contemporary hotel with chic rooms, a rooftop pool, and stunning views of the city and Lake Ontario.
  • Novotel Toronto Centre: A modern hotel with comfortable rooms, an indoor pool, and a prime location near the Distillery District and St. Lawrence Market.

This trendy neighborhood is known for its eclectic mix of shops, restaurants, and bars. It’s a great place to stay if you’re looking for a more laid-back vibe. Recommended hotels in this area include the Kimpton Saint George Hotel and the Madison Manor Boutique Hotel.

  • Kimpton Saint George Hotel: A trendy boutique hotel with stylish rooms, a fitness center, and a prime location near the University of Toronto and the Royal Ontario Museum.
  • Madison Manor Boutique Hotel: A charming bed and breakfast with cozy rooms, a pub, and a prime location near Bloor Street’s shops and restaurants.

The Entertainment District

This lively neighborhood is known for its theaters, nightclubs, and concert venues. It’s a great place to stay if you’re looking for a more vibrant nightlife. Recommended hotels in this area include the SoHo Metropolitan Hotel and the Hyatt Regency Toronto.

  • SoHo Metropolitan Hotel: A chic hotel with modern rooms, a fitness center, and a prime location near the Rogers Centre and the CN Tower.
  • Hyatt Regency Toronto: A contemporary hotel with comfortable rooms, a rooftop pool, and a prime location near the TIFF Bell Lightbox and the Princess of Wales Theatre.

The Harbourfront

This scenic area is known for its waterfront views, parks, and outdoor activities. It’s a great place to stay if you’re looking for a more relaxed vibe. Recommended hotels in this area include the Westin Harbour Castle and the Radisson Blu Toronto Downtown.

  • Westin Harbour Castle: A waterfront hotel with comfortable rooms, a fitness center, and stunning views of Lake Ontario.
  • Radisson Blu Toronto Downtown: A modern hotel with chic rooms, a rooftop pool, and a prime location near the Harbourfront Centre and the Toronto Islands.

Note : The prices may vary depending on the season, availability, and any ongoing promotions. It is always a good idea to book in advance to secure the best rates.

Have a look at our other Toronto Itineraries

  • 1 day in Toronto Itinerary
  • 2 day in Toronto Itinerary
  • 3 day in Toronto Itinerary
  • 4 day in Toronto Itinerary
  • 5 day in Toronto Itinerary
  • 7 day in Toronto Itinerary

2 Days in Toronto Itinerary

About TORONTO JOURNEYS

As offbeat Toronto explorers with a penchant for the city's lesser-known attractions, we are persistently seeking new ideas and insider tips to bring you the best of this dynamic metropolis.

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Tickets still on sale for Taylor Swift’s Toronto, Vancouver ‘Eras Tour’ shows

  • Updated: Jan. 30, 2024, 11:47 a.m. |
  • Published: Jan. 30, 2024, 11:44 a.m.

Taylor Swift Performing on Stage

Pop star Taylor Swift performs at her "Eras Tour" in Buenos Aires, Argentina on Nov. 9, 2023. ASSOCIATED PRESS

Taylor Swift is set to perform in Canada with consecutive shows this year as part of “The Eras Tour.” The tour is scheduled for Toronto and Vancouver, running from August 20 to December 8. In an extension of the Eras Tour, Swift has broadened the itinerary to encompass extra locations, including Miami, New Orleans, Indianapolis, and Toronto. This expansion resulted in a total of 15 additional concerts added to the North American leg.

Related:  Tickets to Taylor Swift’s 2024 ‘Eras Tour’ U.S. shows still available

If you were among the numerous fans unable to attend any of the previous shows, you likely found solace in watching snippets on TikTok, maybe even shedding a tear while wanting to be in the stadium dressed in various Taylor eras. Well, good news is that Taylor is coming back to the U.S. just for you.

As part of her 2024 North American tour, Taylor will also be performing in Miami, Florida (Hardrock Stadium), and New Orleans, Louisiana (Caesars Superdome), with the tour slated to commence on October 18.

It is advisable to purchase your tickets in advance to secure your spot. Please note that tickets for these performances are in high demand on StubHub , and specific dates have already reached full capacity on VividSeats .

Thursday, November 14 - Toronto, Canada

  • VividSeats , TicketNetwork , SeatGeek

Friday, November 15 - Toronto, Canada

Saturday, November 16 - Toronto, Canada

Thursday, November 21 - Toronto, Canada

Friday, November 22 - Toronto, Canada

Saturday, November 23 - Toronto, Canada

Friday, December 6 - Vancouver, Canada

Saturday, December 7 - Vancouver, Canada

Sunday, December 8- Vancouver, Canada

More syracuse concerts

  • Orgy coming to Syracuse for 25th anniversary concert with Cold
  • The 25 hottest concerts coming to Upstate NY in 2024 (tickets, more info)
  • Salt City Blues Concert to pay tribute to Central NY music great at new venue
  • Get crunk: Ying Yang Twins, Trick Daddy to perform concert near Syracuse

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    Trip is ready in under 5 min. Voilà! Your multi-city itinerary is ready in a matter of minutes. Now share it with friends! Plan your fully custom Toronto travel itinerary of any complexity and duration with Triptile™, a free online trip planner.

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