Day 1 & 2: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Two and a half days is not enough to explore what Toronto has to offer. The bustling streets of downtown Toronto somewhat resembles that of Time Square in New York City. I arrived in Toronto with no expectations. My only knowledge of Toronto was that it was the cleaner version of New York City. I find that to be completely true.

From the Airport to Downtown:

I arrived in Toronto in the early evening. Hopped a ride from the Airport on the Airport Express 192 than took their easy to use subway into downtown. The ride took a total of one hour but you can’t beat the $3 bus fare. You can also travel on the new renovated UP (Union Pearson) express that would take you to downtown for $27.50 but in half the time.

Where to Stay:

I was staying at a friends, Carmen’s house. I met Carmen in Dublin, Ireland during St. Patrick’s Day and always mean to visit but finally had the time to go. She has a fabulous AirBnB room for rent and I highly recommend it. She’s a gracious host and I have nothing but wonderful things to say about her!


Hair of the Dog

Carmen took me to a local pub at the corner of Wood and Church. They serve delicious comfort food from their deep fried cheese curds to their perfectly crunchy nachos. This is also the go to place for a Ceasar, Canada’s unofficial official alcoholic beverage. Don’t leave this place without trying one.

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Day 2:


For $11.50, you can get a group pass valid for 2 adults and 2 children. This deal is only available during the weekends and the PanAm game events. On any regular day, it is $11.50 for a day pass.

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Ritz Caribbean Restaurant

Ritz is a Caribbean fast food restaurant located directly in front of the Eaton Centre on Yonge Street, the longest street in North America (They do have 4 locations, 3 on Yonge street). The ambience of Ritz takes you far away to the Caribbean Islands with loud reggae music blaring, women wearing head-wraps, and excellent food taking you to Jamiaca. I ordered the BBQ chicken combo which comes with Caribbean rice and a side of plantains. Yum! Come in between the hours of 11 to 3pm and your meal is only $5.99. What a steal!

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Eaton Centre

Up and down Yonge street are tons of shops and restaurants. I found myself entering Eaton Centre, a 3-story shopping mall. Majority of the mall is still under construction but you can spend hours getting lost in here.

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Ceílí Cottage

Ceílí Cottage was hands down the best food place I’ve had in a Toronto. This was not just any old Irish pub. The staff at this particular pub all originated from Ireland (at least the ones we’ve met).

For all you oyster lover, this is a must for you. The place is run by the famous Patrick McMurray, the Guinness World Champion Oyster Shucker. I can’t eat seafood but the restaurant is filled with unique flavours for your oysters. They also have new options everyday! Can’t eat seafood? There are other delicious options too.

I ordered the half rack of ribs with a side of mash potatoes. The ribs were cooked medium rare.. aka perfection. As you cut through each rib, you can see all the juices escaping from the meat onto your plate. #drools. How meat should be cooked!

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The Left Field

Today, the Toronto Blue Jays (Canada’s only MLB team) plays the New York Yankees. The entire city was well spirited in blue and white colors. The Blue Jays had been on a 12 game winning streak, the most wins since 1993! Carmen took us to meet some of her friends who were watching the game at a local brewery. The Left Field (so fitting to watch a baseball game here) is a small brewery tucked away in a quiet neighborhood. The Left Field is closed rather early because of its close proximity to neighbors. We stayed and watch the game long after the brewery closed. It was an intense game… 4 Yankees, 3 Blue Jays.. 9th inning, 2 outs, Blue Jays on deck. I guess you know how intense it was for all the Blue Jay fans here in Toronto. We left the brewery in a somber spirit but we decided to get some pick me up munchies.

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Milk by Momofuku

Milk by Momofuku is known for their delicious desserts. I’ve never heard of them before but we were told that Crack Pie was a must. I purchased 3 interesting flavored cookies and our new friend bought us a Crack Pie. I officially know why it’s called a Crack pie. The pie is soo full of sugar that it makes your body twitch. Maybe it’s just me. The cookies all resembled some childhood favorites.. like cornflakes cereal and blueberry muffins.

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You can’t visit Canada and not try their official food, Poutines, gravy and cheese curds over a bed of french fries. Yum. We went to Poutini’s which offered a variety of flavours to cover your french fries. There are 2 size orders: tiny and regular. I ordered a tiny pulled pork poutine for $6.99. I found this to be plenty for one, maybe even for 2 people. Remember to have cash in hand because this place only takes cash.

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Dive Bar: 

Lipstick & Dynamite 

We ended the night at an interesting bar named Lipstick & Dynamite. The bar has interesting decor from random paintings on the walls and ceilings to abrupt placards behind the bar area. The bartender even came by and blew us some bubbles… yes bubbles.. with a bubble gun! Facinating place! Another cash only place.

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After a long fulfilling day, it’s time to hit the sack and reenergize for our road trip to Niagara Falls.