So far the weather in Toronto this summer has been more than perfect. It’s a time where weekends are full of activities, trying to soak in every minute of summer before it’s over (we have a few months left – nobody panic!). Downtown Toronto is one of the best places to be during the summer, full of events and festivals nearly every weekend. Toronto also has a few hidden gems in the city, such as the Corktown neighbourhood. Corktown is located near our own neighbourhood – north of the Gardiner Expressway, between Berkeley Street and Don River Street. It is an area full of history, and worth going to see this summer.
There are a few theories on how the neighborhood got its name. One theory suggests the name “Corktown” was derived from its location, being nearby cork stopper manufacturers and breweries. Another theory on how Corktown got its name is from the people who lived there themselves! The first people to settle into Corktown were working class immigrants in the early 1800s, who came from County of Cork in Ireland. We will never know where the name truly came from, but we can admire how unique it is!
In 1843, the famous “Little Trinity Church” was built in Corktown and it is still standing today! Now 173 years old, it is one of the oldest churches in the city of Toronto. Today, Little Trinity Church still remains open and also hosts a few events. You can check that out here.
Ever wondered what an old school looked like? These days, students use whiteboards instead of chalkboards, computers instead of paper, and iPads instead of writing tools. Can you even imagine writing in ink? In 1848, Corktown built the first free school called the Enoch Turner Schoolhouse. Today, the schoolhouse remains open as an event space. You can walk down the aisle or eat dinner with your friends at this historic site.
After strolling the streets of Corktown, you may get a little hungry! Check out one of Corktowns’ favourite restaurants, the Morning Glory Cafe. Grab a bite to eat and hangout with the locals to get a true sense of the area! Other restaurants you can check out are Magic Oven for delicious pizza, The Dominion for a pub-feel restaurant, or if you’re seeking spaghetti and meatballs, Fusilli Restaurant is perfect for you.
There is plenty to do in Corktown, whether it is grabbing a bite to eat or checking out an old historic building. So grab your camera and your running shoes, and take a stroll down the streets of Corktown for an experience well worth it.