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5 Things to Do in Toronto Victoria Day: Top Activities in 2024

5 Things to Do in Toronto Victoria Day: Top Activities in 2024

From fireworks and parades to royal tributes and community gatherings, we’ll explore all the ways Canadians honor Queen Victoria’s legacy on this special day. Whether you’re a longtime participant or new to the celebrations, our blog is your go-to resource for all things to do on Toronto Victoria Day. 

Furthermore, on this special day, you can participate in events or enjoy free things to do in Toronto

Let’s uncover the magic and spirit of this iconic Canadian holiday together.

Victoria Day History 

Generally, Victoria Day is a federal public holiday in Canada observed on the last Monday preceding May 25 to honor Queen Victoria. It is considered the oldest national holiday in Canada, instituted even before Confederation in 1867.

As the name indicates, Victoria Day is the celebration of Queen Victoria’s birthday, which is on May 24th. However, in 1911, the holiday was permanently rededicated to honor Queen Victoria and moved to the Monday preceding May 25th.

Additionally, Victoria Day is the unofficial start of the summer season and is celebrated with various traditions such as camping, picnics, and parades.

Although Victoria Day is no longer celebrated as the sovereign’s actual birthday, it serves as an important part of Canadian history.

What to Do in Toronto on Victoria Day?

Are you spending Victoria Day in Toronto? Here are the fun activities you can do on this day. 

1. Victoria Day Fireworks at Ashbridges Bay Park

In general, there are several wonderful parks in Toronto where you can enjoy your time walking, biking, or going for a picnic. Among all of them, Ashbridges Bay Park is the one to go for the famous fireworks on Toronto Victoria Day. 

The best part is that this annual fireworks is totally free, and you can watch the Toronto night sparkle on the last Monday before May 25th. (It’s Monday, May 20th at 10 pm on 2024).

Ashbridges Bay is a huge park with several picnic shelters. Therefore, you can spend a night out on Toronto Victoria Day.

What are the other places to see Victoria Day fireworks in Toronto?

  • Canada Wonderland Amusement Park will also sparkle after 10. pm on Victoria Day.
  • You will also have a chance to see the Victoria Day fireworks at Toronto’s Dundas Driving Park. 
 Victoria Day fireworks at Ashbridges Bay Park
Victoria Day fireworks at Ashbridges Bay Park

2. Festivals and Cultural Events

Toronto hosts many festivals and events each year. Here are some of the top festivals you can attend for Victoria Day in Toronto: 

  • STACKT Asian Night Market (May 18-20) – Explore over 50 Asian-owned businesses, food vendors, and shopping for free. So, if you like Asian food, the STACKT can be a great food festival in Toronto
  • Stouffville Museum Community Day (May 18) – Free event celebrating local heritage.
  • Black Creek Pioneer Village “Once Upon a Time” (May 18-19) – The village is transformed into a storybook fantasyland with free admission.
  • Victoria Day Weekend Boat Party (May 18)- Enjoy a boat party hosted by Toronto Boat Parties and Oceanic Entertainment for an unforgettable night on Lake Ontario.
  • The Sticky Cheese Man and Other Fairy Stupid Tales (May18-June23)- The performance, which is based on a book by the same name, is presented at Wychwood Theatre in Toronto. Although it is one of the fun activities on Toronto Victoria Day, it runs until June 23, 2024. Furthermore, it is considered one of the fun Toronto nightlife activities for summer.
The Sticky Cheese Man and Other Fairy Stupid Tales Performance on Toronto Victoria Day
The Sticky Cheese Man and Other Fairy Stupid Tales Performance

3. Outdoor Activities

You have a chance to spend Victoria Day in Toronto with fun outdoor activities, including: 

  • The Great War Flying Museum (May 18-20) – See WW1 aircraft and exhibits for free.
  • Visit Toronto’s Parks, like High Park, trails, beaches, and the Toronto Zoo for free outdoor recreation.
  • Splash pads and spray parks across the city will be open from 9 am-9 pm for free.

4. Attractions and Museums

Several major attractions offer free admission over the weekend. Therefore, if you are a fan of museums and cultural attractions, don’t miss your chance to visit these museums for free: 

Centennial Park Conservatory

Do you like to spend your day in a place covered with a variety of flowers and plants? Centennial Park Conservatory is a popular attraction for visitors and contains several different types of conservatory greenhouses, including a tropical house, an arid house, and a showhouse. 

Each of these houses features a variety of plants and flowers from different regions and climates. Additionally, several events and festivals are held in this greenery during the year. 

Centennial Park Conservatory is open during Victoria Day long weekend and admission is free. 

Centennial Park Conservatory
Centennial Park Conservatory

Allan Gardens Conservatory

Another greenhouse you can visit on Victoria Day in Toronto is Allan Gardens Conservatory, which consists of five greenhouses. 

Besides being a greenhouse, Allan Gardens has a playground for kids. Therefore, it is considered a great outdoor activity for families interested in flowers and kids who want to play all day long. 

Allan Gardens Conservatory
Allan Gardens Conservatory

Riverdale Farm

This 7.5-acre property represents a 19th-century Ontario farm and is located in the Cabbagetown neighborhood of downtown Toronto. The Riverdale farm features various farm animals like cows, pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, horses, and donkeys, housed in heritage barns like the Francey Barn (built in 1858) and the Pig and Poultry Barn.

That’s not all! Riverdale Farm has more attractions, including:

  • Historic buildings on site include the Simpson House (a Victorian farmhouse), 
  • the Meeting House (for programs and events), a
  • Remnants of the old Riverdale Zoo like the Donnybrook Ruin and Island House.

While visiting this farm, you should note that you are not allowed to feed animals here. Furthermore, pets are not allowed on this farm, too. 

Riverdale Farm in Toronto
Riverdale Farm in Toronto

Toronto History Museums

As the name indicates, Toronto History Museums is a network of 10 museums focused on preserving and showcasing the history and heritage of Toronto and its diverse communities. They include: 

  • Colborne Lodge
  • Fort York National Historic Site
  • Gibson House Museum
  • Mackenzie House
  • Market Gallery
  • Montgomery’s Inn
  • Scarborough Museum
  • Spadina Museum
  • Todmorden Mills
  • Zion Schoolhouse

These museums can teach you a lot about Toronto’s history. For example, the Gibson House Museums offers an experience of early 19th-century life. 

Additionally, like any other city, Toronto has faced different wars during its existence, such as the War of 1812. If you want to learn about these historic moments, you can visit Fort York National Historic Site. 

The best part is that all these museums are free. They also offer guided tours to help you get the most out of your visit.

Moreover, at some special events, like Victoria Day in Toronto, you will have a chance to attend an event or exhibit. However, you should expect to pay a fee for attending these events, as they usually can only host limited guests. 

Fort York National Historic Site in Toronto
Fort York National Historic Site

5. Other Events

Besides visiting museums or watching fireworks and picnicking in the park, Toronto offers some exciting events on Victoria Day, such as: 

Formula 1 Exhibition in Toronto 

If you are a fan of car racing, you should visit the Formula 1 Exhibition in Toronto. This event is held at the Lighthouse ArtSpace from May 3, 2024, until early summer. 

Are you wondering what you can see in this exhibition? The 20,000 sq ft exhibition features six specially designed rooms with exclusive interviews, iconic F1 cars from different eras, historical artefacts, and archive video material.

Additionally, this exhibition showcases 39 past winners’ trophies, 97 helmets, 5 race suits, and 4 F1 race cars contributed by 8 different F1 teams. The tour usually takes 90 minutes. However, it will be the most exciting 90 minutes for fans of this sport. 

Formula 1 Exhibition in Toronto
Formula 1 Exhibition in Toronto 

Cirque du Soleil: ECHO show

ECHO is a new Cirque du Soleil production. It combines poetry, stagecraft, daring acrobatics, and innovative technologies in a spectacular performance.

The show will be performed at 2150 Lake Shore Blvd West in Toronto from May 8, 2024, to July 21, 2024.

Cirque du Soleil: ECHO show
Cirque du Soleil: ECHO show

Note: All the dates on this post are related to Toronto Victoria Day in 2024. The dates of the shows and exhibitions may change next year. Therefore, it is recommended to check out the calendar before attending any event or festival. 

Bottom Line 

Without a doubt, Victoria Day is a special day in Canada. You can join different events and festivals in Toronto Victoria Day. Furthermore, you shouldn’t miss the fireworks that make the sky sparkle at night. We mentioned some of the top things you can do on this long weekend. 

Since most of these activities are free, you don’t have any excuse to stay home. So, get up and explore the city and its fun activities on Victoria Day. 


1. Where to Watch Victoria Day Fireworks in Toronto?

The most famous park to watch fireworks on Toronto Victoria Day is Ashbridges Bay Park. However, you can still see the fireworks at Canada Wonderland Amusement Park and Dundas Driving Parks.

2. Are There Any Restrictions or Regulations in Place for Celebrating Victoria Day in Toronto?

Some possible restrictions or regulations may exist for celebrating Toronto Vicrtoria Day.  These may include noise bylaws for fireworks displays, parking restrictions for events or parades, and alcohol consumption regulations in public spaces. 

Thus, it is advisable to check with local authorities or event organizers for specific guidelines and requirements.

3. Are Stores and Businesses Open on Victoria Day in Toronto?

Since Victoria Day is a public holiday, most retail stores, malls, tourist attractions, and businesses are closed. However, some restaurants, convenience stores, and tourist sites may have special holiday hours.

4. Can I Take the Ferry to the Toronto Islands on Victoria Day?

Yes, the ferries to the Toronto Islands operate on their regular schedule on Victoria Day. Additionally, the islands are a popular destination for picnics, recreation, and viewing the fireworks.

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