Toronto

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Bordering Lake Ontario, Toronto’s 2.5 million inhabitants span diverse neighborhoods, from the immigrant communities of Chinatown and Little Pakistan to upscale Yorkville and hipster Queen West. The city is easy to navigate with its street grid system, subways, buses, and underground “path” tunnels (no need to venture outside in the cold). Of its 24 distinct neighborhoods, a few standouts garner the most attention.

Toronto Neighborhoods

Yorkville

Formerly gritty Yorkville emerged from gentrification in the ’90s as the genteel home to exclusive shops (Prada, Hermès), museums (the Royal Ontario Museum, the Gardiner Museum), and restaurants.

Financial District

Aside from the landmark CN Tower, with its observation deck and rotating restaurant and the massive Rogers Center stadium, there’s not much to see in Toronto’s shiny, skyscraper-laden midtown, which stretches from Queen Street to Front Street, with Yonge Street and Avenue Road hemming it in on either side.

Entertainment District

Theaters big and small, the city’s flashiest nightclubs, and upscale restaurants are crammed into the eight blocks that make up the entertainment district, creating a unique midtown niche.

Garden District

Bounded between midtown and east downtown, the Garden District encompasses Toronto’s gay village (centered on Church and Wellesley streets), a large percentage of the city’s French-speaking population, the Winter Garden Theater, and the Ryerson University campus.

Chinatown

Massive Chinatown, with its vegetable and fruit markets, vintage clothing boutiques, and Chinese restaurants, is traversed by Spadina Avenue.

Old Town

Beneath Queen Street East and west of Yonge Street, lies 19th-century Old Town, home to historical hotspots that also happen to offer great shopping – like the St. Lawrence Market and the Distillery District.

Queen West

Toronto’s trendiest neighborhood is defined by one street: Queen West. Fronting this stretch between the bounds of Yonge Street and Bathurst Avenue are the city’s edgiest shops, galleries, nightclubs, and cafes.

West Queen West

Although still mostly residential and industrial feeling, this up-and-coming neighborhood hosts a smattering of eclectic cafes and art galleries. After dark it’s the heart of hipster nightlife.

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