By Cathryn McEachern, COMMUNICATIONS INTERN AT RYERSON INTERNATIONAL (4TH YEAR STUDENT AT TRSM)
In a city with as much to see and do as Toronto, it can be hard to decide what to do with your time! There’s an overwhelming amount of restaurants, cafes, shops, activities, and more. Especially if you’re only visiting, it’s nearly impossible to see it all.
As a local and a Ryerson student, I’ve developed a list of some places around campus that I think are worth checking out. I hope this helps to kick-start your Toronto adventures, or just open your eyes to something you might’ve overlooked before.
1. Kensington Market
Don’t have any morning classes? (First of all, lucky you). Second, you have time to head to Kensington Market for a coffee! Just a 20 minute walk from campus, Kensington Market is probably near the top of everyone’s Toronto bucket-list – and for good reason. It’s definitely my favourite neighbourhood to walk through. There’s no shortage of unique cafes and vintage shops – and you can’t miss the amazing street art.
You’ll definitely want to visit more than once, since there’s so much variety! Have a coffee, grab some fresh produce at the markets, hit up a pub with friends… You can do it all in Kensington. It’s a one-stop shop – or neighbourhood, I should say.
2. Queen Street West
On your way back from Kensington Market, pop into a few stores on Queen St W! Another classic – Queen St W is a street full of great shops and restaurants. My all-time favourite place to go is Black Market – a vintage shop where nothing is over $10. You can count on them to always have tuques (for those cold winters), flannels, graphic tees, unique buttons, and more!
And if you’re in to vinyl records, Queen St W is home to Kops Records – Toronto’s oldest independent vinyl record store. You could spend an entire day there flipping through their selection!
3. Salad King
Shopping works up quite an appetite – so before your afternoon classes, head to Salad King! Located just across from the Student Learning Centre (SLC), Salad King is known for their low prices and big portions of great-tasting Thai food. And, Ryerson students get 20% off weekdays from 2-5pm!
(Be sure to try the Islamic noodles – they’re part of the secret menu!)
Done for the day? Or just want to enjoy some festive Christmas lights all year round? Warehouse is the place to go. Also located directly across from the SLC (and with another location on Queen St W), all food is only $5.95 and the drinks are delicious. If you’re here during the warmer months – take a seat on their rooftop patio!
5. The Maddy
If you still have some energy at the end of the day, the Madison Ave Pub (aka ‘The Maddy’) is a great place to catch up with friends – or make some new ones!
Located just a short subway ride away, The Maddy is a popular place for students thanks to its cheap (and on some days, free) cover. It’s 6 pubs inside 3 connected Victorian mansions, giving you plenty of rooms to explore – several of them with pool tables. Take the subway there any day or night of the week for a budget-friendly time with friends!
Though there’s definitely no shortage of places to go and a never-ending list of places I’ve yet to try, I hope this list helps you get started. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, take advantage of everything Toronto has to offer. There’s no other place like it!
Let me know your favourite places in the city in the comments below!