Only a few days into the new year, I took a trip up to Canada to visit someone very important to me. While normally my trips up there involve me staying out in the rural parts of Ontario, on my last trip we spent a couple days towards in a more urban setting. It was the first time I got to visit Toronto, and while visiting a Canadian City on a waterfront in winter may not sound like a good idea, the city has a little secret. 

My “guide” and I went into the city by train, landing ourselves in the main travel hub of the city. But, instead of going outside to face the elements and traffic of the streets, she brought me somewhere different to get to our destination. See, since Canada is a country known for harsh winters due to how far north it is, the businesses were prepared for bad weather. Underneath the city is a large tunnel complex, furnished and populated to look like a giant mall. Shops large and small can be found in every direction, and you can travel blocks upon blocks before you even need to step outside. 

The entire tunnel system is heated and filled with restaurants and its own security. You know the entire time you’re there that it’s safe, and anything you need is just a short walk away. I even remember seeing vending machines that only dispense cake. I’ve been to a lot of different cities, and this one stood out for planning this far ahead for their environment. 

If you ever find yourself heading up to Ontario, I recommend giving Toronto a try if for no other reason than to experience walking around the city underground. It’s a wonderful change of pace for people that like the sights of cities and what they offer, but not the crowded streets and loud cars. You can easily stay outside the city and travel in too, thanks to the GO train system that reaches along the coast of Lake Ontario. It’s a wonderful experience, and one I believe more cities should have available.