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As one of the top tourist destinations in Canada, Toronto is a fairly expensive city. Whether you’re a local or are planning a family vacation in Ontario’s capital, it can be daunting to figure out how to have fun without breaking the bank. Luckily, our team at Trip Support has got you covered. 

From catching live performances to hiking through picturesque trails, there are plenty of things to do in Toronto with no money if you’re on a budget. We’ve rounded up our top choices for the best free things to do in Toronto, so you can enjoy yourself without putting a huge dent in your wallet.

1. Go hiking in Scarborough Bluffs

Scarborough Bluffs

Made up of 11 parks and a stunning blue water beach, Scarborough Bluffs (or The Bluffs, as the locals call it) is a beautiful area with an abundance of spectacular hiking trails. With incredible views of the towering white sedimentary cliffs that hang over Lake Ontario, Scarborough Bluffs offers a wide range of fairly easy to moderate hiking trails the whole family can enjoy.

2. Catch a concert at the Toronto Music Garden

Toronto Music Garden

Inspired by Bach and designed by Yo Yo Ma, the Toronto Music Garden is a beautiful destination to enjoy a free show. The beautiful venue is located along Toronto’s inner harbour, with free classical performances from around the world that take place throughout the summer. 

3. Check out the Art Gallery of Ontario

Located in the La Grange neighbourhood, the Art Gallery of Ontario is home to more than 90,000 stunning works of art. Every Wednesday, from 6pm to 9pm, this art museum offers free entry to visitors. Though not free, you can also grab a bite at the AGO Bistro located in the museum after you’ve gotten your fill of culture. 

4. Enjoy a picnic in High Park

With nearly 400 acres of land, High Park is the largest public park in Toronto. Here you can find walking trails, playgrounds, gardens, picnic areas, and even a zoo. There are 18 designated picnic sites within the boundaries of the park, so you’ll have plenty of spaces to choose from for a beautiful picnic in High Park

5. Soak up the sun on Toronto Island

Soak up the sun on Toronto Island

While the ferry fare will cost you a few bucks, you can explore this beautiful island located off the shores of downtown Toronto for free. Hang out on the beach, go hiking on one of the many trails, and check out the historic Gibraltar Point Lighthouse.

6. Stroll through the Distillery Historic District

Home to a wide array of local shops, restaurants, art galleries, theatres, and free events, this pedestrian-only village is the perfect place to take a leisurely stroll. With plenty of opportunities for window shopping, people watching, and street performances, you can enjoy an afternoon in the Distillery Historic District without spending a dime.

7. Take a yoga class at Evergreen Brick Works

Located in the Don Valley, Evergreen Brick Works is an environmental centre known for its many free events, workshops, exhibitions, and classes. If you’re looking for a fun and free outdoor activity in Toronto, sign up for one of the yoga classes for a relaxing and enjoyable outing. 

8. Watch a movie at a park

Each summer, public parks throughout Toronto screen free movies for people to enjoy. From classic comedies to horror flicks, the genres and screening locations change throughout the season. Bring a blanket, bug spray, and a picnic basket with drinks and snacks for the ideal summer eveningno spending required. 

9. Go back in time at the Black Creek Pioneer Village

The Black Creek Pioneer Village provides guests with an up-close look at how people lived and worked in the 18th century. This authentically recreated village contains 40 historic buildings, 10 gardens, and plenty of fun hands-on activities for visitors. You can visit for free every Tuesday after 2pm, with the exception of March break.

10. Admire the stunning floral displays at the Allan Gardens Conservatory

Allan Gardens

This indoor botanical garden is made up of six unique greenhouses, each of which showcase vibrant floral displays from different climates around the world. There are two tropical houses, a cool temperate house, a tropical landscape house, an arid house, and a palm house; each of which are filled with beautiful displays to walk through.

11. Go skating at a public skating rink

skating rink

If you own a pair of ice skates, you are welcome to take advantage of the public skating rinks scattered around the city. One of the most popular public skating rinks in Toronto is in Nathan Phillips Square, but make sure to get there early if you want to avoid the crowds.

12. Take in a performance at the Harbourfront Centre

Harbourfront Centre

Located on a 10-acre site along the picturesque shores of Lake Ontario, the Harbourfront Centre is an open-air theatre that hosts tons of free musical events, art exhibitions, and festivals throughout the year. Grab a blanket and some snacks, then come on down and enjoy a free show with a beautiful view of the water. 

13. Enjoy the music at the Beaches International Jazz Festival

If you happen to be in Toronto in July, you won’t want to miss the Beaches International Jazz Festival. Held each year in Woodbine Park, this free event has nearly a million attendees throughout the month of July. Bring a cooler of beer and snacks, along with a few lawn chairs, and enjoy the incredible live performances. 

14. Walk through the city of Toronto.

Toronto is filled with unique neighborhoods to walk around in, each with their own distinct personalities and features to explore. If you want to learn more about the area you’re checking out, there are a number of touring companies in Toronto that offer free walks around the city. 

Ready to start planning your trip to Toronto? With our “book now, pay later” model, you can begin the process now without dropping a dime. This flexible payment plan allows you to pay for your trip in easy installments rather than all at once, so you can avoid money stress and focus on the more exciting aspects of planning a trip. 

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you plan an unforgettable trip to Toronto!

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