Toronto is a city that’s travelled to by thousands of tourists each year. And it totally deserves the rep it’s gained over the years. With museums, art galleries, some of the world’s finest breweries, and excellent restaurants, you’ve got to give the capital credit.
It doesn’t stop there, though. While it’s great to spend time in Canada’s largest city, a short journey outside of Toronto will invite an incredible experience in the outdoors. With a wonderland of stunning scenery, hiking spots, vineyards, and adventures, a few surprises will await you.
While most of the destinations can be driven to, guided tours from Toronto allow you to explore the surrounding areas with ease. So, whether you’re a thrill-seeker looking for day trips in Ontario, or a laid-back traveller with a passion for road trips, we’ve got you covered!
Toronto Day Trips: Guided Excursions & Adventure Tours
As the seasons are constantly changing in the Toronto district, there’s always room for a new kind of adventure. Depending on the weather, whether snowy or sunny, there’s no better way to be out in the region than by opting for a guided tour. Particularly if you don’t know the area.
All of the tours below include transportation to the attraction, giving you the chance to forget about car rentals and sorting out the logistics. They’re all about packing in tons of fun and excitement, without spending hours in the car or booking a weekend away.
1. Day Trip from Toronto to Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls is one of Canada’s greatest natural attractions. So, of course, we had to dedicate a number of tours that’ll show off this beauty.
From Toronto: Niagara Falls Day Tour with Boat Cruise
- From $149 CAD, Duration: 9.5 hours
The first tour to make our list allows you to get up close and personal with the 51-meter waterfalls. This boat cruise and falls tour leaves from the city, and takes you through the beautiful Niagara Falls region.
As you leave the hustle and bustle of the city, you’ll travel along the scenic Niagara Parkway, where you’ll have the chance to visit Floral Clock and the Whirlpool Spanish Aero Car. Next up, head to Niagara-on-the-Lake and visit a local winery.
After your day of adventure, cruise along the base of the Horseshoe Falls for an even more spectacular sighting.
This isn’t just a chance to see great things. The coolest thing about opting for a tour is the fact that you get to hear about the history and geography of the falls.
Niagara Falls, Canada: Evening Lights Bus Tour from Toronto
- From $99 CAD, Duration: 9.5 hours
Most of the tours to the falls start pretty early in the morning. However, this evening lights tour makes the best of both the sunshine and darkness of the night – allowing you to see a side of the falls like no other!
After your boat ride around the Horseshoe Falls, fuel up with a scrumptious buffet dinner. Enjoy yet another fantastic local winery while you listen to live commentary from your guide.
Then watch the falls come to life with an array of multi-coloured lights illuminating the waters. You won’t only be blown away by the lights though. Fridays call for the firework show to take the tour to the next level.
Toronto: Taste of Niagara-on-the-Lake Day Trip
- From $150 CAD, Duration: 9 hours
Many of the tours that operate around Niagara focus primarily on the falls. For those of you looking for a new kind of experience, this tour is all about pleasing the senses.
Your day starts with an exciting 2-hour tour of a chocolate factory in the Niagara region. You’ll have an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of how the chocolate-making process works, and once you’ve got the gist of it, sample their creations.
After the sweet treats, you’ll be making your way to two award-winning wineries to sample the region’s finest collection. Part of this excursion includes an in-depth tour of the wineries. Besides enjoying the wine, you can stroll through the orchard and vineyards along the Niagara River Parkway.
Stop for a Tuscan-inspired lunch that includes wood-fired pizza. Now that you’re beyond satisfied, journey to the falls for an hour spent at the lookout deck to capture awe-inspiring photographs.
2. Dog Sledding, Snow Tubing and Snowshoeing Tour from Toronto
- From $389.75 CAD, Duration: 12 hours
Take full advantage of the Canadian climate and embrace the heavy snowfall! This snow extravaganza is a full-day excursion that includes three different snow activities that are perfect for all ages.
Ever had the chance to dog sled through the snow? Probably not, and chances are, you’re not going to get a better chance than with this one. As well as meeting some cute pooches, you’ll be snow tubing along private trails and trying your hand at snowshoeing.
Ending the tour with a hot lunch in a warm tent would be good enough. But these hosts have made the tour super special. Drool over roasted marshmallows on the campfire with a cup of hot chocolate in hand.
3. Prince Edward County Private Tour
- From $1,399 CAD, Duration: 10 hours
While you’ll be up to your neck in outdoor adventures, embarking on a day trip to Prince Edward County promises a relaxing day in purple fields of lavender. And quite frankly, frolicking in lavender fields sounds absolutely magical.
If you’re not the biggest fan of the idea, it’s worth visiting just to explore the luscious region and stopping at a winery. The local hotspots feature amazing wines, as well as beautiful culinary creations.
Don’t get too involved with the wine tasting, though. You’ll be venturing to a national park next, where you’ll have the chance to take a short hike along the water’s edge.
4. Algonquin Provincial Park Private Tour
- From $1,399 CAD, Duration: 12 hours
Looking to escape the city and get lost in nature? How about booking a tour from Toronto to explore the forests and lakes of Canada in Algonquin National Park.
Get ready to immerse yourself in the natural beauty, while simultaneously having a wild adventure.
There’s no better way to explore Algonquin Lake than by hopping in the water for a swim and canoeing across the water. All equipment is provided, and you can even make a stop at a small island and jump off the cliffs.
Next, wander the Booth’s Rock Trail that looks over the two lakes. The 5km loop includes a walk along an abandoned railway.
Your private vehicle will then take you back to Toronto where you can relax and reflect on your wild adventure.
5. Algonquin Provincial Park Day Tour from Toronto
- From $205.98 CAD, Duration: 12 hours
By now you’ve probably noticed that the Toronto district is a dreamland destination for nature enthusiasts and adventure-seekers. A tour through the Algonquin Provincial Park promises a fun day out in nature exploring the lakes, forests, and activities outdoors for active travellers.
Start this tour bright and early by embarking on a short hike on the Ragged Falls Oxtongue River trail. At the end of the trail, you’ll be at one of the favourite local hang out spots at the Ragged Falls.
The falls trail is followed by an hour or two on a Booth’s Rock hike (depending on the group’s preference). Once that hike is completed, you’ll begin the last hike of the day on the Two Rivers trail. The easy-ascend trail leads to the pine-clad cliff. Those brave enough can dive off the cliffs into the water below.
After lunch and snacks, you’ll end off the day at the Algonquin Visitor Centre where you can enjoy even more beautiful views.
6. Private Tour to Scarborough Bluffs
- From $500 CAD, Duration: 6 hours
Indulge in a fully private tour that leaves from Toronto city center and takes you through to the Scarborough Bluffs. The Bluffs are an enormous escarpment that runs along the shore of Lake Ontario, formed from a natural process of soil erosion.
After this 6-hour tour, you’ll soon be an expert on the area. A local guide will share all of their information about the bluffs, which includes some really interesting facts. While you listen and learn, marvel at the magical turquoise blue waters and the crown-like appearance of the Bluffs.
This tour involves walking, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes that are appropriate for hiking. You’ll also want to bring along a rain jacket as you can’t always be sure of Toronto’s weather.
7. Toronto Trips to the Bruce Peninsula
- From $215 CAD, Duration: 12 hours
During the summer, when the weather is the best, Canada can be a haven for globetrotters.
These guided tours operate with small groups in mind, making it an ideal option for family and friends who are looking for an escape from the city. You’ll have a private bus that takes you from the city to Bruce Peninsula National Park, yet another fantastic national park.
Depending on the weather you’ll hike or snowshoe along the trail before arriving at the Indian Head Cove, Grotto, and Marr Lake.
Venture into the caves, visit spectacular waterfalls, and journey to various lookout points, such as Inglis Falls lookout.
Best Day Trips from Toronto by Car
Just a short drive outside of the capital, road trippers will find themselves in charming villages, idyllic forests, and awe-inspiring lakes.
The road less travelled can always lead to a greater sense of excitement. Why not travel to these wonders and see for yourself? Take a look at these Toronto day trip ideas.
8. Blue Mountain Ski Resort
Blue Mountain is just a short 2 and a half-hour drive via Hurontario St, from the center of Toronto. Although this can easily be done in a day, it’s a destination that you’re most likely going to want to spend the night at. That way you can take advantage of the hot tubs, ski lessons, snowshoeing, and ice-skating experiences.
Skiing is the main attraction here, but it’s not the only thing that makes the resort popular. In the warmer months, travellers can venture on a hiking trip around the peaks, or mountain bike through the oak forests.
The nearby town of Collingwood is another popular place to visit outside Toronto and only a short drive from the resort. The lively town has all kinds of great dining options, numerous events throughout the year, and activity-based shopping stores, like biking and skiing shops.
Just to the east of Collingwood is Wasaga Beach. If you’re travelling here in the summer, you can’t miss out on the chance to see the beach turn into a lively, summer family vacation spot.
Blue Mountain Resort Village Suites
The resort offers a variety of lodging to suit a wide range of travellers. From hotels to self-catering guest suites, the units are all located close to the skiing village, where you’ll find more than 40 bars, restaurants, and shops.
9. Cobourg Beach
Only an hour and a half drive from Toronto, Cobourg Beach is another natural attraction you can add to the district’s list of outdoor adventures. You can imagine how vibey the beach is in the months of July and August, when both locals and travellers are making the most of the warm weather.
Fit for the perfect day trip, the park beach features changing rooms, bathrooms, and picnic tables. Go for a stroll along the boardwalk, catch a game of volleyball, or take a dip in the icy waters.
If you don’t happen to be in Canada during the warm, summer months, the beach can still be visited during winter. Although less busy, you can still wander along the picturesque coast or grab a bite to eat at the nearby restaurants.
Spending the Night at the Seaside
Cobourg is a quiet town that’s well worth exploring. When you’re not spending time in the sunshine, wander along the streets and downtown area. Just 500m from the waterfront and 10 minutes from the highway, this beautiful little guest house is the perfect stopover for your day trip.
As well as having a luxuriously comfortable bed for the night, you’ll be spoilt with the scrumptious breakfast before you head back to the city.
10. Canada’s Wonderland
Located in Vaughan, close to Toronto and only an hour north of the city, Canada’s Wonderland is the country’s premier amusement park. And while you may be thinking that a wonderland is for children, the park boasts 200 attractions and 70 thrilling rides for all kinds of travellers.
Take a ride on Canada’s tallest roller coaster. If roller coasters aren’t your thing, you can always explore the collection of other amusement themed activities. Circus shows, artistic performers, and sweet treats are all part of the park’s childish charm.
The park is only open from spring to fall. When the weather is really good, Splash Works is the place to be. With all kinds of water rides, the largest outdoor wave pool, and a lazy river, it’s a great way to spend a summer’s day.
Accommodation Near Canada’s Wonderland
A visit to the wonderland will require a whole day. After a busy day of rollercoaster rides and a likely sugar high, spending a night in Vaughan might save you a late-night drive.
Novotel Toronto Vaughan Centre is a short 5-minute drive from the wonderland. Featuring hot tubs, a 24-hour fitness center, an indoor pool, and a restaurant, it’s an ideal spot to rest your head and recharge.
11. Cheltenham Badlands, Caledon
The Cheltenham Badlands – in Caledon and only an hour from Toronto – were formed over 400 million years ago. Due to erosion and deposition, the iron found within the formations has oxidized and produced an incredible burnt orange colouring.
Once you’ve arrived, the choice of how you want to spend your time is up to you. You won’t be able to walk on the actual badlands, but there is a boardwalk that shows off incredible features of the orangey rock formations.
Depending on the weather, you might decide to hike through the forests on the Bruce Trail. The trail is particularly magical in the fall. The golden hues of autumn highlight the forest beautifully.
To add to your adventure, take a trip to one of the hidden gems in the area. The Spirit Tree Cider is a fantastic brewery that features a bistro and brewery.
Molly’s Retreat B and B
Molly’s Retreat is one of the most highly-rated bookings near the Badlands. After a day spent hiking, canoeing or sightseeing, you can come back to the retreat and relax in the garden space or sit on the terrace.
The rooms are the perfect place to rest in between trips around the Toronto region. From here, you can add a visit to the Theatre Orangeville or the Mono Cliffs Provincial Park.
Best Toronto Day Trips: Adventures for Globetrotters
Spending time in the city is fantastic, and surely not something you’re going to want to miss. As a buzzing, metropolitan city, Toronto is an ideal location for basing your trip. With no shortage of outdoor adventures that can be found just outside the city center, day trips from Toronto allow you to experience the best of the city, and the outdoors.
A one day trip from Toronto can lead you to pristine mountain peaks, spectacular natural wonders and awe-inspiring, luscious vineyards.
IF YOU LIKE THIS BLOG POST, PLEASE SHARE! … THANK YOU 😊
While I think the majority of this to see list are great ideas, I do think its a mistake to advertise dogsledding especially to the location mentioned. This whole practice is some of the worst animal cruelty in the world. Please watch the documentary sled dogs and the location you are promoting here is exposed for horrendous acts.
Matthew G. Bailey says
Interesting. We don’t find dog-sledding, in general, to be bad, and not at the ones we’ve experienced, but it’s sad to hear that this one is. We will look into it. Certainly will not promote it if that’s the case. Are there others in the area that are doing a better job?
Matthew G. Bailey says
Is the company you’re referring to called Sugardogs? I can’t seem to find who actually offers it. Having been all over the world, I doubt it’s the worst animal cruelty in the world (we’ve volunteered at animal refuges and have seen the effects of trafficking) but if you can send me some of the news about the, proof, etc, I’ll definitely remove them
I don’t think you really need proof that dog sledding is in fact abusive. Just because it isn’t the worst animal cruelty doesn’t make it good….
They are simply asking you not to promote it. Should be something easy.
Matthew G. Bailey says
Not totally sure of your point. It’s either abusive or it isn’t. In our experience, it’s not. However, there might be a certain company or person that is abusive. In that case, is it not good to actually want to see some proof? What if it’s not true?
Niagara Falls -bucket list!!!
After living in Downtown Toronto for a few years, I would love to do the Algonquin Provincial Park and Bruce Peninsula tours. It would be so nice to be driven there and enjoy the scenery! I have seen Niagara Falls once before, but in the near future I would love to go on the Evening Lights Bus Tour to Niagara Falls, as it must be a beautiful, special experience to see it at night.
Amanda Sharpe says
500$ For a Scarborough Bluffs tour? Is that a typo? I can’t imagine what the cost would be for.
Pearl Saban says
A great array of suggestions here. Thanks so much. Will flag the page, so it’s easily referred to.