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Toronto, Canada: Getting Oot of Town

Day 1 in Toronto included dim sum, the CN Tower, PANAMANIA (what?) and Chromeo (who?). Read on.


Getting oot of town…🇨🇦 #travel #canada #toronto #cntower weekendgetaway

A photo posted by Monica Wong (@_monicawong) on

The blue is bluer and the green is greener in Toronto. Must be that Canadian air. So light and so fresh. So not like New York.

I flew into Billy Bishop Airport and took the 30 second ferry to downtown Toronto. The ferry ride had the most welcoming view of the CN tower. You know, the one with the glass floor 1,122 feet above ground.

I caught the free airport shuttle bus to Union Station and walked through Nathan Phillips Square to get to one of my favorite hotel chains, the DoubleTree! They offer warm cookies when you check-in.

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Venice Beach, California: West Coast Welcome

If New York City gave me beaches like Venice Beach and weather like LA, being bi-coastal would not be on the bucket list.


My grad school friends were getting married in Sonoma Valley so I decided to make this trip out to California a week-long west coast getaway.

My stay in LA consisted of a lot of driving (not by me), sipping on coffee and tea at Verve, gorging at In-N-Out, eating cheap Mexican food, seeing the Hollywood sign at Griffith Observatory, spending a city girl’s definition of an outdoorsy day in LA and watching the sun set at a rooftop bar from Venice Beach.

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In-N-Out vs. Shake Shack

Despite being a New Yorker, I have to admit that In-N-Out wins over Shake Shack. It taste just as good and is a better bang for my buck.


One of these days, I’m going to be bi-coastal. This Native New Yorker needs her east coast hustle, but I can really get used to this west coast vibe.

Guess what my first stop was as soon as I got into LA. That’s right. In-N-Out. Animal style. And of course, the next question that comes to mind is: Which is better – Shake Shack or In-N-Out? Here’s my take: Shake Shack wins on taste, but In-N-Out is just as tasty and definitely better bang for my buck.

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