Every September, the Toronto International Film Festival beckons thousands of stars and stargazers to the streets and theatres of downtown Toronto.
This year’s TIFF is the first since legalization, and visitors may be curious about where they can find some green to elevate their cinematic experience.
If that sounds like you, here are the cannabis stores closest to the TIFF action, as well as guidelines for consuming legally in Toronto.
In the province of Ontario, where Toronto is located, you are allowed to consume cannabis wherever tobacco smoking is permitted.
Smoking and vaping is strictly prohibited on restaurant patios, within nine metres of public doorways, near playgrounds, wherever children and families may congregate, and a few other select locations.
Just consider and respect these simple rules of the city and you’ll have no problem enjoying your time here.
What Kinds of Cannabis Products are Available?
During the first year of legalization in Canada, only some cannabis products were made legally available.
Until legalization’s second anniversary on Oct. 17, 2019 – when more products will be allowed – consumers can purchase dried flower (including prerolls), ingestible cannabis oils, capsules, and seeds.
Cannabis consumption is lawful on private residential property, meaning homeowners set the rules. If you’re staying at an Airbnb or other short-term rental, you might find a designated smoking area, depending on the host’s policy.
If you’re staying at a hotel, it’s unlikely that you’ll be permitted to smoke or vape cannabis indoors.
Where to Buy Cannabis Near Theatres
For now, there are only five legal cannabis stores in Toronto, as the city awaits its next rollout of retail stores. (Due to a limited, lottery licensing system, some of the most populated cities in the province have struggled to meet consumer demand.)
Regardless, you’ll be happy to hear that Toronto’s legal cannabis retailers are all downtown, near a handful of TIFF theatres.
If you find yourself near Bloor Street or Yorkville—beloved by celebs and celeb-spotters alike—you’ll be close to Ameri, an independent retailer on Cumberland.
This small store is an in-and-out affair that should be able to meet your needs on the spot, especially for prerolls and dry flower. Due to the popularity and small size of this location, Ameri might have limited offerings in terms of capsules, CBD sprays, and accessories. They’re also working on making the entrance more accessible. Call ahead if you have concerns.
Located a few blocks from TIFF hotspot Ryerson Theatre, and near many hotels and tourist destinations, Canna Cabana at Yonge and Carlton is a sleek store brimming with products. Reviewers even call it the “best store” they’ve been to.
Right beside College Station on the TTC’s Line 1, Canna Cabana is a good bet if you’re heading south to the Ryerson campus, or trying to beat the frenzy at retail locations closer to King St. West.
Down the street from Canna Cabana you’ll find Tokyo Smoke, which is likely to be busy as it sits in downtown Toronto’s popular Yonge-Dundas Square. This store is known for its huge strain selection and educational focus – novices and experts alike can expect to be well taken care of.
Tokyo Smoke is a good option if you’re heading to Ryerson Theatre from King or Queen streets, or visiting the Elgin Theatre (189 Yonge St.) a block south.
As we inch towards the glory and fanfare of the TIFF district, you’ll find The Hunny Pot on Queen West, one of the closest legal cannabis stores to the action. Located near John St., The Hunny Pot is only a few blocks north of the TIFF Bell Lightbox, Princess of Wales Theatre, and Scotiabank Theatre.
Those with mobility issues should be cautious, as this store has stairs throughout. Even outside of TIFF season, this is one of the busiest cannabis retailers in the city, with lines frequently spilling onto the street.
On the plus side, the store’s popularity means it is stocked with a wide range of products for those patient enough to wait.
Further west on Queen, Nova Cannabis is a lofty store that’s accessible and full of product offerings. If you’re looking to shop in a large space staffed with knowledgable budtenders, and fast checkout service, Nova’s got you covered.
Closest to Scotiabank Theatre, but also near other theatres on King, Nova has a large selection of strains, prerolls, oils, capsules, and accessories. Depending on the time of day, lineups are not usually that bad.