How would your first trip to Canada go? Toronto and Niagara Falls were a great first taste into what Canada has to offer. Do you have a favourite spot?
The whole month of September, I will share 30 stories with you. One story each day. You will find out how I travelled, what countries I called home and how many times I repeated a travel in the same place. But most importantly, you will get to know my comfort zone stories. Would you share yours?
When I started the podcast Travelling Inside Out over four years ago, I was freshly out of my job as a night auditor in a hotel in Iceland. I had no exact plans as to where to go next. All I knew was to go back home to Romania for a few months. Since I was done with Iceland (haha, so ironic!) I decided to do one more trip to North America before I go back to the East-European part of the world. I first did a stop in New York City because why not. It was September 2018.
And this is why I decided to visit Toronto. And let me tell you, I loooooooooooved it there. Even though the hostelling situation was probably one of the worst I ever encountered. Including in South America.
Arrived last night. Took a train and a tram. I didn’t have enough coins so the driver let me go half price. Did laundry today and the machine didn’t work, had to pay twice.September, 2018
One of the ladies from my room didn’t stop complaining about the room until 1 am when I was desperately trying to fall asleep, she gets woken up by another guest at 8 am.
What goes around comes around.
This sign sums it all up: I’m happy, tired and sad at the same time. I’m happy.
I was still working when I asked a guest from Toronto what’s one thing I should not miss when visiting his city. He said he’s gonna think about it and let me know. One hour later he comes with a whole list written down and he even told me his wife’s and kid’s suggestions. This was one of them: Graffiti Alley. And, as you can probably imagine, it became my favourite,
Everything else on my trip was amazing: High Park, Niagara Falls, I even made it to Casa Loma, the random castle, and I walked through the downtown area like there was no tomorrow. I discovered the Toronto Islands when I got there and it melted my heart. I had a lovely afternoon there, in which I teared up, once again. Here’s again from Past-Alina:
It happened so many times in the last year to be asking myself ”what’s my life?”. Often I am lost for words to express exactly how I feel – in Romanian or English I tear up. Visiting Canada was on top of my list for years and here I was, making yet another dream come true. I smile or I straight up scream as a toddler would do. Sometimes life is so kind that my happiness seems too much to bear.September, 2018
But on the way back I got stung (again) by a bee. And that was not as pretty. Give it to the Universe to keep me grounded. Oh, well. Speaking about the balance, I also met a friend who I knew from living in Iceland. She was so kind to make time to meet me, especially since probably I overwhelmed her with all of my South American stories. At the same time, I also went on one single date to a very cool Tiki bar. The Shameful Tiki Room is so awesome that it was shown in Restaurants on the Edge, a Netflix show.
It was 7:30 am on a Sunday, after the Nuit Blanche, in downtown Toronto. I was waiting for the street car when this guy, that was anything but sober, starts a conversation. A few minutes in he asks me if I want to see something cool. As he was looking at his phone I said yes. He then reaches into his pocket and… the rest of the story on Travelling Inside Out:
Toronto in the fall looked stunning. Loving New York City so much, I had to compare it quite a lot. And in a way, Toronto seemed nicer. Or maybe is just the Canadian vibe. Not sure if this is the reason, but I interviewed quite a few people from Canada. Enjoy it and tell me which one is your favourite. You will see I learned how to pronounce Toronto like a local.
Following my YouTube channel, you will see moments I haven’t shared before from my trips, including from Canada. And for all the Canadians out there. No, during my first trip to Canada, I didn’t see all of it by only visiting Toronto. But it was a good first step. I am aiming at Vancouver and hopefully Montreal next. Alberta and Youkon are on the list too. But until then, read the future article about my next travel to a way warmer place.
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