Local’s guide on Toronto places you should not miss

Toronto at night

It can be challenging to decide where to go in Ontario’s capital city because there are so many hidden gems. While well-known attractions such as Nathan Phillips Square and the CN Tower are always exciting, Toronto has so much more to offer. If you wish to see the city in a new light, following the local’s guide can be beneficial. There are plenty of Toronto places you should not miss.

Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada

The Ripley’s Aquarium, located near the foot of the CN Tower, is one of Toronto’s newest top attractions. This fantastic facility exhibits a wide variety of marine life. It’s one of the most popular family attractions in Toronto. If you’re wondering why this is one of the Toronto places you should not miss, you will find out once you visit it. It has the largest underwater tunnel with a moving sidewalk, which is just the most fantastic feature. As sharks glide by and sawfish linger on the tunnel roof, you can watch the water world unravel all around you. For people of all ages, this is genuinely both an exciting and relaxing experience.

Niagara Falls is one of the Toronto places you should not miss

Niagara Falls, Canada
If there’s one near to Toronto place you should not miss, it’s Niagara Falls.

An easy day journey from Toronto to Niagara Falls is well worth the time. In just over an hour, you can be standing on the edge of the falls. This is also a great honeymoon spot if you’re in the area. If you don’t want to drive yourself, a tour to Niagara Falls from Toronto might be more convenient. Tours include hotel pickup and drop-off, as well as a Hornblower Niagara Cruise, which takes you up close to the iconic Horseshoe Falls’ crashing wall of water.

Art Gallery of Ontario

If you’re looking for an insider’s guide to Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario is a must. The renowned Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) is one of North America’s largest museums. The more than 95,000-piece collection comprises works from all over the world. This gallery has it all from European masterpieces to contemporary art and an excellent collection of Canadian art, including an extensive collection of Group of Seven works. Throughout the year, a range of temporary exhibitions is staged. If you’re keen on culture, you should not miss this Toronto place.

Dine in the Entertainment District or catch a show

The Entertainment District in Toronto encompasses a significant section of the city center. It’s home to several of the city’s most popular attractions, including the CN Tower, Scotiabank Arena, Rogers Centre, and several museums. Various things make it a Toronto place that you should not miss. It’s also known for its delicious food and, most importantly, live music. King Street West is where the majority of the action takes place, between Spadina Avenue and University Avenue. It’s Toronto’s version of New York’s Broadway. It comes alive in the evenings and is a terrific spot for nightlife. This is where you may witness major theater productions such as musicals, concerts, and other forms of entertainment.

Visit the animals at the Toronto Zoo

With around 5,000 animals, the Toronto Zoo offers an impressive and diversified array. Pygmy hippos, lions, tigers, giraffes, penguins, orangutans, and other animals can be found here. The zoo is separated into numerous parts, each of which represents a different part of the world. You definitely should not miss this Toronto place if you’re an animal lover.

Tour Casa Loma

Casa Loma, one of the best places in Toronto that you should not miss
If you’re able to, be sure to visit Casa Loma.

Casa Loma is an impressive building that resembles a medieval castle and stands on well-maintained grounds. It was built in 1914 for Sir Henry Pellatt, an eccentric Canadian multi-millionaire who was the first to identify and capitalize on Niagara Falls’ financial potential. It’s one of the Toronto places you should not miss because it makes for a truly one-of-a-kind experience. The home is now a museum, with about 100 rooms and three dozen bathrooms. Visitors can travel back to a time when Europe was a place of grace and splendor.

Eat and Shop in the Distillery District

If you’re looking for a Toronto place that’s one of the favorite spots for locals, the Distillery District should go on your to-do list. It’s a restored historic district that has been turned into a hip entertainment and shopping spot. The landmark buildings are rich with charming stores, galleries, artist studios, and cafes. This is a fun location to visit at any time of year, day or night. The annual Toronto Christmas Market is one of the most famous of the many entertainment events here. Unique products are sold, and warm outdoor spaces are set up for people to gather around and enjoy themselves.

Relocation to Toronto

If you have fallen in love with some of these Toronto places that you should not miss, you’re not alone. Of course, you can permanently relocate here if you wish to spend more than a holiday exploring it. Hiring a moving company would be the best way to go about this affair. Once you’ve made up your mind, reach out to experts that’ll help you plan everything out. Luckily, there’s a wide variety of reliable Toronto movers for your to choose from.

Enjoy nature at High Park

High Park is one of the Toronto places you shouldn't miss if you like nature
If you’re looking for Toronto places you shouldn’t miss and you love nature, High Park is a must.

Finally, if you’re someone who loves nature and taking road trips with your family and friends, you’ll love High Park. Swimming and wading pools, playgrounds, picnic spots, and a picturesque train journey are all available. Additionally, there are replicas of 19th-century gardens, a Coach House, and the Howards’ Tomb on the grounds.

Where can you stay in Toronto during your visit?

The most fabulous area to stay in Toronto for sightseeing and entertainment is right downtown, in the heart of the activity. From here, you’ll have no trouble visiting all the Toronto places you should not miss since many of the major attractions are within easy walking distance.

10 Most Original Souvenirs To Take Home From a Journey

Souvenir shops

One thing all travelers are currently asking is – is it the right time to travel again? The answer to this question depends on your location and desired destination. Some parts of the world have been affected by the pandemic more severely than others. So, it would be best to wait a bit longer to be safe. After all, we waited this long. What are a couple of months more? However, just because we cannot travel right now, that does not mean that you cannot start planning for your upcoming trip. You can use this time to dig deep and research all the mesmerizing places virtually before visiting. And, while you are researching, it won’t hurt to get some ideas regarding souvenirs. This article is here to help you with that. Here are 10 original souvenirs to take home from a journey. 

1. Argentina – Leather Items 

Argentina is famous for many things, and leather is one of them. So, next time you find yourself in this amazing country, be sure to pick up some leather items. Those can be shoes, belts, bags, wallets, or even watch straps. And, do not worry, you will not get scammed – the leather pieces from Argentina are of excellent quality, so do not hesitate to pay a bit extra.

2. China – Teapots

If you decide to travel to China, one of the most original souvenirs you can come home with is a Chinese teapot. These can be found pretty much anywhere in China. Their prices vary depending on their quality, of course. If you have some extra spending money in your budget, we recommend getting teapots made from Chinese porcelain. And, if you want a complete collection to give you the ultimate tea-drinking experience, you can also get teacups in matching painted sets. And don’t forget to buy some Chinese green or black tea. All of these make for excellent birthday gifts for travelers, too, so keep that in mind if you want to buy a gift for someone special. 

A teapot and cup.
There is nothing more original than a Chinese tea set.

3. England – Cadbury’s Chocolate

Even though Belgium is the world’s chocolate capital, many people argue that England can participate in the competition. But it is not just any chocolate – it is the famous Cadbury’s chocolate. This will also be a perfect gift to an American as this chocolate can no longer be found in the USA. 

4. Belgium – Lace

Speaking of Belgium, this country has a lot more to offer than just chocolate. For instance, Belgium is known for its authentic, hand-made lace and tapestry. Some of the most intricate laceworks can be found in the cities of Brussels and Bruges. You can take this lace home and make curtains, table spreads, or some of the most beautiful pieces of clothing out of it. But, let us warn you – Belgium’s lace comes with a hefty price tag! 

5. France – Macarons

It is no secret that France is famous for its cheeses, pastries and desserts. Some of those famous pastries include Croissants, Éclairs, Crepes, Crème Brûlée, etc. However, one dessert found its way to all of our hearts. The one and only – Macarons. These delectable pieces of heaven come in many colors and flavors. You can buy them almost anywhere throughout France. And even though they look delicate, they will survive the ride home.

A selection of macaroons.
Your friends will love you if you bring them macarons from your trip to France.

6. Ireland -Whisky

Besides food, alcohol and other popular drinks are some of the original souvenirs to take home from a journey. So, in Ireland, do not even think about going home without trying their signature whiskies. Every bar offers a variety of Irish whiskies. Try a couple and then buy a bottle of your favorite as your souvenir from Ireland.

7. Germany – Beer Stein

Most tourists travel to Germany during Oktoberfest. This festival is an excellent opportunity to dance, eat, drink, and simply have fun. Unfortunately, Oktoberfest was not held last year due to the pandemic. Nobody knows what will happen this year, but do not let that stop you from visiting Germany. It is a common travel myth that all the attractions are closed now. They are not! You can still try Germany’s famous beers and buy a beer stein as your souvenir.  

8. Italy – Venetian Masks

If you are looking for souvenirs you can buy that will not only stay on your fridge or your key chains, consider looking for pieces that serve a purpose. So, for example, when in Italy, consider investing in a Venetian Mask. They come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. And, they can be used as art pieces for your home, not only as souvenirs. You can use them to add a personal touch to your office or your living room. 

A Venetian mask.
A Venetian mask can also be a great gift for somebody special

9. Morocco – Ceramic Items 

Morocco is a country famous for being one of the most popular honeymoon destinations. It is also famous for hand-painted ceramic items. Most often, you will see colorful bowls being sold on the streets. But, you can find pretty much anything made of ceramics – mugs, glasses, pots, figurines, and even tiles. What makes them so unique is the color choice and various intricate floral and geometric designs. 

10. Russia – Lacquer Box

One of the most popular souvenirs to buy in Russia is the Matryoshka doll. But, this doll has become a cliché over the years as everybody buys it. So, when in Russia, instead of buying a doll set, consider purchasing the Lacquer box. This is a fantastic souvenir to take home. It too comes in many colors and sizes, but what makes it unique are the pictures from Russian fairy tales drawn on it

And there you have it – 10 most original souvenirs to take home from a journey. What souvenir would you buy?

 

6 Reasons why Road Trips are Better than Flying

People on a road trip relaxing in nature

According to statistics, flying might be the safest mode of travel, and there are some destinations that a car can’t reach. However, traveling by car is usually more affordable and allows you to create your itinerary – that’s just the beginning of its benefits. In this article, we’ll uncover 6 reasons why road trips are better than flying.

#1 You are in control

When it comes to traveling by plane, there are many procedures that you must follow. First, you need to get to the airport 2-3 hours before the departure time. Then, you get processed through security, board a crowded plane, and sit for a few hours in a cramped space. Depending on the airline and destination, food choices may be poor. As a result, people often arrive at the final destination feeling groggy. Some experience headaches or nausea due to turbulence and changes in air pressure. Not to mention the stress caused by delayed flights, long layovers, and missed connections.

If you’re lucky enough, you might fall asleep during your flight (in case there is no crying baby near you). If you happen to have a window seat and if you’re flying during the day, you can watch the clouds. And, that’s probably the only thing you’ll see, except the landscape before landing. All in all, traveling by plane is not very eventful.

On the other hand, when you travel by car, you can have an enriching experience and flexible schedule. When driving, you have many options available. You make the rules of your trip. You can stop and take a break whenever you want, whether to marvel at a lookout point, take photos, or eat something.

#2 It’s safer than you think

Many people are simply afraid of flying. On the other hand, do you know anyone afraid of traveling by car? Plane crashes are statistically more deadly than car crashes, even though they happen much less frequently. However, you’re much more likely to survive and avoid severe injuries if you happen to have a car accident.

Keep in mind that cars are safer now than ever before. You can rely on a car with GPS, automatic braking, anti-lock brakes, lane assist, parking sensors, camera, etc., and have a safe road trip.

However, if you still feel a little worried, you can always look for less busy routes for your road trip. Additionally, you can decide to pull over during bad weather and keep your phone in silent mode for better focus.

Woman driving a car
Whenever you’re driving, safety should be your top priority.

#3 Driving is less expensive than flying

Even though gas can be expensive, plane tickets are much more so. There are many extra fees you’ll need to pay as well. Low-cost airlines charge a fee for checked bags, preferred seats, airport check-in, in-flight entertainment, etc. Prices of food and drinks at the airport are usually outrageous as well.

Traveling by car is an adventure that is even more affordable when traveling with others. Road trips are better than flying because you can split gas money with your travel companions. In case you’re traveling with family, it’s easy to calculate the difference between multiple airplane tickets and the cost of gas.

#4 You can bring more stuff

Another reason why road trips are great is that you have more flexibility when packing your bags, and you don’t have to pay expensive fees for them. You don’t have to follow strict airline rules, and there is no specific weight limit. If you have a spacious car, you can bring almost anything you want. Some of those things can be:

  • Various games
  • Sports equipment
  • Musical instruments
  • Camping gear

You can also take your dog with you without worrying about the airline’s pet policy or the pet fee.

A man and a child near white SUV during sunset
Road trips are better than flying because they allow you flexibility in so many ways.

#5 Endless discoveries

You should go on an adventurous road trip at least once in your life. The fun is almost guaranteed, along with the opportunity to experience many different things. There’s so much to see and do on the road that you’d miss if you traveled by plane. There are numerous roadside attractions which you can plan to visit. Whenever you drive through a quaint little town, you can make a stop and wander through its streets. Moreover, you can stop to explore anything that seems interesting and worth your time, such as small museums, historical sites, famous statues, geological wonders, etc.

#6 Planning a nationwide road trip is so much fun

Everything mentioned above contributes to the idea that your vacation is not only your final destination – planning a nationwide road trip is much more than that. To plan this adventure, get creative and make a list of all the places you want to visit and see how you can connect them on a map. Then, create your itinerary, set a road trip budget, and decide where you’ll spend your nights. Be sure to download offline maps (just in case) and leave at least a little bit of flexibility for unplanned adventures.

Aside from being fun, road trips can also strengthen your relationships – whether that’s with your partner, family members, or friends. When traveling by road, you get to know your companions more intimately by having deep, meaningful talks with them.

Couple sitting in the back of a car
Going on a road trip with a companion will strengthen your relationship.

Final thoughts

Even though road trips are better than flying in many ways, every form of travel has its pros and cons. If you’re going on a business trip, it’s probably best to go by plane. When you need to travel to a remote location, the same logic applies. But, when you do have the option to drive, go for it. You’ll have more quality time, more flexibility, you’ll see things you would have never seen by plane, you’ll learn some history, and you’ll even save money. However, remember it’s essential to be cautious and drive safely. Being on the road promises thrilling experiences which you can remember for the rest of your life.