Now flaunting four — count them, four — David Chang dining rooms all stacked up in one glass cube, Toronto may be the very model of a buzzing urbane city. But hop a 15-minute ferry and you slide into a pastoral parallel universe thanks to the Toronto Islands, strung out like a daisy chain in Lake Ontario. Most people head straight to Centre Island (a.k.a. Toronto Island), where everyone shoots by on bikes -- or, in the canals, kayaks -- rather than cars. For a rustic symphony of forest, dunes, and beaches, don’t overlook the clothing-optional Hanlan’s Point Beach. For a slightly dressier option, the neighboring Rectory Café dishes up a mean Ontario bacon cheeseburger on a lakeside patio. Book your whitewashed room at Swan’s End Guest House (TorontoIsland.org) on adjoining Algonquin Island early, especially if you’re coming in June, when the International Dragon Boat Race Festival turns Lake Ontario into a retro vision of Hong Kong Harbour.
Take a video tour of the Rectory Café below: