Today, December 7, was bright and sunny, despite a chilly high of -2 C. On a whim, I decided to explore the Toronto Islands during the off-season. It was well worth it.
After Thanksgiving weekend, the Toronto Island ferry schedule is reduced to a single ferry to and from Ward’s Island operating on a rather irregular schedule. Sometimes, the service is every 30 minutes, even on Sundays (it takes just under 15 minutes to get between Ward’s Island the central ferry terminal), but at other times, the single ferry runs every 45 or 60 minutes. The round trip fare is $7, or $90 for an adult monthly pass.
The views of the downtown skyline, are the best thing about taking the ferry to the islands; the night time views are as amazing as the daytime postcard views. During the off season, there are no crowds, no waits, no hassles. The pen-like holding area of the recently re-named Jack Layton Ferry Terminal isn’t so bad when there aren’t large crowds headed to various organized picnics or concerts at Olympic Island or the Centreville amusement park, or to one of several public beaches.
I’d like to see a new, modern ferry terminal built that doesn’t feel like a holding pen (and which would be more fitting for a terminal named in Layton’s honour). I’m hopeful that the city will finally see this happen, as well as figure out how to better manage the long summertime ticket lines.
The “Jack’s got your back” statue near the entrance to the ferry terminal