Shine Bright in the Big City by the Lake
“Toronto is a kind of New York operated by the Swiss”. Got to love these words from wise and well-travelled Peter Ustinov. Sir Peter perfectly sums up the atmosphere of Canada’s biggest city, cool tech hub, cradle for start ups, and 230 nationality strong multicultural mosaic. It’s a coming together of unique neighbourhoods that reflect the city’s diversity with their distinctive traits and community feel. An instantly recognisable skyline dominated by the iconic CN Tower, rises from the edge of beautiful Lake Ontario, forming a facade for a city that is larger than you think. Connected by a user-friendly network of subways, streetcars and underground walkways, Toronto stretches for miles offering year-round world class theatre, beloved sports events, and an awarding winning culinary scene.
Toronto’s climate is very much influenced by its lakeside location. Proximity to the vast body of water ensures Toronto is one of Canada’s cooler cities in summer and warmer in winter. Summers buzz with festivals like Toronto PRIDE drawing crowds fit to bursting. Don’t dismiss low season though, from November to March, when Torontonians reclaim their city and peak prices drop. Although temperatures at this time may fall below zero, you can expect many days to be gorgeously clear and crisp. Renowned cultural attractions thrive, availability at top restaurants opens up, and day trips to nearby Niagara Falls remain on offer. Plus, there are some wonderfully unique low season events like the historic Royal Agricultural Winter Fair; the Winterlicious set menu fine dining extravaganza; and of course all the festive lights and decorations.
One thing we love about low season Toronto is how locals still embrace the al fresco feel with outdoor bars setting up for winter with marquees and patio heaters. So you can still wander Downtown, around Harbourfront, bohemian Kensington, or LGBTQ friendly Church & Wellesley for an afternoon craft brewery beer or creamy hot chocolate before catching a Toronto Maple Leafs ice hockey match.
Get in The Holiday Spirit
Low season travellers can join in an infectious excitement at the run up to Christmas. From the end of November to the first week of January incredible light installations adorn Nathan Phillips Square in the city’s Downtown. The stunning Cavalcade of Lights has been an annual event since 1967. Now it’s a month-long exhibit starting with the ceremonial lighting of the Christmas Tree. Right next door, the Holiday Fair in the Square packs in a festive artisan market, and skating at the fun-filled rink to the sounds of Christmas music. Don’t miss the chance to snap your photo in front of the famed Toronto sign under a flurry of snow. The whole city is abuzz with Christmas cheer and jingle bells. Venture to the Distillery Winter Village for an immersive festive experience, witness the original Toronto Santa Claus Parade, a tradition since 1905, special festive culinary dishes, and spectacular new year’s fireworks.
Escape into Magical Museums
Warm up in some of Toronto’s brilliant indoor cultural venues, ranked amongst the world’s best and reflecting the city’s great pride in its history, diversity and progression. The Royal Ontario Museum houses 13 million pieces of art but is perhaps best known for its Gallery of Dinosaurs, majestic domed ceiling and controversial juxtaposing glass extension. Fill your boots at the fascinating Bata Shoe Museum, visit Toronto’s Gothic style castle Casa Loma, or see the architecturally renowned Art Gallery of Ontario partially designed by Frank Gehry. Hockey fans absolutely need to see the Stanley Cup at the interactive Hockey Hall of Fame. Use a Toronto CityPASS to skip the line and get a great price for five top attractions, including the CN Tower, the new Ripley’s Aquarium and the Ontario Science Centre.
Wrap Up and Be Winter Active
Toronto boasts hundreds of parks and stunning outdoor spaces that remain open year-round. Low season is the perfect opportunity to try skating, snowshoeing and winter hiking with the locals. A favourite spot is Rouge Park, Canada’s first urban national park. Or tackle the 19 mile Martin Goodman Trail or the 5 mile Humber Bay Shore Trail which remain cleared and maintained by authorities throughout winter. The Evergreen Brick Works is a site of heritage industrial buildings transformed into an award-winning public space combining nature, history and art. Here you can try fat-biking, with large tyres ideal for low season, and guided cycles Tuesdays and Sundays.
Inspired? Give our friendly partners at First Class Holidays a call to find out more about the wonderful low season months in Toronto as well as hearing about some absolutely amazing deals! Call now for friendly advice on: 0161 888 5630 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org