ontario

A Change of Skies - Toronto Day 4

Another day, another latte.

I started off the day by heading to Dineen Coffee Company at the corner of Yonge and Temperance St. I loved the atmosphere (very open, bright, European-inspired) as well as their delicious cup of Joe. It would be a great spot to sit down and get some work done with sugar and caffeine in your blood. You can also watch the beautiful people of Toronto. As usual, I did a lot of stuff and packed my day with good sights, good food, and good drinks. #yolo

Places visited:
- Casa Loma
- Darkhorse Espresso Bar
- CN Tower
- Kalendar Restaurant and Bistro (Italian dinner)
 

Mi casa es su casa.

Casa Loma was a little out of the downtown area, but still close enough to the city. You have to walk up a bunch of stairs though , but it's a great excuse to get your step count in! While touring through the beautiful mansion, you will definitely suffer from house and furniture envy, but just think about having to vacuum the place! Ain't nobody got time fo' that!

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If you DARE to climb up the steep, swirly stairs, you'll be rewarded with a unique and gorgeous view of the neighbourhood and Downtown Toronto. According to my trusty walkie talkie tour guide, the graffiti on the walls were kept on purpose to show the history behind the mansion when it was abandoned by the original builder, Sir Henry Pallett. Long story short, during WWI, he took a huge financial hit when people started pouring money into war bonds and not homes. His stock was worthless and he was heading straight into bankruptcy. To top it all off, he he had a big fat tax bill, which he could not afford so he had to auction off all of his prized possessions and peace out to a farm. Womp womp. 

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Dark Horse Espresso Bar on Spadina Ave.

CN Tower

I'm a sucker for sunsets, so I figured that would be the best time to go up the tower and get a bird's eye view of the city. I would suggest going up there a little early (like an hour before sunset), grab a drink/food, and patiently wait.

Random fun facts about the CN Tower:

The CN Tower was classified as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers in '95.
- The Tower took 40 months to build and cost $63 million.
- The 360 restaurant takes 72 minutes to complete one full revolution.
 - The Tower weighs 117,910 metric tonnes, or the equivalent of 16,844 large male elephants.
- The Tower's intelligent LED light system changes colour depending on the occasion or season.
- At 553m, the CN Tower is the tallest free-standing structure in the western hemisphere.
(Literally taken from: http://www.seetorontonow.com/attractions/in-the-spotlight-cn-tower/)

Just take it all in. Ahhhh.....

Last but not least, I met up with my lovely friend to stuff our faces with pasta and wine.
I had a pretty perfect day.

Take Me Around Toronto - Day 2

I have to admit. I got lazy with my trip planning. So I cheated and got a CityPASSwhich turned out to be a really good decision. I had a very packed trip as a result. It comes with 5 tickets to visit all of the staple sight-seeing sites at a discounted price (CN Tower, Casa Loma, Royal Ontario Museum, Ripley's Aquarium of Canada, and Toronto Zoo/Ontario Science Centre). I ended up going to 4 out of these places, which still turned out to be a deal when compared to purchasing tickets separately. (More posts to come!)

I was down to do all the touristy things because I feel like you should do it at least once in the city you would potentially like to live in (yes, I can see myself living in Toronto). I also had the help of my local blogger friends who suggested a great list of places to eat and drink.

First up, Ripley's Aquarium of Canada.

I kind of knew this one would be a rough one. Three reasons:
1. I hate going to places with a million people.
2. I don't like animals in captivity.
3. Million screaming kids and frustrated/tired parents are not a fun crowd.

I still went for it... it was cool... I guess. I felt bad for the animals because the tanks seemed very tiny for big underwater mammals and fish to live in. I don't think I'll ever go here again to be honest. Definitely gave me a headache by the end of the visit. I got some nice photos, but in my opinion, I don't think this was worth the trip. #sorrynotsorry

People, no flash photography means no flash photography. These animals belong in the deep, deep, deeeep ocean where there is no light. No one gave a sh*t and it was kind of frustrating.

After being in a really tight space with a million screaming children, you probably feel like you need a drink. Steam Whistle Brewing will greet you with open doors. It's located right across the aquarium and their Pilsner is oh-so-refreshing! Also, they offer free samples (about 6oz) which will quench your thirst enough if you're on a tight budget (haha poor traveller).

Immerse yourself in the energy of the city at Polson Pier.

At the end of the night, I needed to do something mellow. Polson Pier is one of the best places to see the Toronto skyline. It's also quiet. 

Did I mention it's quiet?

Stay tuned for the next post and see what I did on my third day! I had brunch, went to another touristy place, ate some tacos, and drank some beer (duh).