Canadians love the Victoria Day Weekend and it’s no wonder. It’s the unofficial start to summer, which has been a long time coming this year. The holiday weekend offers an exciting and diverse line-up of things to amuse both young and old. Don your shorts and sunglasses… and let’s get started.

Gibson House


Spend Queen Victoria’s birthday at the home of one of WillowDale’s founding families, with sweet treats to taste in the historic kitchen, old-fashioned toys to try in the parlour and lots of hands-on activities in the Discovery Gallery. It takes place on May 23 from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is pay what you can.


Fort York National
Historic Site


Explore the history of Fort York and watch as the guards carry out tactical demonstrations on May 23 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will also be historic cooking demos and pretend drills for children using wooden muskets.

HarbourKIDS: Circus

The free circus at Harbourfront Centre features an international who’s who of acrobats, daredevil stunt persons, rope walkers, unicyclists, fire-eaters, stilt walkers, face painters, balloon sculptors and crazy clowns. It runs May 21-23, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Queen’s Quay Terminal

You’re invited to a Victoria Day back-to-back variety show on the Pirate Stage. Toronto’s Waterfront plays host to free buccaneer-themed shows centred on doggy tricks, daredevil cannonball juggling and the bizarre magic of Zoltan the Adequate Pirate, on May 23 from noon to 5 p.m.

The Bata Shoe Museum pays homage to Canadian music icons Drake, Shania Twain and Paul Anka with this footwear exhibit celebrating 40 years of the JUNO awards.

Ontario Science Centre
Overload your senses with a spacewalk through distant galaxies in IMAX Hubble or get an adrenaline rush from the newest film, Tornado Alley, which follows storm chasers as they experience tornadoes at point-blank range.

Grab the ferry to Toronto Island for a day of outdoor fun at Centreville Amusement Park. With more than 30 rides and attractions and plenty of places to eat, there is lots for the family to enjoy. From May 21-23, the park is open from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.