What’s Good Neighborhood:The Island
No not the place where clones think they’re going if they win the ‘lottery’, but they really die to donate their organs to rich celebrity overlords, the one off the coast of Toronto. A reprieve from the smoggy and bustling metropolis, The Island is a popular destination for city folk looking to cool off and experience nature and goodtimes.
Originally 9 km long, and all one island, some gangster storms hit in the 1800’s and broke it up into what is now essentially 3 main islands, also made up of other mini islands. Basically it’s really islandy. It’s also home to a small and quiet community of people, many of whom commute to the city each day to work.
Originally home to a variety of native tribes, including the Ojibwa – it was considered by them to be a place of well-being, many of them going when they were ill. We obviously ruined that, and the first residents, the Hanlan’s, set up camp in 1862 and named part of the island after themselves – obvs.
Things to Check Out
Centreville Amusement Area:
Fun for the whole family or whatever, this amusement park was building in 1967 and has a 1900’s theme. It’s pretty cute, but don’t go if you’re expecting shit-your-pants thrill rides, it’s for kids.
The main attraction of the island on hot summer days are definitely its beaches. Although many are apprehensive due to its vicinity to the city and assholes who say it’s gross and freak everyone out, it’s actually perfectly fine to swim there and many do. The city tests the water regularly and there’s even this nifty site that is updated daily and tells you which water holes are good and which are unsafe to swim at.
Gibraltar Point Lighthouse:
I thought this was pretty boring until I found out that the first lighthouse keeper died under ‘mysterious circumstances’. Also its mega ancient, built in 1808 – it’s the oldest stone building in Toronto. It also has a sweet view.
Connected to the mainland by a ferry that’s damn cheap (7$ return) , leaves from a convenient central location (Bay and Queens Quay) every half hour and only takes 15 minutes. So basically you’re going out of your way NOT going there.
Photos Courtesy of Samantha Wood