Toronto: What to Do in Canada’s Most Popular City

The capital of the Ontario province, Toronto is Canada’s largest and most well known city, its number-one tourist destination, and its largest financial center. It holds title as the fifth-largest city in North America, and boasts a population of over 5.5 million people.

Toronto has historically been a melting pot, serving as a main welcoming hub for immigrants in the 19th century. Today, half the city’s population was born outside of Canada, and 30 percent of residents speak a language other than English or French in their homes.

Toronto is a cosmopolitan, contemporary city with much to offer tourists. It’s a cultural hub, featuring numerous museums, galleries, theaters and architectural attraction, and boasting the only real castle in North America. It’s also a food-lover’s paradise; the city has over 8,000 restaurants of all types, many of which are 5-star establishments headed by prominent chefs. The city comes alive after dark: From cozy pubs to swanky clubs, great nightlife hot spots pop up on nearly every corner. What’s more, Toronto is just a relatively short drive from Niagara Falls, and from the state of New York, and it’s a gateway to a visit to the Great Lakes.

Museums

Royal Ontario Museum: This comprehensive national history and world culture museum is beautiful inside and out, and offers a comprehensive collection that spans many countries and cultures. There is something here for every age—the second level is dedicated entirely to kids, and offers hands-on interactive exhibits that teach them about animal and plant life. Tours of the museum are free with the price of admission.

Hockey Hall of Fame: This is Canada, after all, so it stands to reason that you’d find a Hockey Hall of Fame. This is a perfect stop for hockey fans of any age and any enthusiasm level. Some of the more obscure artifacts and exhibits will appeal to die-hard, knowledgeable fans, but the game and its history are explored in a way that’s accessible and fun for those who don’t know as much about the game. Highlights include the life-size statues and the replica dressing room.

Ontario Science Centre: This museum is fun for all ages, with exciting interactive exhibits that challenge and educate. There are eclectic exhibits you won’t find anywhere else, special adults-only events, and areas created specifically for kids.

Art Gallery of Ontario: Beautifully renovated in 2008, the Art Gallery of Ontario, or AGO offers a thoughtful and comprehensive series of collections sure to inspire and challenge the art lover, as well as a number of temporary exhibits by celebrated artists. Enjoy collections from Africa, Oceania, Canada and Europe, as well as photography, print and drawing and contemporary and modern art collections.

Museum of Inuit Art: This small, yet wonderfully curated museum celebrates the fascinating artwork of the Inuit, featuring sculptures in bone, stone, antler and ivory, as well as textiles, prints and ceramics. There are many pieces for sale, but they will mostly appeal to true collectors.

Cultural Attractions

St. Lawrence Market: Once the location of City Hall, this beautiful Victorian building now houses a market filled with the tempting sights, sounds and smells of freshly prepared local foods. This is a great spot to have a stroll, take in the scenery and enjoy a tasty lunch.

Royal Conservatory of Music: This recently renovated, world-class modern conservatory is superbly beautiful and features exceptional acoustics. This is a brilliant venue for experiencing the great classical artists, and learning something new about classical music.

Distillery Historic District: If you’re looking to experience the best of Toronto culture and history, the Distillery Historic District is not to be missed. The beautifully restored commercial Victorian buildings are a delight to look at, but the real draw is the wealth of things to see and do, from catching a live theater performance, to visiting a chic gallery, to dining in a one-of-a-kind, award-winning restaurant. The area is closed off to traffic, so pedestrians are free to amble and enjoy.

Kensington Market and Spadina Avenue: Colorful and lively, yet laid-back, this market is the picture of Bohemian charm, and highlights Toronto’s multicultural spirit. While it only extends a few blocks, there is much to see and do. Browse quirky shops, enjoy a street festival, and sample any type of food imaginable. There is no parking, and traffic makes it difficult to reach the Market by car, so public transportation is your best option.

Black Creek Pioneer Village: If you’ve ever wished you could step back in time to experience pioneer life, this is your chance. Black Creek Pioneer Village doesn’t just show you some neat artifacts; it recreates life as it was in mid-19th-century Ontario. From the beautifully preserved heritage buildings, to the characters in authentic dress, you’ll feel part of the scene, and feel connected to the past in a truly unique way.

Outdoor Attractions

Toronto Island Park: Set on the shores of Lake Ontario, this park is the ideal escape from the city. A short ferry ride will have you relaxing on the beach with a picnic, hiking or biking the trails, or taking a kayak ride on the lake. There’s even an amusement park for the kids to enjoy, making it easy to spend a whole day here with the family.

Allen Gardens Conservatory: Located right near downtown Toronto, these tranquil gardens are the perfect place to spend a lazy afternoon in a beautiful natural setting, any time of year. Wander through six greenhouses, which feature 16,000 square feet of seasonal plants.

Traveling to Toronto? Use SmartFares to find the best accommodations at the best rates.

5 Benefits of Corporate Jet Charter for Business Travel

There is one major caveat to using corporate jet charter services for business travel: cost. But there are so many benefits to be gained from this type of travel that you may be able to overlook the expense, especially if you can find ways to reduce costs. Here are just a few reasons why chartering a jet when you travel for business is preferable to flying commercial.

  1. Ease of use. Perhaps the best thing about taking a corporate jet is that you can leave from a private airport rather than waiting in line with hundreds of other passengers on dozens of other flights to get through check-in and security. If you leave from a small airfield, you may not even have to go through a security screening. Generally, you’ll simply park in a lot provided for travelers and get ferried right to the tarmac where your plane is waiting. Although the pilot may elect to check your bags for security purposes, it’s very unlikely that you’ll be subjected to a pat-down or other annoying security procedures. And since the plane will be reserved either for individual or group purposes, you don’t really have to worry about ending up on a plane with some hijacking nut job (unless one of your coworkers happens to go off the deep end). As a bonus, you never have to worry about losing your luggage since there are no plane changes and it really never leaves your sight.
  2. Flexibility. If you’re running late for a commercial flight, you’re pretty much out of luck once they shut the doors. And if you didn’t bother with flight insurance, you’ll most likely have to pay for another ticket and hope that you don’t get put on standby for a string of sold-out flights to follow. With a private charter jet, the plane doesn’t leave until you’re on it because that’s the kind of service you’re paying for.
  3. Fast travel. In addition to skipping the long wait times before you even get on the plane, travel by charter jet is just faster than commercial all around. For one thing, you won’t have to deal with any layovers. Even if you have to stop to refuel for a particularly long trip, you can simply touch down, load up, and take off again in a private jet without having to get off and on the plane. And since you’re using smaller airports, the chances that you’ll get held up waiting to taxi for take-off and landing are greatly reduced.
  4. Luxury accommodations. Although the price of flying by private charter jet is high, you definitely get what you pay for. And while everyone can enjoy the cushy seats, extra leg room, and expanded menu offered by private jets, what you might appreciate most on a business trip is the access to communications technology, not to mention the privacy provided by this type of air travel. Whether you’re working on reports, conducting conference calls, or holding a meeting with coworkers, business partners, or clients on board, the small crew of the plane is expected to be discreet. And the amenities are sure to have a positive impact anyone you bring on board, including partners and clients that you’re trying to impress.
  5. Superior service. Although most flight attendants strive to be polite and well-mannered, dealing with planes packed wall-to-wall with passengers can certainly get tedious, and the result can be rather surly stewardesses. When choosing a private jet charter company for your corporate travel, what you’ll find is that the service is exceptional. The entire flight staff is paid to cater to your whims, leaving on your schedule and providing you with the amenities you request. And they provide additional services such as calling a car service before you land so that your transportation is waiting to pick you up on the tarmac, just for example. So if you have the cash and it makes sense, you might consider contracting with a private charter service in your area or even purchasing your own corporate jet from a vendor like AVJet Corporation. Depending on how much use you get out of it, this could be a sensible investment for your business.

Travel Destinations Where You Should Opt for Rental Car Insurance Coverage

Oftentimes, when people are preparing to take a trip and it requires renting a car, something that the rental agent will offer is rental car insurance. Yet when individuals are on a budget, they tend to refuse it if they already have their own car insurance in order to save a few extra bucks.

But the reality is that whether you’re driving two hours from your home, you’re taking a cross-country trip or you’re traveling internationally and you plan on renting a car once you arrive, it’s always a good idea to get rental car insurance. If you’re curious to know some of the reasons why it can benefit you to obtain this type of coverage whether you’re traveling locally or abroad, we’ve provided you with five of them below:

Rental car insurance covers insufficient car insurance. If you happen to live in a city where you don’t really need a car and therefore, you rely on public transportation, it would make sense that you don’t have car insurance. However, you are definitely the top candidate who needs to get rental car insurance. That way, you don’t have to worry about being held liable if you should get into a car accident. Also, you can file a legitimate claim if some of your items are lost or stolen while the car is in your possession.

Rental car insurance covers personal items in the car. If you are someone who does own a car and therefore, does have car insurance, you still should consider getting rental car insurance. The reason why is because if you do happen to get into a car accident, your personal policy will probably not cover what is known as “rental car loss of use”. This is the amount of money that the rental car company estimates they have lost as the car is in the process of getting repaired. By having the rental insurance coverage, you can avoid paying full market value for the rental while it’s in the repair shop.

Rental car insurance covers personal items. Something that a lot of people are not aware of until it’s too late is the fact that personal car insurance will not always cover the personal items in your car that might end up stolen. However, rental car insurance will. And being that it’s so inexpensive, it’s a great way to get peace of mind.

Rental car insurance prevents claims from being such a hassle. Say that you live in Delaware, you recently purchased a car and after looking at a list of Delaware car insurance quotes , you selected a company to insure your vehicle. Yet after renting a car for a cross-country trip, you end up getting into an accident. If you solely relied on your personal car insurance, filing a claim could prove to be a huge hassle. But rarely is this the case for rental car companies. Plus, if you used your own insurance, you may have to pay for the repairs and wait to get reimbursed while with rental car insurance, this is not an issue.

Rental car insurance keeps your personal insurance claims low. Speaking of insurance claims, if you’ve ever had to make one before, then you already know that after filing, it can cause your premiums to go up. Not if you have rental car insurance, though. With it, the claim is the rental car company’s responsibility and your own insurance company never has to know about what happened. For more information on rental car insurance coverage, contact a local car insurance company in your area.

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