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Old 03-01-2012, 02:35 PM   #1
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What to do in the Toronto area

Since there seem to be a fair number of Ontarians here on DC, I thought I would throw this out.

One of the perks I get through my work is deeply discounted certificates good for a week's stay at a number of timeshare resorts around the world. Granted, most of these are not scheduled during the "high season" and many are off the beaten path (examples: Tunisia, Kenya, Finland), but nevertheless, DW and I have had some nice vacations in places we probably would have never otherwise visited.

This year I have a certificate for Barrie, Ontario, which is just north of Toronto. We'll be visiting in mid-June. During our trip we plan to visit Niagara Falls, since it's only a couple of hours away. Neither of us has ever been there. And we would like to spend a day or two in Toronto.

So my question is this: what are some of the "must see" things around this area? Barrie itself looks like it might have some tourist possibilities.

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Old 03-01-2012, 02:47 PM   #2
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I'm but a humble Ohioan and the last time I visited Toronto I saw "The Phantom of the Opera" at the Pantages Theatre, which was amazing!

I just checked the intertubes to update my info and the theatre has been renamed and the show doesn't run there anymore. Bummer.

Soooooo, you could check out a Maple Leafs game or have dinner in the CN Tower.

That's the extent of my knowledge. There's a pretty extensive arts scene if that's an interest.
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Old 03-01-2012, 11:19 PM   #3
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The Niagara area has a number of vineyards. There is also the Shaw Festival.

Niagara-on-the-Lake - Wikitravel

St. Catharine's is known for it's antique shops.

Kitchener-Waterloo is known for it's Mennonite background.

These are all "day trips" from Barrie.

Barrie has a lot of parks and is on Lake Simcoe.

Toronto has a lot of great restaurants and lots of interesting things to see/do. You might not have enough time to see the area if you've only got a week!

I personally hate driving in TO, but you should be able to hop the train or take public transportation.
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Old 03-01-2012, 11:59 PM   #4
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I was kind of hoping you would reply, CWS.

I actually have a few winemaker friends around the Niagara area, so yes, that will definitely be on the agenda.

Looking at some of the tourism web sites, it looks like there will be plenty to do in Toronto. We've already got our eye on a few restaurants.

Am I right that there are some casinos in the Barrie area? Not that I'm a big gambler or anything, but I lived in Las Vegas for several years, so I do know how to lose money at the blackjack tables.
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:32 AM   #5
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Hey, Steve. If you are into walking and checking things out, I would recommend Kensington Market. Vibrant, old, downtown shopping area with a great mix of cultures and food. That is right on the edge of Chinatown. Dozens of authentic Asian restaurants, food stores, imports, all in a few blocks. Cheap and good eats. I can get you the name of a few good ones. My brother has lived down there for about 25 years and lives on the stuff. There is also the St. Lawrence Market which is in a large pavilion. Tons of food vendors of all nationalities. I believe that one runs on weekends. Not sure, you may want to check that out. Blue Jays might be in town. I don't think there is ever problems getting tickets. Then, there is Young street. Which is one of the main business, shopping streets in the city. The Longest Street in Canada, actually. You can walk it for miles. Or Bloor Street which runs through the down town from East to West. If you go east, you go through large Greek section, if you go west you go through, the University, upscale Yorkville, then into Italian, Eastern European, sections. It is a great, multicultural city. Then there is The Eaton Centre, which is humongus shopping centre down at Younge and Queen. You could spend a few hours there no problem.
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Old 03-02-2012, 10:28 AM   #6
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CWS wrote, "Kitchener-Waterloo is known for it's Mennonite background." That's similar to Amish. From what I hear, the food is amazing.

Shaw Festival Theatre apparently has North America's 2nd largest repertory theatre company.

You should definitely take a ride on the Toronto subway and on one of their trams.
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Old 03-02-2012, 11:11 AM   #7
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Rock and TL,

Thank you both for the suggestions!! It all sounds good.

Mrs. K and I will definitely see the city by foot and public transport. I'm a big advocate of parking the vehicle and hoofing it whenever possible. I feel like you really miss a lot when trying to maneuver through city traffic in a car.
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Old 03-02-2012, 12:29 PM   #8
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Rock and TL,

Thank you both for the suggestions!! It all sounds good.

Mrs. K and I will definitely see the city by foot and public transport. I'm a big advocate of parking the vehicle and hoofing it whenever possible. I feel like you really miss a lot when trying to maneuver through city traffic in a car.
Toronto is a great city for getting around. It is almost a perfect grid. Almost everything runs North-South, East-West. And if you get turned around, just look for the CN Tower. It is close to the Lake which is the South of the city. I lived there for 5 years in the 80's. Good times....
There is also the Lake district which is quite well developed with parks and restaurants. Have fun!
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