Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ)
15 miles/20 minutes to Rogers Centre
WHERE TO STAY?
Hotels Near Rogers Centre (All within walking distance of the ballpark)
Residence Inn Toronto Downtown (entertainment district)
The Westin Harbour Castle
Toronto Marriott City Centre Hotel
Chaser budget traveler
Super 8 Toronto
Ballpark Chasers Tip: although it isn’t the nicest hotel in Toronto, the Marriott City Centre Hotel offers a once in a lifetime chance to sleep in a Major League Baseball stadium! There are over 70 rooms with a field view, so start saving and reserve several months in advance.
WHERE TO PARK?
Rogers Centre is located in the heart of downtown Toronto and can be difficult to navigate if you are not familiar with the area. The Blue Jays underground parking is the most convenient option. Otherwise, garages, paid lots and street parking are readily available in the surrounding city blocks. Expect a price range of $5 to $30 for parking, depending on the distance to the ballpark.
WHERE TO EAT?
Downtown Toronto provides numerous restaurants and sports bars. “The Great One” has his very own restaurant with a not so great name, Wayne Gretzky’s Restaurant. Okay, so the name isn’t that original but the décor and food make up for it. Where else can you find continuous highlight reels from the remarkable career of Wayne Gretzky and hundreds of memorabilia items throughout his playing days? Not to mention, the food is pretty good too. Don’t leave without trying their famous meatloaf.
Another fun sports hangout is The Loose Moose. You can’t go wrong if you love large plates, local fans, and great selection of beers on tap. Make sure to arrive early on game days as this spot becomes the place to be for Blue Jays fans. Our last recommendation for eating outside of the ballpark is Pizza Rustica. We were quite surprised to find a local pizza joint in Toronto that could make a great pie and live up to Ballpark Chasers standards. Come check them out and decide for yourself.
Only a seven minute walk from Rogers Centre is Real Sports Bar & Grille. This is quickly becoming a local favorite as they are currently offering 112 taps and 36 brands of beer. But our favorite feature is their 39ft HDTV surrounded by 199 smaller screen high definition televisions! Before you head out, make sure to check out their golf simulator.
Ballpark Chasers Favorite Bar- Steam Whistle
Rogers Centre is one of the most affordable ballparks in the Majors when it comes to eating. Checkout their Dugout Deals for the most basic and cheapest options throughout the season. And if you're lucky, your game will land on one of six home games over the course of the season that offers $1 hot dogs! Our favorite vendor is The "Pop Up Kitchen" that rotates local Toronto favorite restaurants. Streetcar Tacos, located at Section 537, is another food to sample. The Mexican-inspired dish is offered as a trio of chipotle ground beef or adobo chicken tacos, both served on a bed of creamy slaw, and with the option to customize with different toppings. It's not a trip to Canada without sampling Poutine. And for dessert, make sure to ask for a Poutine churro with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce (located T.O. Street Eats).
New food to Rogers Centre
Log Cabin Topped Tots - tater tots slathered in maple beans, pulled pork, bacon and cheese.
Healthy options - the Southwest inspired Caesar Bowl, Ultimate Vegetarian Burger, and the 32 Ingredient Salad, which boasts 32 plant-based ingredients.
Funnel Cake Poutine – Deep fried funnel cake fries, ice cream, chocolate, caramel and marshmallow.
WHERE TO BUY TICKETS?
The Blue Jays ranked 4th in MLB ballpark attendance during the 2017 season and averaged 80% full. Blue Jays tickets are available before home games through their box office, located at Gate 9 (Bremner Blvd, just east of Spadina Ave). Purchasing tickets from scalpers is another choice and you will find them very visible on all sides of the ballpark. Because Blue Jays tickets are more in demand, Ballpark Chasers recommends pre-purchasing tickets through the Blue Jays ticket office.
WHEN TO GO?
Rogers Centre was the first Major League Baseball stadium to build a retractable roof. The Blue Jays will not only close the roof with rain, but also during those hot, summer afternoons. Spring and fall temperatures tend to be on the cooler side in Toronto; therefore, Ballpark Chasers recommend the months of June, July and August when traveling to Rogers Centre.
WHAT ELSE TO SEE?
Just blocks from Rogers Centre lie two of Toronto’s must see attractions. The CN Tower and the Hockey Hall of Fame are a perfect way to spend the day before a Blue Jays game. To get the most out of the 1,800 ft. tall CN Tower, Ballpark Chasers recommends purchasing tickets for the “Total Tower Experience”. This package includes glass floor elevator rides, sky pod and look-out observation decks, a documentary film and motion theatre ride. The Hockey Hall of Fame is a short walk from the CN Tower and is the “Mecca” for hockey fans. Adults run $18 while juniors ages 4-13 run $12 (under the age of 4 is free admission). This includes access to view the Stanley Cup, slap shots at real-time goalies, test your goalkeeping skills by taking shots from Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier, watch hockey movies, and be a play-by-play announcer, while taking in the world’s largest collection of hockey memorabilia.
If you have a rental car and are up for a two hour drive, head west to visit the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in St. Mary’s, Ontario. Although it isn’t as grand as Cooperstown, the CBHF is still worth the trip for any baseball fan. The museum pays tribute to over 80 Canadian baseball heroes, with tons of baseball memorabilia, artifacts and souvenirs. Coming soon to the CBHF is “The Great Canadian Dream Park”, a 32 acre site that will hold a new baseball stadium, three baseball fields, walking trails, picnic grounds, and a new interactive museum and education center. The new Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame looks to be the next home for baseball in Canada.
Other options to consider visiting while in the Toronto area are: Royal Ontario Museum, China Town, an African Lion Safari, a ferry ride to Centre Island and a short drive to Niagara Falls.
BALLPARK CHASERS VACATION?
Rogers Centre is only one of four Major League stadiums that is not easily accessible to other ballparks. Although Ballpark Chasers recommends using Rogers Centre as a solo trip, it is possible to combine with Comerica Park in Detroit. It is roughly a four hour drive between the two cities, not including time spent crossing the border (don’t forget your passport). A closer alternative is to head south into New York. Two hours from Toronto is home of the Buffalo Bisons, the Triple A Affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays. The Bisons play in Sahlen Field which is one of the largest Minor League ballparks and arguably one of the best. If you visit, make sure to grab a bite at their buffet style restaurant, Pub at the Park.
Last updated by Ballpark Chasers.