BY SARAH ZOSCHKE
Summer is around the corner and we’re all looking forward to enjoying every second of the sunny days and warm evenings to come. Say ‘goodbye’ to hibernating under those blankets and ‘hello’ to going out on the town. Dating season is also in full swing, so why not start planning your nights out with that crush you’ve had your eye on? No matter your age, whether it’s a first date or a night out with your long-term partner, here are some perfect places we’ve found along the Danforth for you to enjoy.
CASUAL OUTINGS: THE GET-TO-KNOW-YOU STAGE
Summer is the perfect time to go for a walk or to partake in outdoor activities, so take the opportunity to spend time sightseeing. Take a stroll on Logan Avenue toward Danforth Avenue, and visit the Alexander the Great Parkette. You will be surrounded by the serenity and romantic ambiance of the fountain’s waters as you enjoy this community landmark. It’s the perfect spot to stop, talk and get to know more about each other. After you’ve relaxed by the fountain, take the time to see what else the area has to offer. The Danforth is lined with unique shops, providing the perfect opportunity to walk and window-shop.
Carrot Common should definitely be a spot on your list if you plan on enjoying the weather. This timeless courtyard has a European vibe and will have you feeling the romance as you sit and chat with your date while sipping organic juice from The Big Carrot’s juice bar.
Why not take a walk through Withrow Park, where you can lounge in the grass and enjoy a picnic. Impress your date by bringing them to the best kept secret in East York, a romantic location that overlooks the city.
Sightseeing makes any date special, so make sure to check out the Bloor Street Viaduct (also known as the Prince Edward Viaduct). You can come here and look out on the valley below for a chance to see those beautiful city lights twinkling at night.
The best dates are when you experience something fun together and create memories. Aside from the typical bowling or movie date, the Danforth has lots of fun, unique experiences to offer.
The Danforth Music Hall is a popular attraction along the Danforth hosting numerous live shows for the public to enjoy. Take advantage of the warm weather and head out on the town to see some amazing performances. Visit their website for tickets and to see this summer’s lineup.
Heading to the local farmers market is another perfect summer activity. It’s the perfect place to try fresh, organic food and homemade items. Pick up a few ingredients and make them into something delicious at home for an easy DIY date.
Summer is also the perfect time for festivals! Perhaps the most well-known one along the Danforth is Taste of the Danforth. This festival is all about food, and who doesn’t love that? It’s an amazing opportunity to taste different cultural cuisines and enjoy these new experiences with your date. Challenge yourselves to try new foods and restaurants during the festival — and have some fun while you’re at it! This summer’s festival runs from August 7–9.
DINNER WITH A SIDE OF ROMANCE
There is no doubt that you will find a delicious restaurant on the Danforth to enjoy with your date. The Danforth has so many food choices to offer any couple. Plus, many of the restaurants lining the Danforth have great patio spaces, perfect for a date under the stars or watching the sunset on a summer evening.
Grab a homemade burger, fries and tasty milkshake at the Burger Stomper, one of the best burger joints in Toronto. Enjoy your meal over a two-person table in the restaurant’s cozy atmosphere of re-purposed wood and exposed brick. Splurge on a large milkshake with two straws — perfect for sharing.
Make sure to put Il Fornello on your list of tasty dinner Danforth options. Here you’ll find amazing Italian dishes. This restaurant is sure to set the mood with its romantic lighting and ambiance.
If you’re looking for Greek food, then visit Messini Authentic Gyros and split a plate of Greek fries and a couple of gyros. Get a table for two and revel in the authentic Greek atmosphere and friendly hospitality.
DON’T FORGET THE SWEET STUFF (DESSERTS!)
After a delicious dinner it’s time to think about dessert, or maybe you’re just craving something sweet to set the mood! Either way, check out these Danforth dessert hot spots.
Cleanse your palate with Dolce Gelato. They have an amazing assortment of gelato– a perfect end to any meal. With so many choices you’ll want to try them all.
If you’re more in the mood for pastries, head over to Von Doughnuts. They sell gourmet doughnuts that will have you wanting to sneak pieces from your date.
End the night off café-style and try Tsaa Tea Shop. With many different flavours to choose from, and the option of bubble tea, you might have a tough time selecting your brew.
Remember when planning your date night to spice things up a bit. Add some fun and make your date unique. Don’t fall into the trap of regular mundane activities. Take advantage of the weather and add some romance to your summer. Have fun, get to know each other and enjoy the local gem that is the Danforth.
Featured image of Alexander the Great Parkette from brendagreektown.wordpress.com.