Luggage and bags:
I happen to have my actual packing list for this trip. Much of it is my normal packing list for travel to anywhere. Not much is specific to Toronto.
Leaving Sunday and returning Friday (5 nights-6 days), I took:
Computer in computer bag with spare discs.
Hardside carry-on-sized Bag with wheels (checked)
Large Waist Pack with cameras and spare set of underwear.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: In addition to what I wore on the plane, I had three pairs long pants, 5 tops, one denium jumper (double as pool cover-up), nightgown, underwear, and two pair of shoes. I wore a jacket (which I left on the plane and had to go back for), and had a sweater and a thermal vest for layering in case it was cold.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Toothbrush, hairbrush, and tweezers.
Photo Equipment: Two point and shoot 35 mm film cameras (didn't have a digital at that time), film and mailers. One of the cameras had panoramic capability and the other was my work camera.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Small flashlight, thermal hood (lives in my coat pocket with my gloves), folding umbrella.
Since hotel had a pool, bathing suit, goggles, and Aurodri (for my ears), small absorbant towel which had a plastic carrying envelope in which I could carry a wet swimsuit.
Miscellaneous: Earplugs (for the plane noise), inflatable pillow (for plane), scotch tape, small notebook with stapler (where I staple my receipts), AAA book, maps and travel info, hotel and registration information, snacks, calculator, and sunglasses.
Luggage and bags:
Security would not be the number one priority I would worry about, & just be travel smart when choosing your bags. There is no need to wear your bag in front, tuck your purse really tight to you....
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Toronto, like the rest of Canada, is famous for those cold, windy winters, so make sure you bring enough clothes, jackets, scarfs & hats to bear the burden. Treat it like you were heading to a ski resort in the Alps or the Rockies.
Spring and Autumn are not warm all the time, so make sure you bring enough sweaters and shirts in case the warm weather is still hibernating with the bears.
Summer in Toronto is very comfortable, though in some years it has dropped to 10-15 degrees. Bring loose clothing, t-shirts, shorts, etc...
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: The humidity is somewhat low in Canada & Toronto in general, so bring lotion if you have sensitive skin.
If you are like me, you would also need lip balm, or the blisters will hurt.
Photo Equipment: Toronto is not photogenic like Vancouver or Banff, but there is plenty of sunshine to keep your pictures bright & happy = )
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Like every other place on earth, sunscreen is important for healthy looking skin!
You must bring mosquito repellant, for there is a fear that the West Nile Virus might spread again. Though it is not as contagious here as it has been in the US, situations could change.
As there is always lots of questions in the Toronto Forum about our weather and what to wear, I recommend the following for travelers coming to Toronto at certain times of the year. During the winter, the coldest time is from mid December to the end of February, you should bring warm clothes like sweaters, winter coats, boots, scarfs and thick socks. The warmest time of the year is from the beginning of June to late September. It is frequently over 30C at this time of the year so bring summer clothing like t-shirts, shorts and maybe sandals. Do not bring heavy winter coats unless you want to be snickered at by custom officers.
Miscellaneous: I call this picture "Artic Toronto" because it leaves the impression that alot of people in other lands think of when I mention that I come from Toronto, Canada. They ask me if it is cold there. Well it was -12C when I took this photo in January 2005. Unfortunately alot of folks seem to think that it is like this 12 months of the year. In fact Toronto Harbour only freezes over like this for about 8 weeks in winter if at all with global warming and all.
This past summer I actually saw an American couple at the airport with winter coats. When questioned by laughing security guards, they said they thought that it would be colder. It was 26C(81F) that day.
There is a saying “We were warned about the Canadian Winters, but not the summers.”
Summer in Toronto can be extremely humid. Frequently there are days so humid, people are warned not to go out.
If visiting during winter, obviously, bring clothing for the snow and extreme cold.
If visiting during summer, make sure you have clothing for really hot days.
If you not bringing sunscreen and hat, make sure you purchase it in the city.
Miscellaneous: The phone number, Website and email given below, is for the "Toronto Convention & Visitors Association" with helpful tips for tourists.
Take a free map of Toronto at the Tourist Information Office. The map includes the locations of the main sights, hotels, restaurants, pubs and cafes.
There are various Tourist Information Offices within Toronto. One can be found in the Eaton Centre on Level 2, another one is at 255 Front Street West.
Miscellaneous: Toronto sits on the Northwest shore of Lake Ontario and covers 641 square miles. Its name means "fishing weir". As of 2001, the population reached 2,481,494 and is considered to be one of the most multicultural city in the world. There are over 100 dialects and languages spoken here.
Pick up a free copy of Tripmag "Toronto and Ontario". It is a useful travel guide for independent travellers about the best that Toronto, Ottawa and Ontario has to offer. It provides information from the city essentials to the best public transportation tipps.
Tripmag is available for free at the airport, train and bus stations, universities, tourist informations and many more places.
Luggage and bags:
BIG suitcase! As less clothes as possible!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: One favourite pair of (walking)shoes and some slippers.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Tootbrush and paste, hairbrush, one in all soap.
Photo Equipment: All you have! and lots of film....especially the 100 ASA thing!
Miscellaneous: I came with 21 kiloos, overthere it weighed less and when I left the suitcase weighed 35.1 kiloos....good thinking eh? ;-)
You can get everything you want here, really! They have 24 hour drug stores, a ton of malls, and quite a few shoe stores!
I came from a conference, so was loaded with my computer and all the peripherals that entails AND my travel pillow (small bag on my side) as well as my clothes, shoes and toiletries (big bag on my back) .... despite this being a small ammount of luggage for some, it was a bit much when taking public transport. I was able to keep tabs on it all - it was just quite a load to deal with during morning rush hour on the subway :)
So keep it small, and keep it fun.
Luggage and bags:
Remember that you shouldn't try to bring any more bags than you can easily manage on your own. This applies to Toronto as well as anywhere you travel. It is difficult to find trollies at the airport, and you need $2 for one. So, if you can't carry the bags then you are going to suffer!
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: A winter warning for your boots - make sure, if you have leather boots, that they are well coated with protector, because they can get badly salt marked. Intersections don't seem to be well cleared and you stand a great chance of stepping in a puddle or slush that is full of salt. Sometimes rubber boots seem the best!
Photo Equipment: Film is available all over the place. Should you wish to develop it before you leave, you can get great developing done at many of the large Loblaws stores, for a reasonable price.
Definately bring clothes to cover a variety of temperatures; sometimes the weather here can be a bit sporatic. If you're here during the summer and we are having a heatwave, chances are you're ok with the normal summer gear....but early and late summer the temperature can change quite drastically
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: You can find pretty much anything you're looking to buy if you run out or need any type of toiletries or medicine. There are pharmacies and drugstores and in every major neighbourhood there will always be one that is open for 24hrs.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Unless you plan to go to a Campsite outside the city, there is no real campground here. There is a beach which is pretty much used for sunbathing only. Many people don't go into the lake water as it is not the cleanest. We do have a lot of public pools and there are various water parks, so if you plan to swim you can do it here!
Luggage and bags:
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: RUNNING SHOES
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: 24 hour pharmacies in dowtown Toronto in case you forget something
Photo Equipment: Great photo shop at Yonge and Bloor, 123 Photo can take care of all your needs.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Many proviincial and private parks just 45 minutes to 3 hours outside of Toronto. Make reservations. Lots of fresh water lakes so great fishing, canoeing, water sports of all kinds.
Miscellaneous: Sunglasses, Hat and Sun Screen, Toronto can get very hot and humid in July. 34C can fell like 40C with the humidity. Always carry water. I have seen some interesting water carrying devices
Yes, do bring shoes for there is quite a bit of discarded gum on our sidewalks (not nice in the summer, especially with bare feet) and if you own a Barbour jacket and you plan to come here in either the Spring or late Fall, then be sure to bring it. Don't even THINK of buying one here in emergency; they are so outrageously overpriced in this city, that you'll have nothing left for one of those snowy-shaky thingy's for your dad. I kid you not; in Dusseldorf I saw the waxed cotton Barbour 'Border Jacket' for roughly around $550.00 CDN, the same jacket here would cost you around $795.00 PLUS tax. Not a good deal. :o(
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: You can buy anything here,(except Nivea underarm deodorant) so if you run out; no problem. Do buy insect repellent if you're here for the summer though: 'OFF' is the Canadian favorite. It tastes terrible, and makes a nasty cologne so you won't have much luck in single's clubs, but at least the mosquito's will keep their distance as well. :o)
Wear light clothing and pack sunscrean when visting Canada in the Sumertime. Although in many way's Canada is an ice-box in the wintertime :) Its can get very hot in the summer !! And i've seen so many tourist wearing dark sweaters and Jeans in the middle of the summer !! and going back home like crispy tatters ;). In the same tolken you now have a wonderfull excuse to visit the harbour fronts and to go for a rehreashing swim :-) Cheer's and have a great time in Canada
Toronto has very unpredictable weather.
If you're going in the winter, it can get REALLY cold when you factor in the windchill, so I'd bring loads of layers and a thick winter coat. You may get lucky and have a mild winter, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Before traveling here, check the local weather, boots may be a necessity.
The summers in Toronto can be quite warm, in the +30 celcius range, but again, because of the erratic weather here, I'd bring a sweater and umbrella just to be safe.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Water is safe to drink here, so you don't have to worry about water purification tablets.
If you're used to soft water, make sure to bring hair condition as the water is pretty hard here.
Photo Equipment: If you're traveling in the winter, make sure that your camera has a flash, you may not get lucky with natural light when you're taking outdoor pictures.