Situated in the heart of the Beaches neighbourhood, Kew Gardens is the ultimate destination for a fun-filled day with friends and family. Whether you’re in the mood for a relaxing stroll through the neighbourhood or a family-fun filled day at the beach Kew Gardens has you covered with a charming library and fun-filled playground complete with a splash-pad! And if you’re looking to take a dip in the cool waters, Woodbine Beach is just around the corner.
What is there to do at Kew Gardens, Toronto?
Kew Gardens is a large park that stretches from Queen Street down to the boardwalk and the lake. It’s a favourite place for visitors and locals alike to stroll down to the beach, enjoy the beautiful gardens, and let the kids run around the large playground.
Kew Gardens Playground
Looking for a fun activity to do with your little ones? Look no further than Kew Gardens Playground! This fenced-in structure provides a safe and secure environment for kids to play and explore. From the classic swings and slides to the three climbing structures, there’s something for every child to enjoy.
Local Tip: Tim Hortons is right across the street on Queen St., so go ahead and grab a coffee and a treat as you watch the kids play in this fenced playground.
Kew Gardens Splash Pad
Looking for a fun way to cool off on a hot summer day? Look no further than the Kew Gardens Splash Pad! Conveniently located right beside the playground, the Splash Pad is the perfect way for your kids to stay cool while having a blast splashing around in the water. The Splash Pad is also fenced in, so you don’t have to worry about your little ones wandering out of the park.
Visit Kew Williams House (Gardener’s Cottage)
At the foot of Lee Ave. you will see Kew Williams House, or the Gardener’s Cottage. Over 100 years old, this is probably the most photographed and painted building in the Beaches. Surrounded by stunning gardens, this historic house has quite a history and became the home of the head gardener starting in 1911. Whether you’re a tourist or a longtime resident, it’s impossible not to be touched by the character and charm of this historic building.
Visit the Beaches Library
Located in Kew Gardens on Queen St. at the top of Lee Ave., you will find the Beaches Library. The Toronto Beaches Library was built in 1916 and has been the heart of the community ever since. It’s a lovely building that underwent some renovations in 2004. The library is open for anyone to visit. It has a fantastic children’s area, and there are lots of nooks to relax and read a book. You only need a library card if you want to use the computers or check out a book.
Local Tip: The library is a great place to escape the heat or the rain, and washrooms are always open to the public.
Go Skating at the Outdoor Ice Rink in Kew Gardens
Also located in Kew Gardens, close to the boardwalk, is the artificial outdoor ice rink. Used for pleasure skating and hockey in the winter and ball hockey, box lacrosse, and pickleball in the spring and summer, this is a popular year-round sports pad. Skating hours are updated annually and posted on the City of Toronto website.
Local Tip: There are washrooms and changing rooms located at the rink, but there is no place to rent skates. Dress warmly, as the wind off the lake can be cold!
Take Your Dog to the Kew Gardens Dog Park
Located right on the beach at the water’s edge is a large off-leash dog park. The area is completely fenced off from the rest of the beach, making it a perfect spot to let your dog run free, play with other dogs, and swim in the lake.
View the Doctor William D. Young Memorial
As you wander through Kew Gardens, you might have come across a lovely memorial dedicated to an exceptional doctor by the name of William D. Young. Erected in 1920, this monument honours the tireless work that Young did during the Spanish Flu pandemic. Dr. Young was committed to providing free care for those who could not afford medical treatment. It’s truly inspiring to think about someone like Young, who gave so freely of himself to help others.
Admire the Alex Christie Bandshell
A classic landmark in the middle of the park is the Alex Christie Bandshell. Often used as a venue for local performances, the bandshell was the original home of the Beaches Jazz Festival before it was relocated to Woodbine Park as it grew in popularity.
Appreciate the Kew Gardens Cenotaph
The Kew Gardens cenotaph is a striking memorial that serves as a powerful tribute to honour those who have served Canada in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, Afghanistan, and the Boer War. Constructed after the end of the Second World War, it stands as a powerful reminder of the sacrifices made by those who have fallen in battle.
The location of this memorial is particularly significant, as it serves as the site for annual Remembrance Day services, where people gather to honour the memories of those who have given their lives for their country.
Kew Gardens, Toronto, FAQ
There is a very small Green P parking lot located on Lee Ave. at Queen St. on the east side of Kew Gardens. This parking lot is a pay-and-display lot. There are very limited spots in this lot, so it does get full quite quickly.
Parking is always a bit of a challenge in the Beach, so it’s highly recommended that if you’re coming to visit for the day, and especially if you are coming during a special event or festival, such as the Fireworks at Woodbine Beach, that you consider taking the TTC.
Kew Gardens hosts several events each year. Some of those events include Remembrance Day services at the Cenotaph, the Beaches Arts and Crafts Show, and the Beaches Artisan Market (various dates).
Kew Beach is the name of the beach located at the south end of Kew Gardens at Lake Ontario. It’s officially known as Kew-Balmy Beach, and it is right beside Woodbine Beach.
Yes. There are a couple of public washroom locations at Kew Gardens. Beside the Beaches n’ Cream Cafe near the outdoor rink, there are accessible public washrooms that are open all year round.
There are also washrooms located at the Kew Gardens playground and splash pad, although these washrooms are open seasonally. The Beaches Library is also an option for those looking for a washroom close to Kew Gardens.
Final Thoughts: Kew Gardens in the Beaches, Toronto
Kew Gardens is a great destination for anyone looking to visit the Beaches neighbourhood in Toronto. A visit to Kew Gardens is the perfect start to a day at the beach, a stroll along Queen Street, or a picnic in the park.
Read More About the Beaches Neighbourhood
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