Mobile sign in image
Sign in

16 Ways To Not Be A Tourist In Toronto

Because there's more to the city than an Instagram of the CN tower.
16 Ways To Not Be A Tourist In Toronto

Torontonians, as basic as we may be at heart, would never admit it. With the temperatures rising and the patio crawlers emerging from hibernation, Toronto's tourist appeal is booming more than ever. And why shouldn't it be! With world class museums, beaches, sports teams and so much more, Toronto has never been more ready for an influx of double decker tour buses and fanny pack carrying tourists.

But let's get one thing straight; we're not tourists, we're Torontonians. We were born and bred here. We live here. We eat, party, recover, and explore here. It's not #wethenorthfor2weeks but #wethenorth24/7. But with Toronto being the amazing city there is, it always seems that there's more to do. So how do you distinguish yourself from the mass amounts of tourists that are expected to flock the 6ix this summer? You could hit up this list, or you could play your odds and try and be a "local" hitting up the CN tower.

1. Don't caption every landscape/scenic picture with #viewsfromthe6ix

Straight up sign you're not from around here. We all know, we have #views of the city every day, that kind of thing should just be expected.

2. Look like you know where you're going in the PATH

We know you are, that shit is like the labyrinth down there; but don't let anyone know you think that. All true Torontonian's know how to keep their cool when they have no clue where they're going.

3. Limit yourself to not only looking at the art at the AGO

The AGO does has amazing work displayed, but there the Toronto art scene offers amazing alternatives for those looking for more local works. Check out 401 Richmond, Division Gallery, or The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery for starters.

4.  Buy that ridiculously overpriced beer at a Jays Game

Some tourists may tighten the purse strings for this one, but you know that hometown pride is worth dropping a crisp 1o dollar bill for a drink.

5. Don't order anything other than a double double at Tim Horton's.

It's just a classic. And if you call it a grande you may get a puck in the face.

6. Don't say, ToronTOE

It's always, always, ALWAYS pronounced Turrono.

7. Stay away from the chain restaurants

The Toronto food scene is nothing less than straight fire right now. All true Torontonians know that a brunch at School, Rose and Son's, or Uncle Betty's definitely surpasses any chain brand.

8. Always say you live within 5 minutes of a subway line

Don't lie, no one wants to say there anywhere farther than the heart of the city. A give away sign your not from Toronto is saying something like, "ya it's like a 45 minute drive from the GTA so it's pretty much in Toronto".

9. End up at an underground Korean Karaoke Bar

We know we always start the night with the intention of maintaining of northern class, but Toronto knows that ending a night with your squad belting Celine Dion is much more worth it than waiting for 2 hours to get into Cube.

10. Sport any kind of Toronto related apparel

You think this would be a giveaway, but if you've stepped outside recently you'd realize that as Torontonians we like to make it f*cking clear who we are. From Raptor's jerseys, Jay's caps, to "Toronto Vs. Everyone" shirts we love it all. This isn't some airport merchandise, this is homegrown apparel we're proud to rock.

11. Don't just limit yourself to Sweet Jesus

We get it, it's something that everyone has to experience (even if you're really only going for the Insta). Hit up G for Gelato, Dutch Dreams, and Hollywood Gelato and you can easily distinguish yourself from the tourists by going to these hidden gems.

12. Go to a hidden bar

Finding a place to get a drink in Toronto is easy, the hard part is knowing which ones are worth the wait. Hidden bars make you seem even more in the know hence less touristy. Check out The Wallflower, Cold Tea, Bar With No Name, or The Hole In The Wall T.O.

13. Don't be that person to pay 50 plus dollars for an event when you can do them for free

No, I'm not talking about breaking the law. Toronto has so many amazing events going on in the city for free for locals to take advantage of. From Yoga In The Park, events at Luminato, going down to Queen to watch the MMVAs, Legos and Lager at the Gladstone, live music at Roy Thompson Hall, Adult Colouring at the Gladstone, to free movies in the park, the locals know when it's worth dropping the cash or when they can do it for free.

14. Don't be afraid of your bandwagon status

I have all the faith in the world in our teams, but sometimes we are a little (to quote Katy Perry), hot and cold. Are we going to make it? The constant stress may make some people only hop on when we start doing really well. And as back as that sounds it's something that we all recognize, and instead of denying the extra love we've learned to embrace all the fans of Toronto teams. So bandwagon or not, you're there to support you're team and a true local wouldn't judge.

15. Always give yourself more time to get around on the TTC

Shuttle buses from delays are my second home.

16. If you understand the weather, you're definitely not from here

Is that snow? Rain? Hail? Oh, just my dandruff? Who knows in this city when it's 25 degrees one day then 10 and raining the next. Keeps us on our toes though.

At the end of the day one thing that can never separate you from the tourists is the amount of love you'll have for the city.

Follow us on Snapchat: narcitytoronto

Stay Informed
Get Toronto's latest and greatest stories every day straight to your inbox.

Mandatory Vaccination Will Kick In For TTC Workers Next Month & Their Jobs Are On The Line

The TTC says the change could mean fewer service hours for Torontonians, too!

Employees with the TTC only have a few months to get vaccinated or face losing their job, according to its new mandatory vaccination policy.

According to a release posted on October 15, the transit agency said unvaccinated employees will be put on unpaid leave on November 20 and fired after December 31 if they do not get vaccinated or share their proof of vaccination.

Keep Reading Show less

13 Things 2 West Coast Girls Wished They Knew Before Moving To Toronto

Dundas Square is overrated and the winters are actually worse in the 6ix.

Canada is one of the biggest countries in the world and each province and coast has its own quirks and individual culture from weather to slang.

Here's what two west coast girls from Vancouver and Calgary wish they knew before moving to downtown Toronto.

Keep Reading Show less

Have you always wanted to see Ireland's rolling green hills or epic cliffs? Well, travelling to Europe from Toronto is about to become a lot less expensive than you might think.

WestJet announced in a press release on October 5 that direct flights between Dublin and Toronto will be coming this spring.

Keep Reading Show less

New Presto Card Changes Are Now In Effect & It's Easier To Get Caught Evading Your Fare

The system update will also show you the funds left on your card when you tap.

Calling all PRESTO card users: there's a new update to the card system that will show TTC drivers (and yourself, of course) everything there is to know about your PRESTO.

In an announcement posted on September 24, the TTC said they've updated PRESTO card reader screens, so they'll show how much you've paid if you're transferring, how much is left on your card, and whether or not you're paying with a monthly pass.

Keep Reading Show less