Urban wilderness at Tommy Thompson Park, Toronto

Despite having lived in Toronto for over three decades, this weekend was my first time venturing over to the Port Lands and exploring it properly. We tuned up our bikes and took them out for a ride along the Martin Goodman mixed use trail that leads you to Tommy Thompson Park.

Located along the east waterfront of Toronto, Tommy Thompson Park is a unique gem of nature and wilderness within the urban jungle. Situated on a man-made peninsula known as the Leslie Street Split, the park extends five kilometres into Lake Ontario and spans 500 hectares.

Amongst the 10 kilometres of bike and hiking trails, you will find one of the largest existing natural habitats on the Toronto waterfront, where wildlife and flora flourishes. It is a bird watcher’s paradise, but if you’re lucky, you may also catch a glimpse of some sly foxes that have made the park their home, at least temporarily.

28 responses to “Urban wilderness at Tommy Thompson Park, Toronto”

  1. That’s so cool. The fox is beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was a real surprise to see that fox up close!

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  2. Great pictures of the skyline… and that fox! Did you have a telephoto lens or were you able to get that close?

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    1. I was about 5 feet away! It was just sitting there amongst a group of people and I initially thought someone had snuck their dog in (this park is supposed to be dog-free due to risk of disturbing the wildlife). I have a point and shoot camera that has 20x zoom so was able to get the closeup. Pretty cool to see!

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  3. What a great park, I have never visited it on my many trips to Toronto. I can’t believe you got so close to the fox, and it looks like he stayed for a while to get so many pictures. Maggie

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    1. Seeing the fox was a surprise; he was just sitting there and didn’t seem to mind the people standing just a few feet away!

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  4. So beautiful – I love the little blue flowers and the fox is amazing 🙂

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    1. Yes, I’m glad I finally discovered this amazing place in the city!

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  5. Now I see why Toronto ranked as one of the most beautiful cities in the world a few years ago. Great post and wonderful photos, Toronto Skyline is every photographer’s dream! Thanks for sharing 🙂 Aiva

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    1. This park is situated out on Lake Ontario so it gives you an interesting vantage point to see the skyline. Great for photography as you’ve mentioned.

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  6. What an adorable little fox; I love that beautiful red fur on it! Tommy Thompson Park looks to be a therapeutic, secluded place, but surprisingly so close to Toronto…and that skyline view just can’t be beat!

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    1. It does feel like an escape from the city!

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  7. I understand the delay in visiting the other side of Toronto, there are always reasons to stop on the way. The Port seems to me to be the next playground for developers, so expect changes in the next few years. Hopefully it will be hard to reverse Tommy Thompson Park. What luck to have seen a fox, they tend to disappear; they are killed by the coyotes who hunt in groups.

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    1. I hope that Tommy Thompson Park stays well protected. It was remarkable to see all the development that has already happened along the stretch of waterfront east of Yonge as I headed toward the Port Lands. Condos everywhere!

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  8. with the city skyscrapers in the background! Beautiful!

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    1. Yes it was. Thanks for reading!

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  9. What a nice place to discover, and the fox was an unexpected treat! Great photos.

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    1. The fox was definitely unexpected, a cool way to cap off my day at the park!

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  10. Great captures of the foxes. I have never been to Tommy Thompson Park before but will have to add this to my list of places to check out before we move out of Toronto.

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    1. I think you would enjoy it being the nature lovers that you are!

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  11. It’s crazy how we don’t really explore the places closest to us isn’t it? The Tommy Thompson Park looks great as well as the skyline views.

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    1. I rarely go over to the east end and there is lots that I have missed exploring for sure.

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  12. Very cool. What did the fox say?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. […] I enjoy spending time along the Lake Ontario waterfront and have spent many afternoons and evenings cycling along the Martin Goodman Trail. This summer, I discovered the Port Lands area and specifically Tommy Thompson Park, an amazing little nature reserve that feels like an escape from the city. You can read more about that in this post. […]

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