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Where to Go Toronto

Shop the PATH: 8 Top Stores, Eateries and Services in Toronto’s Underground Oasis

BY STEPHANIE YOUNG

The PATH level of First Canadian Place boasts a large food court, a Harry Rosen store and more

The PATH level of First Canadian Place has a food court, an event space, a Harry Rosen store and more

Another marvel of engineering and architecture lies beneath the Financial District’s sky-scraping bank towers: an extensive warren of subterranean shops and services—and pedestrian corridors, naturally—known as the PATH. Stretching from Dundas Street south to Lake Shore Boulevard, and from west of University Avenue to just east of Yonge Street, the PATH has grown steadily over the course of more than 50 years. It’s now the world’s largest underground shopping concourse, with 28 kilometres of tunnels and four million square feet of retail space. The system is easy to enter, connecting as it does with six major downtown subway stations and numerous office buildings; it’s the leaving that you may find difficult. Major stores, attractions and even hotels are PATH-accessible, but the real finds are its high-end independent boutiques and eateries.

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Boots ‘n’ Bourbon & Rock ‘n’ Horse: Toronto Saloons for the Stetson Set

Rock 'n' Horse Saloon

Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon

Strap on your spurs! Two new western-style saloons have sprung up in the city. Boots ‘n’ Bourbon, co-owned by the creative and culinary minds behind Rock Lobster, tips its ten-gallon hat to old-fashioned country charm with free line dancing lessons, a horseshoe-shaped bar pouring 20-plus bourbons, and novelty drinks like the 32-ounce Stampeder served in a giant glass boot. Also trotting into town is Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon, well stocked with authentic touches like saddle-topped stools and a wagon-wheel chandelier. Feeling tough? Toss back a Bulldog—a giant margarita topped with an upturned bottle of Corona—before taking a spin on the mechanical bull. For tamer entertainment, kick back with a bourbon or beer at the pool table.  —Sara Burnside Menuck

• Boots ‘n’ Bourbon, 725 Queen St. E., 647-348-0880; bootsbourbon.com
Map and reviews

• Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon, 250 Adelaide St. W., 647-344-1234; rocknhorsesaloon.com
Map and reviews

Best of Toronto: 30 Things We Love About Our City This March

Each and every month we scour the city to bring you all the very best that Toronto has to offer! Check out our latest favourites below.

Best of Toronto #1: Rock 'n' Horse Saloon

Best of Toronto #1: Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon

1 Strapping on our spurs, downing a few drinks and taking a ride on the mechanical bull at Rock ‘n’ Horse Saloon.

2 The numerous sushi restaurants in the Annex and Koreatown neighbourhoods, especially the two locations of New Generation Sushi.

3 Sonic Boom‘s vast selection of used and new music plus unexpected musical accessories.

4 The consistent laughs to be had at Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club

5 Stumbling across one of the locations of used bookstore BMV, and once inside, stumbling across so many books you want to buy.

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Best of Toronto: 30 Things We Love About Our City This October

Each and every month we scour the city to bring you all the very best that Toronto has to offer! Check out our latest favourites below, and don’t forget that many of our September picks remain applicable throughout the fall.

Best of Toronto #1: I Love Lucy—Live on Stage (photo: Ed Krieger)

Best of Toronto #1: I Love Lucy—Live on Stage (photo: Ed Krieger)

1  Hearing “Lucy, you got some ‘splainin’ to do!” in the stage production of I Love Lucy.

2  Sipping $3 mimosas or $4 caesars at The Lakeview.

3  Anticipating cooler temperatures with a sable or shearling coat from Four Seasons Fur.

4  Indulgent truffle popcorn from Suits Lobby Lounge—you’ve never tasted kernels so rich.

5  Reveling in creativity at Nuit Blanche, a dusk-to-dawn celebration of art across the city.

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Where to See the Best Fall Colours Near Toronto

BY CRAIG MOY

The fall colours can be seen in abundance on the Niagara escarpment (photo: Jeff S. PhotoArt)

The fall colours can be seen in abundance on the Niagara escarpment (photo: Jeff S. PhotoArt)

We may complain about the shorter days and the noticeable chill in the air, but one thing we can’t lament with autumn’s arrival is the beautiful change it brings to our parks and woodlands. While trees are, of course, reasonably abundant in Toronto, you really do owe it to yourself to take leave of the concrete jungle in order to view the most vibrant foliage. So pack a picnic (or just some sturdy hiking shoes) and head to these just-outside-of-town locations to be awed by the best fall colours near Toronto.

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Niagara-on-the-Lake: 10 Things You Need to Know About This Getaway From Toronto

By KAREN CLEVELAND

Getaway From Toronto: Niagara-on-the-Lake

Getaway From Toronto: Niagara-on-the-Lake (Photo: Theodore C)

If you’re going to invest 90 minutes of driving for a getaway from Toronto, fewer places net a higher return than a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake. The charming town is home to breathtaking views, excellent restaurants, amazing vineyards and some of Canada’s most treasured heritage sites. Whether you fall in love with Niagara-on-the-Lake for a long affair, or just a fleeting tryst, be sure to consider these 10 tips when making your getaway plan. (more…)

10 Reasons to Visit the Canadian National Exhibition

BY LAURA SABATINI

The midway at the Canadian National Exhibition

The midway at the Canadian National Exhibition

If you’re visiting Toronto in August, you simply must not miss the Canadian National Exhibition, which runs from August 16 to September 2. Known to locals as “The Ex” (or, well, the CNE), the country’s largest fair was originally conceived in 1879 as a forum for promoting agriculture and scientific innovation. Today it boasts more of a carnival-like atmosphere, with a huge midway, rides, a casino, and heaps of deep-fried food, though its traditional attractions—like the horse show, butter sculpting, and marketplaces galore—remain beloved staples, too. Still not convinced you should attend this communal, end-of-summer spectacular? Check out our 10 reasons to visit the Canadian National Exhibition this year:

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Cabana Pool Bar is Toronto’s Hottest Summer Patio

Cabana Pool Bar (photo: Ink Entertainment)

Cabana Pool Bar (photo: Ink Entertainment)

Soak up summer at the city’s newest, largest and ritziest lakefront hot spot. Entertainment mogul Charles Khabouth’s Cabana Pool Bar is now open at Polson Pier, boasting 50,000 square feet of posh party space and a spectacular west-facing view of the skyline. The French Riviera-meets-Miami Beach venue is also outfitted with 12 private cabanas, dozens more oversized lounge chairs, and room for 2,500 sun-worshiping guests. Oh, and did we mention the dining area with a full Oliver & Bonacini–designed menu? The multiple bars serving signature cocktails? The octagonal swimming pool? It all adds up to a unique and very chic way to make a splash in Toronto.  —Laura Sabatini

• Cabana Pool Bar, 11 Polson St., 416-461-4400; cabanapoolbar.com
Map and reviews

10 of the Absolute Best Jazz Clubs in Toronto

By CAROL SPODE

Best Jazz Clubs Toronto

Jazz Bistro makes our list of the best jazz clubs in Toronto (Photo: George Pimentel)

To lovers of jazz and blues, Toronto is particularly rich terrain. It’s even possible to visit one or more jazz clubs in Toronto every single day of the week. There are several rooms that feature live jazz every evening, along with top-notch bars known for showcasing local talent and at least two dinner-jazz hotspots—think the legendary Ronnie Scott’s in London—that focus on international acts. From a local lover of live music, Where.ca offers this list of Toronto’s best jazz and blues destinations.

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16 Unforgettably Unusual Restaurants in Toronto

By CAROL SPODE

Unusual Restaurants in Toronto

This famous spot, with amazing views of the city, is on our list of awesomely unusual restaurants in Toronto(Photo: robceemoz)

Toronto has some of the best restaurants in Canada and is the most multicultural city on Earth, so it is not surprising that you can get a stellar meal from an unfamiliar cuisine every night of the week. For a truly memorable dining experience, however, a restaurant needs to offer something beyond great fare. Here, we’ve listed 16 of our favourite off-the-wall restaurants in Toronto that are unique for their setting, ambiance, food or concept.

See the 16 unforgettably unusual restaurants in Toronto »

— Carol Spode runs Tailor-Made Toronto—http://britgirlintoronto.wordpress.com—which offers Toronto-based itinerary planning tailored to a client’s interests and time frame. If you are a visitor, have visitors coming to stay or simply want to find out how exciting and diverse Toronto can be, then leave a comment on Carol’s blog. Contact: britgirlintoronto@wordpress.com.

 

TRAVELLING TO TORONTO? YOU MAY ALSO LIKE:
30 Things to Love About Toronto Right Now
Toronto’s Top 10 Shops for Art and Design Gifts
12 Best Pizza Spots in Toronto
The Top Shops for Cookies in Toronto

Enjoy the Hoppy Days of Ontario Craft Beer Week

Ontario Craft Beer Week celebrates great, locally brewed beverages

Ontario Craft Beer Week celebrates great, locally brewed beverages

JUNE 16 TO 23  There are two kinds of people who are able to appreciate the art of creating a high-quality beer: the brewers and the drinkers. You’re more than likely to fall into the latter of these categories during Ontario Craft Beer Week, which celebrates the growing number of excellent and innovative small-batch beers being poured across the province. In Toronto, that means numerous tours, tasting events and more, presented by a variety of microbrewers. If you’d rather sample Ontario’s craft beers on your own time, download the OCB Beer Locator app for your iPhone or Android device, which lists of Ontario craft beers sold near you. Visit ontariocraftbrewers.com for more information.  —Anna Marszalek

Best of Toronto: 30 Things We Love About Our City in June 2013

Each and every month we scour the city to bring you all the very best that Toronto has to offer!

Best of Toronto #1: colourful scarves from Augustina

Best of Toronto #1: colourful scarves from Augustina

 Accessorizing with luxe leather purses, statement jewellery and colourful scarves at Augustina.

2  Purring over the new Canadian production of Cats.

3  Story time at the Franklin Children’s Garden on Toronto’s Centre Island.

4  Rows of sparkly chandeliers at Troika Vodka Boutique.

5  Treating yourself to a hot lather shave from Truefitt and Hill, a classic barber shop and spa exclusively for gents.

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