We may look like a frozen wasteland seven out of twelve months, but for the summer at least, Toronto offers some truly breath-taking views.
1. Casa Loma
Sure, a gothic revival house might be out of place in modern Toronto, but it does make things interesting. Should you tour the house (and its ninety-eight rooms, secret passages, collections of vintage cars, and an oven large enough to cook an ox), you’ll get a pretty great view of downtown from the third floor—but a no-cost walk through the gardens gets you nearly the same view.
2. Scarborough Bluffs
It figures that you might need to trek a bit far afield to really enjoy Toronto’s waterfront, but the good news is that once you’re there, you’ll have fifteen kilometres to spread out. At their highest point, the escarpment rises ninety meters from the water, affording a pretty great view of lake Ontario. Bring a picnic lunch and make a day of it.
3. Toronto Islands
How does an enterprising Torontonian get to cottage country with only ten minutes to spare? Easy—he hopes a ferry to the Toronto islands. There’s no end of recreation available, like canoeing, kayaking, tennis, cycling, and many, many beaches. Including a clothing optional beach! And with the soon-to-open tunnel, it’s even easier to cast your gaze at downtown and think, “Enjoy the rat race, suckers—I’m going to nap on a beach!”
A perennial favourite amongst Bay Street elite, Canoe is where you eat if you really want to enjoy your Canadian-inspired food like northern woods mushroom soup and venison tartare with a panoramic view of the harbour and downtown core. It’s also a sophisticated and upscale dining spot, so if the increasing casualness of dining of late is bothering you, here’s your remedy.
5. The CN Tower
It was inevitable, wasn’t it? Sure, it costs an arm and a leg to get up there, and sure, you’re bound to be stuck in an elevator with shrieking children, but there is no view better view in Toronto . . . unless you shell out $200 for Edgewalk, which puts you in a harness, ropes you to a safety rail, and lets you walk around the outside edge. You may have to bring your own change of underwear.