You can do more than you think for less than $10 in Toronto. Most major cities can be expensive places to live and visit, but if you know where to look there’s usually a whole host of things to see and do that offer a budget-friendly way to explore—and Toronto is no exception. Sure, it’s easy to splurge in the city if you want to, but if you’re looking to save money while still having fun and discovering what Toronto has to offer, you’re in luck. Here are some of the best cheap things to do in Toronto, all for under $10.
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A scenic ferry ride to the Toronto Islands will cost you just under $8 (including the return trip) and once you’re there you have your pick of fun things to see and do. If you’ve got kids, Centre Island is a great place to visit, with over 30 rides and attractions at Centreville Theme Park, plus picnic areas and BBQ sites. Ward’s Island is ideal for a picturesque stroll among the area’s quaint residences, as well as for a stop at the Island Café for a drink or a snack. Hanlan’s Point offers picnic sites, tennis courts, firepits and a bike trail. You’ll find beaches in all three areas, including a clothing-optional stretch of sand at Hanlan’s Point.
Catch a Comedy Show
Need a good laugh? Comedy Bar on Bloor St. features an event calendar filled with comedy shoes for between $5 and $8. Check the listings to see what’s happening when at the west end sketch, stand-up and improv venue. An affordable snack menu is also available to satisfy your cravings with many items hovering around the $10 mark.
Do Some Morning Yoga
Set your alarm and get yourself up bright and nearly on a Wednesday morning for some yoga at the Gladstone Hotel. Their second-floor gallery space makes a beautiful setting for practicing your downward dog and relieving any mid-week stress. Drop-in classes run from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. and cost just $5.
Toronto has a booming beer scene and if you’ve ever wanted to learn a bit more about the brewing process, brewery tours are a great way to do it. Over at Amsterdam BrewHouse you can see how Amsterdam’s beers are made with a free 30-minute tour that includes a tasting. Henderson Brewing also offers tours where you’ll get to see their brewing facilities as well as learn about the history of brewing in Toronto. Tours are $5 with a tasting of the beers they’re currently brewing, or free without the tasting.
See a Cheap Movie
Going to the movies can be expensive, especially when it comes to seeing the latest blockbuster on a giant screen or in 3D. But there are ways to make the movie-going experience more affordable in the city. On Tuesdays at Carleton Cinema downtown you can catch a movie for just $5.
Check Out the Bata Shoe Museum
Learn all about the history of footwear at this unique Toronto museum where, on Thursday evenings from 5 to 8 p.m., admission is "pay what you can" with a suggested donation of just $5. The small yet comprehensive collection over five floors features over a thousand shoes and related artifacts ranging from ancient Egyptian sandals to Elvis Presley’s blue patent loafers.
Play Some Board Games
If you’re looking for an entertaining yet low-key way to spend an afternoon—for under $10—you can head to one of two locations of Snakes & Lattes and play a few board games. A $6 cover charge gets you access to a huge library of games covering everything from strategy to trivia. Not sure what to play? Ask a staff member to help you choose the best game for you. If you get hungry mid-game, food and drinks are available for purchase.
Head to the Horseshoe for Live Music
Toronto’s legendary Horseshoe Tavern has been open since 1947 and is one of the best places in the city to see some live music. If you happen to be on a budget, or you’re just looking for something cheap to do of an evening, head to the “Shoe” (as it’s known by locals) on Monday night for Shoeless Mondays or Tuesdays for Dave Bookman’s Nu Music Night to see up-and-coming acts for no cover charge. Tickets for other shows (depending on the band or musician) can also be found for under $10 in some cases—keep an eye on the upcoming events page.