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Favorite Guide to Toronto, Excluding Fodor's of course

Favorite Guide to Toronto, Excluding Fodor's of course

Apr 10th, 2011, 05:57 PM
  #1  
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Favorite Guide to Toronto, Excluding Fodor's of course

We have a 5 week trip planned to Toronto next Sept., a home exchange. We are looking for a guide with lots of detailed information about neighborhoods, unusual sights, restaurants, etc. We don't want a book for the three day visit. We won't have a car, so information about public transit would be helpful, too.

Any recommendations? We have Fodor's Toronto, but would like one or two more guides. We'll also post on this board for suggestions once we do some more reading and of course, continue to browse Fodor's Forum for ideas. Thanks.
annetti is offline  
Apr 11th, 2011, 04:48 AM
  #2  
 
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Hi annetti,

I'm so pleased that you've seemed so interested in discovering Canada; I remember you did a home exchange in Victoria not so long ago. I don't really use guidebooks anymore in Toronto so can't help you there, but below I've included the key two sites for public transit in T.O. (one common nickname for the city). I hope you enjoy the streetcars (I do!) and the subway system I find quite efficient (but maybe I've been lucky). Most subway stops in T.O. are undecorated, but do check out Museum subway stop.

http://www3.ttc.ca/

http://www.gotransit.com/publicroot/en/default.aspx

With 5 weeks, you may consider taking the train at some point and checking out Kingston, Ottawa or Montreal.

Wishing you a great time in the Ontarian capital! Daniel
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Apr 11th, 2011, 05:33 AM
  #3  
BAK
 
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I live in the suburbsw of Toronto, and because of some advertsing work, we get "Where" in the mail.

This is the magazine found for free in most hotel rooms.

For practical information, including good maps, this is very good.

And it does a good job of telling readers about special events scheduled over the month.

BAK
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Apr 12th, 2011, 06:10 AM
  #4  
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Toronto has a lot of daily newspapers, all with lots of local informtion too. Friday and Saturday editions are best.

There are two thick weekly newspapers, free from boxes on thestreet and from stores and restaurants with lots of listings, too.

The transit system, called the Toronto Transist Commission or TTC, has good maps called Ride Guide available at subway stations.

Can you give us an idea of where the house is?
BAK is offline  
Apr 12th, 2011, 07:05 AM
  #5  
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Thank you, Daniel Williams. I remember your postings, too; You often explore out of the way places.

BAK, thank you for your suggestions. If I give you the postal code, would that endanger my home exchangers' privacy? Someone on this board once told me that the Canadian postal code practically shows the number of the home. It does not seem possible to me, but then what do I know.
annetti is offline  
Apr 12th, 2011, 09:15 AM
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Hello annetti

The Canada Postal Code is indeed very specific and although it doesn't show the exact house, it will narrow it to a very few addresses. You can see for yourself with the Postal Code lookup here:

http://www.canada411.ca/search/areaCode.html

For example, my postal code shows my side of the street within my block.

However, the first three characters (known as the Forward Sorting Area) will indicate a neighbourhood, which should be enough for this forum.

The breakdown of FSA codes can be found here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...odes_in_Canada

For the city of Toronto for example, click on "M" and all the neighbourhoods will be shown by FSA.
laverendrye is offline  
Apr 12th, 2011, 09:32 AM
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Thank you, laverndrye: The first three characters are MSN. BTW, if you don't find me impertinent, how did your screen name originate?
annetti is offline  
Apr 12th, 2011, 11:00 AM
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You likely mean M5N (the sequence is alpha-numeric-alpha). Nice area of Toronto.

My screen name comes from the great explorer Pierre Gaultier de Varennes, sieur de La Vérendrye. I also once lived on a Rue La Vérendrye.
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Apr 12th, 2011, 11:23 AM
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laverendrye: You are correct; it is a 5. I can't even read my own handwriting! It sounds like they are convenient to public transit. We just love not driving on vacation.
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Apr 13th, 2011, 04:55 AM
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M5N seems to be near Eglinton/Avenue Road.
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Apr 13th, 2011, 05:41 AM
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For the curious: It appears to be in North Toronto, north of Eglinton between Avenue Road and BathurstI spent the second to eighth years of my life a few blocks east of there, on Rosewell between Lytton and Craighurst.

Have you looked the house up on Google Maps?

A few blocks south is a nice stretch of Eglinton Avenue, with small shops and restaurants.

There's frequent bus service north and south on Avenue Road and on Bathurst that will take you to a subway station, and from there it's quite easy to get to lots of interesting parts of the city.

One transit ticket lets you switch between bus, streetcar, and subway as long as its all in one general direction, and a continuous trip. And for frequent riders, there are a couple of different types of passes.

Overall, a fine location.
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Apr 13th, 2011, 08:03 AM
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"Overall, a fine location." Thanks, BAK. This sounds good to us. When it is your first visit to a city, doing a home exchange as opposed to staying in a hotel in a tourist area, you are not always assured of a prime location.

I've been looking at the transit site that Daniel_Williams provided. Thanks DW. I found info on passes, but no prices and am a bit confused where to purchase them. We will be there the third week in Sept and leave almost at the end of Oct. Passes appear to be issued on the calendar month.

BTW, I really want to see some beautiful autumn leaves and am hoping that I chose a good time to visit, but am also hoping that this Southern Californian's husband and his wife won't freeze.
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Apr 17th, 2011, 04:03 PM
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I don't think you'll freeze in September but you never know - it was snowing today! Awful day.

I made a list of some Toronto books at the book store today but I've never used any of them - I expect you could get them out of the library once here - I wonder if you can join for the time you're here...you're likely near the Forest Hill Branch on Eglinton West.

"Stroll, Psychogeographic Walking Tours of Toronto" by Shawn Micallef

"Faces on Places, a Grotesque Tour of Toronto" by Terry Murray

"Toronto" by Mike Filey - he has quite a few books on the city and co-hosts a radio show on Sundays at noon on AM740 telling stories from the past and writes a column in the Sun on Sundays.

"Cabbagetown, the Story of a Victorian Neighbourhood"; you might be here during the Cabbagetown Festival.

"Toronto's Visual Legacy, Official photos from 1856 to the present".

They also had one of those little boxes of City Walks, 50 Adventures on Foot.
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Apr 17th, 2011, 08:10 PM
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Hi annetti,

You're picking a great time to be in and around the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) and you should be able to score decent Fall colour sometime in your visit window. I'd recommend either the Forks of the Credit and Orangeville area which're north-west of the city

http://bit.ly/Forks_of_the_Credit

or pretty much anywhere along the Niagara Escarpment from Stoney Creek to the Falls. If you have a sunny day during the week, take advantage of it because a sunny weekend day with the trees in colour attracts pretty much everybody and their dog to the Belfountain area.

As Daniel suggested early in the thread, definitely take a side trip to Kingston, Ottawa, Montreal or Quebec City and you might want to consider flying Porter out of the Island Airport downtown. Also definitely get yourself down to Niagara Falls or Niagara on the Lake for an overnight. You can get there in under two hours by taking the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW or the QE for short) and take the scenic route along the Escarpment on the way back, driving through Jordan, Beamsville, Grimsby and Stoney Creek.

HTH
U
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Apr 18th, 2011, 06:56 AM
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Just taking the subway between Castle Frank and Broadview across the Don Valley you'll see great colour in the fall.
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Apr 18th, 2011, 03:31 PM
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Morningglory47, Thanks for the book titles. I'll check and see if any of them are available here. I particularly like the sound of one title: Faces on Places, a grotesque tour of Toronto. I love spotting faces, gargoyles and unusual bas reliefs on buildings.

UTour: Thanks for all the information. I can't believe all the help I'm getting about touring Toronto and I just posted about a book selection. I have all sorts of questions, but just have to read a bit and see what my books say before I start quizzing people, but feel free to give me information, I am certainly pleased to hear what people have to say.

I love the Canada Board, I get more help here than anywhere else and that says a lot since Fodorites are very generous with their answers.
annetti is offline  
Apr 29th, 2011, 12:00 AM
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Hi annetti,
I became aware of your post because I get notified every time there's a new mention of Faces on Places online. (I wrote it, and took all the pictures.) The book is really available only in Toronto bookstores, although you can order it from amazon.ca and chapters.indigo.ca. If you like gargoyles and reliefs, etc., the book contains addresses, maps, historical and background information on the faces as well as photographs of all the sculptures that are discussed. I hope you have a good trip to Toronto.
Terry Murray
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May 3rd, 2011, 12:01 PM
  #18  
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Thank you, terrymurray. We'll look for your book when we get to Toronto. Another good excuse to enter a bookstore.
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