Search This Blog

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Getting Hitched in Canada

Niagara Falls - Hamilton - Toronto Trip


December 2017 is another unforgettable experience of a lifetime. My heart finally found a home. For the first time in history, I can clearly see my future in the eyes of a man I'm going to love and travel the world with for the rest of my life. 

To start our newly wed journey right for 2018 we're going for a trip again. Our last trip together was last summer we went to Niagara Falls, Kingston, Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec City. This time around we explored Hamilton, also known as the Waterfalls City and Toronto which is considered one of the busiest cities in Ontario.

Dec 22, 23 & 24 Toronto
Dec 22 Friday: Arrival at night
How to get to the subway from the airport:
Take bus 192 outside Toronto Pearson Airport to Kipling station.

Check in West Hostel West, Toronto
Address: 1521 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M6R 1A5
Booked via booking dot com, check sidebar for link.

As what normal couples do before marriage we had our prenuptial pictorial with a professional photographer. We did our own thing last time with our smartphone and a tripod, it turned out pretty good but it's a challenge to run after a timer and smile before it takes the shot. It's fun I tell you but I've realized having someone take our picture is so much better. I chose High Park for our pictorial location in Toronto. It's definitely the best place for any kind of seasonal photography. I went there last fall and it's gorgeous.  As much as I love summer the winter backdrop is just simply romantic in its own way. I like playing with the snow it naturally brings out the child in me. It didn't felt like a pictorial at all, we we're having so much fun that we forgot someone is right there taking our pictures. Kevin, our photographer was friendly and warm. Posing in different angles in front of him was a piece of cake. We also jump in powdered snow and made snow angels like little kids. I remembered I did my first snow angel after a snow storm last year with my cousin. One more thing, we had a special guest during the pictorial, as we were walking down a trail a golden retriever suddenly ran towards our direction and laid down in front of us motioning to pet him. He was so cute and fluffy. Kevin took a great shot of that unexpected event. It's one of those moments where all things come together in one perfect moment.

Prenup Pictorial in High Park 1:30-4:00
Address: 1873 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6R 2Z3
Bought a groupon voucher for the prenup package, check sidebar for vouchers.


I've booked a surprise brunch for both of us at CN Tower the following day. I wanted our first Christmas to be extra special, so I thought why not have it on one of the tallest freestanding structures in the world. The view was spectacular, what I like more about the 360 restaurant is the revolving platform where you can see the whole city of Toronto while having a delicious meal. It wasn't just about the view, food was fantastic too. I called my family back in Philippines as we had our meal; they were already counting down for Christmas in that side of the world. It's not the same celebrating with them in person but seeing them made it all worthwhile. 



Funny moment: On one of the glass panels in the restaurant, there's one sticker of a fish pasted on the glass. And we said, "oh wow! a flying fish" , animatedly thinking ahahaa, that sticker really made me laugh. 

Early Christmas Eve Celebration at CN Tower (brunch)
Address: 301 Front St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2T6
Book yelp or call for reservations.
Budget: 120 cad for two people

Megabus: 7:30PM - 8:55PM Toronto Coach Terminal - St Catharine’s Bus Terminal
BUS Terminal Address: 610 Bay St, Toronto, ON M5G 1M5
Fare: 11 cad - 18 cad (book early for cheaper fares)


Dec 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 & 31 Niagara Falls - St. Catharine’s

Christmas and New Year celebration was with my family in St. Catharine’s. Our simple gathering was all about coming together to celebrate love and family. We are not a family by blood but the bond that I have with this family is incredible. I'm simply drawn to them which made things easy for me in Canada. It's nice to have people around you who care's and truly wishes you well with all your endeavors. Every one of them attended my wedding too. It warms my heart knowing they all didn't work that day for my wedding. I'm blessed and I couldn't ask for more. 

Wedding Prep:
How to get a Marriage License in St. Catharine’s, Ontario.
1. Passport or Birth Certificate 
2. Valid Government issued ID
3. If previously married, bring along the certificate with seal

Dec 30 Sat Wedding
Check in Ramada Hotel by the river
Address: 4357 River Rd, Niagara Falls, ON L2E 3E8 (nearby Niagara bus terminal)
Booked via agoda dot com, check sidebar for link.




Jan 1, 2,3,4,5 & 6 Honeymoon in Hamilton 

GO bus: Fairview mall in St. Catharine’s to Hamilton
Bus Fare: 11 cad (no booking required, first come first serve basis)

Air BnB in Hamilton: Conveniently near Hamilton Downtown.
Address: 55 Wellington St. South, Hamilton, ON L8N 2P9, Canada

We were supposed to have our New Year's celebration in Hamilton instead we decided to stay in St. Catharine’s, and took the GO bus the next morning. Family comes first. Best decision so far, a great way to start the year right. The following day we were in Hamilton, our home away from home for a few days. Our place in Hamilton was perfect with a great view, convenient location and Alex; the Air Bnb owner was very accommodating. He even brought white wine for us on our first day. I won't forget such a sweet gesture. 


We didn't go out that much to have our meals. There's a nearby grocery where we bought our supplies and we cooked our own meals. I believe home cooked meal is still more appetizing. My husband showed me his ultimate ramen specialty and it was delicious. I like men who cook because I'm just terrible in the kitchen. It's just not in DNA, my genetic make-up is designed for other things in life.  


Hamilton is a quiet city with hidden gems all around the corner. Our first stop was the interesting wall or the mountain located in downtown Hamilton. The mountain has accessible metal stairs all the way to the top to reach the other side. It was a good exercise with a great view of the city. I don't know what happened or maybe it was the sunshine breeze that powered up my partner that day. He sang and danced as we went up the stairs. It was a funny sight, having that cheerfulness vibe on winter days warms the cold air around us. It was worth our time we've got to see an overlooking view of Hamilton and its right there in downtown. 

Funny Moment: We actually found a big stuffed toy in front of house along the road . It was fluffy dog with his butt facing the sky and its face kissing the snow. 

Hamilton Mountain
Address: Wentworth St S, Hamilton, ON
No admission fee



Another thing we did in Hamilton is Cafe hopping. One cafe was closed due to the holiday season; we wanted to try their cold brew float. The other one was full of customers so we end up in a cafe called "The Nook." I've never tried Turkish coffee before so I ordered that for me. It was fragrant and strong but I was able to finish it. I love the cafe's ambiance, it was cozy and warm. The beautiful female barista was very informative when it comes to tourist spot location which served as a guide for our next day adventure. 

Cafe: The Nook (try the Turkish coffee)
Address: 6, 2 Bold St, Hamilton, ON L8P 1T2

Next on our list was to visit a waterfall. A Hamilton visit wouldn't be complete without seeing one of their beautiful waterfalls. We chose Tiffany Falls as it is more accessible by bus and closer to downtown. It was pretty cold that day the temperature was over negative twenty. Rain or shine we made our way to the waterfalls. I'm glad we did. The trail is easy, clear and a short hike from the road. I've never seen a frozen waterfall that close, maybe Niagara falls but this one was clearer and closer like just a few metres right in front of me. It was beautiful and serene. The waters were frozen but you can still hear the faint sound of flowing waters under the ice. My partner was not pleased with the cold air poking through his butt, funny and torture that may sound. But I loved that short hike, it was actually the shortest hike I've ever done going to a waterfall. 


Tiffany Falls Conservation Area
Address: Tiffany Falls Side Trail, Hamilton, ON L9G 3H6
No admission fee

My husband has done some research and he wanted to try the recliner leather seats in a mall located downtown. We watched The Last Jedi, another movie sequel from the star wars movie. A spacious reclining seat for a regular movie price?! I couldn't complain to that.  

Movie: Landmark Cinemas 6 Jackson Square (recliner leather seats)
Address: 2 King St W, Hamilton, ON L8P 1A1
Ticket: 15 cad

On our last day we went to play at the Escape Room. A fun learning activity where in you are timed to find clues and solve mystery or decipher number codes which will eventually lead you to unlock an escape door. We were told that we had the most challenging room, as it was the only room available that time. It was a mystery room good for 8 people. Our task was to find certain number codes to open a casino vault. Our clues we're stored in 2 boxes, a drawer, a safety vault behind a wall picture and a briefcase. All had locks with 3-4 codes. We need to the find codes around the room, collect what we found and decipher it. We had a calculator on the desk, some calling cards with bank accounts, a map on the bulletin board and casino chips stacked together near the door. My partner knew what we were doing (he was Aamazing!) while I assisted him on finding clues and suggesting here and there (The muse?!). He was the brain of the operations; I on the other hand was the scavenger. I search, laid out clues, memorize how many number codes we need and which locks needs it, (just made myself useful ahahaa). It was fun. It was one way of knowing if we'll work as a team, and yes indeed we are absolutely a perfect duo!. That activity tested our intellectual capacity and listening skills. However, we were not able to escape the room or maybe if we took it more seriously?! then maybe. On the other hand, we were able to open the vault and took out our cash. We just didn't have enough time to solve the clue for the escape door. It was still a good ending,  we end up happily in jail locked in each other’s arms ahahaaa -what a cheesy line I have there. 

After a mind-boggling activity we went to a Japanese restaurant to have some spicy ramen. OhMy! It was so good that if I wasn't that full I can have another bowl of ramen again. According to my partner who has lived in Japan for years, that soup-based for our ramen was made from scratch -No wonder it tasted great! It was a perfect goodbye for our last night in Hamilton, our small place away from home. 

Fun indoor activity, Escape Room: Alcatraz
Call for reservation to get a cheaper price
Address: 576 Concession St, Hamilton, ON L8V 1B1
Game: 30 cad per person

Food: Kenzo (try the spicy ramen)
Address: 21 King St E, Hamilton, ON L8N 1A1
Meal ranges from 10 cad - 15 cad

Jan 6, 7, 8 & 9 Toronto
Greyhound Bus: 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Hamilton Bus Terminal to Toronto Coach Terminal
Hamilton Bus terminal address: 36 Hunter St. E., Hamilton, ON L8N 3W8

Air BnB Toronto: 
280 Wellesley St. East, Toronto, ON M4X 1G7, Canada



We went back to Toronto to spend our last few days together. It was my birthday, another unforgettable day for 2018. I actually made a pact with myself that every year I'm going to do something special on my birthday. I'd allowed myself to love myself better and make me more special, I guess that's what we called self-love ahahaa. This time I booked a helicopter ride with my partner. It's supposedly his belated happy birthday gift last year; however the flight was canceled that week due to weather condition. But not this time! We were meant to fly on my birthday. It was still a surprise for him, he knew about it only when we got to the airport terminal. It was a bright, clear day, just perfect for a ride up in the sky. It was a short ride yet it didn't felt that way. The helicopter roamed around the city, saw the lake, the famous CN tower; a few days ago we were just there with a 360 view of the city, now we have an awesome bird's eye view. What made it more interesting is that we flew on winter, roofs were covered with snow, some parts of the lake were frozen and it's really something that you don't see every day. 

Afterwards, we feed the beast within us to a buffet in Queen Street. I don't eat that much anymore compared when I was still in Singapore, it's funny how our appetites change. Getting old means our body is not growing anymore, so I believe I should feed my mind and soul more. Well, it's my birthday and we were starving. Celebrating life with abundant food is a good excuse, and besides we get to save more than dining in a fancy restaurant. 

Birthday Celebration: 4pm Helicopter Ride with Toronto Heli Tours
Address: Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, 2 Eireann Quay, Hangar 6, Suite 214, Toronto, ON M5V 1A1
Purchased groupon voucher to save more, check the link found on the sidebar.
Ride: 70 cad per pax

Buffet: TCJ Restaurant (All you can eat Thai, Chinese and Japanese food)
Address: 64 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M5B 1Y4
Price: 25 cad per person



I've done Ice skating with my friend last year and I was terrible at it. So I went back again with my husband to show him how a turtle is faster than me on ice. He had a good time, gliding here and turning there. While I on the other hand was doing just fine; little baby steps as what they say, as long as you're moving you'll be fine. 

Philips Nathan Square
Address: 100 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
Skate Rental for 2 hrs: 10 cad
How to get there: Alight at Osgoode Station. A walking distance from the station. 

Our next stop is a unique dining experience. I've always wanted to try dining in the dark back in Singapore. How it feels like to heighten your other senses to experience food fascinates me. Nasir was our food guide that night, he was funny and friendly. I ordered an all surprise meal for me. My taste buds were clapping like little kids when we had our delicious meal, surprisingly everything taste good- maybe because we valued the meal more. Mind you it was a challenging task ,I had fun thou searching for that last piece of meat on my plate and estimating the distance where my fork goes. It was funny and an interesting way of having a meal. We laughed all throughout our dining experience while we held each other hands.   A unique setting for a romantic dinner. 

O.Noir Dine in the dark 
Address: 620 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y 2G2
Book yelp or call for reservations.
Dinner: 90 cad for two person (tax + tip)
Two course and three course menu: 35 cad-50 cad

Jan 9 Tuesday: Flight 
How to get there: Toronto Pearson International Airport
Take bus 192 from Kipling Subway Station to Pearson Airport 


Saying goodbye at the airport was painful and brutal. I'm glad my husband found me and chose me among all the girls he'd met. He's the one and I'm the one for him. 


Check out: 

Niagara Falls - Hamilton - Toronto Itinerary
Hamilton and Toronto Favorites

Please do not copy Blog photos and texts without further permission and proper attribution. Picture Window theme. Powered by Blogger.