Uniquely Toronto: Souvenir and Gift Shops You Won’t Find Anywhere Else
Toronto is a one-of-a-kind city – not only when it comes to our people and our attractions, but also when it comes to our local shops and businesses.
If you’re looking for a souvenir of your trip, forget generic T-shirts and mugs. Bring home a keepsake like no other from one of these unique Toronto gift shops that you won’t find anywhere else.
Drake General Store
You’ll feel like you’ve gone back in time the moment you enter the Drake General Store. This one-of-a-kind shop is chock-full of Canadiana with an old timey feel – everything from fedoras, to engraved flasks, to traditional maple syrup, to iconic Hudson’s Bay blankets. Shop at any of the store’s three locations – in The Hudson’s Bay store on Yonge Street, beside the Drake Hotel on Queen West or at Yonge and Eglinton.
Location: 176 Yonge Street | 1144 Queen Street West | 2607 Yonge Street
Blue Banana Market
Blue Banana Market is as hip and eccentric as you would expect from a store located in Kensington Market. With two levels overflowing with posters, games, clothing, jewelry, musical instruments and various odds and ends, it’s impossible not to find something here that catches your eye. There aren’t many other stores in Toronto where you can buy a designer dress, a bongo drum and a jar of gourmet hot sauce under the same roof.
Location: 250 Augusta Avenue
The first retail offshoot of Toronto’s Spacing magazine is located off Queen West in the fittingly creative shared space of the 401 Richmond building with its industrial bones, wooden ceiling and exposed beams. Toronto-themed merchandise includes the publication’s popular TTC station buttons, books, reprinted vintage posters, cool T-shirts, cycling-themed items and peameal bacon-scented candles.
Location: 401 Richmond Street West
St. Lawrence Market
The history of Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market goes all the way back to the turn of the 19th century. Renowned for its unparalleled selection of locally sourced produce, meats and other edible delights such as local favourite Kozlick’s mustard. The market also features handmade crafts and novelties from local vendors. Browse at your leisure and when you get hungry grab a fresh sandwich such as the iconic peameal bacon from Carousel Bakery or bakery treat like the Portuguese-style custard tarts at Churrasco.
Location: 92 Front Street East
AGO Gift Shop
The Frank Gehry-designed gift shop at the Art Gallery of Ontario is arguably as impressive as the museum that houses it. From personal accessories, to stylish home décor, to Group of Seven prints, this shop contains everything for the fashionable art lover. Check out the AGOkids section for books, toys, and craft sets that make great gifts for youngsters interested in exploring the world of art.
Location: 317 Dundas Street West
Marketplace at the CN Tower
There’s no landmark that’s more iconically “Toronto” than the CN Tower. The tallest free-standing structure in the Western Hemisphere is a tourist magnet – and unsurprisingly its 10,000 square foot gift shop is stuffed to the brim with unique souvenirs including authentic First Nations art, sports memorabilia, and (of course) CN Tower miniatures. Browse the merchandise before or after taking the elevator up 342m to the famous Glass Floor and SkyTerrace.
Location: 301 Front Street West
Rolo (which stands for Realm of Ludicrous Objects) specializes in the weird and wacky. Here you will find the kinds of things you only dream up in your craziest moments. Edgar Allan Poe action figure? Check. Bacon-scented shaving cream? Check. Latex pug mask? Check. Ask the store’s “gifticians” for inspiration so you can bring your family and friends home a souvenir that will have everybody talking.
Location: 24 Bellair Street
One of the most innovative stores in one of Toronto’s most unique neighbourhood’s, Bergo Designs in the Distillery District is known for its European-inspired designer housewares and home décor. The front room is filled with row upon row of shiny contraptions that artfully combine functionality with creativity – including contemporary kitchenware, moving alarm clocks, and flower vases that look like they stepped out of a painting by Dali. In the kids’ section at the book, various other gadgets and gizmos offer endless hours of fun for little ones.
Location: 28 Tank House Lane
Rated as Toronto’s best unique gift store by NOW Magazine, the Arts Market is a favourite spot for Toronto artists and art-lovers alike. Hand-stitched clothing, homemade greeting cards, original paintings and sketches – here’s your opportunity to bring home a genuine piece of Toronto while supporting the local art community.
Location: 1114 Queen Street East and 846 College Street at Ossington
One of a Kind Show
The One of a Kind Show may happen twice a year, but it truly is one-of-a-kind. Canada’s finest craft show brings together over 800 artists, craftspeople and designers to showcase the best of their work. Browse hand-crafted fashion items, fine art, ceramics, jewelry, and much more at either the Christmas or Spring show. Check out the website for date and ticket information.
Location: Exhibition Place, 200 Princes’ Boulevard