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A Guide to the Toronto Christmas Market

Photo via Instagram @toxmasmkt

When:

The Toronto Christmas Market starts on November 15th and runs until December 23rd.

Hours:

The market is CLOSED Mondays
12pm to 9pm Tuesday to Thursdays
12pm to 10pm Fridays
10am to 10pm Saturdays
10am to 9pm Sundays

Cost:

Free on weekdays, then charges $6 on the weekends from 5pm on Friday through to Sunday. You can also purchase the Express Pass Ticket which costs $20 per person but we suggest just getting there early and saving the $14 for goodies and treats once you’re inside. Tickets can be purchased online here or in the Ticket Tent Sale which is just north of the grounds on Trinity Street but better to get them ahead of time online to save yourself the headache of lining up.

Photo via Instagram  @jenannross

When to go:

When you decide to go is circumstantial to your everyday life but we’ll give you a low down of what to expect at various times and then you can make your choice… First, you should think about what day is best. Tuesdays to Thursdays are hands down way less busy than Fridays and the weekends, not to mention has free entrance! If the weekends work best for you and you don’t mind overwhelming crowds then go for it. Otherwise, we suggest a weekday after 5pm when the sun goes down and you can really take in all of the beautiful Christmas lights and decorations.

How to get there:

The way of transportation you choose typically depends on where you’re coming from. If you’re coming from within the city, or even outside Toronto with direct access to a GO station, we suggest taking the TTC which is super simple and cost-effective. Parking can be a bit of a headache depending on when you go. If you’re planning on Friday night or weekend then be cautious as this is the most popular time, meaning traffic and finding a spot can be an issue. Plus the money you’ve allocated for parking is much better spent on mulled wine and turkey legs! Find directions here.

If you want to be a 10-minute streetcar and Uber trip away or alternatively, a 20-minute walk, it’s always an option to stay at a downtown Toronto hotel like One King West which brings you near the Distillery District. If you streetcar, grab the 504A Eastbound across the street on the Southeast corner, take it to Parliament Street and walk two blocks south to the Parliament entrance into the Distillery.

Photo via Instagram @ouradventurediary

What to do:

Shop, eat, drink, watch and ride. That pretty much sums everything there is to do at the Toronto Christmas Market and it’s a lot. Between the many eclectic stores in the Distillery District and the seasonal vendors welcomed for the 6-week period, there’s an overload of places to visit and do some holiday shopping. Our favourites are Gotstyle for the newest fashion trends and Blackbird Vintage Finds to find a present for everyone on your list – even yourself!

Eating is our favourite thing to do in this market but always causes us the biggest dilemma. You’ll come across various tents of delicious eats throughout and choosing what you’re going to get is never an easy decision. We definitely suggest choosing eats from the vendors such as these delicious options:

– DAS KARTOFFELHAUS’ Tornado Potato
– Fresh Canadian Poutine
– Käse-Sandwich: hot grilled-cheese on artisan bread
– Raclette
– Weiner Haus’ Bratwurst, Farmer’s Sausage, Hungarian Sausage, etc.
– Wafel Bar: fresh caramelized Liège styled waffles


Photo via Instagram @chauingthrulife

To drink, there’s nothing like the warm mulled wine on a cold day which you can find at all hospitality lounges except the Mill Street Beer Garden. Pure Spirits Oysters house is one of the hospitality lounges and is where you’ll find that infamous ‘Naughty or Nice’ light sign which always makes for some great photos. In addition to mulled wine, you can sip on Amarula Cream Liqueur.

Entertainment comes in many forms within the Toronto Christmas Market. From carolers, to live music and carnival rides, there always seems to be something going on every day. Check this link to see what you can expect when you go.

Photo via Instagram @toxmasmkt

Make it an early Christmas vacation:

It can be quite chaotic ahead of the holidays so if you can take an opportunity to refresh and take a load off, why wouldn’t you? Have a mini getaway at a downtown Toronto hotel so you’re close to all of the action happening in the city. One King West offers the perfect home-away-from-home setting where you can unwind after a day of shopping. When you go to the Christmas Market, how amazing would it be to have to only travel 5 to 10 minutes there and back and knowing that you have a warm and welcoming suite waiting for you? VERY amazing. Give yourself an early Christmas present! Head here to browse our modern home-inspired suites.

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