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Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

WI
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Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

We are planning on driving to New York and returning home via Niagara Falls & Toronto. We have a graduation on Mon with only a few hours of free time for sight seeing. So far we have planned our activites for Tues & Wed in NY. We need to decide whether we spend our extra day Thurs in NY or Toronto. Our plan is to drive thru the night from NY to Niagara so that we are there when it opens in the morning. We need to leave Toronto by 9:00 pm Sat. . My question is if you had 5 days how would you split the time between NY & Toronto. I know it is an awful lot to cram into a few days. I have been to NY before but never Toronto.

I am also posting this on the New York forum.

West Grey, Ontario
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1. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

"I have been to NY before but never Toronto."

Hi KM19;

Well then, time for a new experience !

You could spend an entire week in Toronto and still have plenty to see and do !!

Best Regards

New York City, New...
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2. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

You haven't said how many you are, who is going (kids?) and why you're going to the Falls in the first place. Have you ever been to NYC? Toronto? For starters, I would NOT drive overnight straight through to Niagara Falls.

West Grey, Ontario
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3. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

"Have you ever been to NYC?"

Hi nywhiz;

The OP stated - "I have been to NY before but never Toronto."

Best Regards

Canada
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4. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

Can't say that I think that it's a good idea to drive all night and then expect to enjoy time at the Falls and then a further couple of hours driving to Toronto. Are you planning an overnight in Niagara and then, what is left of your time, in Toronto? Not clear from your post.

Edited: 03 April 2011, 16:52
WI
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5. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

There will be 6 of us going. Husband & I and 4 kids, ages 16 - 25. We choose to drive overnight to save money and time. We rotate drivers so even though I appreciate your concern please don't comment on our choice of travel. It works for us.

We plan on being at the Canadian side of the falls when it opens in the morning and heading out when we are done for Toronto. Estimated time of arrival in Toronto is between 3 - 5 pm..

I realize we could spend a week in Toronto but we don't have that amount of time. We are not trying to cram in everything on this trip. We know we will be back. I'm just trying to figure out how to divide our time between NY & Toronto. None of us have been to Toronto. All but 1 of us have been to NY several times. The reason for going to NY is for a graduation. The reason for going to Toronto is because we wanted to take a different route back to the Midwest since we have driven from NY to WI many times.

Toronto, Canada
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6. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

With the limited time you have to split between NYC, Niagara Falls & Toronto, I would recommend that you use the extra day for Toronto:

- Spend Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday in NYC as currently planned

- Wednesday night, do your overnight drive arriving in Niagara Falls for Thursday AM

- Thursday - see the falls & arrive in Toronto late Thursday afternoon

- Spend Friday & Saturday in Toronto before heading out at 9pm

The itinerary above gives you 2 full days to enjoy Toronto. I wouldn't "count" Thursday as part of your Toronto sightseeing as you will be pretty tired once you arrive in Toronto Thursday afternoon (due to all the driving you've done, along with a full day of sightseeing in Niagara falls). I would even suggest that you consider staying in the Niagara region a little longer (perhaps visit Niagara-on-the-Lake), and even make your trip back to Toronto a little later (your current timing will put you on our highways during rush hour and this is not fun!) Thursday night in Toronto could be spent by having a nice dinner somewhere, walking around in a neighbourhood closeby to where you are staying, and then get some good rest to prepare for 2-days of sightseeing on Friday & Saturday.

If you had moved Thursday to NYC, you would be spending most of Friday in Niagara falls, leaving only Saturday to see Toronto - which isn't much time at all! Of course...this really depends on what you were hoping to see in Toronto...if you have specific plans, I'd be happy to give you an opinion as to whether they can be accomplished in one day or two.

Hope this helps - Cheers!

Toronto, Canada
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7. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

Given your circumstances, I would probably opt for the extra day in Toronto. This gives you a little time to rest once you arrive (will be a long journey from NYC via Niagara Falls) and still leaves you with a few days in Toronto to make the stop there worthwhile. I'm of the opinion that arriving in the afternoon/evening and leaving the next night is probably not worth the stop at all. There is plenty to see/do in Toronto for a couple of days on a weekend...if you need more specific info or ideas just ask!

Of course, this all depends on your family's interests...If you hadn't been to NYC on several occasions, your time might be better spent there.

By the way, I'm envious of your method of travel...I miss family road trips!

Toronto, Ontario
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8. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

Something that hasn't been noted is that the Falls are only about 2 hours from here. Most people I know (unless they are doing some wine country touring) head out from Toronto about 8-8:30, arrive Falls 10-10:30, do their touring and viewing, and then return home that same day, leaving Niagara about 6 pm to avoid the crush hour traffic.

It seems to me, based on the google map I just did for m'self, that for you guys to get home from Toronto, you must go back through South Western Ontario, anyway. If you take the route via 403 to 402, you will be halfway back to the Falls. So why not do it another way 'round? If you're pulling that all-nighter drive anyway, why not just drive through to Toronto, spend your time doing the must-do's here, and then, on your way BACK, go to the falls.

Toronto, Canada
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9. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

While I'm sure KM19 have their route sorted out anyway, I don't quite agree with the suggestion to see the Falls on the way back to Wisconsin.

Whether you cross in Sarnia (402) or Windsor (401), it is still backtracking to visit Niagara Falls along the way.

Furthermore, I would suggest taking the 401 to leave Toronto as opposed to the QEW/403 on most occasions.

Edited: 03 April 2011, 19:52
WI
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10. Re: Splitting time between NY & Toronao. Need help

Thank you all for your help. I like the idea of adding Niagara on the Lake and arriving in Toronto later that night.

I wrote a description of our family travel style but somehow I must not have posted it.

We travel 3 - 4 times a year (lower end of middle class Americans) which is why we need to travel on a budget. We choose to drive long distances over nights to avoid the cost of lodging. We prepare most of our own meals, stay in budget accomodations and we avoid most tourist attractions.

We enjoy the culture of different neighborhoods, geocaching, people watching and learning history on our own.

I will start a new thread when I have more specific questions. Thanks for helping me get started in my planning.