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A Museum Geek’s Visit to Toronto

When it comes to culture and museums in Canada, Toronto is a major hotspot.

This metropolis is the largest city and it is where some of the best collections of artwork and historical artefacts can be found. Checking out the museums of Toronto is the perfect activity for a rainy or wintry day.

Here are a few of the top cultural institutions in the city.

(PS. To make the most of your museum-hopping visit to Toronto, consider a Toronto CityPASS. It will give you great discounts on admission to many attractions and allow you to skip the ticket line.)

The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)

One of the largest museums in North America, the AGO dates back more than a century. It’s 2008 expansion was designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry. The museum is home to more than 80,000 works spanning 100 A.D. to the current day – offering a fascinating glimpse into the history of art and design.

It’s also home to the Thomson collection, donated by Ken Thomson. The largest gift ever made to a Canadian cultural institution, this collection features works by the Group of Seven as well as European masterpieces including a 17th century painting by Peter Paul Rubens.

The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)

Diverse, intriguing and kid-friendly – there’s something for everyone at the ROM. Young visitors will be intrigued by hands-on exhibits including a dinosaur dig, totem poles and a creepy bat cave.

Plus, there are some truly impressive historical artefacts including an intact Ming Tomb from China and busts from ancient Rome. The museum also hosts “Friday Night Live” every Friday at 7 pm, an event where the museums stays open late, the cocktails flow, food is served and a top DJ or live artist performs.

The Hockey Hall of Fame

There’s no denying the crucial role that hockey plays in the history and culture of Canada. This sports museum celebrates this, featuring exhibits about players, teams, legendary goals, records and much more.

If you feel inspired to try shooting on goal yourself, you can check out the interactive “Be a Player” zone, where you can take shots using real pucks at a computer simulation of goaltender Ed Belfour.

What is your favourite museum in Toronto? Share your tips and experiences in the comments below!