Written by: Lena Rye
Toronto is a vast city with many hidden wonders and surprises. It is difficult for one person to discover the best places to go. I believe that sharing our discoveries with one another will help us appreciate our home more. I will describe some of my favourite places in hopes that you may enjoy them as much as I do.
In the muggy summer, my favourite place to be is in a park, and what better park than Dufferin Grove? I grew up playing in this park and I’ve never gotten tired of it. It is situated on Dufferin, just south of Bloor.
Dufferin Grove has many amazing community activities like the outdoor farmers’ market every Thursday, where you can try delicious, organic foods from pizza to crepes to fresh bread baked in the brick oven. There is also an endless selection of local produce.
Another thing to try at Dufferin Grove, is rolling your own pizza. You are supplied with dough, tomato sauce, cheese, and anything you want from the community garden. Then, your creation is baked in the outdoor pizza oven. To be honest, this is the best pizza I’ve ever had and it’s incredibly inexpensive.
This park is not just enjoyable in the summer, it’s fun all year round. They have a day of the dead parade, clay and paper theater performances, and all through the winter, a skating rink with snacks and meals in the rink house.
Overall, Dufferin Grove is a beautiful, community oriented park and a great place to bring a friend.
The next place I’m going to share with you is Spadina house, Casa Loma’s smaller but no less interesting neighbour. It is on Spadina, north of Davenport. This is a historical house from 1818 and is now a museum. You can explore it and learn about the Austins and Baldwins, the families who have lived there, and what their lives were like. The outside is beautiful, too. You can walk around the property, through fragrant flower gardens and orchards and relax in the shade of age old trees.
Spadina house also offers themed activities like the Downton Abbey Tour, where the clothing collection from the television series was shown, the Gatsby Garden Party, and Music in the Orchard, free outdoor concerts. There are many other events here, but my favourite thing to do is to explore the grounds.
Finally, for all you bikers, there is the West Toronto Rail Path. This is a path that runs north-south beside the railroad from Dupont and Annette, to Dundas. It is separated from the noise of the city and quite secluded. There are indigenous plants and art along it. It’s a great place to go for a walk or bike ride when you want the feeling of being outside of the city.
I hope you will explore these places and discover your own favourite spots which you can share with others.