Toronto Harbour Attractions
Toronto, Canada’s largest city, has much to offer. With over four million people, there are loads of things to do and see to entertain and amuse everyone.
Many of these attractions may be seen from the water. When out on one of our beautiful cruises, you will see the following Toronto Harbour attractions:
CN Tower – If you could name one structure that defines Toronto’s skyline, it would be the CN Tower. Opening for business in 1976, the World’s Tallest Tower is 1815 feet, 5 inches tall. In 1995, the CN Tower was classified as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers. Every year, two million people make a trip to the top of this telecommunications and entertainment complex to visit its famous revolving restaurant and to catch a view that stretches to Niagara Falls.
Rogers Centre – Previously known as the SkyDome, the Rogers Centre is one of Toronto’s most dynamic attractions. It opened in June 1989 and is the home of the Toronto Blue Jays Baseball team, winners of the 1992/3 World Series. As Toronto’s premiere arena, domed-stadium and open-air facility, the Centre has also hosted a series of concerts and conventions. With a seating capacity of up to 50,000, she has been host to over 2000 events and has had more than 60 million visitors.
Billy Bishop Airport commonly known to the citizens of Toronto as the “Island Airport” is a small airport located on the Western end of Toronto’s Island in the heart of the Harbour. This airport started operating in 1939 and was originally called King George VI Island Airport until 1994 when it was renamed Toronto City Centre Airport. Run by Ports Toronto, it was later officially called Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport after William Avery “Billy” Bishop. It is currently used for civil aviation, medical flights and regional airlines using turboprop planes. Its largest tenant is the popular Porter Airlines which travels to Ottawa, Montreal, Chicago, Boston, and many other eastern seaboard locales.
Queens Quay Terminal houses delectable lakefront dining, office space and luxury condominiums. Standing at the foot of York Street, in the centre of the harbour’s waterfront, this green glass building is a renovated cold storage facility warehouse built in 1926.
Canadian National Exhibition – aka “The Ex”, is an annual event held in late August of each year, at Exhibition Place, just north of Ontario Place in the west end of the city. It is Canada’s largest fair and the fifth largest in North America with an annual attendance of over a million people. Having celebrated its 125th anniversary in the summer of 2003, The Ex offers a wide variety of entertainment and events such as midway rides, sports, international food, shopping, fireworks displays and a three-day air show, the Canadian International Air Show
Corus Quay building is an eight storey commercial office tower located on 2.5 acres of waterfront property at the foot of Jarvis Street on the east side of the Redpath Sugar Plant. The $160 million building houses Corus Entertainment’s Toronto headquarters, consolidating its 10 locations and 1200 employees into one site.
Redpath Sugar Refinery was built on the Toronto waterfront in the late 1950s at the time of the completion of the Saint Lawrence Seaway. This refinery provides sugar products to consumers and food manufacturers throughout Canada. Situated in the east end of the harbour at the foot of Jarvis Street, she is readily recognized by her cranes and visiting cargo ships. On the street side, she is adorned by her Whale Mural painted by Wayland. This historical building also houses a Sugar Museum.
The Amsterdam Brewery: The Amsterdam Brewing Company operates a micro-brewery and restaurant with a patio at 245 Queens Quay West, just West of Harbourfront centre. For anyone looking for a nice meal and a craft beer, Amsterdam Brewery will be the place to go.
Tours also available.
Harbourfront Centre is an innovative non-profit cultural organization which provides internationally renowned programming in the arts, culture, education and recreation fields. This 10-acre site in the heart of the Toronto Harbour presents over 4000 events and attracts over twelve million visitors annually. The centre also operates two Marinas, five parking lots and a powerboat and sailing school in addition to hosting over 30,000 school children during day trips and popular camps.
The Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada: The Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada is just east of the Rogers Centre. The aquarium hosts over 13,000 different species of fish, crustaceans, and mammals from all over the world. It is another iconic landmark in Toronto’s downtown core.
Radisson Admiral Hotel is a boutique-style hotel situated right on the waterfront at the foot of Rees Street just south of the CN Tower and Rogers Centre. It can accommodate up to 220 guests and includes an on-site restaurant offering panoramic views of the harbour and skyline from its 5th story location.
Westin Harbour Castle is a 4 star hotel situated at the foot of Yonge Street right on the water’s edge. This hotel has 38 floors and offers 977 rooms with views of the lake and/or city. There are several restaurants and bars on site, a glass-walled pool and a fitness centre to help guests relax in style and luxury.
HTO is knows as Toronto’s “Urban Beach.” It is a long stretch of sand extending along the water’s edge. With its very recognizable metal yellow umbrellas, this lovely beach in the heart of downtown Toronto provides a great place to ponder the views while sitting in a variety of Muskoka chairs pitched in the sand. The HTO beach is located just west of the Radisson Hotel.
Sugar Beach is a whimsical new park in the east end of the Harbour that transformed an old parking lot into Toronto’s second Urban Beach. Located at the foot of lower Jarvis Street to the east of the Redpath Sugar Refinery, the two acre park provides a sandy beach filled with 150 beach chairs and 36 pink umbrellas along a 225 metre stretch of shoreline.
Sherbourne Common is a stunning waterfront park located just East of Lower Sherbourne street, designed to bring a feeling of “life at the lake” to the area. It is the first park in Canada to integrate a neighbourhood-wide stormwater treatment facility into its design. This 1.5 hectare park features wide open greenspace, unique play areas, a skating rink that doubles as a splash pad in the summer, a striking zinc-clad Pavilion and a beautiful water channel with three dramatic sculptures. Recently finished, Sherbourne Common promises to become a well-used destination for city residents and visitors for many years to come.
Toronto Islands are a popular destination for residents and tourists during the summer months. Made up of several picturesque parks, it is a great way to escape the busy bustle of the city for a picnic by the water or a refreshing swim at one of the many sandy beaches. Explore all that the islands have to offer by renting a bike or canoe during your visit. Kids of all ages are sure to also enjoy the Centreville Amusement Park and Franklin Children’s Garden. While on the island do not forget to hike to the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse, Toronto’s oldest stone building.
The Music Garden, located between Bathurst and Spadina, was inspired by Bach’s Suite No. 1 in G Major and designed in part by internationally renowned cellist Yo Yo Ma. It is composed of a river scape, conifer and forest groves, a flower parterre, a winding wildflower meadow and grass steps. Arrange to take a guided tour of this magnificent garden during the summer months or rent an audio player at the Marina Quay West office and take your own self-guided audio tour. Free weekly outdoor music concerts also take place in the garden from June to September.
Yacht Clubs & Marinas
The Royal Canadian Yacht Club was founded in Toronto in 1852. It is a yachting recreational club and an unofficial auxiliary of the Royal Navy. As one of this country’s premier sailing and social clubs, it hosts a series of exclusive social functions for its members, including wine dinners, a summer and winter ball, summer barbeques and themed parties.
Queen City Yacht Club is one of Toronto’s oldest sailing clubs and is formed by a not-for-profit community of sailors and friends. Located on Algonquin Island in a sheltered lagoon, QCYC has some of the greatest views of the Toronto skyline. Its beautiful clubhouse includes a restaurant and is home to popular dances, concerts and dinners. With a long list of exciting events to fill the sailing season, it is no wonder that QCYC is known around Lake Ontario for its great parties.
National Yacht Club is nestled in Toronto Harbour just east of Ontario Place. This club offers a beautiful setting for leisure, social events and relaxation. Its triking clubhouse also holds a licensed dining room and terrace that provides great views of fireworks, air shows and sunsets over the water. “The National” is the place to be for Sailors and Power Boat Enthusiasts!
Outer Harbour Marina is conveniently located within 10 minutes of the downtown core, east of the DVP. It can accommodate vessels of any size and provides access to Lake Ontario and the inner harbour. The marina is also near Tommy Thompson Park as well as great bike and roller-blade paths that lead to the Beaches neighbourhood or to the city centre.
Harbourfront Centre Marinas offer quick and easy access to the Toronto Harbour and Lake Ontario. There are three sites to choose from: Marina Quay West, Marina Four and John Quay. Marina Quay West is located adjacent to the City of Toronto’s Music Garden and is a quieter location for boaters looking for docking slips. Marina Four, east of Pier 4 restaurant, is the perfect location for those looking to be in the middle of the action. John Quay is exclusively available to visitors and is also located centrally just south of the CN Tower. All three marinas are great spots to take in sites of the harbour, while being steps away from city attractions.
Boat cruises and dinner cruises for Corporate Events, Weddings and all types of Private Parties.