Bright lights, big city.

Trip Start Jan 16, 2011
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Canada  , Ontario,
Friday, December 16, 2011

Toronto was the biggest city we'd visited so far and coming into the train station, one of the first things we noticed was the iconic CN Tower that makes the Toronto skyline so famous.

After the usual settling in period and a quick walk around town, it was clear how big the city was compared to anything we'd witnessed up to then and the massive skyscrapers meant we were walking around with our necks craned for a lot of the time. 

I suppose one of the biggest advantages of a big city is that there is usually more tourist attractions and first on our list was to get to the top of the CN Tower for it's much spoken about views, however the weather didn't exactly agree with us and a huge fog came down over the city meaning that the observation decks were completely covered meaning we had to revert to plan B.

So we took a boat out to Ward's Island, which is just a 15 trip across Lake Ontario and gave us some great views of the city's skyline. The island itself was the complete opposite of it's big brother across the lake. Almost everyone there seemed to use a bicycle as their main form of transport and the speed limit was a very leisurely 15 miles per hour.

Back on the mainland we walked to Chinatown for some lunch, however we made an amateur mistake and used the Lonely Planet for a restaurant recommendation. I've done this before and should've known better, so I can only blame myself. Mental note...again: Only use Lonely Planet for maps and basic info. The weather outside was dull, dreary, cold and miserable and the staff and meal inside weren't much better.  

We saw as much as we could on foot, including Dundas Square, Toronto's equivalent, if not smaller version of Times Square which was packed with Christmas shoppers, making us both glad we were not caught up in the madness this time around.

The following day we made the most of break in the weather and took our chances with heading to the top of the CN Tower. We timed it so that we could be there for evening and see the change over from day to night and maximise the photo opportunities. The risk definitely paid off as the views from 443ft up were simply stunning, and watching the sun set over Lake Ontario was a definite highlight.

Our second last stop in Canada was an enjoyable one before we set off for Niagara Falls early the following morning, on what would be the shortest but quite probably the hardest train trip we've experienced.

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kimrobinson on

It's so good to see your photos and hear about your adventures in places I visited only in Summer. Such a different perspective and proves cities should be visited in all seasons.

Oh and I'd already forgotten about Tim's cuppas and poutine - can't believe I had!

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