Sports and strolls on the shore
The neighbourhood named for its location on Lake Ontario has a 3km boardwalk, which runs along the shore from Woodbine Beach in the west — the best spot in Toronto for beach volleyball — to the Balmy Beach Club in the east.
Both Woodbine and Kew-Balmy beaches have attained Blue Flag certification for water quality.
Beaches International Jazz Festival
For three weeks every year in July, the neighbourhood hosts the Beaches International Jazz Festival. It began in 1989, when local jazz artists were booked to perform at the Kew Beach Bandshell and it now includes workshops, exhibitions and performances across the whole neighbourhood.
Performers have included Trombone Shorty and Hilario Durán.
Varied green spaces
The Glen Stewart ravine winds through the red maple trees in Glen Stewart Park, while there is the chance to play clay-court tennis overlooking Lake Ontario at the club in Kew Gardens, a 6.5 hectare park that borders the coastline.
The oldest cinema in Canada
In 1913, Arthur Brooks Webster petitioned Beachers door to door until he gained enough support to open a cinema on Queen Street East. The Fox Theatre opened in 1914, showing The Squaw Man, a silent western. The 248-seat cinema has since withstood a multitude of changes in the film industry and is the longest-running cinema in the country.
Community spirit, from ceilidhs to Sunday markets
Head to Jonathan Ashbridge Park to the west of the neighbourhood for the Leslieville farmers’ market on Sunday mornings from May to October.
Photographs: Getty Images; Alamy; Education Images/UIG via Getty Images