Toronto is accessible from other Canadian cities by the country's excellent railway network. Arriving in Toronto by road from elsewhere in Canada as well as from certain areas of the United States is also a straightforward option.
All scheduled passenger trains in Toronto run into and out of Union Station which is located at 65 Front Street, between Bay and York Streets. Opened in 1927, Toronto's Union Station is generally considered to be one of the grandest, most impressive train stations in North America; with an enormous great hall, the ceiling rising to a height equivalent to seven stories.
Despite this impressive hall, most of the activity in the station takes place in the underground concourses which link the commuter rail platforms with the subway station. The great hall is still used for purchasing intercity rail tickets with a row of ticket booths and several ticket machines. The train station is served by a subway station with the same name, accessible from the GO concourse.
The main intercity concourse is accessed from the great hall, but all commuter rail platforms are accessed from the underground GO Transit concourse, as is the Union Station Bus Terminal across the street. The GO Transit concourse is accessed by taking any one of the three large staircases in the great hall or directly from the subway.
Travelling within the Greater Toronto Area
Commuter train services in the Greater Toronto Area are operated exclusively by GO Transit who run all of their trains from Union Station. Their trains serve mainly the sprawling suburbs around the city and most of the train lines run only during rush hour, at other times of the day they are replaced by bus services. Most of these buses originate from Union Station Bus Terminal across Bay Street from the railway station, there is an overhead walkway from the GO Train concourse underneath the railway platforms to the bus terminal.
Travelling Further Afield
Government subsidized passenger rail service into the scarcely populated north of Ontario is provided by Ontario Northland. They run trains on a single line from Toronto to Cochrane (Ontario) six times a week. Most of this line is single track and owned by freight companies, as a result, whenever a freight train passes, the passenger train must move onto a siding and wait for the other train to pass, therefore Ontario Northland trains are generally 1.5-2.5 hours behind schedule at either end of their route.
Most intercity rail travel in Canada is provided by VIA Rail. Union Station is one of VIA Rail's main hubs and connects several of their lines. Railway routes operated by VIA Rail out of Union Station include:
Corridor: This is VIA's most profitable line running from Windsor and Sarnia in the southwest to Quebec City in the northeast. Regular trains run from Toronto directly to Montreal, Ottawa, London, Kingston, Windsor, and Sarnia as well as stations in between. The lines between Montreal and Toronto and Ottawa and Toronto are VIA's busiest and most frequent, they also have the largest discounts if booked well in advance
Maple Leaf: This service is run jointly by Via and America's passenger rail company, Amtrak. Trains on this line run between Toronto and New York City once a day in each direction stopping at Albany and Buffalo as well as many smaller stations. Trains between Toronto and New York are extremely slow and very expensive, the coach services listed above generally take several hours less and cost several times less than the train. There are also more frequent trains that run on this line from Toronto to Niagara Falls.
The Canadian: Trains on this line run the transcontinental route from Toronto to Vancouver three times a week each way, stopping at a large number of smaller stations on the way. Cities that this train passes through include: Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Jasper and Kamloops. The full journey takes about three days. This is one of the most expensive rail journeys in North America and is many times more expensive than flying.
The main streets in Toronto are laid out in a grid pattern that makes it one of the easiest cities to get around in by car. Getting from point to point anywhere in the city can be achieved with only a few turns. Parking in the downtown core can be expensive and hard to find, but is plentiful and inexpensive or free throughout the rest of the city.
Major Roads and Motorways
Major highways leading into Toronto are the QEW, the 404, the 401, the 400, and the 427. Toronto is in the enviable position of being the largest city in Canada, so it's relatively easy to find a sign pointing you in the right direction. Be advised that traffic on incoming highways can be extremely heavy. In the downtown core it is often illegal to make a right or left onto Yonge Street. The exception is Front Street.
Road Rules and Speeding
Toronto follows some bylaws related to the transit system that often confuse or surprise visiting drivers.
If a bus is signalling intent to merge into traffic from a stop, you must yield to the bus. If a streetcar in front of you and travelling in your direction has its doors open, you cannot pass the open doors.
However, if a traffic island (it'll look like a raised median with a transit shelter on top) separates the streetcar from your lane, you may pass with caution.
Occasionally the rightmost travel lane on certain streets (most notably on Bay Street between Front and Bloor Sts.) are reserved from 7am-7pm for transit vehicles, taxis and bicycles only; you can only enter these lanes to make a right turn at the next cross street. If you do decide to travel as through-traffic in these lanes you may be liable to an (often hefty) fine.
Additionally, drivers are advised that Torontonians generally take their obligation to give a wide berth to emergency vehicles quite seriously: if you hear sirens or see lights, pull over to the side of the road safely but quickly.
Intercity Bus Travel
The main bus terminal in Toronto, the Toronto Coach Terminal (also known as Bay Street Terminal or the Metro Toronto Coach Terminal), is used for intercity coach travel and is served by Greyhound, Coach Canada, New York Trailways, and Ontario Northland. The bus terminal's main entrance is on Bay Street immediately north of Dundas and the terminal's departures building takes up the northern half of the block bounded by Bay Street, Dundas Street, Edward Street, and Elizabeth Street.
The arrival building is located immediately across Elizabeth Street from the departures building. The departures building is connected by the underground PATH walkway system to Dundas subway station on the Yonge line, as well the Eaton Centre and Atrium on Bay shopping centres. The terminal is also several blocks east of St Patrick subway station on the University-Spadina line. The bus 6 runs along Bay Street and stops near the main entrance to the terminal.
Unlike Union Station, the bus terminal has lockers in which people may store luggage, the cost is $3 for 24 hours and you must get a token from one of the token machines located next to the lockers; the lockers are located in the hallway connecting the departures building with the arrivals building, storing items in lockers overnight is not advisable as break-ins are common at night. Certain items too large to fit in a locker may be stored in the information booth at an extra cost.
Travellers should be aware that the bus terminal in Toronto is very poorly designed, forcing passengers to queue in a space that is little more than a shed with walls on two sides, as a result passengers queuing are forced to inhale the diesel exhaust fumes from the coaches as well as endure the cold winters and hot summers. In addition, there are often queues so long for the commuter coaches that they block other coaches from reaching their platforms.
It is advisable that passengers arrive at the terminal at least thirty minutes before their coach is scheduled to depart. Passengers should avoid the hassle of having to purchase their tickets at the terminal, it is generally much better to buy tickets online if possible. If you must purchase tickets at the terminal, add an extra twenty minutes onto the thirty minutes due to the long queues that form perpetually around the ticket booths as a result of the lack of ticket machines and organization present at the terminal.
Toronto Bus and Coach Operators
Below are several bus and coach companies which operate routes from Toronto to nearby towns within Ontario, and also to other states.
Greyhound provides a large number of intercity services, their primary routes from Toronto include: New York City via Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse; Ottawa; and Chicago via London, Windsor and Detroit.
GreyhoundQuicklink provides commuter services between Toronto and cities immediately outside the range of GO transit. Services run to Kitchener, Guelph, Barrie, Peterborough, St. Catharines, and Niagara Falls.
Ontario Northland provides service from the northern parts of Ontario.
Coach Canada runs buses from Toronto to Montreal (7hrs) via Kingston (3hrs); and New York City (10.5hrs) via Niagara Falls (1.5hrs) and Buffalo (2.5hrs). Coach Canada buses to Montreal and Greyhound buses to Peterborough and Ottawa also stop at the Scarborough Centre bus station to the east of central Toronto, this station lies on the Scarborough RT mass transit line. Greyhound buses to Kitchener, Guelph, St. Catharines, Niagara Falls, Buffalo and New York and Coach Canada buses to Buffalo and New York also stop near Union Station, either in front of the York Street entrance to the Royal York Hotel or on University Avenue north of Wellington Street.
Discount Coach Travel
Two new, heavily discounted services between Toronto and New York City now operate from the sidewalk in front of the Royal York Hotel, across the street from Union Station: Megabus and Ne-On.
Megabus provides service from New York City, Buffalo and Buffalo-Niagara Airport to the sidewalk in front of the Royal York Hotel. While they advertise $1 fares, their fares actually start at around $15 if booked several months in advance. Megabus coaches include electric sockets at every seat. Megabus runs two buses a day from the Royal York, as well as two buses a day from the bus terminal, buses from the bus terminal run to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York, while buses from the Royal York run to Penn Station in New York
Ne-On is a service operated jointly by Greyhound USA and New York Trailways that runs from the Royal York Hotel to the New Yorker Hotel in New York. They run two buses a day and tickets start at $1 if booked several months in advance. Ne-On buses have electric sockets at every seat, as well as wireless internet and movies.
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225 Front Street West Toronto ON M5V 2X3 Canada
586 guest rooms 25 floors * Valet Parking available with In/Out privileges (max. $30 per day)* Self Parking is available at an adjacent 24-hour covered and patrolled parkade Daily parking fee - 30 (CAD) Public transportation within walking...
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3 Park Home Avenue, North York, M2n 6l3 North York, Canada
Hotel IntroductionLocated in uptown Toronto with easy access from major highways. Superior rooms including all amenities, with an exceptional restaurant, bar, pool, fitness facilities and public pay parking. On site subway access to Toronto venues and attractions.AccommodationNumber...
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