The Best way to Enjoy the Toronto Distillery Christmas Market is by Walking Tour
I love Christmas. It is my favourite time of year. Yep, I am that Christmas lover who indulges in egg nog, whose credit card usually gets maxed, and the one caught wearing an ugly Christmas sweater proudly. These special Christmas traditions sprinkle joy and happiness to the season and continue to make it possible to stay sane. So with this in mind, undoubtedly I seek out markets and fairs that prominently offer seasonal and festive goods to add even more sparkle to my holiday. And with this in mind, I just could not miss the world famous Toronto Distillery Christmas Market! Crazy! A world renowned market right in my hometown! And how better than to experience it with a touch of history on a walking tour?
Quirky Facts about the Distillery District Learnt
So I loved doing a walking tour through the world famous Christmas Market as I got to learn so many cool and interesting facts about this little area of my hometown. Our guide Eric, an enthusiastic bloke full of knowledge and energy indulges in some of the quirkiest of historic facts. Not to give away all the incredible secrets the tour unfolds, here is a sampling of the trivia and quirky history shared on tour:
- It is illegal to rowboat to Cuba from Toronto
- The original distillery Gooderham & Worts were in-laws who moved from England to Toronto in 1831.
- James Worts had a tough life – his wife died during childbirth and he sadly committed suicide by falling into a well and drowning shortly after.
- In 1862 the Gooderham & Worts distillery made 700,000 imperial gallons of spirits, producing a quarter of the world’s production! Whoa…..
- The Distillery District was named a Canadian Heritage Site in 1988.
A Little More About The Tour
The Walking Tour of the Toronto Distillery Christmas Market that we took while here was offered through GO Tours. Established in 2004, the knowledgeable guides take you through various points of interest, while giving great detail on their background and just what made them such pivotal landmarks. The tour is an hour long, and stops frequently to give guests a behind the scenes experience along with the seasonal sites and sounds.
Tour Highlights – Toronto Distillery Christmas Market
So besides taking guests to important historic areas of the district while providing all the quirky details, the tour includes a few wonderful highlights making it a seasonal treat for all visitors.
Waffle Bites at Wafel Bar
One stop on the tour that was a nice treat was for the tasty Waffle bites. This little hut, The Wafel Bar, near the midway, brings delicious freshly baked waffle bites to patrons for some yuletide cheer. They are baked in large batches, sprinkled with icing sugar and served hot. If you have a sweet tooth, you will absolutely love these! Pair them perfectly with a Balzac’s coffee or their famous espresso in a cone.
Soma Chocolate maker
Another awesome highlight to the walking tour is the stop at Soma Chocolate maker. It isn’t everyday that you can witness chocolate and cocoa being made the old fashioned way, AND THEN getting to taste the finished product. With the Go Tours walking tour, you stop in, you learn further about the process, and get to sample some of the dark cocoa made from a 90+ year old machine. If you are lucky, you just may get a rare glimpse of the wheel in motion! We were fortunate that day to get that rare opportunity and if you are a nostalgic at heart like me, you will truly love the moment in chocolate history.
Mill Street Brewery
Another highlight that beer drinkers will love is the stop at the Mill Street Brewery. Established in 2002, this wonderful brewery of red brick foundation within the Distillery District was the first to bring organic lager to the Ontario public. The environment is of top priority in their production of beer and ales. The brewery became such a success in Ontario with its production of organic products that in 2006 they were able to expand with additional facilities. On the tour, guests are treated to up to 5 samples of beers, ales, and root beer on tap to enjoy as a very pleasing conclusion.
While you are exploring the Distillery District by walking tour, take note of the unique storefronts and huts to indulge in later. They have really fun finds including retro Christmas decor, sweets, savouries, and kitsch. You just never know what you will find!
The walking tour provided by Go Tours is definitely a great way to explore the Toronto Distillery District. Whether for the Christmas Market or at other times of the year, it is an educational hour with a touch of sweetness and satisfaction with the chocolate, waffle bites, and beer samples included as an added touch. You can book your special Christmas Market walking tour here and enjoy the fun with some very entertaining guides just waiting to kick off your season with the yule you are looking for.
The Toronto Distillery Christmas Market made it as #22 on our Heavenly Centenary Sites bucket list! Follow along with us and tick off some of these yourself. We look forward to seeing your experiences!
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Fill My Passport was a guest of Go Tours Canada and Attractions Ontario. All views expressed in this post are our own and were not influenced in any way.