A zoo with no admission fee? Who would have thought that one existed in the heart of Toronto! Well, the High Park Mini Zoo is open all year-long from 7am to dusk, and it’s an extremely fun excursion.
Feeling a tad bit unhealthy lately, due to the lack of exercise in my life, and coming down from the highs of sightseeing in Italy – led me to High Park. My mothers stories about living in High Park when she was young with my Nonnies, added to my desire to go for a walk there. So, on a sunny Sunday a couple of weeks ago, I picked up my boyfriend, and drove us there.
It began with desperately needing to pee. During our adventure to find a bathroom close to the parking lot, we came across a baseball tourny of young boys, and the baseball facilities washroom. Unsure whether or not I was allowed to use it, I did it anyway. I heard Andrew speaking through the door, but wasn’t sure why. I popped outside, only to hear that he had seen a mouse. Ick! I creeped by where it had been, through the exit, and there it was! That was the first animal we saw.
Forging onward, we debated the paths we could take when we stumbled on the Mini Zoo! With bison, deer, llama, peacocks, highland cattle and more to look at – we were entranced for about an hour. We even saw some animals mating (having sex), which was awkward, yet none of the onlookers could look away.
Surprisingly, as of 2012 this Mini Zoo has NOT been funded by the City of Toronto, but generous donations made by people living in the surrounding areas and visitors have kept it alive.
High Park also has off leash dog parks, so we got to meet a lot of cute pets, picnic areas, gardens, and a waterfront path amongst many other walkways. It was fun to just embrace nature, see chipmunks and ducks, while walking hand in hand – sort of romantically – throughout the area.
If you don’t have a lot of money, or lots of kids, and are looking for something to do High Park is really enjoyable. Also, when it’s bedtime, everyone will pass out from all the fresh air.