Arts, fine dining and live entertainment ... it's easy to see why Toronto - home to a third of Canada's entire population - is also Canada's No. 1 tourist destination.
A hidden gem: Squarely in the heart of downtown, the Marriott Eaton Centre Hotel is within walking distance of all of the city's go-and-do places, including the popular Nathan Philips Square skating rink.
The hotel is family-friendly and is equipped with an inviting swimming pool and hot tub on the 18th floor. It's reasonably priced and is an outstanding value. Details: bit.ly/ 513yy.
Nota Bene: Nota Bene is consistently named one of the Toronto's finest restaurants. The menu is decidedly Canadian with a contemporary twist. Start with the delicious Glazed B.C. Black appetizer.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Charlotte Observer
Nota Bene is directly across from Toronto's entertainment district. Make reservations well ahead of time: www.notabenerestaurant.com.
Entertainment district: On Queen Street West is the popular live jazz club, The Rex. Whether or not you are a jazz aficionado, this is a great place to drop in and be wowed. Details: www.therex.ca.
The Second City: Toronto is synonymous with live comedy, and no trip to the city would be complete without experiencing the Second City sketch troupe: Alumni include John Candy, Steve Carrell and Tina Fey. Details: www.secondcity.com.
The CN Tower: More than 1,800 feet high and dominating the skyline, the elevator takes only a pulse-pounding 60 seconds to reach the observation platform. Visit this popular place on a sunny, clear day for an unequaled panorama of Toronto, Lake Ontario and possibly even Niagara Falls. Details: www.cntower.ca.
Arts district: Give your feet a rest by taking a Segway tour of the Distillery Arts District. Details: www.segwayof ontario.com .
More on visiting Toronto: www.see torontonow.com .