3 Amazing World Heritage Sites in Newfoundland and Labrador

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 27 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #77. Come on in for a coffee or tea, and let’s catch up.

In June, while in Newfoundland and Labrador, I explored three UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the province:

  1. Gros Morne National Park
  2. L’Anse aux Meadows
  3. Red Bay Basque Whaling Station

UNESCO stands for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. In case you’re unfamiliar with local name and geography, the official name of the province is Newfoundland and Labrador (NL). The Strait of Belle Isle separates the province into two areas: 1) Newfoundland and 2) Labrador.

This post includes the highlights of my visits to the three sites. The first two sites are along the Viking Trail on Newfoundland’s west coast and the third site is on Labrador’s south coast. I included links to Parks Canada and UNESCO official websites for more information. As always, click on photos in galleries to see a bigger version and read their captions.

1. Gros Morne National Park

In 1987, Gros Morne National Park was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for both its unique geological history dating back 1.25 billion years and its exceptional scenery. Gros Morne French meaning is “big lone mountain” or more literally “great sombre.”

The park provides a rare example of the process of continental drift, where deep ocean crust and the rocks of the earth’s mantle lie exposed. More recent glacial action has resulted in some spectacular scenery, with coastal lowland, alpine plateau, fjords, glacial valleys, sheer cliffs, waterfalls and many pristine lakes.

UNESCO Gros Morne National Park

I visited the majestic Western Brook Pond, a fresh water fjord which was carved out by glaciers. The photo below shows the Long Range Mountains where the fjord is located. The steep escarpment on the right marks a crack (or fault) in the Earth’s crust. The fault was created when continents collided about 400 million years ago.

Western Brook Pond
Western Brook Pond
Western Brook Pond
Western Brook Pond photo in my hotel room

I took a boat tour on beautiful Bonne Bay. It was a clear and sunny day so the 806 m high flat-topped Gros Morne Mountain and the Tablelands with a dusting of snow were visible.

I also visited the park’s informative Discovery Centre and hiked the picturesque Tablelands Trail. The landscape is so spectacular that I can easily spend two weeks here to explore more hiking trails.

***

2. L’Anse aux Meadows

L’Anse aux Meadows was designated a National Historic Site in 1975 and a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978. It is the only authenticated Viking site in North America and the earliest evidence of Europeans in North America. It comprises 80 square kilometers of forest, bog, coast, bay and islands.

L'Anse aux Meadows reconstructed sod huts
L’Anse aux Meadows reconstructed sod huts

Norwegian explorer Helge Ingstad and his wife, archaeologist Anne Stine, were searching for Norse landing places along the coast of North America. With the help of local resident George Decker, they would uncover the only Norse encampment ever to have been discovered in North America. Following excavations, they determined Leif Erickson and crews of Norse explorers arrived here and built a small encampment of timber-and-sod buildings over a thousand years ago.

My visit started from the Visitor Centre to watch a short documentary for an overview and to see the authentic artifacts that proved the site’s origin. A tour guide took visitors along a beautiful boardwalk to the Meeting of Two Worlds sculpture, created by Luben Boykov and Richard Brixel and unveiled in July 2002. This sculpture symbolizes the meeting of human migration from the east through Asia to North America and from the west through Europe to North America. The two groups met when the Norse landed at L’Anse aux Meadows. Anse French meaning is “cove“.

Meeting of Two Worlds sculpture: Viking ship (left) and Aboriginal sword (right)

We continued to the actual site to see the fascinating archeological remains of three halls and five smaller buildings where the Vikings lived and worked have been carefully preserved as they were when discovered by the Ingstads. We then followed the boardwalk trail to the reconstructed sod huts and met costumed interpreters.

***

3. Red Bay Basque Whaling Station

Red Bay Basque Whaling Station is the earliest, most complete and best preserved 16th-century Basque whaling site found anywhere in the world. Red Bay was listed as a National Historic Site of Canada in 1979, and designated a World Heritage Site in 2013.

Red Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

For about 70 years beginning in the 1530s, whalers from the Basque region of Spain and France used the harbour at Red Bay as a seasonal base for hunting whales and producing the whale oil that lit the lamps of Europe. Each spring as many as twelve ships and upwards of 2000 men arrived after a dangerous voyage from Europe to set up operations at Red Bay, one of about a dozen seasonal whaling stations along the south Labrador coast.

To visit Red Bay Basque Whaling Station, I traveled from Newfoundland to Labrador by ferry. Labrador means Big Land. At the Visitor Centre, I viewed a remarkable collection of original artifacts, archaeological remains, videos, models and the restored 16th century Chalupa, the oldest known whaling boat in the world. Behind the Chalupa exhibit is a stunning ‘whale and mariners’ mural created by Newfoundland-born artist Lloyd Pretty in 1999.

***

I’m grateful to be able to visit these three amazing UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Newfoundland and Labrador. I hope you enjoy them through my lens.

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Corktown Common and Don River

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you are here. It’s week 23 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #73. Come on in for a coffee or tea, and let’s chat.

Today I have two lovely walks and a few beautiful peonies to share. The walks can be combined to get in more steps and to see distinct landscapes.

1. Corktown Common

Corktown Common park is a versatile place for either an easy walk on flat surfaces or a cardio workout using the stairs. The trails go in sort of a spiral pattern. Beautiful redbud trees and other native flowers bloom in spring.

Lots of birds to watch in this park, especially the red-winged black birds that fly back and forth across the curved boardwalk, and cute duck families in the ponds. Benches are available to rest and enjoy the park.

Click on any image in the gallery to see its bigger version.

It was a blissful walk in glorious sunshine to get in my steps, enjoy nature, and be grateful for the little things that make life better.

2. Don River Trail

The Lower Don River Trail is a beautiful, serene trail that follows the Don River. The trail is perfect for a peaceful walk or bike ride, and offers stunning views of the river and its surroundings. Coming to the trail on a sunny weekday, I had the place almost to myself.

Green trees, green grass, the dappled shade, and the reflections on the river were pleasant to see. Several bridges contribute to the uniqueness of this trail. Birdsong filled the air as I walked. Sunshine and a gentle breeze were ideal conditions to stay out longer. I cycled home feeling light and relaxed.

3. Beautiful Peonies

I was delighted to see peonies in three different colours: yellow, hot pink and red. I look forward to seeing them in a local garden every spring. These blooms are huge, almost the size of a dinner plate. There were many of them so the branches just bent over with the weight. I love their layers of petals and gentle fragrance.

Spring walks are my favourites as the weather is mostly sunny, temperatures are usually cool, the landscape is fresh green, and flowers bloom everywhere. I hope to have more beautiful outings this weekend.

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5 Easy Walks To Cool Off

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 22 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #72. Come on in for a coffee or tea and let’s chat.

It’s been a week of hot and humid weather from Monday to Wednesday. Toronto hit a record-breaking high of 32.1 C (89.8F) on Tuesday. It felt more like 36C (97F) with humidity. Cooler air arrived on Wednesday night. Trees are full of green leaves, flowers are blooming and pollinators are busy.

I cycled to the waterfront for a fresh lake breeze and walked in the morning when it was cooler. Here are some pictures from the two parks, two beaches and a courtyard that I explored.

1. David Crombie Park

David Crombie Park is located in the St. Lawrence neighbourhood in the east end of downtown Toronto. The park is named after the former Mayor of Toronto who served from 1972 to 1978 and oversaw the creation of the St. Lawrence neighbourhood.

It’s a long park with plenty of tree shades. At the east end, there is a wall with two murals on its two sides. The murals, with nature and community themes, were painted by artists Shalak Attack and Bruno Smoky (also known as Los Clandestinos) in 2014.

Mural by Los Clandestinos
One side has a circular stage for performances.
Mural by Los Clandestinos
The other side is a basketball court.

2. Sugar Beach

A few blocks south of David Crombie Park is Sugar Beach with white chairs under pink umbrellas, a tree-lined promenade and beautiful lake views. In May, bright daffodils and tulips were planted along the bike path and sidewalks. It’s a nice place to relax and enjoy a sunny day.

3. Sunnyside Park

Sunnyside Park is located in the west end of Toronto on the shore of Lake Ontario. The park has big trees, grassy fields, picnic tables, a nice 3 km (1.9 miles) long boardwalk, and benches facing Humber Bay.

Sunnyside park
Sunnyside park
Sunnyside beach
Lovely tree-framed lake views

4. Sunnyside Beach

Running parallel with the park is Sunnyside Beach, a wonderful spot to cool off on warm days. Walking on the beach, on a clear day, one can see the CN Tower to the east and the white Humber Bay Arch bridge to the west.

Sunnyside Beach looking east
Sunnyside Beach looking west

5. Sunnyside Pavilion Courtyard

Steps from the beach is Sunnyside Pavilion Café which has a lakefront patio and a charming courtyard behind the iron gate. The small garden complete with a fountain was designed by landscape architect, artist and horticulturist H. Stephen Went (1952-1989).

Sunnyside Pavilion garden
Garden
Sunnyside Pavilion fountain
Courtyard with fountain

Sunnyside park and beach are blissful places to enjoy nature and stay cool. I cycled home feeling healthy and content.

How has your week been?

Shared with #SundayStills, #PPAC49.

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What Stories Do These Trains Tell?

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 20 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #70. Come on in for a coffee or tea chat.

A sunny morning was just right for my visit to John Street Roundhouse at Roundhouse Park, specifically to see the Toronto Railway Museum outdoor exhibits that tell the stories of Toronto’s railways. The John Street Roundhouse is the best example of a surviving roundhouse in Canada.

John Street Roundhouse

This complex was built by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1929 to service the steam locomotives of its passenger trains using nearby Union Station. The 32-stall roundhouse featured the most modern technology. Its direct steaming facility was the first of its kind in Canada, allowing a faster and more economical operation, and a smokeless environment. Abundant natural light is provided by its monitor roof and large windows. The switch from steam power to diesel, completed by the CPR by 1960, spelled the end for Canadian roundhouses. The John Street complex was closed in 1982. It was declared a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990.

Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada
Doors at John Street Roundhouse
Doors at John Street Roundhouse

It’s easy to do a self-guided walk and learn about Toronto’s railway history thanks to the information plaques that accompany each exhibit item. I enjoyed my visit so much, I was at Roundhouse Park longer than expected.

Map of Toronto Railway Museum outdoor exhibits
Map of Toronto Railway Museum outdoor exhibits

Don Station, Cabin D and the Turntable

I started from the Canadian Pacific Railway Don Station built in 1896. The station has been moved a few times until the City of Toronto moved it to Roundhouse Park. The building’s distinctive turret was typical of hundreds of stations across Canada but only a handful of these buildings survive. The Don station is the only 19th century Toronto station remaining.

Don Station built in 1896.
Don Station

Steps from Don Station is Cabin D, a wooden interlocking tower built by the Grand Trunk Railway in 1896. It is one of a few, if not the only, surviving examples of an interlocking tower in Canada that used an entirely mechanical system instead of electrical. It is also the only surviving interlocking tower of its type in Toronto.

Cabin D
Cabin D

The Roundhouse turntable is 120 feet long, in order to accommodate the Canadian Pacific Railway’s largest passenger steam locomotives. It’s one of the longest ever built in Canada.

John Street Roundhouse turntable
Turntable

I visited freight cars, locomotives, passenger cars, water towers, coaling towers, a watchman’s shanty, and other interesting railway artifacts. I imagined the farewells and greetings that took place at Don Station, and the stories that the trains and rail workers have witnessed.

I included links to the Toronto Railway History Association blog in case anyone is interested in the history of each exhibit.

Freight and Passenger Cars

Locomotives

Towers

Left to right: Coaling tower, the old wooden water tower and the new water tower with Steam Whistle Brewery logo. Steam Whistle Brewery has leased to use bays 1 to 11 at the Roundhouse.

Mural

My walk ended at a stunning mural on the side of the underground parking building. This mural is a reproduction of a painting, titled A John Street Morning, by artist David A. Oram.

A John Street Morning by David A. Oram, 2003
A John Street Morning by David A. Oram, 2003

I enjoyed spending a beautiful morning at John Street Roundhouse where I learned more about Toronto’s railway history and discovered an amazing mural by a talented Canadian artist.

What’s your favourite train story?

Shared with #WQW18, #ThursdayDoors, #PPAC, #Lens-Artists.

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Sakuras and Fleurs de Villes 2022

Hello and welcome to my blog! I’m glad you’re here. It’s week 19 in 2022 and I’m hosting Weekend Coffee Share linkup #69. Come on in for a cup of coffee or tea and let’s chat.

May is mid-spring in Toronto and beautiful flowers are in bloom everywhere. This week has been sunny with daytime high temperatures ranging from 16C to 24C (60F to 75F). I enjoyed some lovely walks and two stunning floral events: Sakuras and Fleurs de Villes.

Sakuras (Cherry Blossoms)

Sakura trees have a long history in Toronto as written here. Since Sakura peak bloom only lasts about a week, I was happy to see the beautiful and delicate flowers before they’re gone. Just walking under the trees and enjoying spring weather is a wonderful experience.

Sakura (Cherry blossoms)
Clusters of pink cherry blossoms

The easiest way to spot the difference between a cherry, plum, or peach flower is by observing the petal’s natural shape. Cherry blossoms have a unique cleft at the tip of their petals, which add to their pretty features and incredible popularity.

Cherry blossoms also have long stems that attach them to the branch from a single bud. One bud can produce more than one flower and you see whole branches of trees covered in pink, pale pink, or white.

Since April 1959 when the first 2000 Somei-yoshino sakura trees were presented to the citizens of Toronto on behalf of the citizens of Tokyo, Toronto has planted many Sakura trees in different parts of the city for its residents to enjoy every spring. I feel fortunate to see Sakuras close to home.

Fleurs de Villes 2022

The Fleurs de Villes event returned to Toronto’s Bloor-Yorkville neighbourhood from May 4 to 8, 2022. This year’s theme is Femmes to celebrate remarkable women and raise funds for breast cancer research. The trail displayed over thirty stunning fresh floral designs by incredibly talented florists.

My slideshow below includes ten pictures of the fourteen incredible floral mannequins inspired by a remarkable woman – each with a unique story, and each making a profound impact. Click on the arrows or swipe to see the images.

There are fun floral designs as well, such as a bike, a phone booth, a swing, a heart, a heart-shaped frame and Mom since the event ended on Sunday May 8th which was Mother’s Day in Canada. The fresh flowers were gorgeous to see up close and their scent was lovely.

I enjoyed my walks and all the fresh flowers that I’ve seen this week.

How has your week been?

Shared with #SpringFestival2022, #PPAC, #SundayStills, #CellpicSunday, Jo’s Monday Walk.

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Which Pet Is Your Favourite?

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #57! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 7/ 52

When I read that February 20th is an annual National Love Your Pet Day in Canada and the USA, I knew exactly where to take my blog readers to see my virtual pets. Are you ready to go? I know you are. We’re going to three places to see a few pet murals that I adore.

1. Mural at Coronation Park

Artist Andrea Manica painted these dog murals on a storage building at Coronation Park in 2021. Their expressions make me smile. There is a fenced dog park across the street where we can watch dogs running around, playing, and chasing squirrels.

Dog mural by artist Andrea Manica, 2021
Dog mural by Andrea Manica, 2021
Dog mural by artist Andrea Manica, 2021
Dog mural by Andrea Manica, 2021

2. Mural at College Street Animal Hospital

Artists Viviana Astudillo and Logan Miller created a long animal-inspired mural for the College Street Animal Hospital in 2012 under the StreetARToronto program in partnership with Community Cave. I love the animal eye expressions and their ears. They make me want to pet them.

Pet mural at College Street Animal Hospital
Mural at College Street Animal Hospital, 2012
Mural at College Street Animal Hospital
Close-up of the mural at College Street Animal Hospital

3. Mural at the Toronto Humane Society

Artist Allan Ryan (better known as Uber5000) painted a long and amazing mural that covers most of the south wall of the Toronto Humane Society on Queen Street East (at River Street) in 2017. What could be more appropriate for this wall than cats and dogs and other animals that you can adopt?

Mural at Toronto Humane Society.

Here are my close-up photos of some of the cute animals on the mural. The yellow birds are the artist’s ‘signature’ animal on his murals.

Hamster and yellow birds cover the main door.
Hamster and yellow birds cover the main door
Cat on the grass.
Cat on the grass
Three cats together
Three cats together including the black cat in the middle
Cat with a ball.
Cat with a ball
Turtles with fun sunglasses
Two turtles with fun sunglasses
Rabbit with red glasses
Rabbit with red glasses

Using my cellphone to photograph these murals is my low maintenance way of owning pets. I promise there will be less photos in my next post.

Which pet is your favourite? If you own a pet, tell me what’s most endearing about your pet. How do you show your pet affection?

Shared with #CellPicSunday, #PPAC36, #SundayStills, #ThursdayDoors.

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Toronto Music Garden in Winter

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #55! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 5/52

One of Toronto’s gems is the Toronto Music Garden. I wrote about it here. I love that the garden is open year-round with no entry fee. Its location right by the waterfront and next to Spadina Quay Wetlands also means there are always more plants and urban wildlife to see than what’s already in the garden.

Toronto Music Garden entrance in winter
Toronto Music Garden entrance in winter

This winter I had the pleasure to visit the garden on several occasions, with and without snow. The lack of leaves shows off the beautiful shape of the trees and their branches.

Beautiful tree and its branches.
A beautiful tree and its branches

While walking in the Toronto Music Garden, I discovered four charming birdhouses, watched and listened to many birds. The birds were vocal and quick to hide.

I also watched Danielle Hyde, a multi-disciplinary Indigenous artist, @CoCreation_Art, spray painted a colourful park mural on a storage building at the east end of the garden. The mural reflects the garden surroundings: People, plants, flowers, birds, butterflies, ducks, and water.

North side
North wall
East side
East wall – The door lock is between the two red and purple flowers
South side
South wall – The doors are easier to see at this angle
West side
West wall

I look forward to visiting the Toronto Music Garden again in Spring when many beautiful flowers bloom.

How has your week been?

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Murals at Marilyn Bell Park

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #53! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 3/ 52

I hope you’ve had a good third week of January. From Sunday night through to Monday afternoon, a winter storm brought about 33 cm (13 inches) of snow to downtown Toronto. From Tuesday on, it’s been back to normal winter conditions.

Last week I shared dinosaur and whale murals at Budapest Park. Today I’d like to share three beautiful murals at Marilyn Bell Park and Lakeshore Boulevard Parklands. Their vibrant colours would catch your attention.

The murals were painted on rectangular storage buildings by professional artists. The storage buildings with locked doors look like utility sheds or tool sheds for Parks employees to store their tools for park maintenance. They vary in size. Each has four sides so it’s actually four murals per storage building.

Bee and Butterfly Murals

The Bee and Butterfly murals are on two storage buildings located side by side at east end of Marilyn Bell Park. Two artists painted them with a theme of plants and pollinators.

  • Artist: Katrina Canedo @Kat_Cee painted the bigger and more colourful building.
Butterfly mural
South wall – Butterfly mural on locked doors with artist’s name at the top right corner
Bee on flower mural
North wall – Bee on flower
Flower and leaves
East wall – Flower and leaves
Flowers and leaves
South West corner shows flowers and leaves on the West wall
  • Artist: Hanna Brasly or Bee Fawn @bee_fawn painted the smaller building with the white background.
Honeycomb on locked doors
South wall – Honeycomb on locked doors
Bee and honeycomb
North wall – Bee and honeycomb
East wall – Plants with flowers
Plants with flowers
West wall – Plants with flowers and artist’s signature

Cyborg Mural

This mural makes a bold statement. The longer I study the four sides, the more I admire the artwork.

  • Artist: Gabriel Kizmet @Kizmet32
  • Mural location: Lakeshore Boulevard Parklands, west of Marilyn Bell Park
Cyborg hand painted on a locked door
North wall – Cyborg hand painted on a locked door
Cyborg eye
South wall – Cyborg eye
Cyborg head
East wall – Cyborg head
Cyborg mural
West wall – Cyborg mural

Marilyn Bell Park and Lakeshore Boulevard Parklands are beautiful parks with lots of green space, big trees, picnic tables, tennis courts, a disc golf course, a boardwalk, and fantastic views of Lake Ontario. These vibrant murals bring art and add visual interests to the parks.

Which mural is your favourite?

Shared with #ThursdayDoors, #PPAC32.

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Murals at Budapest Park

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #52! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

Week 2/ 52

I hope you’ve had a good second week in January. Today I’d like to share some beautiful public art with you.

There is a string of nice parks along Toronto’s waterfront. Back in Fall 2021, I discovered colourful murals in some of these parks. The murals were painted on rectangular storage buildings by professional artists. I watched one artist painting over several days to complete her murals.

The storage buildings with locked doors look like utility sheds or tool sheds for Parks employees to store their tools for park maintenance. They vary in size. Each has four sides and the paintings are all different so it’s actually four murals per building.

Here are the murals on three storage buildings in Budapest Park at 1575 Lake Shore Blvd West.

Dinosaur Murals

  • Location: West end of Budapest Park
  • Artist: Morgan Groombridge @ Miss Morgan Illustration
  • These fun murals seem to illustrate a dinosaur life cycle: Birth, Youth, Maturity and Death
Dinosaur eggs on door
West wall – Dinosaur eggs on door.
Young dinosaurs at play
South wall – Young dinosaurs at play.
A T-Rex, a Stegosaurus and a young dinosaur.
North wall – Roar! A T-Rex, a Stegosaurus and a young dinosaur.
Dinosaur skull
East wall – Dinosaur skull in a crystal cave.

Little Dinosaur Murals

  • Location: Budapest Park playground
  • Artist: Kseniya Tsoy @al.fergani
Little Dinosaur mural on door
South wall – Door with a pink dinosaur paddling.
Purple dinosaur on roller blades.
East wall – Purple dinosaur on roller blades.
Blue dinosaur with ball and headset.
North wall – Blue dinosaur with ball and headset.
Purple dinosaur paints and green dinosaur on a scooter.
West wall – Purple dinosaur paints and green dinosaur on a scooter.

Whale/ Deep Blue Murals

  • Location: East end of Budapest Park
  • Artist: Rene (or Ren) Lonechild
East side - Whale on doors
East wall – Whale on doors.
West side
West wall
North side
North wall
South side - Medicine Wheel symbol
South wall with Medicine Wheel symbol

The Medicine Wheel symbol is an emblem of North American Indigenous cultural values, tradition and spirituality. Its four colours symbolize:

  • Yellow: spring, time of renewal
  • Red: summer, time of youth
  • Black: fall, time of maturity
  • White: winter, time of death

Budapest Park is a very nice park with big trees, picnic tables, a playground, and a long boardwalk along the shore of Lake Ontario. These murals add more beauty and visual interests to the park.

Which mural is your favourite?

Shared with #ThursdayDoors, #PPAC31.

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Fall Cycling and Hiking

Maple leaves in autumn.

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #45! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station and let’s chat.

It was a week of mostly sunny skies and unusually warm temperatures for this time of the year. Daytime highs ranged from 11C to 17C (53F to 63F). Daylight Saving Time ended on November 7. I was outdoors most mornings, cycling and hiking along nature trails.

This Fall I’ve been to at least a dozen beautiful parks in Toronto. Each park has interesting architecture, unique history, and varied terrains. The diversity of trees planted throughout these parks, in various stages of growth from young to mature, provide a brilliant display of Fall colours against the deep green grass.

Here are photos from some of my cycling and hiking trips. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed taking them.

Trinity Bellwoods Park

Trinity Bellwoods Park is a beautiful 14.6 hectare (36 acre) public park with full amenities in downtown Toronto. A mix of bike trails, paved walkways, staircases, and hills attract me to this park for a good bike and hike excursion.

Trinity Bellwoods Park in the Fall.

Trinity Bellwoods Park was once the home of University of Trinity College (Trinity College in 1852). Of the college itself, only the stone and iron gates now remain.

Trinity Gates.
Trinity Gates are at the southern entrance to the park.
Variety of trees in Trinity Bellwoods Park.
Variety of trees in Trinity Bellwoods Park.
Autumn leaves.
Autumn leaves in Trinity Bellwoods Park.

Queen’s Park

Queen’s Park is an urban park in downtown Toronto. The park was named in honour of Queen Victoria and opened in 1860 by Edward, Prince of Wales.

Queen's Park in Fall 2021.

The shape of Queen’s Park is similar to an oval. The north portion of the park includes many big trees, benches along paving stones, pathways, picnic tables, and three bike trails on flat terrain. I like to cycle here then take a walk in the park.

Edward, Prince of Wales statue at Queen's Park.
Edward, Prince of Wales statue at Queen’s Park.
Autumn leaves, pathways and benches at Queen's Park.
Autumn leaves, pathways and benches at Queen’s Park.

The south portion of the park is the site of the Ontario Legislative Building, which houses the Legislative Assembly of Ontario (provincial government). This portion includes the majority of the monuments and memorials in the park, and the Queen Elizabeth II rose gardens.

Ontario Legislative Building.
Ontario Legislative Building opened in 1893.
Queen Victoria statue.
Queen Victoria statue.
Autumn leaves.
Autumn leaves at Queen’s Park.

High Park

High Park is located in the west end of Toronto. The park offers quiet walking with beautiful scenery, gardens, long hills, ravines, steep staircases, and winding trails through woods.

John and Jemima Howard deeded their 165 acre country estate, which they had called High Park, to the City of Toronto in 1873. What a beautiful and generous gift they left for Toronto’s residents.

Colborne Lodge built in 1837.
Colborne Lodge, built in 1837, was John and Jemima Howard’s country home.
Autumn leaves in High Park.
Autumn leaves in High Park.
Trails in High Park.
Happy trails in High Park!
Steep staircase and autumn leaves in High Park.
A steep staircase and autumn leaves in High Park.
Grenadier Pond.
Grenadier Pond, Toronto’s largest pond, is on the west side of High Park and a great area for watching waterfowl, herons, egrets, turtles, and other pond-dwellers.

I can easily spend a full day in High Park to explore nature and watch wildlife. The park’s varied terrains are fantastic for hiking. There are also five bike trails, a Nature centre, Hawk’s Hill (to watch hawks), a zoo, and other attractions in High Park.

Fall Colours

Aside from parks, here’s a gallery of Fall colours that greeted me this past week. I’m thankful for good health, beautiful parks, winding trails, stunning Fall foliage, and gorgeous views everywhere I look.

It will be cooler this weekend and the seasonal decorations have started in the downtown core. I look forward to seeing the holiday displays.

Linked with #LifeThisWeek, #SundayStills, #ThursdayDoors.

How was your week?

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