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Best things to do in Ontario

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Where in the world: Canada  /  Ontario
Whether you are looking for a weekend getaway or a family vacation, there's no shortage of things to do in Ontario. Toronto's CN Tower remains one of the tallest buildings in the world, while High Park and Toronto Music Garden offer lots of walking spaces not so high off the ground. For nature lovers, Niagara Falls provide a great day-trip idea with an awe-inspiring view like few others in the world. While you are there, be sure to check out Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory, a colorful world of exotic insects.

Ontario is best known for its Waterfalls, Observation Decks, and Specialty Museums.

Top 15 things to do in Ontario

1. CN Tower, Toronto

Arguably Toronto's most recognizable attraction, CN Tower held the record for world's tallest building upon its completion in 1976. Still one of the world's highest towers, this spindly icon remains a landmark of the city skyline. Ride the glass elevator to the top, where on a clear day you can take in views of the city from 553 m (1,815 ft) in the air. If you choose to have a meal at the revolving restaurant, elevator access is free of charge. For an extra dose of adrenaline, daredevils can take a short walk around the edge of the tower's main pod, just above the restaurant.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Tours from $22 › Learn more about CN Tower

2. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto

Appreciate edgy art and science at Royal Ontario Museum, Canada's largest museum. Thanks to its strong ties to the University of Toronto, the museum offers informative and up-to-date exhibits on everything from dinosaurs to modern fashion trends. It also houses an extensive collection of artworks from around the globe. Admire the museum's bold exterior, which features striking crystalline features contrasted with the building's original facade. Take a tour of the museum to get the full story behind the pieces on display.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Tours from $17 › Learn more about Royal Ontario Museum

3. Parliament Hill and Buildings, Ottawa

See where Canada's most important desicions are made at Parliament Hill and Buildings. Architecturally reminiscent of Westminster in London, the parliament buildings, which overlook the Ottawa River, were founded in 1859 and completed in 1927. Today Ottawa residents think of the precinct as the heart of their city. Take a tour through the parliament buildings and surrounding gardens to gain an appreciation of the Canadian political process.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Tours from $5 › Learn more about Parliament Hill and Buildings

4. Niagara Falls in One Day: Deluxe Sightseeing Tour of American and Canadian Sides

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Don't let the border stop you from experiencing all of Niagara Falls' glory! On this deluxe 6-hour tour, visit top Niagara Falls attractions on both the Ontario side and the New York side. Take a ride on the famous 'Maid of the Mist' boat, view the falls from atop Skylon Tower, feel the falls’ thunder at the Cave of the Winds and much more. All attraction fees, admission fees, hotel transfers and road tolls are included!
Suggested duration: 7 hours
Tours from $180 › More about this tour at viator.com ›
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Best tours in Ontario

5. Journey Behind the Falls, Niagara Falls

Admire Niagara Falls from a different vantage point with a visit to Journey Behind the Falls. Hidden behind the powerful waterfall, the tunnel offers several viewing platforms that give visitors a fresh perspective on the thunderous cascade. Be sure to wear a poncho or waterproof jacket on your visit, as you'll almost certainly get doused by heavy sprays of water. Reserve your tickets in advance, as the popular attraction can sell out.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
Tours from $96 › Learn more about Journey Behind the Falls

6. Butterfly Conservatory, Niagara Falls

Enter the world of colorful insects at Butterfly Conservatory, located just minutes from the world-famous waterfalls. Sheltering over 2,000 butterflies that fly freely through the lush vegetation, this modern insect zoo features a climate-controlled greenhouse, 200-seat theater, and a large gift shop. Most of the conservatory's butterflies come from farms in El Salvador, Costa Rica, Australia, and the Philippines. Special nets stretched along the conservatory's glass dome keep the fragile creatures from entangling and dying of hypothermia. Boost your chances that butterflies land on you by wearing brightly colored clothing, moving slowly, and dabbing some perfume just before entering.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Learn more about Butterfly Conservatory

7. Casa Loma, Toronto

Constructed at the beginning of the 20th century in the Gothic Revival style, Casa Loma represents the city's only castle. The midtown landmark once served as the formal residence of financier Henry Mill Pellat, known for helping bring hydroelectric power to Toronto. Originally the largest private home in Canada, the grandiose 98-room castle now acts as a museum, often used for wedding ceremonies and movie shoots. Choose between several themed guided tours, or pick up a digital audio guide at the entrance and explore the castle and gardens on your own.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Tours from $175 › Learn more about Casa Loma

8. Niagara Falls Canadian Side Tour and Maid of the Mist Boat Ride Option

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While you're visiting Niagara Falls, take a morning or afternoon tour of the spectacular attractions on the Canadian side of the Falls. Highlights include an exhilarating ride aboard the famous Maid of the Mist boat at the base of the majestic Horseshoe Falls, and a trip up the Skylon Tower for a bird's-eye view of the Niagara region.Please note: The Maid of the Mist portion of this tour departs from the US side of Niagara Falls. All customers booking this tour must have appropriate documentation to enter the United States and Canada.
Suggested duration: 6 hours
Tours from $150 › More about this tour at viator.com ›

9. Ripley's Aquarium of Canada, Toronto

Immerse yourself in a world of underwater adventure at Ripley's Aquarium of Canada. Colorful marine creatures swim around you, contained only by a layer of glass, as you wander through the aquarium. Get within inches of razor-toothed swimmers in the shark tank, or treat yourself to a hands-on experience at the ray pool. Don't miss the ethereal jellyfish display, where the naturally luminescent creatures light up the water in dazzling colors.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Tours from $5 › Learn more about Ripley's Aquarium of Canada

10. Distillery Historic District, Toronto

Once home to the British Empire's biggest producer of spirits, Distillery Historic District now represents one of Toronto's top tourist hubs, packed with shops and bars housed inside preserved Victorian-era buildings. This ten-street quarter contains dozens of old warehouses converted into modern art galleries, artist workshops, trendy eateries, and upscale boutiques. A popular gathering place for both tourists and locals, the neighborhood is especially crowded on weekends, when newlyweds come to pose in front of the area's iconic redbrick buildings. Browse the website for upcoming events, which include live jazz performances, food festivals, and art exhibits.
Suggested duration: 3 hours
Tours from $5 › Learn more about Distillery Historic District

11. Niagara Falls Canada, Niagara Falls

One of North America's most impressive natural attractions, Niagara Falls Canada straddle the border between the United States and Canada, marking the point at which the eponymous river plummets over a prominent escarpment. Two cascades on the U.S. side and one on the Canadian combine to form the most powerful waterfalls in the world, harnessed to produce electricity using a generating system invented by famed scientist Nikola Tesla. Experience the sheer force of the water by taking a boat tour from the base of Horseshoe Falls, or climb to the top the observation tower for a bird's-eye view of the entire region.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
Tours from $146 › Learn more about Niagara Falls Canada

12. Best of Niagara Falls Canada Tour

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Your first stop is Skylon Tower, you’ll head up 520 ft. in a glass elevator to the observation deck where you will be treated to an incredible, birds-eye view of all three Niagara Falls, the Niagara River & surrounding area. At your next stop you will descend 125 ft to explore cave-like tunnels at Journey Behind the Falls. This experience is a treat for the senses as you’ll be able to not only hear the falls, but feel them as well.Next jump aboard the Hornblower Niagara Cruises boat ride (seasonal, operating May-Nov. only, replaced with Niagara's Fury & Butterfly Conservatory from Dec.-Apr.). You will sail around the Niagara gorge, get as close as possible to the Falls and feel the refreshing mist on your skin.During the final portion of your tour, your guide will take you on a narrated driving tour of the city. Your guide will take you to several points of interest including the Dufferin Islands, the International Control Dam, the Old Scow, Whirlpool Rapids and the Floral Clock.
Suggested duration: 4 to 5 hours
Tours from $146 › More about this tour at viator.com ›

13. St. Lawrence Market, Toronto

Let yourself be tempted by a smorgasbord of mouth-watering aromas at St. Lawrence Market. With traditions dating as far back as 1803, the covered market showcases the capital city's most diverse range of fresh food vendors, with specialities from across the globe. Find all the ingredients you need to prepare your favorite meal, and taste samples of exotic foods from specialty vendors. Visit the market's bustling food court for a meal.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Tours from $12 › Learn more about St. Lawrence Market

14. Horseshoe Falls, Niagara Falls

Horseshoe Falls are the largest of the three waterfalls that constitute the Niagara Falls. The falls are not only a popular holiday spot, but also an abundant source of hydraulic power. If you wish to admire the scenery, take a walk along the waterfall, picnic in the free park, or take a ride in the cable car. Adventurous souls will appreciate boat cruises and ziplining to the falls.
Suggested duration: 4 hours
Tours from $12 › Learn more about Horseshoe Falls

15. Niagara Falls CANADA Helicopter Tour

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Marvel at Niagara Falls from above on an exciting 10-minute helicopter ride! As you fly a scenic route along the Niagara River, see all of the area’s spectacular natural attractions, from Whirlpool Rapids to the three waterfalls that make up Niagara Falls — American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and Horseshoe Falls. You’ll also zoom past sites like the Skylon Tower and Rainbow Bridge. Unique, multi lingual, commentary provides interesting and informative details about the falls as you fly. Maximum of 7 passengers per flight, weight and balance dependent.
Suggested duration: 12 minutes
Tours from $119 › More about this tour at viator.com ›

Best tours in Ontario