Photos: Toronto: An urban gem

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  1. Casa Loma Garden

    The former home of Canadian financier Sir Henry Pellatt, Canada's foremost castle is complete with decorated suites, secret passages, an 800-foot tunnel, towers, stables and beautiful 5-acre estate gardens (open May-Oct.). (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Nathan Phillips Square

    Nathan Phillips Square is a city square that forms the front (south) entrance to Toronto City Hall or 'New City Hall', and features an ice rink/reflecting pool, a peace garden, and the 'Three-Way Piece No. 2' ('The Archer') by Henry Moore at the north end in front of City Hall. (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. The Rexall Centre

    The Rexall Centre is an international tennis center built with the local community in mind. The park-like setting provides dining, shopping and interactive activities to add to the tennis experience. (Matthew Stockman / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. The Toronto Zoo

    Sumatran tiger cubs play in their pen at the Toronto Zoo. (Adrian Wyld / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Royal Ontario Museum

    A totem pole extends towards the skylight in the main stairwell of the Royal Ontario Museum. (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Air Canada Centre

    The Air Canada Centre, often referred to simply as The ACC, is a multi-purpose arena located on Bay Street in downtown Toronto, Ontario. It is the home of the Toronto Raptors of the NBA, the Toronto Maple Leafs of the NHL, and the Toronto Rock of the NLL. It was also home to the Toronto Phantoms of the AFL during their brief existence. (Robert Laberge / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Chinatown

    Toronto has the second largest Chinatown in North America and the largest when all six Chinatowns are grouped as one. It has grown significantly over the years and has come to reflect a diverse set of Asian cultures through its shops and restaurants, including Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai. (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Rogers Centre

    The Rogers Centre is home to Major League Baseball's Toronto Blue Jays and the Canadian Football League's Toronto Argonauts. While it is primarily a sports venue, Rogers Centre also hosts other large-scale events such as conventions, trade fairs and concerts. (Harry How / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Hockey Hall of Fame

    The Hockey Hall of Fame which celebrates the history of ice hockey with exhibits featuring memorabilia and NHL trophies (including the Stanley Cup). (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Eaton Centre

    The Toronto Eaton Centre is a large shopping mall and office complex in downtown Toronto, and is a top tourist attraction. One of the most prominent sights in the shopping mall is the group of fibre glass Canada Geese hanging from the ceiling. This sculpture, named Flight Stop, is the work of artist Michael Snow. (Tourism Toronto) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Toronto skyline

    The Toronto skyline with a view of the CN Tower, at 1,815 feet, 5 inches tall, is the world's tallest freestanding structure on land. It is considered the signature icon of the city; more than two million international visitors are attracted annually to the tower. Guinness World Records has listed the CN Tower as the world's tallest 'building' for 30 years. (Corbis) Back to slideshow navigation
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updated 12/18/2007 11:48:14 AM ET 2007-12-18T16:48:14

The Real Deal: Round-trip airfare and three nights' accommodations, from $719 per person—plus taxes of about $45.

When: Through Apr. 30, 2008.

Gateways Chicago; add $40 from Miami; $80 from Atlanta, Boston, and New York City; $120 from L.A.

The fine print: Hotel taxes are $15, and airport tax and surcharges are $30 per person. Breakfast is not included. Based on double occupancy; single supplement is $219. Extra nights are $69 per person per night. Read these guidelines before you book any Real Deal.

Book by: No deadline; based on availability.

Contact: Maxxim Vacations, 800/567-6666, maxximvacations.com.

Why it's a deal: According to a recent search on Kayak, round-trip airfare between Toronto and Chicago is relatively low for winter departure dates, starting from $282 in late December (American) and $235 from mid-January through early February (Northwest). But the package becomes a better value in spring when Toronto starts to warm up, and airfare rates jump to $428-$434 in early to late April (United/Continental). For an additional $291, or about $97 per night, Maxxim Vacations also covers a three-night hotel stay. Also, if the Canadian dollar continues to gain on the U.S. dollar, the package (with its fixed price in dollars) may become an better value compared with booking a hotel room (priced in Canadian dollars) independently.

Trip details: The City Stays Toronto package includes round-trip airfare on a United Airlines/Air Canada carrier and three nights' accommodations at the Delta Chelsea, a huge hotel with more than 1,500 rooms, three restaurants, pools—including one on the top floor with panoramic city views—and a family-fun zone that has a heated indoor waterslide.

Delta Chelsea's location is tough to beat; it's in Downtown West, home to major attractions such as the CN Tower, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Rogers Centre, and the Harbourfront.

While in Toronto, you may also want to sample local delicacies from over 60 gourmet food vendors at the St. Lawrence Market in the heart of Old Town Toronto or treat yourself to a shopping spree at the Eaton Centre, a multilevel shopping mall modeled after the Galleria in Milan, Italy.

For more tips on what to do in the area, visit the official Web site of the city of Toronto. You can find the latest exchange rate and the local time at BudgetTravel.com.

Not surprisingly, Toronto winters are cold with temperatures just below freezing and an average snowfall of about four inches. Before you go, check the weather forecast at BudgetTravel.com.

Maxxim, which specializes in travel to Canada, also offers a two-night version of this package from $679 per person, as well as a package with airfare, three nights at the Delta Chelsea hotel, and orchestra-level theater tickets to "Dirty Dancing" from $819.

Copyright © 2012 Newsweek Budget Travel, Inc.

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