Stuck in Toronto’s Pearson International Airport on a long layover? Fear not, I’m coming to your rescue for awesome things to do in Toronto on a layover! I recently had an 8 hour layover and came up with the perfect way to spend 1 day in Toronto.
The iconic CN Tower is the needle-shaped building found in almost every photo of the city. If you have the time, head up for awesome views of downtown Toronto. It’s especially beautiful in the evening!
St. Lawrence Market
St. Lawrence Market is Toronto’s oldest market, in operation since 1803. Personally, I navigated straight to the maple syrup stand because I figured that’s what a first-time American visitor to Canada should do? If you’re interested in food other than maple syrup, don’t you worry. There’s over 100 vendors, from bakers to butchers to produce stands. For those that are extra hungry, make sure to check out the St. Lawrence Market Food Tour.
If you know me, you know I love all things colorful. And believe me when I say that Toronto’s Graffiti Alley did not disappoint. The area is filled with colorful art, and I even got to see a couple artists in action. Plus, it naturally makes for an epic photo shoot spot!
The Distillery District’s cobblestone streets and quaint brick shops make for an excellent stop. You’ll find breweries (I tried a couple!), restaurants, and plenty of art galleries. Make sure to show up thirsty, and you’ll leave happy!
Another fun area to check out is Toronto’s Chinatown. You’ll find a mix of Chinese businesses, tea shops, and restaurants. If you’re in the area during lunch, try a Chinatown lunchtime food tour. I have trouble saying no to Chinese food…
If You Have More Time…
There are a ton of other activities you can do with 1 day in Toronto if you have a longer layover (or a longer trip to Toronto). A few things for you to consider adding to your Toronto bucket list:
- Visit the beautiful Falls on a Niagara Falls day trip
- Make friends with the fish at Toronto Ripley’s Aquarium
- Take a sightseeing hop-on, hop-off bus tour and see Toronto’s highlights
- Get your exercise and see Toronto on a downtown bike tour
How to Get to Downtown Toronto
Take the Union Pearson Express! For only $12 CAD, I got a round-trip “layover ticket” to Union Station in the heart of Toronto. I purchased the ticket in-person from a UP agent at Toronto airport. The UP Express is only about 25 minutes and incredibly easy to navigate.
I hope this guide to what to do in Toronto on a layover was helpful! What other recommendations do you have for 1 day in Toronto? I’d love to hear your suggestions in the comments!
P.S. This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I might make a little extra spending money, at no extra cost to you. As always, all opinions are my own and these products/services have been found useful during my travels and come highly recommended to you from yours truly!