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10 Socially-Distanced Activities to Do Near Toronto

COVID-19 has been a household name for a while, but we’re all still adjusting to this new phase in life. Among many things, the way we travel in particular is changing.

In lieu of long-distance trips, more of us are staying close to home and looking for outdoor activities that we can participate in. However, we still need a way to get to and from our destinations.

If you find yourself running in a smaller group than average, it might not make sense to rent an entire coach bus or school bus. Instead, a sprinter van may have everything you need and more. A sprinter van is a type of passenger vehicle that can fit up to 15 passengers. Bus.com offers sprinter van rentals in Toronto that can be delivered directly to your doorstsep.

Fun Things to Do in Toronto During COVID-19

For this post we’re focusing on Toronto, one of the most popular Bus.com cities. We’ll cover outdoor places to visit, yummy food spots, and even immersive art. Without further ado, here are some great socially distanced activities to travel to outside of Toronto.

Lavender Fields

If you’re hoping to get a break from the city streets, visiting one of the lavender fields outside of Toronto might be just the thing to take away your blues. Surrounded by fields of purple and heated by the warm summer sun, what else could you want? Most local farms have timed ticket entry to account for COVID-19. Each lavender farm has its own feel, whether you’re visiting Weir’s Lane Lavender and Apiary, with its beehives, or Apple Hill Lavender which boasts apple orchards, as well. Terre Bleu is one of the largest lavender farms in Canada. If you want to visit, make sure to sign up for their email list, as they are closed to the general public, but sometimes notify their email subscribers of ticketed entry options.

Gogh by Car

Although many were excited for the Van Gogh exhibit that was coming to Toronto, few imagined this was how they’d be interacting with it. This “Immersive Van Gogh” exhibit opened on June 18th. Instead of walking through the exhibit, participants drive in and watch the show from inside the car. The exhibit includes 600,000 cubic feet’s worth of projections including Starry Night, Sunflowers, and The Bedroom. This exhibit was custom designed for the historic space that used to house the Toronto Star’s printing presses. Initial ticket sales sold out; you won’t want to miss the splendor of Van Gogh from the safety and comfort of your car. 

Toronto Islands

Accessible via a ferry, the Toronto Islands, also know as the Islands, are located on Lake Ontario. The Islands are comprised of 15 different islands that are all interconnected with bridges and walkways. Just because COVID-19 means travel is limited, doesn’t mean that fun has to be. There are beaches, picnic tables, and even a 200 year old lighthouse you can visit here on the Island. You can visit any one of the three main islands. Centre Island, sits smack dab between Ward’s Island and Hanlan’s Point, and boasts a fountain, formal gardens, and more. Hanlan’s Point, which is the westernmost island, has firepits, the Gibraltar Point Lighthouse, and bike trails. And finally, there’s Ward’s Island to the east, which is mostly home to residents.

Visit Toronto’s first social distancing market, El Mercado

If you’re hungry for street food and miss the ease of sitting in a restaurant, El Mercado has got you covered in the time of COVID. It’s Toronto’s first social distancing pop-up carryout market.  If you’re going to check it out, bring your favorite mask! Otherwise, they have them available for purchase for $2 at the gate. Visitors will enter in and travel along a single direction, with a maximum number of guests at a time. You’ll be able to pick from a variety of food options like pickle lemonade, dill churros, fried candy bars, and your more standard fare of beer and produce. 

Visit a local park

If you’re looking for something a little more low key, but still want outdoor places to visit in Toronto so you can meet up with friends in a socially distanced manner, why not visit a local park? Toronto has many parks and the summer days are perfect for a socially distanced picnic lunch or get-together. You could check out High Park if you’re looking for something that has a range of trails and nature walks and even tennis courts. Tommy Thompson Park has closed its facilities right now, but bowler trails are still open for socially distanced passive use. If bird watching is your jam, make sure to visit here, as its one of the best locations within the inner city to bird watch.

Edwards Gardens

Edwards Gardens is one of the best outdoor places to visit in Toronto if you love plants and flowers. Originally, Rupert Edwards owned Edwards Gardens, however he sold it to the City of Toronto in the ’50s and it opened for all in 1956. It’s adjacent to the Toronto Botanical Gardens, and loved in the Don Valley. The best feature of Edwards Gardens is that it offers many options, depending on what activity level you’re looking for. There are areas for short walks, long hikes, and even picnic benches. Take some time to be outside and forget about COVID. There’s room to socially distance, and you can take in all the beauty you’d like. Make sure to check out the small waterfall and to enjoy the large weeping willow trees.

Stay in for a self care night

Do all of these things to do in Toronto make you feel tired? You could also consider staying in for a self-care night, instead of heading outdoors. As you plan your self-care night, don’t forget to think about what makes you recharge. For some, it’s cooking good food. For others, takeout would feel better. Relax, listen to some good music, have a tasty favorite drink, and enjoy the quiet and calm of a night of self-care.

As COVID-19 persists, its important that you stay connected to those you love. One way to do that safely is find fun outdoor activities. Consider a sprinter van which can easily transport your pod to your destination, safely and securely.

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