A Guide to Visiting Toronto as a Family
Easy to reach and full of fun activities, this city is a foolproof family-vacation destination.
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Chicken is a food everyone in the family enjoys—it’s even better when a restaurant serves high quality poultry free from antibiotics and raised without the use of steroids and hormones. Jack had his chicken wings (which he loved), while I had a salad with pulled chicken (super tasty and fresh). The relaxed vibe and open-concept kitchen make this more than just a chicken joint.
I’m always trying to get my kids to try new foods and so I was excited to try the Chinatown + Kensington Market food tour. Toronto’s Chinatown is one of the largest in North America and Kensington market, located a short walk away, has a diverse array of restaurants and food shops. We ate at several restaurants in each area—little bites at each place so we didn’t fill up too much—and my son was excited to try what the other kids were trying. The owner, Kevin, took us around and really shared his city with us. His daughter was also part of the tour and encouraged my son to try a bit of everything—something he’s willing to do if someone other than his mom is asking.
What to do
I had heard so much about this play, that I was excited to finally see it first-hand. This uplifting story about family, friendship, and generosity towards strangers left me feeling grateful and inspired. While some of it went over my son’s head, he enjoyed the music, dancing, and colorful characters.
I’m a big aquarium fan, so I was excited to see one of only three Ripley’s Aquariums—and the only one in Canada. Home to more than 16,000 marine animals, there’s plenty to see including the new “Curious Creatures” exhibit. We enjoyed the touch-and-feel hands-on exhibits as well as the dive shows. This is a popular spot for families—even during the week—so get there early before the crowds.
One of the things I love doing with Jack when I travel is taking part in a cooking or baking class. AT Le Dolci, a bake shop specializing in custom cakes, macarons, and cupcakes, we took a private baking class to learn how to make unicorn cakes. There were five adults and five kids and each one made their own creation. It was fun learning how to ice the cake in buttercream, paint an edible gold horn, and create a colorful piping mane. It was one of my favorite memories of the trip.
My son has always wanted to try an escape room and with the help of five other kids, he did just that. The theme was “The Hidden Treasure of the Grand Carnival” and it was held at Downtown Toronto’s only kid-friendly escape room. The kids had to work together to figure out the clues and advance to the next step. The cooperation among the kids was great to see, plus they all had a blast.
The newest exhibit here is “Spiders: Fear & Fascination” and both the kids and adults around us really enjoyed learning about these interesting creatures. Real specimens—including 18 different types of live spiders and their relatives—plus interactive virtual elements let visitors get closer than ever to some of the over 48,000 known spider species, from the top ten local spiders to the world’s most venomous, like the Black Widow and Brown Recluse.
This free walking tour was another highlight of the trip. We walked along the lake front with a very knowledgeable guide as she explained Toronto’s changing landscape over the years. During this two-hour walk we learned how the Queen's Quay area evolved from its industrial and commercial origins. It was a great way to really get to know Toronto.
Photo caption: Judy Koutsky and her son with their unicorn cakes at Le Dolci