A late 18th- and 19th-century defence against invaders (i.e., Americans), Fort York was destroyed during the War of 1812 and rebuilt to ward off a further U.S. invasion in 1814. The 43-acre site is a reminder of how unnecessary such defences have become and how much of Lake Ontario the city has reclaimed—the site used to be right on the waterfront. A chic and award-winning new Visitor Centre and exhibition space, tucked away under an expressway, gives street cred to this venerable historic site, now surrounded by shiny condo towers. Historic re-enactments on offer.
Fort York National Historic Site, built in 1793 is the birthplace of urban Toronto. It is best known as the location where the Battle of York came to its violent climax in 1813 during the War of 1812. It served as the city's primary harbour defence between the 1790s and the 1880s and was the home of a military garrison until the 1930s.
Fort York consists of 44 acres of land that is used to host many cultural and artistic events and its defensive walls enclose Canada's largest collection of original War of 1812 buildings.
City of Toronto Historic Sites work collectively as 10 historic museums including: Colborne Lodge, Fort York National Historic Site, Gibson House Museum, Mackenzie House, Montgomery's Inn, Scarborough Museum, Spadina Museum, Todmorden Mills Heritage Site, York Museum and Zion Schoolhouse.
These museums work within a values framework of service, stewardship and commitment and are operated by the City of Toronto.
These institutions maintain a leadership role in inspiring passion and understanding for Toronto, a diverse and vibrant city. Each building located throughout Toronto tells a unique story in ways that engage citizens and tourists alike.
The museum curators are experts in their field and are able to explain in creative ways through tours, events, classes, workshops, school programs, camps, birthday parties and more about Toronto’s evolution.
You're encouraged to visit any one of the museums listed, whether you have been a resident your whole life or are a tourist visiting Toronto for a short time. These museums have something to offer everyone.
Don’t just read about Toronto’s history – taste it, touch it, hear it and explore it.
|Venue name:||Fort York National Historic Site||Contact:|
250 Fort York Blvd
|Cross street:||at Lakeshore Blvd W|
|Opening hours:||Labour Day–Victoria Day, Monday–Friday 10am–4pm, Saturday–Sunday 10am–5pm; Victoria Day–Labour Day, Monday–Sunday 10am–5pm|
|Transport:||Streetcar 511 Bathurst, 509 Harbourfront/Bus 63 Ossington|
|Price:||$7.96; seniors and youth $4.87; children $3.76|