Read this in conjunction with posts on Girls Morning Out and Girls Afternoon out (Eating!)
VISIT ONE OF TORONTO’S WORLD-CLASS MUSEUMS AND GALLERIES
Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO). Look out
for the “always significant” temporary exhibitions – currently “Revealing the Renaissance” exhibit with priceless 700 year ol works of art – some never before seen outside of Florence!. Go up to the Cedar Lounge on floor 2 for a delicious espresso and house-made pastries. If you are a member then there is the gracious relaxing “Grange” – the member’s lounge strewn with sofas and armchairs and looking over the park.
Royal Ontario Museum (ROM); great static exhibition of home decor through the ages.
Gardiner Museum; (do a spot of pottery creation in the Pottery studio in the basement).
The Textile Museum and Bata shoe Museum.
The Tiff Bell Lightbox always has some amazing movie related exhibitions, plus a host of unusual film screenings. You can also ask for a guided tour as the architectural nature of the building itself vis a vis it’s purpose is interesting. It also houses an “Oliver and Bonacini” cafe.
Walk along far Queen Street West to look in all the smaller lesser -known galleries, the best being Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art . See http://www.mocca.ca/about-us/visit-mocca/ and href=”http://www.showmetoronto.com/tour_queen_art.htm”>http://www.showmetoronto.com/tour_queen_art.htm for a list of all the galleries in this area.
Also some cute galleries on Dundas Street West opposite the AGO and in the Distillery District, and on Tecumseth street north of King Street West.
You can have a tour of the University of Toronto’s art collection at Hart House – check http://www.harthouse.ca for tour dates and times.
At the AGO, create some life drawing masterpieces in one of the galleries in the museum – be prepared for onlooking museum visitors who will stop to admire ( or sneer at ) your work or book to do a spot of yoga amongst the Henry Moore sculptures.
Spadina House and Gardens – if you are a “Downton Abbey” fan this 120 yr. heritage home of “The Austins” definitely worth a visit right now as “Downton Abbey” days are being programmed into the visiting schedule,
It is also right next to Casa Loma so you can make a whole day of it.
Torontos Victorian Gothic Castle – great for an afternoon’s tour / sit on the raised stone patio and view the Toronto skyline below whilst sipping tea/coffee from the basement restaurant. Subscribe to their website – they always have cool events befitting a castle ( Ghost Hunting/Dracula plays/ music/feasts etcetera.
Take a Ferry from Queens Quay over to Toronto Islands; the largest car free community in North America; less than a 10 minute ferry ride but a whole world away from the bustle of the city. Stroll around the maze of cutesy cottages and gardens set out amidst the dense thicket of trees that makes up the corner of Ward Island; have a snack at the cheerful outdoor “Island Cafe” opposite the Ward Island Ferry point; have lunch on the tree shrouded patio just off the boardwalk at “The Rectory”.
Take your swimsuit and visit one of the many beaches. Hire a bike or canopied 4-wheeler and ride around all three islands, play frisbee golf, canoe, or kayak.
Or just stroll the boardwalk or lush island paths.
Visit the aforementioned “Distillery District” for cobbled meanderings amongst artsy shops/cafes/galleries and restaurantsExplore the tiny zoo at Riverdale, amongst all the cute Victorian houses and the stunning Victorian gothic Neocropolis building.
Walk the trails of Toronto’s Ravines or its largest park – High Park with the tiny zoo, fishing lake, picnic spots, historic Colborne House, allotments, ornamental gardens and waterfalls – best pie in the city at “The Grenadier Cafe” – sit on the tree shaded deck outside in the summer.
Spoil yourselves by having a day/half day by the pool on one of the upper levels of the Fours Seasons Hotel!
The Shangri-La’s Caudalie Miraj Hammam Spa is a treat but you have to have a treatment in order to use the Hammam and lounging room.
The Aveda spa in the Intercontinental on Front street gives you unlimited use of the gym, pool and steam room/sauna
Spend a day/ afternoon at the custom made Elmwood day spa.
Check out Mirvish.com and subscribe to email updates for great deals on the many shows hitting Toronto; the third largest theatre city in the world!
If you are planning your day out in the summer look out for the following outdoor performances.
“Dream in HighPark” – Canadian Stage“The Withrow Players”. “The Humber River Shakespeare company” who perform in heritage properties like Casa Loma or Montgomerys Inn.
Look out for “Cirque de Soleil” listings as one of the troupes has a permanent home in Toronto
Anywhere the “National Theatre of the World” (aka comedians Sniekus & Baram) are playing.
“The Comedy Club” (Eglinton.
“The Second City” on Mercer street downtown always puts on a pithy and hilarious show which they change around 3 times a year.
“The Rex Hotel” downtown Queen Street west for great music anytime (around 4 acts a day)
“Gate 403” in Roncevailles in the west end
“The Royal Conservatory” – Koerner hall.
The Ballet or Opera at the “Four Seasons for the Performing Arts”,
Look out for Toronto Symphony Orchestra performances at “The Roy Thompson Hall”.
Want to finish the day in style? Look out for the soon to be written “Tailor-made Toronto – Get Dressed Up” blog.
Over and Out