It seems the opening of the Toronto Islands on July 31 has managed to salvage some of our summer fun. Many people have been anxiously awaiting the reopening of the Toronto Islands to the public. As of April this year, the islands were severely flooded — even in mid-June 50 per cent of the land was still underwater.
While this presented a stunning and unusual visual for photographers, many Torontonians and tourists were left seeking activities elsewhere as they dealt with the frustration of the closure.
Now that the islands have reopened, many businesses are hoping to recover from the losses endured over the first few months of summer. One example is the amusement park on Centre Island. Centreville has long been a fun family favourite for parents will small kids looking to enjoy a relaxing day with celebrated rides. Earlier in July, the owner of Centreville, Bill Beasley announced the amusement park will be selling their 110-year-old carousel ride for $3 million in an effort to sell off assets to bring in some form of revenue due to the extended closure. It is estimated the company lost over $6 million due to the flooding and this is just one of many business on the island
Now that the Islands have reopened, Women’s Post has some tips and key points to remember while visiting the Toronto Island.
- Ferry service, recreational programs and summer camps are all reopened on the islands. Ferry tickets can be purchased online to avoid the rush at toronto.ca/ferry
- Take your time to enjoy the beaches again! Centre Island beach, Wards Island beach and Hanlan’s Point beach will all be open and only certain areas will be closed off and due to raised water levels the beaches may appear much different this year. There are also many wading pools and splash ponds to cool off in the heat.
- Eat some delicious grub! The Toronto Islands are home to interesting and delicious restaurants such as the Carousel Café on Centre Island, The Rectory and Island Café on Wards Island and various other food stands along the way selling small treats such as popcorn, ice cream and hot dogs. The perfect summer treats.
- Rent a bike! Earlier this year, it was announced the long-standing Toronto Island Bike Rental on Centre Island would close its doors, but thankfully this is not the case. Help keep this fun business going and rent some tandem bikes or quadricycles as you get in some summer fitness and leisure.
- As a reminder, some parts of the Toronto Islands are still off limits due to flooding and this includes areas such as Olympic Island. It is wise to pay attention to signs and blocked areas to ensure your safety.
So get out there and enjoy your summer Toronto! Let us know in the comments below how you feel about the reopening of (some) of the islands.