Thursday, 22 May 2014

Mini Break

Our dear friend mother nature kind of put a kink in my restaurant eating plans. I thought I'd be able to go enjoy some spring patio times but alas madam au natural had other plans. Rainy plans. Rainy, cold plans. Mother nature is definitely a b with an itch if you know what I'm saying. (You know what I'm saying right?) Don't worry there is plenty of summer patio funness to be had and I will keep you updated on all my yummy findings, but for now I would like to share something else that is super great about living in Hamilton. Are you ready? How about now...

It's only 45 minutes away from Toronto! Yay!! Yaaaaay!!

Okay so I haven't always been a huge TDOT fan (like when I was commuting to that unpaid internship) but I have to admit that it definitely has its perks. I recently spent a lovely weekend there with someone special and we partook in some very fun attractions. Seriously if you need a get away this summer but you're short on time I would definitely recommend a quick jot over to the little big city. It really does feel like a get away.

Here are the things we did that I think you should do too!

1) Ripley's Aquarium

This is NOT just for the kiddos. This had me ohhhing and ahhhing along the whole time we were there. It has some really cool fishies and some super scary but wicked sharks (by wicked I mean terrifying but I'm trying to play it cool and pretend that sharks don't scare the poop out of me, I mean I'm a gal who has nightmares about land sharks coming to get me...I'm not a shark fan) and other sea creatures. I touched a crab, a really small shark and a sting ray so I would say it's more than just looking through glass into their underwater worlds. There's tons of info as you go along and also a lot of interactive areas for the wee ones. Trust me, had it been less busy I would've crawled into the see through tunnel to have my picture taken with sharks but as it was there were thousands of small people running amok and I didn't want to be "that guy".

I would advise arriving early or buying your tickets online. We went in the morning and we didn't have to wait but when we left the line up was out the door and around the block so I would definitely plan to make this an early one.

To plan your underwater adventure click HERE.

Dinner recommendation: Sushi ;p

One of my favourite things at the aquarium. SO vibrant.

They look so happy and friendly...not like they could kill you or anything :/

pffft I know it's a robot...I'm cool. I'm cool. Get me awaaay from this thing.

2) Steam Whistle Brewery Tour

This was spontaneous but I'm so glad that we went to check it out. If you're a beer fan you will like this tour. There are three different admission prices. One is the souvenir tour which is $10 at the end of which you receive a bottle opener, the 6-pack tour which is $15 and you get a 6-pack to take with you or the 12-pack tour which is $26 and you get a 12-pack to take with you. All tours also come with a complimentary sample of Steam Whistle Pilsner. We did the 6-pack tour and it was SUCH a great deal! 

We didn't really plan it out so well so we actually ended up having Steam Whistle for lunch. Liquid lunch. We bought a pint while we waited for our tour and were also given a sample. Then we had a can on our tour and another sample after the tour. Let's just say we were slightly impaired by the end and then we both had 6 packs to carry around. Like I said we didn't really plan it out too well but we did have a great time and we learned a lot about Steam Whistle, like how they're the 2nd greenest brewery in North America and they only use 4 ingredients in their beer. I was pretty impressed.

Book your tour or find more info HERE.

Dinner Recommendation: Your Steam Whistle take aways.

REFRESHING!! This picture makes me wish I hadn't finished my 6-pack already.

3) Fort York

This one is cool because it's like walking into the past while still being in the middle of the city. You look in front of you and there is a lodging house from 1812, you look up and there are skyscrapers. It's very strange.

The day we went there was almost nobody else there. It was like a ghost town, which was kind of nice because we got to explore at our leisure. The site holds Canada's largest collection of original war of 1812 buildings and artifacts. There was very little interaction and the tour guide seemed a little bit uncomfortable but all in all I really enjoyed my time there. It was informative and I love history so it was right up my alley. It would be a great place to take the kidlets and have a picnic or something as there is also lots of green space. I'm pretty sure it was only $7 for adults so it would be a fairly priced day out as well.

For events and more information about Fort York click HERE.

Dinner recommendation: Although not close to the Fort I would recommend Johnny Rockets. It's a fun 50's inspired diner. You could go from 1812 to 1950 all in one day. Besides their butter finger milkshake is to die for. Seriously. I dropped mine and tears were almost shed.

An 1812 Soldier Lodging House.

Gats Yo!

There is SO much to do in Toronto and I do intend to go adventuring more this summer as well. Living just a hop, skip and a jump away definitely has its perks, but it's nice at the end of the day, or weekend to come back home to Hamilton where it's a little less congested and there isn't so much of a rush.