Map &

Been here?
Rate it

Top Tours

Toronto City Hop-on Hop-off Tour
From CAD43.00
Toronto CityPass
From $64.00
Toronto City Hop-on Hop-off Tour
From CAD43.00

Harbourfront & Toronto Islands Tips (20)

Tommy Thomson Park

In the heart of Toronto's waterfront

Former industrial spit, now wildlife regeneration & conservation area ... It is a very beautiful area, though it may seem uninviting to tourists! (There is no formal entrance, except for some factories behind & a metal fence.) I hope someday they can turn it into a real park, for the views from there towards downtown is dynamic! Coupled with the Toronto Islands, it makes the city look so green! I love to go rollerblading and biking here, because the area is huge...

The wildlife in the city is trying to regenerate their species here, so it's best not to disturb the fragile environment while visiting.

MORE coming soon..

-To visit Tommy Thompson Park, take the Don Valley Parkway south to LakeShore Boulevard, travel east to Leslie Street, then south half a kilometre to the park entrance.

coolpanda87's Profile Photo
Apr 04, 2011

Lake Shore Boulevard, Music Gardens

At the intersection of Lake Shore Boulevard W. & Spadina Ave West, you will find Music Garden, a park that was inspired by musician Yo-Yo-Ma. It is designed after Johann Sebastian Bach's Suites for Unaccompanied Cello. Originally planned for Boston, the plan eventually became a reality here at the waterfront. Though it is small, it is one of the most beautiful parks in Toronto. Mr. Ma worked with landscape designer Julie Moir Messervy to interpret in nature the music of Bach's first suite, with each part of the garden dedicated to a different dance movement.

Dance Movements include -

Prelude - "An undulating river scrape with curves and bends," it was designed to give a flowing river feeling where visitors can stroll.

Allemande - "A forest grove of wandering trails," it is a birch forest with a swirl that has an upward slope. Eventually at its highest point, you could view the harbour through a circle of Dawn Redwood Trees. Allemande is an ancient German dance.

Courante - "A swirling path through a wildflower meadow," is a huge upward spiral through a field of grasses and brightly-coloured perennials. At the top, a Maypole spins in the wind. Courante is an exuburating Italian & French dance.

Sarabande - "A conifer grove in the shape of an arc," is an inward-arcing circle that is enclosed by evergreen trees. Envisoned to become a poet's corner, it has a pond that reflects to the sky and a stone in the middle set for readings.

Menuett - "A formal flower parterre," is a circular pavilion is designed to shelter small musical ensembles or dance groups. The symmetry and geometry of the pavillion follows the movement's grace and form. Menuett is actually a French dance.

Gigue Giant - "grass steps that dance you down to the outside world," is a series of giant grass steps that offer views onto the harbour. The steps form a curved amphitheatre that focus on a stone stage (under a weeping willow tree.) It is a place for informal performances. A gigue (jog) is an Englsih dance.

coolpanda87's Profile Photo
Apr 04, 2011

Toronto Music Garden

To the west of the main harbourfront is the Toronto Music Garden. The shape of the garden was inspired by the music of Bach, and the full layout can only really be seen from the air, or in your mind's eye.

In summertime concerts are held here free of charge.

It's location directly across from the Toronto Island Airport (a big debate by itself) adds for some extra drama when the propeller-driven plans take off during a performance.

Apr 04, 2011


Harbourfront refers to a section of the waterfront from the Ferry Docks to Bathurst St. It is a revitalized area that has art shops, antique shops, and entertainment all the time. Many weekends in the summer there are festivals and live entertainment. There are also many buskers, this is Leyland Gordon who we saw several years ago. Recently they have expanded and improved this area with a music garden.

daffodil's Profile Photo
Apr 04, 2011
Sponsored Listings

Hotels in Toronto

390 Clinton Street, Toronto, M6G 2Z2, Canada
Show Prices
Bathurst and Harbord Sts, Toronto, M5S 2R2, Canada
Show Prices
83 Spadina Road, M5R2T1
Show Prices
20 Madison Ave., Toronto, Ontario, M5R 2S1, Canada
Show Prices
280 Bloor St. W., (formerly Quality Inn), Toronto, Ontario, M5S 1V8, Canada
Show Prices
305 St. George St., Toronto, M5R 2R2, Canada
Show Prices

Catch the Right Ferry!

Unless you want to walk 3km, make sure you get on the right ferry for Centervile (Center Island). Stay away from the Ward Island ferry if you don't have suitable transportation (such as a bike). Bring $$$; you'll need a Labatt's after walking that much, and there's an nice outside refreshment stand at Center Island.

Jim&Ivy_Garland's Profile Photo
Sep 24, 2007

Toronto Islands

Just minutes away from downtown by ferry is the peaceful Toronto Islands. The Toronto Islands are a series of islands connected by bridges. There are variety of things you can do there. It is a wonderful place to visit for families who want to get away from the city. There are trails around the islands that you can either have a relax walk or a bike ride. The Centreville Amusement park on center island would be interesting for children too. Best of all, you can enjoy the wonderful skyline of downtown Toronto. Especially after dark, the night view of downtown from Toronto Islands is so great.

lhe's Profile Photo
Jan 13, 2005

Sail Away.

Take the ferry at the foot of Front Street across to Centre Island for the day. You can take a picnic with you or buy from the shops on the island. It is only a 20 minute ride and the view looking back at the Toronto skyline is wonderful. Lots of places to walk and swim, and an amusement park for the kiddies. Stroll along the little laneways past the quaint houses of people that still live on the island. The Toronto Yacht Club have had their home here for many years.

crazygal59's Profile Photo
Aug 28, 2004

The Music Garden

The Music Garden is a trippy walk through the six stages of a cello piece. Deigned by a musician, landscaper and filmmaker, it exhibits the song’s different music through altering plants, flowers, trees and sculpture. We rocked this spot by bring some wine (local vintage), cheese (from Cheese Magic in Kensington Market) and bread (from the bakery next door to Cheese Magic). Highly recommend you do the same. Free walking tours offered at 6pm.

bandi13's Profile Photo
Jul 28, 2004
freddie18's Profile Photo


"My Toronto - "Yours to Discover""
View Member
MissAntarctica2002's Profile Photo


"Close To Home"
View Member
CdnJane's Profile Photo


"Andre Rieu's Magic Hits Toronto"
View Member
coolpanda87's Profile Photo


"TORONTO Canada"
View Member
Paul2001's Profile Photo


"Paul2001's Big T.O. Page"
View Member

High Park

Former estate, High Park is one of Toronto's most beautiful green spaces. My favourite location is Grenadier pond & the gardens surrounding it, especially around the maple leaf. On the south side, High Park directly faces Lake Ontario. Unfortunately, there is that unsightly Gardiner Expressway blocking the way. Hope that freeway will come down soon!

The park also has many places for biking, rollerblading and jogging. There is a children's playpark & a mini zoo.

High Park is accessible by car & public transit.

TTC: Exit High Park subway station

MORE coming soon...

coolpanda87's Profile Photo
Apr 12, 2004

CNE & Exhibition Place

Site of THE EX, Canada's largest fair. During the rest of the year, numerous exhibitions are held at Exhibition Place. The CNE grounds is also used as the Indy 500 race track, attracting Torontonians and sports fans alike.

Coming soon...

coolpanda87's Profile Photo
Apr 01, 2004

Toronto Islands: a great escape

The Islands are a timeless escape from the city. Many of the summer visitors take the Centre Island ferry, which connects with the middle of the islands where Centreville, the amusement area is located. I had so much fun there as a kid and it hasn't changed much. South of there across a bridge are fountains and my favourite unknown Toronto place, the Centre Island Maze. It is a grass maze which is a total riot.

There are two other boats that go to opposite ends of the island. Hanlon's Point on the west side is known now for the nudist beach, which is a mix of gays, card-carrying nudist types and gawkers.

On the east side are Ward's and Algonquin Islands, with residents living in quaint cottages. Some call them charming, some call these people upper-class snobbish squatters. It's still a nice area. I would take the Centre Island ferry, walk south past Centreville, over the bridge to the boardwalk area, and either walk or go to the bike rental place there. A walk east to Ward's Island is quiet and timeless, it feels as if it's the early part of the 20th century rather than the 21st.

ronnie77's Profile Photo
Mar 04, 2004

Tour Boats

One of the things the boat tour guide said was that one of the ships had telephone poles for masts - that it had been converted from a power boat. She said that the masts made it too heavy to actually sail. I don't know if that is true or if this is that ship or not.

In any case, there are more ships available for harbour tours than the Challenge. I got the following information from the internet:

This is your chance to get on board the Kajama, a traditional 165 foot three masted Schooner. Only in the Caribbean can this experience be duplicated. Sit back and relax with a cold drink from our fully licensed bar, as you set sail on Toronto Harbour and Lake Ontario.

11:30am 12:00pm 1:30pm
1:30pm 2:00pm 3:30pm
3:30pm 4:00pm 5:30pm

$13.50 US*
*US Prices are Approximate

grandmaR's Profile Photo
Sep 10, 2003

Things To Do in Toronto

Things to do

Bata Shoe Museum

Interesting exhibit about the history of shoes, shoes from famous people, artic shoes and mens heels. The museum collects, researches, preserves, and exhibits footwear from around the world. Three...
View More
Things to do

Casa Loma

The castle is opened from 9:30 until 5:00 but remains opened later for concerts and special events. There were lines of cars trying to get into the parking lot, it was Sunday so we parked on the...
View More
Things to do

Kensington Market

Eclectic bohemian market with wonderful cafe's, shops and pubs. Very artsy and filled with artsy people. The bakeries, ethnic food and ice cream looked wonderful. People were friendly. We enjoyed...
View More
Things to do


One of the best universities (or is it the best?) in Canada, University of Toronto has a elegant, historic campus with plenty of architecture in the Romanesque, Gothic etc styles, for visitors to...
View More
Things to do

ROM - Royal Ontario Museum

This 100 year old Museum isThe Tornonto Museum of Art, Culture and Natural History is the largest in Canada, and attracts over one million visitors every year. The museum is north of Queen's Park,...
View More
Things to do


I just walked along this street. They said celebrities whenever in Toronto can be spotted here dining or clubbing. Yorkville is a mixture of high end stores, beautiful condos and restored victorian...
View More

Getting to Toronto


We don't yet have an address for this Off The Beaten Path. Help us improve our info!


We don't yet have hours for this Off The Beaten Path. Help us improve our info!