nap toronto

The top 10 places to sneak a nap in Toronto

Life in Toronto would be greatly improved if we seriously considered the siesta as an official thing, but given that it won't happen in our lifetime, I thought I'd take a stab at rounding up some public places suitable for napping in this city. The criteria is pretty basic: relatively comfortable seating, some privacy (or at least anonymity), and relative quiet. In short, you're unlikely to find a perfect place to snooze without heading home or laying down some cash, but there are places that will allow you to do so if you're particularly exhausted.

Here are 10 places to sneak a nap in Toronto.

Royal York Hotel
Many hotel lobbies have chairs suitable for napping, but as is the case with other entries on this list, you ideally want to find somewhere that you might go unnoticed for a while. The second floor couches at the Royal York might not always fit this bill, the place is big enough that it's possible to be taken for a weary traveller. Do bear in mind, you'll be more likely to blend in if you're dressed decently.

The TTC
This one is rather obvious, and many of us are guilty of falling asleep on our commute home. But if you're actually looking to ensure that you get a bit of shut eye, try making it to the front end of the train on the Bloor-Danforth Line (2) during the middle of the day. If you get lucky, you can grab the two-seater beside the driver, where you're pretty much guaranteed to be left alone. Head east for the lowest possible number of passengers.

EJ Pratt Library
A lot of people recommended Robarts Library when I poked them about this list, but you need to flash your U of T student card to access the stacks, so I'd try EJ Pratt Library instead. It's far nicer and typically quieter. Rest your head on your carrell and catch a fews Zs. Bonus: there are even couches on the second floor.

Brookfield Place
This one comes from a reader tip. If you head down to the food court, there is a corridor between section 161 and 181 that has seating for about 20 people. It's relatively secluded (as much as any place can be in the Financial District) and the seats are comfortable enough to allow you to drift off if you find yourself in a state of exhaustion.

Sugar Beach
Sugar Beach makes this list on account of its chairs, which allow you to get about half reclined and its umbrellas, which are necessary to block out shade when hoping to snooze for a little while. It's also mostly quiet (though not when a delivery is underway at Redpath Sugar), the sand is pleasant to cover your feet in, and you likely won't get robbed. All good things.

Rainbow Cinemas
Few places are better for napping during the day than movie theatres -- just make sure to pick an atrocious romcom that will bore you into oblivion (and definitely no action flicks; the sound will wake you). That said, who wants to pay much for the chance to not watch a film? One of your best bets for a cheap snooze is Rainbow Cinemas at Market Square. The cinema is cheap enough that you won't stay up worried about what you just spent on a nap.

Centrepoint Mall
Centrepoint Mall is one of a number that feature hyper comfortable chairs that demand sleep. In fact, it's impossible not to sleep if you decide to take a moment's pause in them. Perhaps the gentle rhythm of fellow sleepers (all over the age of 60) is contagious, but there is a snooze power here that's very strong. Be careful: you might lose the afternoon.

Toronto Reference Library
Any library could have made this list, but I'm partial to the Reference Library for its sheer size. The public nap requires anonymity, and big spaces tend to allow one to slip into the background. This is true at the Reference Library if you hug the edges of the building (the fifth floor can be nice and quiet during the day) and hunt down an unoccupied table. Needless to say, don't bother around exam time, as the place is absolutely packed. For libraries with more comfortable seating, try Deer Park, Northern District, Bloor Gladstone, or really any other one on this list.

The AGO
The trick with having a snooze at the AGO is picking where you're going to sit/slouch. Darkened rooms featuring video installations are a good bet, but only if the chairs within have back rests. Another good bet is on the first floor immediately north of where Frank restaurant is located. This quiet section of the gallery features a few comfy chairs that you can sink back into. Put a book in your lap to ward off the security guards.

Toronto Music Garden
I've tried to keep outdoor spaces off this list, as there's really only a few months of the year that you can comfortably nap in Toronto. But, for my money, the area around the Toronto music garden, which features some nicely secluded benches is one of the best options. There will often be classical music playing to lull you into a slumber, and the people passing by the waterfront path are far enough away so as not to bother you.

Got a favourite place to sneak a nap in Toronto? Let us know in the comments.


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