As the winter chill melts away and the flowers begin to bloom, it’s time to get out and explore all that our city has to offer. Whether you’re a local looking for something new or a visitor on a budget, this list of the best free things to do in Toronto this spring will come in handy.

From markets to festivals to outdoor activities, there’s something for everyone.

Enjoy this roundup of incredible free things to do in Toronto this spring and have yourself a fabulous season.

The Word on the Street Festival

Canada’s largest free outdoor book and magazine festival is returning to Toronto this spring.

Join this annual celebration of Canadian literature and writers and browse the vibrant marketplace of the best books and magazines out there.

Whether you’re a bookworm or a casual reader, this free community street festival is not one to be missed!

When: May 27th and 28th
Where: Queen’s Park

Doors Open Toronto

Torontonians will once again get rare access into some of the city’s most interesting sites this May as part of the annual Doors Open Toronto event.

With nearly 700 unique locations and over 2 million visits since the event began in 2000, this free event is not to be missed if you love to explore the city.

When: May 27th to May 28th, 2023

Go on a spring hike

It’s time to bust out those hiking shoes and explore the outdoors.

Sunshine, fresh air, beautiful views — these easy hikes near Toronto have it all, and many of them are free to enjoy!

And don’t sweat it if you’re a beginner because these trails are suitable for hikers of all skill levels.

Where: See the best easy hikes near Toronto here

Free Third Tuesdays at The ROM

Bring your friends and fam to The ROM on the third Tuesday night of each month for a free museum visit! This monthly offer includes free access to all of the galleries and exhibitions at the museum.

Advanced tickets are not required and it’s first come, first served, so be sure to arrive on time for a guaranteed spot!

When: May 16th, 2023
Where: The Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park

The Bentway Opening Weekend

Toronto’s beloved outdoor hub below the Gardiner Expressway is reopening this May with a new season of programming, called Beyond Concrete.

In celebration of its opening weekend, visitors can attend free talks, tours, and workshops.

Plus, there are several installations that the public can enjoy for free throughout the season.

That includes a special live art performance on May 27th and 28th.

When: Starting on May 26th, 2023
Where: 250 Fort York Boulevard

Portugal the Festa

In celebration of 70 years of Portuguese immigration to Canada, a free festival is coming to Nathan Phillips Square.

Spend the day enjoying authentic Portuguese food, live music, entertainment, local vendor shopping, and good vibes.

When: May 14th, 2023 at 11 AM
Where: Nathan Phillips Square

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Do West Fest

Do West Fest is returning for another weekend of free festival fun this spring.

Formerly Dundas West Fest, this neighbourhood-wide event is a Dundas West tradition. Food, drinks entertainment, live music, and good vibes — what more could you ask for?

When: June 9th to 11th, 2023
Where: Dundas Street West from Ossington to Lansdowne

MOCA Free Friday Nights

The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) has reopened with new spring exhibitions, and you can visit for free!

The museum has a Free Friday Nights tradition that brings art lovers together on the best night of the week.

Visitors are invited to celebrate contemporary art and community and enjoy live performances, installations, pop-ups, activations, and more.

You can book your spot in advance to guarantee entry or drop in on the day. The last time slot for entry is 8:45 PM.

When: Fridays from 5 PM to 9 PM
Where: Museum of Contemporary Art, 158 Sterling Road #100

Burlington Sakura Festival

Travel outside the city for a little taste of Japan!

The Burlington Sakura Festival is a free event that will transport visitors to cherry blossom season in Japan.

The festival is a celebration of spring hosted in partnership with Burlington’s sister city of Itabashi, Japan.

The City of Burlington’s Mundialization Committee told Curiocity that the event will feature “an afternoon of Japanese music, dance and martial arts demonstrations.”

When: Saturday, May 13th, 2023 at 1 PM
Where: Burlington Performing Arts Centre Family Lobby, 440 Locust Street, Burlington

Party for Paws Spring Pet Fair

This annual free pet-centric party is coming back this month, and it’s pawsitively awesome.

The family-friendly and fully accessible event allows you to start your animal adoption journey, support local businesses, and meet celebrity pets all in one place.

There will be all kinds of fun things to do for your pet too, including doggie pools and tunnels, a photo booth, treats for pets, goodies, and more.

When: May 27th & 28th, 2023
Where: Trinity Bellwoods Park, Dog Bowl, 790 Queen Street West

Saturday Farmer’s Market

The change in season brings a whole host of amazing new produce to explore at the Farmers Market.

Every Saturday this spring, you can head over to the Brickworks to explore their gorgeous artisanal goods and seasonal food.

We recommend squeezing in a little hike of the park while you’re there.

Where: Evergreen Brickworks, 550 Bayview Ave

Backyard Festival: Asian Night Market

Stackt Market is bringing back its annual free festival series and it kicks off this month.

Starting May 20th, 2023, the Backyard summer festival series returns, featuring five different events to start.

This month, you can expect an exciting Asian Market to turn up the heat with delicious cuisine and cultural activities.

When: May 20th, 2023
Where: Stackt Market

AGO Free Wednesday Nights

The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) has a longstanding tradition of allowing the public to visit the gallery for free every Wednesday evening.

Free general admission tickets must be booked in advance, online.

If you don’t manage to get one, be on the lookout on Mondays when a limited number of free timed-entry tickets are released for the following Wednesday.

When: Wednesdays from 6 PM to 9 PM
Where: The Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West

Beaches Artisan Market

This beloved market is making a comeback this month at Queen Street Marketplace, featuring handcrafted works of over 50 independent artists, artisans, makers, and designers.

While admission is free for everyone, kids get an extra treat with free face painting.

When: May 14th, 2023
Where: 2075 Queen Street East

Hit the beach

Okay, we may be jumping the gun a bit on this one. But if you’re as pumped for summer as we are, then any hint of warm weather will have you running to Toronto’s beaches.

Right now, you can enjoy a breezy afternoon soaking up the sun. These spots make for beautiful outdoor walks.

Where: Check out Toronto’s best beaches here