T O R O N T O // C A N A D A

December 28, 2018

I've been to Canada a few times - to Quebec a few years ago along within the mountains in North Ontario - and have always been so impressed with their country - the people there are unbeatable at being nice and the cities are always beautiful and clean. I truly believe everyone should travel to Toronto at least once in your life, to experience how pretty it is yourself. Canada has so much to offer, and Toronto was the perfect place to enjoy a large city with friendly people, eventful nightlight, and delicious food! 


I flew into Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ) and the easiest way to get to Toronto from here is to take the UP Express train. Trains run every 15 minutes and will get you downtown in 25 minutes! 


Nick and I decided to split our trip into two parts: 5 start hotel near Queen Street for more of a pampered feel and then an Air BNB to get a feel of how a local would live. 

Le Germain Hotel Toronto Mercer: This hotel certainly has its interior architecture going for it. Your jaw drops when you open the door to your room, and see the elegant and sleek, yet masculine - and might I dare to say sexy - interiors. The inside of the hotel is very spacious too, with a coffee shop/bar turned full service restaurant for breakfast, lunch & dinner. A fitness center, and a gorgeous rooftop terrace. Our room was very clean and the beds were cloud-like comfortable, and overall we really loved everything about the hotel. Plus it's only a 10 minute walk to where all the shops and restaurants are located on Queens Street. Be sure to ask the concierge to show you the best places to stop and shop at on a map!

Air BNB: As I cannot disclose where exactly we stayed for our "Journey as Native Canadians" I can tell you that renting out an apartment in the middle of Toronto was the best decision for us - we absolutely love what it is like, with their cafes all around and interesting twists to flavors - we deemed that we will be back and soon! I highly recommend trying out the local stays in the most hip areas just west of Entertainment District! 


Sud Forno: Hands down my favorite bakery/coffee shop in Toronto. Everything is so tasty!! This is where I went for lunch the very first day and spent two hours people watching and since I loved it so much I had to try the second location on our very last day too! The restaurant on Queens Street has a cute and quaint vibe that I was totally digging and the Sud Forno on Yonge Street has an incredible atmosphere that felt family like. Anything you buy here is high quality and delicious. They use the best of the best ingredients, and you can tell after the first bite! 

Aloette Restaurant: Evoking a chic diner, this narrow eatery serves elevated comfort dishes plus French staples. The night we went here we were able to get the Chef's Tasting, and if you've never had one, you're truly missing out on an expedition of food! Neither of us wanted to pick and choose what to eat and since we deemed to live like locals we wanted to taste everything. With the Chef's Tasting we were served six delicious plates to share plus appetizers. The atmosphere + the food made us fall harder in love with the scene Toronto is! 

Gusto 101: Southern Italian classics with a global twist in an industrial setting. I met up with an old friend of mine who lives not too far from Toronto and we came to have lunch here and we had the BEST pasta and pizza, OMG. Highly recommend getting a reservation if it's for brunch or lunch because it gets packed fast! 

iHalo Krunch for Ube Nut Ice Cream: Go here. No Hesitation! This tiny, minimalist spot offers Asian-inspired soft-serve ice cream made from coconut and purple yams in black cones. No added sugar. ALL natural. I won't lie, I had one everyday...

Miller Street Brewery: Oddly, What I liked most about Miller Street Brewery wasn't the organic brew or delicious pub food but was the diverse and well traveled staff. We had a rather arrogant British bartender but I found him to have interesting stories of his abroad studies and lifestyle! I was fascinated by his approach on life and what it's like to have been a bartender in every place he has visited to make an income. I appreciated his effort in explaining to me the way this brewery is dedicated to make organic brew a more approachable goal for other companies. I highly recommend going here because not only do you get the cool hipster vibes from the Historic Distillery District but there are many shops to explore here and a wicked awesome nature gallery for photographer Jason Leo Bantle (we own his coffee table book with all 18 years of photographs)!  


I did a little bit of it all - tourist attractions as well as keeping it DL as a local. Yes you can definitely go to the CN Tower and the Aquarium or the Hockey Hall of Fame but that stuff is all too touristy for me. So if you're looking for more local attractions I've listed my favorite down below!

Historic Distillery District: Here you can walk around and browse the shops while grabbing a pipping hot cuppa from one of the many cafes or grab an organically made brew from the distillery! 

St. Lawrence Market: Much like NYC's Chelsea Market, this place homes a ton of vendors with varieties of foods to souvenirs! 

Toronto Sign: Did you really go to Toronto if you don't have proof of the Toronto sign?? 

Graffiti Alley: I never was a big fan of graffiti, that is until Toronto. The murals are breathtakingly beautiful and even if your aren't an artist you can truly respect the effort made in these paintings. Spend a whole day walking around to view all there is! 

CAFE: I am a big fan of coffee shops and this one took the gold. Quaint little hole in the wall next to our Air BNB with delicious snacks and drinks! When in Roma eat like the locals! 

Same Nightclub: We all wanted to experience the eventful and exciting nightlife of Toronto so we opted to go dancing at a nightclub! Coming from the Midwest I think we were all a bit out of touch with the styles hah! We wore pants and regular shirts whereas everybody, and I mean everybody, was dressed to the max. So advice from experience, bring nightlife clothing next time! 

Thank you to everyone for following along! 

xoxo Ash

1 comment

  1. Omg this post makes me want to visit Toronto even more!!! Sounds like a great trip :)