Head to Toronto for downtown city vibes and an added touch of international flair for a summer stay with the kids or a couple’s trip without breaking the bank. Affectionately known as the downtown of Canada, Toronto offers all the eclectic dining, vibrant nightlife and cultural excitement you need, with the growing live music scene you want.
Save your pennies for a great family dinner in a swanky restaurant, a live sporting event or cocktails on the town by hitting up all the free activities you can throughout the day. Check out what’s on in Toronto before heading into the city this summer, or use this handy list to plan your trip.
Skip the expense of planning a touristy jaunt around town with the kids and book a free one instead. Tour the city on a free, 90-minute walking tour with Tour Guys. It’s a great way to get your bearings of the city, take in the sites, get a little background information and plot your next move in the city — all for free. Tour Guys offer free walking tours through Toronto’s downtown, or with a fun theme. Mix it up with a scenic tour of the waterfront, Old Town Toronto, mural and graffiti tour, or spooky ghost tour.
Depending on the time of year, Toronto has a few fun and free film festivals to check out. Fill time between activities, or use a free feature film as an excuse to rest your feet and entertain the kids with a classic flick after a long day of walking. During the summer, locals and travelers head to the open-air Christie Pits Film Festival held Sundays June 30–Aug. 25. For those traveling later in the fall, the Regent Park Film Festival takes place Nov. 20–23, showing lesser-known films.
What’s the summer without an open-air music festival? Check out some fun live music and entertainment July 5–28, at the Beaches Jazz Festival in the heart of the city. Head to the lawn for this free and wholesome event, showcasing live performances for a month-long event. Check out free workshops and live concerts and plan your stay alongside your favorites.
Take advantage of all the free fun in the city by day, and splurge on family fun and activities by night.