30 Oct Toronto Islands
“We need to run, we are going to miss it!” I started to panic as I hobbled along the trail toward the Toronto Ferry. We had already walked so much in the past two days that my feet had literally started to bruise and swell (I blame it on the shoes)…but if we were going to make our flight back to Florida that afternoon, we had to catch the ferry.
On our last morning in Toronto, we decided to visit the Toronto Islands. We woke up early and made a rushed walk down to the harbor, arriving minutes before the ferry departed. Finally on board, we enjoyed a relaxing ride with nice views of the city. There are three main docks on the Toronto Islands, Center Island, Ward’s Island and Hanlan’s Point. The ferry was scheduled to dock at Center Island first, where we originally intended to get off, but instead the boat docked at Ward’s Island, by mistake. We decided that since we had 1 hr, we should just get off at Ward’s Island, walk down to Center Island, and catch the return boat there. The views of the city and the crisp fall air, made the islands a very enjoyable place to relax. Maybe that was the problem…perhaps we lollygagged too much in the beginning of our stop because by the time we got to Center Island we still had quite a ways to walk, and only 10 minutes left until the boat was scheduled to depart, so our sprint began.
Typically, on the weekends and in the summer, the ferries run every 15-30 minutes. But, since we were there on a weekday and it was the official start of the fall schedule, the next boat departing the islands was scheduled to arrive 45 minutes later, and adding on a 30 minute ride back to the city would have put us very close to missing our flight back home. Thankfully we made it to the boat just as it was pulling up! On board we finally had some time to rest, which was nice since my feet were a little numb from the sprinting/hobbling.
I wish we would have had more time to spend on the islands. If you enjoy nature, you have to make a trip out to the Toronto Islands. There is something for everyone to enjoy and with ferry tickets at $7 a piece, the views of the city can’t be beat. I would rather take the ferry than an expensive harbor cruise. You can get a taste of the harbor, skyline and islands all in one for a fraction of the cost. The islands are large, about 570 acres in total. Activities range from many walking paths, boardwalk, pier, marinas, restaurants, bike rentals, kayak rentals, Centerville amusement park, frisbee golf, beaches and even a nude beach. I was a little surprised to see so many homes on the island, but overall, the lack of people made it feel remote.
I really wanted to rent bikes, the islands just seemed like a perfect place to go for a bike ride, but rentals stopped for the season the day before we arrived on the islands. However, renting a bike on the islands is something I definitely want to do when we go back to Toronto one day.