Over the holidays I went to visit my friend Olivia in Toronto for New Years. Ottawa to Toronto is about a 4 hour train ride, which is a much more comfortable option than flying. For those of you familiar with my blog, you’ll know that New York City has always been my dream city to live in, but as a Canadian it’s not so easy to get a job there. Toronto is the closest to NYC that Canada has to offer, so if I’m going to live somewhere in Canada, it seems like the place to be. Plus, there are numerous international companies in Toronto that could eventually transfer me or let me travel for the job in the meantime. Sounds like a pretty good compromise! :) Anyways, click to read more for the trip recap!
Distillery District: I arrived at Union Station and since Olivia picked me up in a car, we were able to head straight to the Distillery District. This area is very trendy, I kind of imagine it as the Brooklyn/Meatpacking District of New York. The pictures will give you a better idea of what it’s like. There are shops, restaurants, bars, and cafes to explore. There is also a Christmas Market here, which we just missed.
Balzac’s: this is the coffee shop we went to in the Distillery District. The coffee is great and the shop is eclectic and trendy.
Heelboy: because I can’t avoid shoe stores! They had a great sale and a great selection of shoes. I wanted to buy three pairs of booties but settled on one Steve Madden pair.
Yorkville/Bloor: is such a lovely/posh neighbourhood. It kind of reminds me of Montreal. The streets are brick … how elaborate is that? Definitely a neighbourhood I would like to live in – if money allowed! Bloor Street is quite long but the section of it that passes through Yorkville is worth checking out. As we continued walking along the street I realized it’s Toronto’s Fifth Avenue. The shops were beautiful to look at, honestly just like Fifth Avenue … that’s all that really needs to be said!
Nathan Philips Square (Toronto Sign): is a lovely spot to visit; especially at night when everything is lit up! You’ve likely seen a photo of the Toronto sign that changes colours, it’s fairly new but hopefully it will stay! Also, similar to the Rockefeller Centre, it’s a lovely space to go ice skating in the middle of the city!
Queen Street: is a cool neighbourhood for shopping and dinning. I’ve spent more time there during past trips, but this time it was just a quick visit to get some crepes!
Cafe Crepe: What better to way to warm up on a winter night than ordering a crepe to-go? This place is really popular, so there can be a wait. I ordered one with Nutella, strawberries, and banana – delicious!
Hudson’s Bay: this is the Canadian department store … that was recently bought my an american company. But the flagship store is quite a big deal in Toronto. They had the most magical Christmas window display outside. There was orchestra music playing and each window had a continuation of the story (which I believe was The Night Before Christmas).
Dundas Square: the Times Square of New York! Though it’s more similar to Piccadilly Circus in London – I honestly don’t think anything can compare to Times Square. Still a fun spot to check out, and it’s right by the huge Eaton Centre mall.
Bar Italia: is where we went for New Year’s Eve dinner. We were really lucky to get a spot because most places were booked up for the night. I had calamari for an appetizer and pasta for my main course and it was delicious! The restaurant it is Little Italy which is also a cool area to explore.
The rest of the trip was all about preparing for the New Year’s party being held at Olivia’s house, so that’s all the sight seeing I had time for. From what I saw on this trip, I can’t wait to move to Toronto!
Have you been to Toronto? What are your favourite spots? I’d love to know since I’m probably moving there!