Tanning Toronto

5 places to get a (natural) tan in Toronto

The question of where to get a tan in Toronto is sure to bring about comments on the dangers of overexposure to the sun, but that doesn't stop hordes of people from flocking to Toronto beaches and parks to catch a hefty dose of vitamin D. And, hey, like so many things, as long as you don't overdo it, lying around in the sun can be one of the most enjoyable warm weather activities imaginable. That is, of course, if you pick a good spot to do your lying around. While Toronto's many beaches are the most obvious candidates for tanning, there are plenty of other less sandy places to soak up the sun.

Here are my five picks to get a (natural) tan in Toronto.

Gus Ryder Swimming Pool
Located a stone's throw away from Sunnyside Beach, this is one of the city's biggest and busiest public pools. While the deck area could be more spacious, it doesn't get much better as far as swimsuit-clad people watching goes. Did I mention it's right by the lake? You get all of the view without the E. coli.

Trinity Bellwoods Park
Sure, there are more serene parks in Toronto but if you're looking to see and been seen, a weekend afternoon here is the bee's knees. To bring: a blanket, a book and beer.

The rooftop at the Thompson Hotel
So you can't just sauntered up to the top of the Thompson whenever you want, it's certainly worth a visit if you can get up there. Technically reserved for condo residents and hotel guests, there's plenty of events that make the area accessible on occasion. Failing that, you could sweet talk your way up there or slip the staff a twenty. One look at the infinity pool and you'll probably think it's worth it.

Hanlan's Point
Any of Toronto's beaches would make for a great place to tan, but Hanlan's is a cut above the rest for those of us who detest tan lines. As Toronto's only clothing optional beach, Hanlan's won't appeal to everybody, but for the less prudish it's the best beach in the city. Also of note, the beach faces west, so it's a great spot in the late afternoon (even if that's not the most ideal time to bronze yourself).

Sugar Beach
While you can't do intervals between the water and the sand (like, seriously, don't swim here), there probably isn't a nicer sandy beach in Toronto. Plus, there's something marvelous about the incongruous juxtaposition between an industrial looking sugar refinery and an almost white-toned beach dotted with pink umbrellas. If there's a drawback it's that the place gets very, very busy on weekends. Arrive early, apply sunscreen, leave late.

Got a favourite place to catch the sun? Let us know in the comments.

Photo by Still the Oldie in the blogTO Flickr pool


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