Katie focused her studies on human culture and has degrees in anthropology and the environment. She currently works as a freelance writer.
Toronto is a wonderful place to explore if you ever find a chance to visit, as it is the capital of Ontario as well as the largest city in Canada. Additionally, Toronto is one of the most expensive places to live in Canada. It’s a beautiful place to visit all year 'round with endless things to do that cater to a wide audience. I suggest you check it out! Below, I have created a list of 20 unique and special places that are worth a visit.
20 Must-See Places in Toronto
- Steam Whistle Brewing Company
- Medieval Times Torture Musem
- Toronto’s Chinatown
- The CN Tower
- Old Fort York
- The Hockey Hall of Fame
- The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)
- Ontario Science Center
- The Distillery District
- The Toronto Eaton Center
- Spadina Historic House and Gardens
- Casa Loma
- Air Canada Center and Rogers Center
- Toronto Islands
- Canada’s Wonderland
- Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)
- St. Lawrence Market
- Bata Shoe Museum
- Broadway in Toronto
- Ontario Place
We will take a look at each unique location and talk about the highlights of these landmarks. From Old Fort York to Air Canada Center, let’s take a tour of the excitement that awaits as featured below.
1. Steam Whistle Brewing Company
You can visit the Steam Whistle Brewing Company for free, or you can pay for a tour that also includes beer tasting. The brewery uses only four ingredients in their beer (spring water, malted barley, hops, and yeast) and prides itself on being the most environmentally friendly beer production company in all of Canada. The location was once used as a steam locomotive cleaning facility and was known as the John St. Roundhouse. While visiting the brewing company, check out the historic roundhouse and railway museum.
2. Medieval Times Torture Musem
Although Medieval Times has several locations throughout North America, the Toronto location is the only one in Canada. Exploring the museum is a unique experience that will take you back in time. Your ticket price includes dinner and a show, which includes horses, falconry, jousting, and more. Inside, you will find a medieval torture museum and a gift shop to supply all of your medieval needs. Many people go to the museum for birthdays, bachelorette and bachelor parties, as well as other special occasions.
3. Toronto’s Chinatown
Toronto's Chinatown is the second largest Chinatown in North America and is an excellent place to grab a bite to eat or go for some shopping. You can find Chinatown centered on the Dundas Street West and Spadina Avenue intersection. They have a large selection of food and drinks, clothing, accessories, and whatever else you can think of—all at fantastic prices. Be sure to check out the Chinatown Center and the Dragon City Shopping Mall for indoor shopping and food.
4. The CN Tower
Built by the Canadian National Railways in 1976, the CN Tower is considered to be one of the world’s modern wonders. It once held the record as the tallest building in the world and is currently one of the tallest free-standing structures. The top of the building contains a glass-bottom floor as well as a revolving restaurant, known as the 360 Restaurant. At the restaurant, you can enjoy an exceptional dining experience while overlooking the entire city of Toronto.
5. Old Fort York
In the heart of downtown Toronto is a historical site like no other: Old Fort York. Formerly known as York, Fort York was the birthplace of modern-day Toronto. The fort was the site of many battles during the war of 1812. It is a location filled with artifacts and displays, and it is a great place to learn historical facts about the United States, Canada, and the War of 1812.
6. The Hockey Hall of Fame
If you are a sports fan, then the Hockey Hall of Fame should not be missed! From NHL trophies to a TSN/RDS broadcast zone, this place is a fitting tribute to all things hockey.
7. The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)
The Royal Ontario Museum, or ROM, is a museum of natural history and cultural diversity. It is Canada’s largest museum of its kind. The outdoor building is uniquely designed and recommended for its one-of-a-kind architecture.
8. Ontario Science Center
The Ontario Science Center is an interactive science center that has been around for 40 years. The Ontario Science Center makes for a fascinating visit that's fun for the whole family.
9. The Distillery District
The Distillery District is a historic area full of old buildings from the Victorian era. Once a bustling industrial sector, the district is now a favorite place to have a bite and go for a stroll. Enter a world with no cars, as the streets of the distillery district are for pedestrians only. There are lovely shops, boutiques, gourmet food places, and art galleries, all set in an architectural paradise. Along the way, you can enjoy some of the old machines and industrial parts that were once used for the distillery. There are also giant sculptures found throughout the walkways of the area to highlight your route.
10. The Toronto Eaton Center
This shopping mall has over 250 stores, but it isn’t just for those with a keen eye for fashion—the glass-domed structure of the mall is a beautiful site to enjoy. It’s one of the most popular attractions in all of Toronto and a great location to visit on a rainy day.
11. Spadina Historic House and Gardens
The Spadina Historic House is a historical home that was formerly the property of James Austin. Now open to the public, it’s a beautiful, old house, full of lovely antique furniture and art.
12. Casa Loma
In the heart of downtown Toronto lies an ancient-looking castle. If you enjoyed the thought of visiting the Spadina Historic House and Gardens, then you should definitely visit the Casa Loma castle. This beautiful castle was created in the 20th century by a wealthy businessman named Sir Henry Pellat. You can take a tour of the inside of the castle as well as the gardens.
13. Air Canada Center and Rogers Center
Neither the Air Canada Center nor the Rogers Center are to be missed if you enjoy live sports and entertainment. The Air Canada Center is home to the Toronto Maple Leafs Hockey Club, the Toronto Raptors, and the Toronto Rock lacrosse team. The Rogers Center (formerly known as the Skydome) is the home of the Toronto Blue Jays. The center is a massive stadium where you can enjoy baseball, football, and a wide variety of concerts.
14. Toronto Islands
The Toronto Islands are a lovely escape from the hustle and bustle of downtown. There are no roads to the islands, but don’t fret; the ferry will take you there in a matter of minutes. There are three main places to visit: Center Island, Wards Island, and Hanlan’s Point. Enjoy a variety of outdoor activities such a kayaking, canoeing, carousels, and tram tours. There is even an amusement park, the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse, and Franklin’s Children Garden.
15. Canada’s Wonderland
This outdoor amusement and water park has live entertainment. Don't miss the recently opened Dinosaurs Alive exhibit. Canada’s Wonderland is located north of downtown Toronto and only about a 30-minute drive from the area.
16. Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)
With over 80,000 works of art, the Art Gallery of Ontario is one of the most extensive art galleries and museums in North America. The gallery has a large collection of works, from contemporary creations to some pieces that are as old as 100 CE. Enjoy both the permanent collection as well as a variety of scheduled, temporary exhibits.
17. St. Lawrence Market
According to National Geographic, St. Lawrence Market is considered to be the best food market in the world. Here you can enjoy food, wines, shopping, antiques, collectibles, and everything in between. St. Lawrence Market has a rich history and diverse amount of items guaranteed to please the pickiest of shoppers.
18. Bata Shoe Museum
The Bata Shoe Museum is a museum that would make Imelda Marcos jealous. The Bata Shoe Museum has over 10,000 pairs of unique, beautiful, and one-of-a-kind shoes from across the world. It is guaranteed to be a memorable stop on your next visit to Toronto.
19. Broadway in Toronto
If you enjoy Broadway shows, what better place than Toronto to get your fix? Choose from a variety of popular Broadway shows. Some shows that have played in the past are Beauty and the Beast and War Horse, to name a few.
20. Ontario Place
Located right on Lake Ontario, Ontario Place is an amusement park and entertainment area. Visit the marina, the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre, and the Atlantis Pavilion where you can dine while enjoying a panoramic view of the city.
What's Your Favorite Place in Toronto?
Marina Ezzat from Egypt on December 30, 2017:
Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on November 18, 2017:
A great list for Toronto. Just love this city. It is so vibrant.
Katee Shew (author) from Canada on November 18, 2016:
@Jenn Ottawa is the capital of Canada. Toronto is the capital of Ontario. Hope that clears up any confusion you might have :)
Jenn on August 20, 2015:
Umm Ottawa is the capital of Ontario. Not Toronto.
Greensleeves Hubs from Essex, UK on June 10, 2013:
Lists of this kind are always useful tourist guides of the main attractions to try to visit during a short stay in a locality. Your list seems a very comprehensive run down of a diverse range of attractions to suit all tastes, and would be useful for anyone who pays a visit to the City of Toronto. Voted up accordingly. Alun.
francis5k from New York, New York on November 09, 2012:
huge article! informative! well done...
Nell Rose from England on July 15, 2012:
Hi, this was great as some of my family moved there back in the 40s, I have never met them as they are all gone now, but my gran was always talking about it, wonderful, I really must get there someday, thanks!
Katee Shew (author) from Canada on July 11, 2012:
After visiting it myself, it is one of my favorites as well :)
Spitfire07 from Calgary on July 11, 2012:
Cheers for listing my favourite as number 1! Go Steam Whistle.