The serene High Park neighbourhood contains a wealth of local history that dates back to the mid - late 1800's. Historical homes of immense charm and stunning grandeur are easily found. New condominium projects offer affordable housing, attracting young professionals and families to the area. Independently owned shops and restaurants along Bloor Street West invite you to dine or sip coffee in a friendly neighbourhood environment. The jewel of this unique neighbourhood with the friendly, community feel is naturally High Park itself.
High Park is Toronto’s largest municipal park. It spans 161 hectares (400 acres) within a prime location west of the downtown core and north of Humber Bay. It stretches south from Bloor Street West to The Queensway, and is bounded on the west by Ellis Park Road and on the east by Parkside Drive. This extremely popular destination point, for locals and tourists alike, is a mixed recreational park that boasts sporting, cultural and educational facilities as well as gardens, playgrounds and even a zoo. A full one third of the park still remains in its natural state.
High Park was opened to the public in 1876 via the generosity of a land bequest from John George Howard to the city of Toronto. The western section of High Park, including Grenadier Pond, was initially privately owned by the Ellis family who sold the land to the Chapman family who eventually sold 29.1 hectares (71.8 acres) that included the pond, to the city of Toronto for $150,000 in 1930.
Nestled within the heart of Toronto’s green, leafy oasis is a zoo! The keeping of animals in the park originated in 1890 when deer were routinely sheltered and provided for. Today, keeps an impressive assortment of animals including: bison, emu, llamas, peacocks, fallow deer, wallaby, capybara, Highland cattle, yaks, Barbary and Mouflon sheep.
The first Japanese Somei-Yoshino Cherry Tree was planted in 1959. It was a gift from the citizens of Tokyo. Each spring, when these early to bloom trees burst forth with fluffy pink and white flowers, High Park attracts thousands of visitors to admire these beautiful cherry blossoms. Late April to early May is the optimum time to see the cherry trees in full bloom.
• Colborne Lodge Historical Museum, a Regency style cottage built in 1837, original former home of John George Howard and family
• Shakespeare outdoors, under the stars performed in the High Park Amphitheatre, professional theatre productions of the highest calibre (program changes each summer)
• Trackless trains that run daily during summer months (weather permitting)
• Swimming pool with water slide and splash pad, offers free admission and lifeguard supervision
• Grenadier Café, try their great breakfast, unbeatable for price and flavour!
• Two large playgrounds for children
• Three very popular baseball diamonds
• Two soccer fields
• Several tennis courts, various locations
• High Park Nature Centre, non-profit organization that provides nature appreciation and park stewardship programs to local schools and community groups
• Unlimited dirt trails for walks and hiking
• Paved trails for cycling enthusiasts
• Artificial ice rink, offers recreational skating and hockey
• Unlimited toboggan runs during winter months (weather permitting)
High Park is accessible by TTC:
• The High Park and Keele subway stations on the Bloor-Danforth subway line are to the north of the park.
• The 506 streetcar line has a terminus at the east side of the park, at Parkside Drive and Howard Park Avenue.
• The 80 Queensway bus operates from the Keele station, south along Parkside Drive, along the east side of the park.
• To the south, the 501 streetcar stops at Colborne Lodge Road and The Queensway, just south of Colborne Lodge.
• The 30B Lambton bus operates from Kipling and High Park stations into the park from Victoria Day to Labour Day.
Automobile access is allowed to most of the park, although several roads are closed to vehicular traffic. Parking lots exist at the Bell playground and zoo, at Colborne Lodge, at Grenadier Cafe, High Park pool and the north-western children's playground, as well as along some roads. On Sundays in summer, the roads are closed to traffic. Colborne Lodge Road does not allow through traffic from The Queensway beyond the parking lot for the lodge.
People can walk or bicycle to the park along roads and streets and enter from the neighbourhood. They can take the Martin Goodman Trail along Lake Ontario to points south of the park.
In the area:
High Park Public Library
228 Roncesvalles Ave.
High Park Baptist Church
9 Hewitt Ave.
Sandra Rinomato Realty Inc.
2120 Bloor Street West