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Toronto & Region
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Toronto Skyline
The Toronto skyline from the lakeshore
  Toronto has evolved into one of Canada's most interesting cities. The heart of the counties financial affairs, it has acquired a cosmopolitan flavour without losing the sense of community it always had.
Given its image as a corporate center, people are always surprised to learn about the large natural spaces within the city, especially in the downtown core. Map of the Toronto Region.
Aside from the broad Lake Ontario shoreline, it's the watersheds and ravines that provide the largest green areas in the city and some very interesting outdoor opportunities. By their very nature, ravines are easily overlooked, even by the cities residents. Driving through the Don Valley on the expressway you aren't likely to be aware of mountain bikers on the forested hillsides or canoeists paddling the river below.
Toronto Restaurant
  With the influx of a large and varied ethnic community has come a broad range of new cuisine and subsequently some of Canada's best restaurants.

Appropriately enough, Toronto has a Chinatown, a Greektown and areas referred to as Little Italy, Little India and Little Jamaica. Of particular note are the cities Thai restaurants, which are amongst the best we've encountered.

Toronto's nightlife is everything you might hope for. While Yorkville has gone upscale, there are plenty of other areas if you're on a budget.

Check out The Beaches area for funky bars and restaurants or head over to Queen Street. The Entertainment District has endless variety along with some of the longest running theatre productions in North America.
High Park Toronto
The cities most famous park
  Given that Toronto is so heavily populated it's surprising how well the city has managed to preserve such a large amount of green space. To a large extent this can be attributed to the hard work and far sightedness of many groups and individuals. Of course nature played a heavy role in this, by cutting those large river ravines through the city from north to south, providing a natural greenway and a deterrent to developers. The Don Valley, the Humber Valley and the Rouge River Ravine are the most prominent. These amazing strips of green, shelter joggers, hikers, mountain bikers, cross country skiers and dare we say it - whitewater fans (yes, you can run sections of the rivers in the spring). Toronto birders will find excellent areas in the Sherwood and Rouge Parks but perhaps the best birding area in or around the city is the Leslie Street Spit .
Aside from the inner city green, the areas surrounding Toronto have a wide variety of forests, cliff faces, lakes, rivers and trails. These surrounding regions have a host of parks and conservation areas, with the core of the region managed by the Toronto Conservation Authority. Halton, Credit Valley, Lake Simcoe, Nottawasaga and Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authorities manage dozens of recreational areas just outside the city as well. Nearby Provincial Parks include Darlington, Forks of the Credit, Sibbald Point and Bronte Creek.
Backpackers have several long distance trails to choose from within a very short distance of the city. These include the world famous Bruce Trail, the Ganaraska Trail and the Oak Ridges Trail. Hikers can choose from short trail walks in High Park to longer beach hikes below the Scarborough Bluffs or a custom hike on a section of the Bruce Trail. If you're a climber the city is awash in rock gyms, or if you have a little more time to spare Rattlesnake Point is only a short distance away. Mountain bikers are a spoiled bunch with excellent trails in the Don Valley and off road trails and paths you can actually ride to work on. Both Halton Hills and the Ganaraska Forest have lots of MTB trails just a short distance away.  
Cycling Toronto
The Humber Trail
In the Spring white water enthusiasts can paddle in the city on the Don or the Humber rivers. Another option is Dufferin Creek , just to the north of Ajax. Sea Kayakers can launch in downtown Toronto and paddle out to Toronto Island or the Leslie Street Spit. Further afield you'll find some of North Americas best Sea Kayaking in the Bruce Peninsula and Georgian Bay areas north of Toronto. Canoeists can paddle routes along the Grande or Nottawasaga Rivers just outside the city or head north to the endless routes of Algonquin Park. Nordic skiers follow their compass north when the snow flies to the Collingwood region to ply the trials of Mansfield Outdoor Centre or Hardwood Hills Resort. While boarders will find great runs at nearby Blue Mountain, as well as many other local areas.

Algonquin Park Sunrise

Algonquin Provincial Park

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Provincial Parks and Conservation Areas in the Toronto Region
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Bruce Peninsula Cliffs
Central Ontario North - Georgian Bay, Muskoka, Lake Simcoe, Blue Mountain, Bruce Peninsula, Grey
  Sea Kayaking Georgian Bay
  Bruce Peninsula National Park - A spectacular natural setting
  Awenda Park
  Awenda Provincial
- A superb campers park on Georgian Bay
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  Georgian Bay Islands National Park - A paddlers paradise just north of Toronto
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  Algonquin Provincial
- A world renown canoe camping destination
Camping Bruce Trail
The Bruce Trail - 800km of exceptional hiking within an hour of the city
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Provincial Park
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by Mady MacDonald
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