Ontario is slowly opening the economy, which is a good thing. We don’t want to see ourselves in a fourth lockdown! The Province has announced that Step One will begin the week of June 14, 2021 and this will allow outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people, outdoor dining with up to four people per table and non-essential retail at 15 percent capacity. These are baby steps, but we are moving in the right direction. With the relaxation of outdoor gathering rules and Toronto attractions remaining closed for the near future, it’s easy to see that people will flock to Toronto parks to enjoy outdoor activity. Read further to learn about Toronto east end parks to explore:
Rosetta McClain Gardens
Located just off of Kingston Road, just east of Birchmount Road, Rosetta McClain Gardens is a favourite sanctuary of mine. The centerpiece of the park is the soothing rock fountain, which is surrounded by flowerbeds and benches on which to languish. This park has more restrictions than other parks including no dogs allowed (except service animals), which makes this Toronto east park a little more subdued than others. Head to the northeast section of the park to see the exquisite rose gardens, and be sure to take a selfie under the pergola or gazebo. Sit at the southeast section of the park and enjoy a spectacular view of Lake Ontario from high up on the Scarborough Bluffs. 5 Glen Everest Road, Scarborough. See some of the gorgeous flowers at Rosetta McClain Gardens.
Ashbridges Bay Park
Located at 1561 Lake Shore Blvd. East, Ashbridges Bay Park is the lesser-known neighbour of Woodbine Beach. If you are seeking relief from the blazing sun, you will enjoy a walk along the paths shaded by the towering evergreens. Sit by the bay and admire the sailboats docked at Ashbridges Bay Yacht Club. The walking trails follow the shore of Lake Ontario where you can enjoy lake breezes. If the call of Woodbine Beach and the beach basketball games are too much, you can circle back and walk eastward to where the crowds are sunbathing.
Glen Stewart Ravine
You will really forget that you’re in the city when you descend the steps into this sliver of a park located in the Beaches. You’ll find lush greenery as you walk along the boardwalk trails; be forewarned: there is no way around the numerous stairs to descend and ascend the park.
Bluffers Park draws crowds for the impressive Scarborough Bluffs that tower over this beach park. Although many daredevils ignore the City of Toronto warnings not to climb the bluffs, inevitably each year, some people get stuck on the cliffs and must get rescued by emergency personnel. So you can definitely take a photo from afar, but please don’t climb the bluffs or cross the barriers that have been set up to prevent this. Bluffers Park is in fact two main islands with walking trails and a popular beach for swimming. Four yacht clubs call Bluffers Park home, as well as two restaurants, The Dogfish Pub & Eatery and Bluffers Restaurant, where a patio table will give you a spectacular view of the marina and Lake Ontario. Bluffers Park is located at 1 Brimley Road South.
Guild Park & Gardens (formerly Guildwood Park)
Home to The Guild Inn, an arts and crafts style mansion, this Toronto east end park is an oasis of gardens, sculptures and woodlands. The home, owned by the prominent Clark family, served as a hub for artists including contemporaries and students of the Group of Seven. In 1978, the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority purchased the property to be used as a public park. The Guild Inn has recently undergone a multi-million dollar renovation and is now being used as a restaurant and popular wedding venue. Follow the southward trails to discover gorgeous vistas of Lake Ontario. Guild Park is located at 201 Guildwood Parkway.
I hope you get a chance to explore Toronto east end parks this summer. Let me know in the comment section if you visit one of the parks mentioned above.