Niagara

What’s a trip to Toronto without the Niagara falls, eh? I have seen some pretty impressive waterfalls elsewhere, but nothing compares to the volume of these water masses.

Water, the key to life

I was lucky enough to have my friend take a road trip with me to the falls. We visited the over-kitch “creep street” and its’ surroundings, and took the Maid of the Mist cruise (19.27$/person) to the falls.

Tourists cramped up in Maid of the Mist like sardines in a tin

The village around the Canadian side of the Falls is a combination of attractions such as 3 wax museums, laser tag, minigolf, and 3/4/6D movie theaters. It haves fast food joints and classics such as Hard Rock Cafe and Planet Hollywood, and besides Starbucks, there is also of course Canada’s favorite coffee spot, Tim Horton’s.

Ice cream and hot dogs – the foundations of a good holiday

TIPS:
Niagara Falls: if you go on the Maid of the Mist, pack extra pair of socks
Travelling: For a long bus trip, take water with you! If you want to sleep, eye mask doesn’t hurt, either.
Air travel: Request a special meal – You get to eat before others even get their food. If possible, choose a seat from the front – You can leave the aircraft earlier. Take an empty water bottle – you can fill it after security check.
Pack facial wipes in hand luggage – the refreshment is needed.
The eye mask.

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Totoronto

Since I had a week without work before going back to Finland, I decided to leave the Webster and Manhattan, and go explore some new places. I have never been to Canada, so I figured Tronto would be a good destination. So, here I am hanging out in my friend’s pool, 20 mins. train ride away from downtown Toronto. This is definitely the best opportunity for me to relax and wind down from all the hassle and stressed atmosphere that devours you in Manhattan.

For several reasons, I decided to come to Canada by bus. First of all, it was 200$ cheaper than flying. The Megabus stop was 2 blocks from where I lived, and the bus on Sunday will take me back to 7th and 28th, which will be 2 blocks from the bus to the airport – yes, I will first sit 11 hours in a bus to New York, then 2 hours in a bus to the airport, followed with God knows how many hours in two planes and another bus to Tampere from Helsinki. So, even though this bus ride is approximately 11 hrs, the convenience of the locations was important.

I wonder how many Megabus trips are actually 1$, mine was 59$ each way

The bus ride here was not as painful as one would expect. I had printed out sudokus and ripped crosswords from AM and Metro newspapers, I stole a ziplock bag of cereal from the Webster, had more than enough other snacks to keep my cravings satisfied, and even though the promised wifi did not work, I occupied myself by watching How I Met Your Mother on my laptop. The bus left at noon (15min late, though), and was upposed to arrive in Toronto at 10 pm. Too bad my friend had to wait for an hour, since the bus was late (as it apparently always is). At the border we had to empty the bus, go trough customs inspections and load everything back in. I wonder how long that will take on the way back to the land of the suspicious…

Canada, thank you for giving me the first stamp on my new passport!

I came to Canada with no local money, and no telephone. Or, technically, I have a telephone, it just does not work. So I’d better not get lost or make vague plans. Needless to say, Google maps doesn’t work, either.

Yesterday I went to wander around downtown Toronto, which seemed rather small after Manhattan (not in a bad way, though). In the evening I got to experience a Canadian pub (tv screens showed ice hockey). Here they put vinegar in french fries! I was surprised, since I had no idea anyone anywhere would do that. Today, I went to Costco! Tomorrow, it’s time for CNE. I’ll tell you later. Canada, not bad. Lot’s of squirrels, and a whole lot of variety in restaurants.

By the way: a month from now, It’s Beppu time!