5 downtown Toronto neighbourhoods to take (or send) your out-of town guests

The holidays can be a stressful time when buying gifts for friends and family but even more so when you have out-of-town visitors and need to entertain them! While being a tourist in your own city can be fun, developing itineraries for your guests midst a busy holiday season can be a tad overwhelming.

I have devised a very short list BY neighbourhood in downtown Toronto to take or if need be distract your house guests for a few hours.

  1. Distillery District: During the holiday season, the Christmas Market reigns supreme and is a wonderful tourist spot that truly makes it feel more like the holidays. If your guests are big beer drinkers, send your guests to a Mill Street brewery tour, its only about $10 and you get free samples!
  2. Harbourfront: For an outdoor skating experience with a view, the Natrel rink is a lot less crowded than Nathan Phillips Square. The Power Plant and Harbourfront Centre also offer many free events and activities For a snack, head to the Amsterdam Brew House for a cozy hot chocolate or a locally-brewed beer!
  3. Kensington Market: This is the perfect neighbourhood for your hippie/bohemian family members or friends. Spend some time in eclectic shops and discover a rare find at this market.
  4. Yorkville: Your fashion-forward family members or friends will love this neighbourhood for high-end shopping (or window shopping) at Holt Renfrew, Chanel, Burberry, Kate Spade and much more! And if shopping becomes boring head to the nearby Royal Ontario Museum or Bata Shoe Museum.
  5. University of Toronto Campus: The university campus boasts beautiful Romanesque and Gothic inspired architecture that is full of history and can keep a tourist occupied for hours!

Hope this helps to appease your holiday hosting woes!

Happy to hear any other ideas you may have in the comments 🙂


The header image for this post is a wonderful collection of winter hats (great gift idea!) found at Tuck Shop Trading Co.


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