This cultural center encompasses a four-hectare (10-acre) strip of waterfront land, once-abandoned warehouses, charming piers, and an old smokestack. The center, which opened in 1974, is a stunning urban playground and one of the most popular destinations for locals and visitors alike—a great place to spend time strolling, picnicking, gallery-hopping, biking, shopping, and sailing.
Harbourfront has several venues devoted to the arts. The Power Plant is a contemporary art gallery with some excellent and often edgy shows; behind it is the Harbourfront Centre Theatre. At the Craft Studio, you can watch artisans blow glass, throw pots, and make silkscreen prints. You can buy their works at the Harbourfront Centre Shop.
More than 4,000 events take place annually at Harbourfront, the biggest of which are two literary gems: the Forest of Reading series in June and the International Festival of Authors in October. Other happenings include dance, theater, art exhibitions, music, film, children’s programs, multicultural festivals, and marine-themed events. Harbourfront is best in summer but a great destination year-round, especially when wintertime activities like the pretty ice-skating rink open for cold-weather fun. In midwinter, the winds blowing off Lake Ontario can be wicked, so dress warmly.