Toronto has all the amenities you would expect in a metropolitan centre, like restaurants, venues, and shopping. Once summer rolls along, however, you’re more likely to find Torontonians at one of the city’s amazing beaches! If you live downtown, you won’t have to drive far to get to these spots. Many are located within Toronto’s core, and others lie just outside. Read on for our picks of the best GTA beaches to enjoy a day trip!
Bluffer’s Park Beach
Located at the base of the majestic Scarborough Bluffs, this popular spot has been a summer staple in Toronto for decades. It boasts amenities like a picnic area (pack your lunch to make the most of your day!), and the city’s only full-service marina with two snack bars. If you’re not distracted by the beautiful view of Lake Ontario, make sure you take in the towering bluffs behind you. If you put your ear next to them, you may be able to hear sand shifting deep inside these natural wonders! Bluffer’s Park Beach is a Blue Flag certified beach, which means it has some of the cleanest water and best environmental standards in the city. Combining cleanliness, safety, and breath-taking views, Bluffer’s Park Beach is one of several GTA beaches to visit this summer.
This beach has the advantage of being a little less known and therefore less crowded than some of the other options on our list. If you live in the west end, it’s very accessible as well! Located just east and south of High Park, Sunnyside Beach offers sandy areas to lay out a towel and soak up some sun, as well as trails for running and biking. Before the Gardiner was built, this part of Toronto was a recreational hub where famous names such as Duke Ellington performed! While its area may have been reduced, Sunnyside remains one of many beautiful GTA beaches, and its historic white bathing pavilion remains an icon of the past.
Marie Curtis Beach
Another hidden gem that retains a true neighbourhood beach vibe, Marie Curtis Beach has long been an Etobicoke favourite. One of the things we love about this quiet spot is getting to watch the Etobicoke Creek and its pretty wooded banks as it meets Lake Ontario. Keep an eye out for ice cream trucks as they are often parked in the trails around the creek! Looking to the east from the beach, you get a great view of the downtown skyline and its distinctive CN tower. It also offers a playground which kids are sure to gravitate to and great bird-watching opportunities around the creek. With so many GTA beaches to choose from, Marie Curtis stands out with its peacefulness and surrounding nature.
KEW Gardens & Kew Balmy Beach
Nestled in the Beach neighbourhood, this is another day trip option that is easily accessible from the downtown core if you want to take transit instead of driving. Once a privately owned farm, the area was converted to a recreational space and gardens when it was bought by the city. With features like a rock garden and waterfall, Kew Gardens is one of the most naturally beautiful places in the city. The gardens are split into sections which showcase different flowers and themes such as the Mediterranean Habitat or the Bamboo Garden. If you really want to experience the garden, however, you have to take a stroll on the Great Walk Borders, which features 320 meters of flower beds to entice your senses! Once you’ve completed all those steps, hit up the long stretch of white sand at Kew Balmy Beach to relax.
Now that you know where to go, we hope you get a chance to soak up the sun and relax this weekend. Take advantage of the fact that our city lies next to beautiful Lake Ontario and visit one of these GTA beaches soon. Just don’t forget your sunscreen! Make sure to follow along on the Medallion blog for more great Toronto tips.