The beautiful spring weather always brings us something special to look forward to. And that is all the trees and flowers starting to grow and eventually blooming with gorgeous colors. It’s the beginning of a new season and awakening of our senses that got buried in the cold and dreary winter weather. Each spring gives us an opportunity to revisit new and familiar places where nature showers us with all its glory. This week I wanted to share with you a few amazing sights around my city where nature gives us such special delights. One of those being the beautiful cherry blossoms that are always such a pleasure to see in Toronto around this time of the year. And I hope you get to visit Toronto sometime to see these wonderful sights for yourself.
Why Cherry Blossoms Are Amazing To See In Toronto!
History Of Cherry Blossoms In Toronto
I did a little research to find out how exactly cherry blossoms or Sakura trees have made their way to Toronto. Apparently it all started with a gift from the Japanese ambassador to Canada in 1959. 2000 Somei-Yoshino Sakura trees were given to the citizens of Toronto on behalf of Tokyo citizens. The trees were given as a gesture of gratitude for Toronto accepting Japanese-Canadians after World War II. Several trees were then planted at the Hillside Gardens in High Park.
Since then many more cherry blossoms trees were planted all over Toronto parks. Also, the Japanese consulate initiated The Sakura Project in 2000 and as a result there’s approx. 3000 trees planted all over Ontario. So as you can see there are many places you can spot these beautiful trees in and around Toronto.
The cherry blossoms blooming season usually runs from late April to early May. So if you’re planning a spring visit to Toronto make sure you take this into consideration if you want to catch a glimpse of these stunning blooms. So without further ado here’s 11 awesome places you can find cherry blossoms in Toronto.
1. High Park
I had an opportunity to head out to this famed area in Toronto to see cherry blossoms; High Park. This area is always a very popular spot to see cherry blossoms in Toronto. During the bloom period of the blossoms you can expect large crowds of people at any time of the day. So keep that in mind when you venture out. Perhaps try to get out there in the morning to avoid some of the crowds and pack some patience. It might take a few tries to get the perfect pictures with the lovely trees without someone photo-bombing you :). I know, I’ve been there lol.
High Park is Toronto’s largest public park featuring many hiking trails, sports facilities, diverse vegetation, a beautiful lakefront, convenient parking, easy public transit access, a dog park, a zoo, playgrounds for children, a couple of eateries, greenhouses, picnic areas and lots of events throughout the year.
Address: 1873 Bloor Street (at High Park subway station)
2. Mount Pleasant Cemetery
Okay I know what you might be thinking, why would I go to a cemetery to see cherry blossoms? Right? Well, honestly I wouldn’t have found these trees if it wasn’t for the fact that my parents live in the area. They were the ones who spotted the trees and alerted me to their location. There are a few beautiful trees planted around the grounds and there are usually very little crowds. So this is a perfect opportunity to see these blooms in all their glory without dodging large crowds. The Mount Pleasant Cemetery is one of Canada’s most historic cemeteries with beautiful monuments that can be seen all over the grounds. It has served Toronto since 1876.
Address: 375 Mount Pleasant Road
3. Centennial Park
This is probably the second most favorite place to see cherry blossoms in Toronto. There’s about 200 trees planted in this park. If you have time it might be worthwhile to venture out to the east end of the city to see the blooms there. This park is located at the northwest corner of Toronto. It is home to the Etobicoke Olympium, Centennial Park Ski hill and Chalet, Centennial Arena, Centennial Park Conservatory, Centennial Park Stadium and a new BMX bike park. There are also a number of playgrounds, sport fields, baseball and softball diamonds, picnic areas and a wading pool.
Address: 151 Elmcrest Road
4. Trinity Bellwoods Park
Trinity Bellwoods Park is another popular place in Toronto to see cherry blossoms. The path southeast of Trinity Circle is where you find cherry trees. This park is one of Toronto’s largest public downtown greenspaces. There’s always something interesting happening at this park from farmer’s markets, movie nights to public parades. Or just come down to have a nice family picnic on the grounds.
Address: 790 Queen Street West
5. Centre Island
Apparently there are about 30 cherry blossom trees located on the south end of the bridge on Centre Island. They’re close to the fountain. It’s also just a short 10-minute walk from the ferry dock. Toronto Islands are a popular place to visit to see beautiful views of the whole city over the waterfront. There are numerous attractions on the islands that you can make a day out of it and explore. My favorite is Ward’s Island as I find it much more relaxed and less populated than Centre Island. It also has a quiet beach that I like to visit in the summer. Centre Island is definitely more family friendly with different activities well suited for kids. These islands are a nice getaway from the city and are great to visit as the weather gets warmer.
Address: Take the ferry to Centre Island from the Jack Layton Ferry terminal at 9 Queens Quay W.
6. Woodbine Park
Last year 20 brand new cherry blossoms have been planted at Woodbine Park. They now form a tunnel of cherry trees near the waterfront. What a fantastic idea to head out to the beaches area and also see these gorgeous blooms. Woodbine Park was completed in 2002. It is located on the site of the old Greenwood Racetrack and is believed to be the largest residential development to have appeared in old City of Toronto in many decades. It spans 83 acres and is bounded by Coxwell Avenue to the west, Woodbine Avenue to the east, Lakeshore Boulevard to the south and Queen Street East to the north.
Address: 1695 Queen St E.
7. Cherry Beach
If you’re looking for more places to see cherry blossoms head over to Cherry Beach. You can get a glimpse of these pretty blooms on the northeast corner of Cherry Street and Villiers. There are about 45 cherry trees you can find at this location. Cherry Beach is a lakeside beach park located at the foot of Cherry Street just south of Unwin Avenue.
Address: Intersection of Cherry and Villiers Streets
8. Broadacres Park
If you don’t mind heading out to Etobicoke you can look forward to seeing about 100 cherry blossom trees. You can find them in the southwest corner of this park. They are conveniently planted in neat rows. This park features 5.7-hectare grounds near Burnhamthorpe Road and The West Mall. It includes a children’s playground and a large open green space.
Address: 35 Crendon Drive, Etobicoke
9. Cedar Ridge Park
Another small collection of cherry blossoms can be found at Cedar Ridge Park. This is a well-landscaped park with lush flowering trees, shrubs, and bulbs. It’s located on the property of a restored mansion, and the surrounding grounds feature a series of lush traditional gardens with scenic woods and vistas. This park is a popular wedding photography location and a pretty spot for a picnic. It also houses the Cedar Ridge Creative Centre where the city runs creative arts programs.
Address: 225 Confederation Road
10. University of Toronto
University of Toronto is a great spot to see cherry blossoms. You can see the trees at just outside of the Robarts Library. They can be found across the grounds from Huron Street to Harbord Street. There are about 70 trees at this location. Or head out to the Scarborough campus where you can find 50 trees located in front of the Humanities Wing. Both of these places are definitely some hidden gems in the city where you can also see the trees without huge crowds.
Address: Toronto – Huron Street to Harbord Street
Address: Scarborough – 1265 Military Trail
11. Exhibition Place
In May of 2002, the Sakura Project donated 68 cherry blossom trees to Exhibition Place. The trees can be seen in various location such as: General Services Building, Press Building, Bandshell Park, Better Living Centre/Princess Margaret Fountain, Queen Elizabeth Offices/FountainBlu and at Liberty Grand. Take a stroll through the picturesque grounds and spot the beautiful flowering trees in peace. Exhibition Place is a leading destination for trade and consumer shows, meetings, conferences, conventions and community space. It attracts more than 5.5 million visitors a year and offers: convention, exhibition and conference venues, sporting facilities, restaurants, nightclubs, and attractions in a beautiful 192-acre parkland.
Address: 100 Princes’ Blvd
Plan To Visit Cherry Blossoms In The Future
If you live in Toronto or plan to visit sometime in the spring, I hope you get to venture out to at least some of the above-mentioned places. I myself need to check out those I haven’t been to yet. It’s really amazing what nature has created and I feel very fortunate to live in a city that offers such beautiful sights. For more fun stuff happening in Toronto head over to my article about the St. Lawrence Market Summer Series events. If you want us to cover one of your events feel free to reach out to us via the Contact Form.
Have you seen cherry blossoms trees before? Where have you seen them? Have you found them in any unusual or out of the way places? Share with me in the comments below. I’d love to hear about your experiences.
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