Beaches in Toronto – Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan!

It’s officially not summer in Toronto yet, but the rising temperature is already upon us.

Sweaty foreheads and body parts/pits are starting to smell. It’s my pet peeve I can’t hide my disgust on my face. Yuck!

There’s only one thing you should do to cool yourself down before exploding into a rage of complain about the sultriness of the season–bask in the sun and sand–at the beaches in Toronto.

There, you’ll find your summer coolness.

Lake Ontario’s shores provide relief to Canadians to conquer the boiling heat. The beaches are, for sure, crowded with people of all ages doing what they love under the sun: playing beach volleyball or catching frisbee, reading, relaxing, sunbathing or simply burying their feet in the sand. And of course, wearing that swimsuit you bought on sale last winter!

It’s summmmmmmmmmeeeeeerrrrrrrrrr!

Go to the beach or pump up that water hose in your backyard–revel in it, and have a laugh like a child. If you’re conserving water, find a nearest park or a place with a fountain (clue: Yonge / Dundas Square and Nathan Phillips Square) and show that damn wet look of yours! LOL…

Here’s the list of beaches in Toronto where you can flaunt that bikini body you’re shy to show last winter!

Don’t have a bikini body? No problem, show it still. Not everybody is into gorgeous, shapely bodies with bulimia problems, right? Hahahahaha….

Be reminded that not all beaches are open for swimming. Water salinity is checked–so look for the blue flag in the area to know if the beach is good for swimming on that day or not. Or better, ask a volunteer lifeguard around.


Beaches in Toronto - Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan! Sugar Beach in Toronto Aqua Party

Sugar Beach during the Aqua Party / Beaches in Toronto – Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan!

1. Sugar Beach

I love their umbrellas and their big wooden chairs. It’s a good place to just relax by reading a book or sunbathing. Every time I go there, the crowd is not as congested as the other beaches in this city. Come early to grab one of those umbrellas/shades. No swimming here because the beach is built on quay.

During Toronto Pride Week, the beach is host to an awesome Aqua Party where the hottest guys dance their bubble asses to electronic tunes and show off the bodies they worked for a year at the gym!

Directions: Take #6 bus from Bay Station and get off at Cherry Beach. Ask the driver. 

Beaches in Toronto - Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan! HTO Beach in Toronto Harbourfront

Beaches in Toronto – Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan! / HTO Beach / Park

2. HTO Beach

On the west side of Harbourfront Centre, there’s a beach called HTO. If you can’t take the heat, go under the tree shades on the hill nearby. They have limited umbrellas for shades. The beach is built on quay, so no swimming allowed.

Directions: From Union Station take bus #509 and get off at York Street. Ask the driver. Or just walk south on York Street.

Beaches in Toronto - Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan! Hanlan Point Nude Beaches in Toronto

Sunset at Hanlan’s Point / Beaches in Toronto – Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan!

3. Hanlan’s Point (Clothing-optional Beach)

The Souther stretch of the beach is mostly populated with gays but not exclusive. The northwestern part (near the airport) are for those who don’t enjoy being naked. Can be crowded on weekends. Stay there until late afternoon—you’ll see a marvelous, marvelous sunset! Yes, you can swim here!

Directions: Take a ferry to Hanlan’s Point. From the dock, follow the directions. 

4. Toronto Center Island Beach / Manitou Beach

On the southern tip of the island is a long expanse of sandy beach.  Because this is mostly frequented by tourists and families, you really can’t have privacy here. The good thing is that there are change rooms, lockers and showers nearby. Also, there’s a grocery here and a bike rental shop. Swimming is allowed but don’t go beyond the rock breakwater, the waves can be harsh.

Directions: Take a ferry that goes directly to Centre Island. From there, walk south. Or follow the crowd. 

Ward Island Beach in Toronto

Afternoon at Ward Island Beach

5. Ward Beach 

Walking distance from Center Island Beach (to the East), is the Ward Island Beach. Though this beach is just a short belt of sandy shore, I love it for its privacy, away from the madding crowd. And it has beautiful swans—swimming with you!

Directions: Take a ferry that goes directly to Ward Island. 

Beaches in Toronto

Kite Festival at The Beaches / Beaches in Toronto – Bask in the sun and sand and get a tan!

6. The Beaches

The busiest beach in summertime. This longest beach in Toronto is the most family-friendly, too! Children build their sand castles while adults play beach volleyball and other sports. If you’re not into swimming, walk and sashay like a beauty queen on the long boardwalk! Swimming allowed.

At the end of your beach life, check out those restaurants along Queen Street. They’re awesome and serve delicious food.

7. Cherry Beach (Clothing-optional Beach in some areas)

You gotta have a car to go here. It’s a wooded area. There’s a TTC bus service to this direction from Union Station but the nearest stop would still be a good long walk from it. It’s very laid-back, less crowded and good for flying kites. You can do everything you want to do here. You know what I mean. 😉

8. Lakeshore Beach

I’m not even shore if it’s called Lakeshore Beach. If you go south of High Park, there’s a piece of sandy beach there and a lot of shades and greens. If you’re hungry, there’s a Pizza Pizza and a good restaurant nearby. Lots of people stroll around and it’s family-friendly. Swimming allowed.

The marina at Bluffer's Park Beaches in Toronto

The marina at Bluffer’s Park / Beaches in Toronto.

9. Scarborough Bluffs / Bluffer’s Park

Nature and beach combined—this is what I like about this beach. Gather a group of friends and explore the bluff. Climb the escarpment and enjoy the panoramic view of Lake Ontario. After a long hike, dive into the refreshing water. Good for skinny dipping. 😉

10. Beechgrove / East Point Park (Clothing-optional Beach)

This is a secluded clothing-optional beach. It’s so secret that we had to go under vines and climbed down on dangerous cliffs—all for the curiosity and experience of what a nude beach is like! LOL…. Yes, this is my first nude beach. 🙂

But, hey, there’s another way where you don’t need to experience our hardships in finding it.


A wanderer. A frustrated photographer. Hiker. Lover. Half extrovert, half introvert. Solo traveler.

1 comment

Leave a reply