The best way to see the city of Toronto is to explore it on foot. To celebrate the warmer weather, Common Mag is sharing our recommended walking tours over the next four months. Each tour will focus on one part of the city, divided into north, south, east, and west. For our very first issue, we’re visiting Toronto’s east end and all that it has to offer.
This walking tour focuses on Corktown and Leslieville, two very nostalgically whimsical neighbourhoods of Toronto. It shows the cute side of the city that you don’t usually get in the downtown core. If you have ever visited, you’ll know this area is full of greenery and nature, young budding families out for walks, and the fact that there is always something to do! It’s the perfect blend of a neighbourly suburb, mixed with the energy of urban spaces.
Anyways, here are our recommendations on where you should visit if you decide to stop on by Toronto’s east end:
This stop is more than just a coffee shop (although the coffee is delicious)—it feels like an escape from Toronto the second you walk through the front doors. It gets its name from the wood panelled walls, cottagey interior, and the giant canoe hanging over the the front counter. The spot is a great place to grab a coffee or quick bite to eat if you’re feeling peckish. Or, if you decide to visit in the evening, you can enjoy any one of the live entertainment performances they have scheduled weekly.
This is the perfect spot if you need a place to get some work done, if you feel like chatting with the friendly staff, or want to play some of the board games they’ve got tucked away in every corner. The atmosphere is completely unlike any other place in the city and will leave you feeling calm and nurtured. Start off your adventure with a cup of fresh, homemade chai tea and if you want to know more about The Dock on Queen, read our in-depth review here.
The second stop on our tour is an independent bookstore just down the street from The Dock on Queen. If you’re looking for another quaint bookstore to kill a few hours, this little shop is the perfect choice! It’s currently voted as Common Mag’s favourite Toronto bookstore where you can pursue a wide variety of niche books. Its charming exterior will have you hooked before you are even through the doors, with the cute sculptures of people reading watching over you.
The store even holds events in the space that you can check out on their website. The floor-to-ceiling bookshelf displays, friendly staff, and sense of community will have you coming back here for all your book buying needs for sure. Stop by during your visit to Toronto’s east end to discover your next read.
This park is the perfect place to end your day exploring the east end. It’s a bit farther of a walk from our last two stops, but you really get to see that part of the city. We can promise you it will be worth it as Riverdale Park has everything; recreational fields for various different sports, a swimming pool, and even a farm! Hike to the top of the hill with your new book and coffee in hand to watch the sun set over the Toronto skyline. We’ve seen those infamous shots on Instagram and they’re absolutely gorgeous!
If you follow our map, let us know! Post a pic of your favourite location on social media and make sure to tag us. Also, keep an eye out because you just might find some fun prints of the tour at the majority of the locations.
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