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Okay, not "Notes from Nowhere" but rather "Notes from Northwest Ohio via Dallas/Fort Worth ..."

Excerpted from an e-mail from my mother this morning: "We are off again on one of our adventures. This weekend (beginning tomorrow) we will drive to Windsor and take the train to Toronto. We hope to see the CN Tower, the Eaton Centre, the Cathedral in Toronto, the Edwards Gardens, possibly a museum as well, perhaps a play also, and an Irish pub or two during our stay there. We will be staying for two days at the Hilton Toronto Hotel (145 Richmond Street W.) We will be home again on Sunday night. It will be a celebration of our 51st Anniversary."

So, help a Bauxite (and his family) out ... what's can't-miss in TO these days? Top quality, surprisingly inexpensive restaturants? Off-the-beaten-path kewl stuff? Be nice, I am sending the URL for this thread to my whole family! ...

[Off-Topic] Help a Bauxite out ... | 16 comments | Create New Account
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Leigh - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 02:15 PM EDT (#203581) #
Mike Green - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 02:23 PM EDT (#203584) #

Southern BBQ- The Stockyards (Christie and St. Clair)
Italian- Zucca Trattatoria (Yonge and Eglinton)
Brunch- The Harbord Room (Spadina and Harbord)

I could go on.  Any preferences, Mick?

Congratulations to your parents.  We raise a virtual Guiness in their honour.

Paul D - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 02:23 PM EDT (#203585) #

I think Nota Bene, at Queen and University, is far and away the best new restaurant in the city.  It's not cheap, but it's also not super expensive.

The Queen and Beaver pub on Elm street is a really nice new put, although again, it's pricier than a typical pub.

If they're shopping on Queen Street, New York Subway is good, cheap lunch food.  Ghandi is also delicious, although you get more than you can eat there.

Not off the beaten path, but the distillery district is nice in the summer.

And, if they go to Grossmans, as recommended by Leigh, lots of cheap food in Kensington.   Actually, they could East of Spadina on Baldwin and get to the Baldwin village for lots of fun restaurants. 

The new Art Gallery is nice, if you're into that stuff.

Geoff - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 02:24 PM EDT (#203586) #
Just a smidgen too early to witness a classic Jays-Yankees rivalry series.

If it's in their taste, Casa Loma could be a pleasure.

VBF - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 03:07 PM EDT (#203589) #

CN Tower (next to Dome) and the Art Gallery of Ontario (Dundas, east of Spadina) are both popular. The CN Tower is pricey, and can get a little boring (you go up, look around, and then go back down) but there is a decent view--depends if you want to be a typical tourist or not. The Art Gallery is Frank Gehry's latest work if you're into architecture, and has some very cool stuff.

Unlike many cities, Toronto is a city for people like walking around, and you can walk anywhere you want in the downtown, it's safe and clean. Some great walking neighbourhoods: Queen St, West of Yonge, Queens Quay West of Yonge, Yorkville (Bloor, West of Yonge, big celebrity kinda neighbourhood), the Danforth (Bloor, East of Yonge but further east), but these are not the only excellent neighbourhoods to explore.

The transit system is kind of outdated but for that reason is fairly user friendly--there are two major lines. It's safe and you can get around pretty well id you're a tourist.

For theatre, most major theatres are located on King St W, west of Yonge and East of John St. Check out for alot of the theatre productions taking place in the city.

And lastly, the cheapest thing you can do in Toronto with in my opinion, the greatest bang for your buck is to visit the Toronto Islands. For $3.50 you can board a Ferry which will take you to one of the three ports on the island: Wards Island, Centre Island, and Hanlan's Point. Hanlan's Point is where Babe Ruth his his first professional home run and there is a plaque located there commemorating the occasion--ask one of the city workers to point you to it because it's kind of hidden near some shrubs. All the islands are connected so you can walk as you like along them: it really is like its own paradise. There's a beach, a collection of restaurants, and many small streams and rivers, sailboats and stuff like that. You could spend an hour there, or a whole day, and the return trip back to Toronto is free. You can board the Ferry at the foot of Bay Street.


Mike D - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 03:18 PM EDT (#203590) #

I'd second what VBF said about the Danforth, which is easily accessible by subway.  Take the TTC to Chester station and walk to Ouzeri and order the lamb rosemary pie.  And there are fantastic dessert options afterwards as you walk around the neighbourhood -- or you can just walk across the street to a Greek bakery and pick up a plate of loukoumades.

The restaurant I would most classify as "top quality, surprisingly inexpensive" is The Pomegranate at College and Bathurst.  Spectacular food (make sure to reserve in advance).  Then you can stroll west along College to Little Italy for a glass of wine and take a cab back to the hotel.

snider - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 03:58 PM EDT (#203595) #

visit the Toronto Islands

 Double check that the ferries to the islands are running.  This depends on when the striking city workers go back on the job. 

Isn't it Caribana this weekend?  That will present a whole lot of opportunities for some interesting times around the city and on the islands.

Matthew E - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 04:17 PM EDT (#203599) #
The zoo. Always the zoo.
christaylor - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 04:42 PM EDT (#203601) #
The Royal Ontario Museum is showing the Dead Sea Scrolls -- which is a rare opportunity to see these treasures as they almost never travel. Could be good if that's your sort of thing.

Dave Till - Thursday, July 30 2009 @ 04:56 PM EDT (#203602) #
The Toronto Island ferry service may resume by this weekend - Toronto city council still has to ratify the agreements reached with the inside and outside city workers. There's no guarantee that they will.

As for things to do:
  • Eat lunch at Burrito Boyz! Yum yum.
  • Explore the Toronto parks and ravine system - you can walk all the way up the Don River or up the Humber.

jerjapan - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 09:23 AM EDT (#203669) #
The Harder they Come the musical just opened and sounds great.  And the Harbourfront centre always has lots of interesting food / music (Leroy Sibbles Saturday night!) / events, although it's Caribanna this weekend, not sure how much granny likes reggae.

I just ate with a large group at Lahore Tikka House, which is on Gerrard at Highfield road.  It's a bit of a hike to the east end, but if people like Indian food / interesting dining experiences and want to check out little India, it's really fun - the restaraunt isn't finished so everyone sits under a big tent in the parking lot at picnic tables.  It's always rammed with locals, lots of kids and families, and many call it the best Indian in the city.  If you come out to stroll the Danforth, a short cab ride would get you there and you could take the Gerrard streetcar west to get back downtown. 

Mike Green - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 09:36 AM EDT (#203670) #
Not far from your parents' hotel and very close to the Art Gallery is Yeung Sing bakery on Baldwin just west of McCaul.  Great chinese buns (and dim sum on the weekend) at rock bottom prices.  The seating consists of benches in front, but for a quick bite at lunch in a interesting area, it cannot be beat. 
vw_fan17 - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 01:39 PM EDT (#203698) #
The Royal Ontario Museum is showing the Dead Sea Scrolls -- which is a rare opportunity to see these treasures as they almost never travel. Could be good if that's your sort of thing.

Wow, wish I'd known that! I JUST finished visiting my family in K-W from July 11-16.. Of course, the days were booked pretty solid.. Lots of visits with mom and dad (mom's undergoing cancer treatment, which thankfully appears to be going well) and my sister & family... But, I might have squeezed  a short road trip in there. Then again, with a 2.5 year old and a 0.5 year old, it's tough to plan ANYTHING...

Will definitely let my family know, as I think they'll be interested.

Mike Green - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 02:06 PM EDT (#203706) #
She may be only .5 years old, but her VORB is outtasite. :)

A warning about the museum.  A modern renovation was done, and the inside is apparently beautiful.  I don't know because I find the outside so hideous from an aesthetic perspective that I haven't made it inside since the renovation (to me, it looks like a crystal tumour was grafted onto a beautiful old building).

Mick Doherty - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 02:40 PM EDT (#203710) #

VORB? Value Over Replacement Baby? But Mike, where does one find this fictional "replacement baby"???

Alas, there will need to be a VORPT report this time -- Value Over Replacement Parental Travelers. Mick Sr. has taken ill and they are delaying the trip. But this thread has been great -- please continue to add to it! -- for future reference, especially for those of us who have not been in TO since 1987 ...

Mike Green - Friday, July 31 2009 @ 02:57 PM EDT (#203713) #
Best wishes to Michael Sr. for a speedy recovery.
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