mississauga things to do

How to spend a day in Mississauga this holiday season

Mississauga may be overlooked as a sight-seeing spot but, once it's safe to get out again, this city has plenty to offer from nature trails to great food — and it is only a short drive or ride from Toronto.

On the shores of Lake Ontario, visitors can take strolls along the waterfront to see a working lighthouse and this holiday season, there's a spectacular drive-thru light show.

If you’re driving to Mississauga from Toronto, just jump on the Gardiner or Lake Shore and head west, you’ll be at your destination in about 20 minutes. It is also possible to take a GO train to several convenient stops in the city such as Port Credit or Cooksville GO stations.

No matter how you decide to get there, it shouldn't take you more than an hour, making it perfect for a quick day trip out of the city.

Here's how to spend a day in Mississauga, from morning until night.

Breakfast

Mississauga has many beautiful trails and outdoor activities so you will need some fuel to start your day. 

For an easy portable take out breakfast, stop by Breakfast ING. It's a bit hard to find, but this place makes Malaysian street style breakfast sandwiches with fillings like fried egg, ground beef, tomatoes, lettuce, secret spices and sauce.

things to do mississauga

Daddy O Doughnuts has homemade sweets in retro flavours. Photo via Daddy O Doughnuts

If sugar is your fuel, look no further than Daddy O Doughnuts. This place has homemade donuts in retro flavours, such as the bright green Luck of the Irish, you won’t find anywhere else. They also have vegan selections.

Get Caffeinated

There are plenty of places to grab a hot cup of coffee. For something unique to Mississauga, the independently owned Halo Espresso Bar has you covered for lattes, cappuccinos and Americanos.

mississauga day trip

Halo Espresso Bar is an independent coffee shop serving cappuccinos and Americanos.  Photo via Halo Espresso Bar

Motorcycle fans may want to check out Back Road Motor Coffee Co. started by two best friends and avid motorcyclists, the café offers ethical brews roasted in house.

Studio.89 is a fair trade café created as a social enterprise. So you can feel good about the organic, bird-friendly brews on the menu here. They also have vegan options.

Morning Activity

Mississauga may be the sixth most populous city in Canada but it has such a wonderful trail system, you may feel you stepped into the country.

Rattray Marsh Conservation Area is a 94-acre marsh with trails and raised boardwalks. This marsh is one of the last along Lake Ontario and is home to a variety of plants and birds.

mississauga day trip

Rattray Marsh Conservation Area is a 94-acre marsh with trails and raised boardwalks. Photo by Kevin Cabral

Those with more energy may want to try the Mississauga portion of the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail. The trail starts in Marie Curtis Park in the east and runs parallel with the lake to Winston Churchill Boulevard.

If you're riding or walking on the waterfront trail, make a stop in Port Credit to see the iconic red and white lighthouse. Built in 1991 to replace the original, which was burnt in a fire, this is a working lighthouse as Port Credit is an international border entry point to Canada.

mississauga things to do

Port Credit's iconic red and white lighthouse is a must-see.  Photo by  Sonicgregu.

Erindale Park is one of the best places to see and walk along the Credit River. The main trail is about 13 kilometres long but it is mostly flat and easy to navigate.

Lunch

After all that walking you will be hungry for lunch and Mississauga has several options.

Lion City is a Singaporean restaurant selling a menu of hard-to-find eats from the city-island of culinary delights. On a cold day the Laksa, served with thick rice vermicelli, tofu puffs, fish cakes, chicken and shrimp in shrimp based coconut soup, will warm you up.

mississauga things to do

Lion City is a Singaporean restaurant in Mississauga. Photo by Hector Vasquez 

For an on-the-go take out meal, Zeerah is a Halal Pakistani and Indian joint known for their bun kebabs, as well as traditional kebabs and stews.

Culture and Outdoors

For those who like plane watching, the Danville Airplane Viewing Platform, offers a clear view of planes taking off from Toronto International Airport. Despite the name, the airport is actually located in Mississauga.

Since it's winter, it's also time for outdoor skating and Mississauga has plenty of options. Right next to Square One, Celebration Square has an outdoor skating rink as well as plenty of holiday festivities going on.

Afternoon Snack

For a quick snack, grab a freshly made samosas at A-One. This place makes some of the best samosas in the country and also serves Indian sweets and treats, all preservative-free.

mississauga things to do

Don't miss on the samosa at A-One. Photo by Hector Vasquez.

For fresh baked breads, visit Bread and Salt Bakehouse, a contemporary bakery firing up Middle Eastern staples mixed with European classics. This place also has its own mini market — there's a wall of Judi-branded halva, cherry jams, and premium dates — and part pitstop for breakfast, lunch, and a coffee.

mississauga things to do

Bread and Salt Bakehouse has lots of fresh baked treats. Photo by Hector Vasquez

Try made-from-scratch cupcakes at The Social Bakeshop in Port Credit for a sweet treat. This bakery also has keto offerings.

Dinner

Spending time by the lake may have you craving fish. Samaka Seafood serves up platters of freshly grilled fish, stuffed calamari, and shrimp sandwiches made Mediterranean-style. The choices here include red snapper, mackerel, grey mullet, and tilapia, which are flown in from the Caribbean and the Mediterranean, are priced per pound.

mississauga things to do

Samaka Seafood serves up platters of freshly grilled fish. Photo by Hector Vasquez

For a hearty meal that is hard to find in Toronto, Monasaba is a Yemeni restaurant specializing in mandi: a delicious and painstakingly-made traditional dish of rice and meat.

mississauga things to do

Don't forget to order the rice when you go to Monasaba.  Photo by Hector Vasquez 

For a to go meal, Manousha is a bakery specializing in manakeesh: Middle Eastern flatbread that's cooked up to order in a wood and gas oven. Loaded with vegetables and cheese, these breads are a meal in themselves.

Evening fun

Canada's first multi-level drive-through holiday experience, Polar, is a great option for these social-distancing times. Polar will be operating every day, rain or shine, until Jan. 3. You will need a car and to purchase tickets ahead of time.

mississauga things to do

The Absolute World Condos look beautiful at dusk.  Photo by Jason Ng.

If you have an interest in modern architecture, don't miss the Absolute World Condos, nicknamed the Marilyn Monroe Towers due to their hourglass design.

These 56 and 50 storey high buildings were completed in 2012 following an international design competition. They look beautiful in the evening.

Lead photo by

Jason Pham


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