Wondering which things to do in Toronto with teens? We’ve got you covered!
In April 2023 I took my teenage daughter to Toronto. It was her first time to Canada, and I was excited to show her some of the things to do in Toronto, that I also experienced as a teenager. We received media passes from Destination Toronto for some of the top attractions in Toronto, but rest assured, all opinions are based on our personal experiences. If you’re looking to plan the best things to in Toronto with teens, then we hope our daughter’s top picks save you some time, money, and trouble.
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You may be wondering, “What is Little Canada?” Here, teens can gain a unique perspective on Canada in miniature scale, and watch artists at work on new models. It’s truly inspiring to see a miniature detailed model of the country and imagine what it would be like to visit. At Little Canada, you’ll get an incomparable experience that will show you just how incredible Canada really is, and help you choose your next Canadian destination to explore.
Considering Little Canada only opened their doors in August 2021, it’s impressive how quickly they became Ontario’s #1 attraction in 2022 according to Ontario Choice Awards. As you can see, our daughter agrees that Little Canada is THE top thing to do in Toronto for teens. An artist herself, she was fascinated by all the animation and detail throughout. Speaking with the artists working on future areas sparked her own imagination, and she claimed to come back and see more.
Along with exploring the miniature versions of places like Québec, Ottawa, Toronto, and Niagara Falls, you get to learn about different popular events that happen across Canada. For example, in Kitchener they highlight the annual Oktoberfest which happens to be the largest of its kind outside of Germany.
The only downside is Little Canada is not completely finished. Before opening, it was already 10 years in the making, and after talking with some of the creators, it’s understandable how long it takes to design each area. Therefore, we still believe Little Canada is totally worth visiting, and you’ll just have to go back and see the rest!
“Amazing experience. The details of the scenes spectacular. Loved that it was shown as it would be in daylight and night time. We will definitely recommend this to all friends and family! The staff were wonderful and all very friendly and helpful.” – Carol S. (Read more reviews)
⭐️ RATING: 4.5/5 Stars | ⏱️ TOUR LENGTH: 1-2 Hours 📍 LOCATION: Downtown Toronto | 👉 Book it!
With North America’s longest underwater viewing tunnel, over 100 interactive experiences, and a world of 20,000 aquatic animals, you won’t want to miss this opportunity. Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada in Toronto is a fun time for the entire family! From feeding sharks to touching horseshoe crabs, there are endless opportunities for your teenagers to explore and get excited. Whether they’re an expert aquarist or just starting out, there’s something new and exciting to be discovered at Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada.
We’ve been to a lot of aquariums on our travels, and Ripley’s Aquarium is by far our daughter’s favorite. From the moving walkway through the viewing tunnel, to the Giant Pacific Octopus crawling up the inside of the tank, teens will be fascinated by the variety of galleries Ripley’s Aquarium offers. Our teenage daughter especially enjoyed the Ray Bay, Planet Jellies, and Canadian Waters galleries. She was very happy to learn about species she’s never seen before.
Located in the heart of downtown Toronto, it’s easy to get to Ripley’s Aquarium via public transit or parking nearby. It’s also within walking distance to dining and other attractions like CN Tower, Rogers Centre, The Rec Room, and Roundhouse Park. Admission prices are very reasonable, making it possible for everyone to enjoy all that Ripley’s Aquarium has to offer without breaking their budget! Including a combo ticket option with CN Tower.
“This museum does a great job of engaging kids, teens and adults. My teens really liked the touch tank and show. We went during shark week and loved seeing the sharks swim above us. We also enjoyed see the sea turtles.” -cmomma (Read more reviews)
⭐️ RATING: 4.6/5 Stars | ⏱️ TOUR LENGTH: 2-4 Hours 📍 LOCATION: Midtown Toronto | 👉 Book it!
Located in the heart of Midtown Toronto, Casa Loma allows visitors to explore all of its floors, including the two towers and extensive tunnels. Teens may especially enjoy the military and spy exhibits. We can see why Casa Loma is one of Toronto’s top attractions. Our daughter finds it fascinating to walk through historic homes with authentic period furnishings and antiques. It’s an adventure that both adults and teens alike can enjoy.
Visitors can take advantage of the self guided tour, with the option of using an audio tour on a phone, therefore plan to bring headphones. Each room is also numbered for you to follow along, and read. I will say, we weren’t prepared for how long it would take us to walk through Casa Loma. Even though our teen got a little tired of being there toward the end, she was happy we got to see everything. Surprisingly, she was not impressed with the wax figures in the Hollywood display featuring Casa Loma as a filming location.
Touring Casa Loma provides a unique experience for every visitor. Not only is the castle itself a historic landmark, but it also offers its visitors a chance to explore and learn about the history of Toronto in an immersive and interactive way. One thing our teen would love to do in Toronto next time, is come back to Casa Loma and do one of their escape rooms in a tower, or a murder mystery event.
“It was a wonderful experience. Very beautiful! My daughter and I enjoyed it very much.” – April (Read more reviews)
If you’re looking to take your teens for a day of fun and games, then Claw & Kitty Arcade is the perfect place. Our daughter actually found Claw & Kitty on TikTok, and was the reason she wanted me to bring her to Toronto. Claw & Kitty has an expansive selection of claw machines, and the employees are very helpful in teaching you how to win. In addition, the prices are surprisingly affordable, so you don’t have to worry about going over your budget. When it comes time for rewards Claw & Kitty has a large selection of prizes to choose from. Everyone can go home with a souvenir!
Reviews are full of people saying how friendly and helpful everyone is at Claw & Kitty. While playing the machines, they even came over to fill it with more prizes and make it easier to grab the plushies. Our daughter was very happy with the prizes she walked away with for both herself and her friends.
“The staff are really nice and helpful. They will go around to demonstrate and share some tips to help you get a prize. I think their stuffed toys are really cute.” – Jenny (Read more reviews)
The CN Tower is a must-see attraction for families visiting Toronto. Standing at an impressive 553 meters in height, it offers incredible views of the city and Lake Ontario. Visitors can choose between two observation decks, one of which features a glass floor. In addition, EdgeWalk is an event allowing visitors to walk around the circumference of the tower’s roof ledge! Therefore providing an exhilarating experience to thrill even the most daring teens!
Our daughter is not one who likes roller coasters, and I love them, so you’d think she was more nervous on the ride up the CN Tower, but it was actually the other way around. I had to step back from the window on the close to 80 second ride up the CN Tower elevator. Taking my daughter here was special because I remember coming here several times in middle school on field trips. Some of my best travel memories as a kid.
Although CN Tower has great ratings on all platforms, and it’s listed as the #1 Toronto attraction on Tripadvisor, many reviews mention cost versus worth. My suggestion would be some kind of bundle pass that includes CN Tower, along with other fun things to do in Toronto with teens. Most bundles will have the perk of not waiting in line.
“We went to the tower at night and it was a beautiful view. We went toward the end of our trip to Toronto and the kids and teens had fun identifying all of the places in the city we had been. The outer deck was fun to walk around and the kids liked the glass floor level.” – Sarah B (Read more reviews)
Not just for hockey fans, the Hockey Hall of Fame is a fun place to learn and see how hockey connects people throughout the world. With the original Stanley Cup and the world’s largest hockey collection, parents of teens can truly understand the history behind the amazing sport. The variety of interactive programs offered by Hockey Hall of Fame will surely keep your teen entertained. And with a fun and engaging atmosphere, it’s a great way to spend some quality time together.
Even our teen who doesn’t know much about hockey was pleasantly surprised at how much she enjoyed walking through the Hockey Hall of Fame. Her favorite area was Lord Stanley’s Vault, which houses the Original Stanley Cup trophy, a large collection of championship rings, and more. Also, the hockey in marketing display and seeing all the original equipment from back in the day.
“It’s a lot larger than we expected. I think even someone that isn’t into hockey would find it interesting. We really enjoying walking through it.” – Jamie W (Read more reviews)
Way before we knew we’d be visiting Toronto, I found out where some of the Schitt’s Creek filming locations were and pinned them on my Google map. Therefore, when we decided to make the road trip I suggested we make some pitstops to see some of the buildings, such as the Rosebud Motel, Rose Apothecary, Cafe Tropical, and Bob’s Garage. These Schitt’s Creek filming locations are outside Toronto, so I suggest a day trip to check them out. If you fly into Toronto, you’d need. to have a rental car to make the road trip.
While it’s possible to see some of Toronto’s highlights in just one or two days, we recommend spending at least three days in the city to fully explore its diverse neighborhoods, museums, and attractions. We made the road trip from Detroit to Toronto, therefore we had about two and a half days in Toronto. Although we got to do a lot, my advice would be to narrow down your “must dos” and make sure to prioritize them.
Is Toronto worth visiting with teens?
Toronto is definitely worth visiting! From its diverse neighborhoods and delicious food scene to its world-class museums and attractions, there is something for all teens in this vibrant city. Plus, it’s known for being one of the safest and cleanest cities in the world.
Is Toronto a walkable city?
Toronto is a very walkable city, with many neighborhoods and attractions easily accessible by foot. The city also has an extensive public transportation system, including buses, streetcars, and subways, making it easy to get around even if you don’t want to walk everywhere. Additionally, Toronto has many bike lanes and bike-sharing programs, making it a great city for cyclists as well. We used the GoTransit system to take a train into Union Station, then walked to everything we did that day. It was an unlimited group pass for two people valid for 24 hours. The pass includes their buses too, even though we didn’t use them.
Final Thoughts: Will we visit Toronto again?
Toronto is a great place to visit with teens, and there are lots of fun activities for them to do. Whether you end up in Toronto because of a claw machine arcade, or to explore the city’s museums, attractions, and historical sites, you will be sure to take home special memories. So why not make the most of your time with your teens by taking them on a memorable road trip this summer? Find more amazing things you can do with teens in Detroit and Orlando.
Julie is owner and founder of How We Find Happy. As an optimist, the name is perfect as we share the ways we find happy living in Florida, visiting breweries, spending time with our adult children, and getting away on some couples trips. As previous residents of Michigan, we still spend lots of time each year visiting our family up there, along with new and favorite places. My hope is to encourage others to spend time exploring this beautiful world, and finding happy in unexpected places.