The weeks leading up to Christmas in Toronto are a time for family, friends and lots of festive fun. The city changes into a magical winter wonderland brimming with Christmas lights. Ice skating rinks, beautiful window displays and seasonal events are ready to help you have a very merry Christmas.
Toronto is a perfect destination choice for a short Christmas break compared to a more traditional European city trip, as it doesn’t have to be expensive. You can be sure to have a cheap and extra cheerful Christmas break!
So, if a visit to Toronto is in your Christmas future but you don’t want to break the bank, take a look at this budget-friendly guide.
Food can be an expensive additional cost while you’re away, but on your Christmas break in Toronto, it doesn’t need to be. The city offers a number of ‘cheap-eats’ places where you can get plenty of bang for your buck.
Try Burrito Boyz for eight burritos options, customised to your great taste, that will blow you away from just $5. For a cosier atmosphere visit 416 Snack Bar, a tasty tapas bar with a menu full of bite-sized sliders, all for less than $8. But if it’s a trendy lunching spot you’re after then visit The Annex Hodgepodge, a bistro bar with plenty of options for all tastes including; fresh soup, salad and vegan and vegetarian sandwiches, all under $8.
What’s the damage?
An average dinner in Toronto can cost you up to $13.
That’s cheaper than a dinner in Paris or Reykjavík that could set you back up to $18.
And it’s far cheaper than having dinner in Interlaken because that meal could set you back up $26!
If you want to enjoy your Christmas tipple but don’t want it to cost a bomb, you’ll find Toronto’s inexpensive bars and pubs very accommodating. Wide Open has you covered with a number of fantastic drink deals throughout the week. And of course, on Thursday it’s Happy Hour 5-8pm, so all drinks are just $2.75!
To get your kicks with a more historical vibe, try Duffy’s Tavern a pub that’s been serving Toronto since 1949. Here you’ll find live music every week and some of the cheapest drinks in the city.
What’s the damage?
Enjoying a pint of beer in Toronto will cost you up to $4.50, but for this privilege in Europe you’ll pay up to $6 in Amsterdam, up to $8 in Reykjavík and up to $9 in Paris.
And food and drink aren’t the only areas where Toronto excels in cost comparison. A simple bus ride will cost you around $2 in the city but you’re looking at paying at least $3 (if not more) for a bus ride in European cities.
So with Toronto’s frugal advantages officially established, your Christmas break is off to a thrifty start. There are a number of low-cost activities to try so you can continue to make the most of your time in Toronto.
Still need to do your Christmas shopping? The Eaton Centre and Queen Street West are the top shopping locations in the city. And with over 250 retailers for you to choose from, you’re bound to find a bargain.
Of course it goes without saying that visiting Toronto’s Christmas Market is an absolute must on your Christmas break as its just $5 per person on weekends and free during the week. You’ll find all your festive favourites in this ‘Christkindlmarkt’ inspired market, like mulled wine and warming hot chocolate. And while you browse the wares of local craft and artisanal food makers you can enjoy the cheery sounds of Christmas carollers.
For some alternative festive fun try Illuminite. The 360 degree theatrical experience in the centre of Downtown Toronto ends with the climactic lighting of a 52,000 LED Christmas tree!
If you’re looking for a more “merry” Christmas event, then the 12 Beers of Christmas is the place to be. Just $10 lets you taste as much of the naughty and nice crafts beers on offer as you like. There’s also live music with Combo Royale and Shameless Karaoke after the beer’s run dry. You’ll find this located in the Melody Bar and the Ballroom at the Gladstone Hotel.
Or you can spend your Saturday nights brushing up on your skating skills at Toronto’s number one outdoor party. DJ Skate Nights at the Harbourfront centre has a great line up of local and international DJs so you can skate the night away to your favourite tunes.
So, let’s give big thumbs up to Toronto for being the perfect spot to spend your Christmas break this year. Toronto’s cheap, cheerful and unbelievably awesome. It’s time to treat your family and friends to their most magical Christmas yet!
If you fancy getting away, we have special Christmas short breaks to Toronto starting from an amazing £399pp. Departing Gatwick inc. flights and 3 nights at a 4* hotel.
Image credit: Hannah (flickr.com), Thy Khue Ly (flickr.com), Dan Gaken (flickr.com)