Walking is one of the best forms of mind-clearing exercises we can do. It doesn’t require a membership and no fancy equipment. Just a good pair of walking shoes. We can plan a route or just wander. We can go solo, with family, with friends, and our dogs. During the pandemic we saw more people exploring by foot. We discovered pockets in the city that we had never ventured to before. The fresh air and the slow down did us good. We’ve kept it going, too!

We’ve taken the time to look around and even listened to various podcasts. Smartless, Scamfluencers and so many more. It inspired our team led by Heather to create our Favourite Podcasts posts. Libby also just wrote about her latest Mindful Meditation and the benefits of walking. Nathalie is often sharing her Forest Bathing” posts, and Carole explored by foot on her travels. We love how she stumbled across discoveries that are new to her!

I’ve been inspired to keep walking also by listening to the Apple Fitness+ Time to Walk series. Some of the most famous and (real) influential people in the world share their personal life and career stories on this series. What makes this series really interesting is each person is also on a walk while they are telling their story. They are right there with you! A few of my favourites include Jamie Lee Curtis, Christiane Amanpour, Dolly Parton, Jon M. Chu, Constance Wu, and Simu Liu. There are many more!

Apple Watch - Time to walk

Since National Walking Day is April 6, here are some of our favourite places in and around Toronto for a walk…

Trillium Park and William G. Davis Trail: 

Most Torontonians know Ontario Place but there’s also a wonderful trail and park space to enjoy. Here you can take in native trees, plants, flowers and beautiful sedimentary rocks and boulders. The park was designed in consultation with people from across Ontario, including the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

William G. Davis Trail - Ontario Place - Trillium Park - photo credit Sonya Davidson

Ashbridges Bay Park & Woodbine Beach: 

On a quiet weekday anytime of the year we love to walk along the boardwalk especially with our pup. The water always seems to calm and soothe (even when it’s winter and snowed over). We’ll take the boardwalk all the way to the east end where the water plant is situated and where the beach stones are the smoothest around. This is also part of the Martin Goodman Trail.

Ashbridges Bay and Woodbine Beach

Evergreen Brick Works & Lower Don Valley: 

There are several trails in this popular public park area. Some lead you in and out like the “Milkman’s Run” that starts at Castle Frank subway station. We usually start at Chorley Park and work our way into the Evergreen Brick Works proper and enjoy the ravine along the way.This revitalized space continues to evolve from its industrial days and returning more nature to the city. When you’re exploring, be sure to stop into Cafe Belong for one of their famous blueberry scones.

Evergreen Brick Works

Centre Island & Wards Island:

Take an easy ferry ride or water taxi across to the island for an afternoon to just get away from the city’s core and explore. Follow the paths that lead you to the most southern parts of the islands and walk in peace. Centre Island is busy in the summer with families taking in Centreville amusement park but once you get past that, it’s calming.

Queen’s Quay & Waterfront: 

Taking public transit we’ll start our route at the foot of Yonge & Queen’s Quay  and head west. You can also start closer to Sugar Beach near the Redpath Buildings. Keep an eye out for really cool public, and permanent, art installations. Stop into the Power Plant Contemporary Gallery (admission is free) for the latest exhibition and continue along the water’s edge. You’ll walk past Toronto’s Music Garden and maybe even catch a summer concert.

Waterfront Toronto - Walks

Sherwood Park: (Midtown)

This beautiful forested park is popular off leash dog walking. Wander through tall trees on the trail alongside the ravine. The fall is spectacular with the crisp cool air and the canopy of colourful leaves on the tall trees above.  It connects to several other walking trails. It’s hard to believe that this is in the city.

Glendon College:

Behind the school is a stunning park and trail but parking requires a little sourcing. With the tree lined paths and the ravine that runs through it,  it’s stunning in the fall when the leaves change from green to goldens and reds.

Glendon Park - fall - autumn leaves

U of T Philosopher’s Walk:

Just steps behind the ROM is a pathway that takes you through the University of Toronto grounds. The campus is steeped in history. Spotting along the walkway are homes and buildings steeped in history. Sculptures and plaques offer insight. In the Springtime (early May) you’ll also find cherry blossom trees at the Robarts Library grounds. A popular spot for enjoying these seasonal blooms.

High Park: 

Always popular and easy to get to also by public transit. There are many hiking trails in Toronto’s latest public park space. Of course, a big draw is the spring Magnolia and Cherry Tree blossoms in early May. But there’s more to this open space to explore including Chinese gardens, Grenadier Pond, and even a zoo. In the summer, you can also enjoy open air theatre.Bluffer's Park ScarboroughBluffer’s Park: (Scarborough)

There are many parks to explore in the area but Bluffer’s Park is the largest one. Here you’re surrounded and protected by the tall cliffs. Geese and ducks spot the shoreline. A beach is there as well. Popular in the summer for picnics.