Museum of Illusions
With just 15 locations around the world, the opportunity to explore Toronto’s Museum of Illusions is a truly special one.
This photogenic museum has more than 100 rooms filled with art installations and optical illusions that will bend your brain in the best way. The Infinity Room looks like it goes on forever, and you could truly spend forever there, gazing at the twinkling lights and wondering where the room starts and ends. Kids will spend hours exploring the Smart Playroom, filled with hands-on illusions like 3D puzzles and impossible knots. The Vortex Tunnel is a dizzying whirl that reminds you that you’re standing on solid ground — something you’ll greatly appreciate when you exit the tunnel! With tons of illusions to play with, from the familiar ones like the kaleidoscope to the unique and mind-boggling ones like the Anti-gravity Room, this museum will draw in anyone with a curious eye and a willingness to try new things. The place can change you if you let it — like the True Mirror exhibit which displays a true representation of you, versus the optical alterations that occur when you look in a normal mirror at home.
The Museum of Illusions is located in Old City in Toronto, just a few blocks away from iconic spots like St. Lawrence Market, and in walking distance from the Entertainment District, the Distillery District or the waterfront. If you choose to drive, park at any of the paid garages or street spots on the surrounding blocks. To avoid parking, take public transit via the 121A bus or the Route 1 subway from the north.
For up-to-date information and details on the Museum of Illusions, we recommend you visit their website. For information about other places of interest to explore nearby, keep scrolling to see what Destination Ontario recommends.
Some things to do may not be available due to COVID-19.
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More about Museum of Illusions
The Museum of Illusions is a marriage of art, science and entertainment that will have the whole family chatting about the experience for hours. Attractions are divided into three categories — images, installations and rooms — that incite varying levels of confusion. But don’t worry, the museum also offers fascinating explanations of the illusions, so you can also learn about what it takes to trick the human eye.
The Anti-gravity Room, for example, seems to defy the laws of physics as objects roll uphill and water flows in the wrong direction. In the Infinity Tunnel, a visually pleasing, but nonetheless befuddling, collection of mirrors creates the effect of staring into a bottomless pit. At the Smart Playroom, kids and adults will spend hours poring over cognitive puzzles, brain teasers and games. These challenges are truly tough, so if you can’t figure them out during your visit, purchase your favorite brain teaser at the attached smart shop. Much like the experience of visiting a new city, your mind will expand with each moment you spend in the Museum of Illusions.
As one of the world’s most Instagrammable museums, this multi-city attraction is a hit among kids, teens and adults alike.
In the Chair Illusion, you’ll feel smaller than ever when you see yourself in this chair built to make you look tiny — or to make everyone else look huge! Flip your world upside down in the Rotated Room, where you can pose for photos that’ll make you look like you can scale the walls and do handstands. The Clone Table is an excellent photo op, as it creates several versions of you, sitting around a table with yourself.
Toronto’s Museum of Illusions has a distinctly educational focus, despite the museum being one of the most fun and adventurous indoor experiences in the city. Groups can book tours where they will learn more about the illusions they’re seeing. Visitors are also always encouraged to ask questions in this museum — after all, what you see will defy the laws of physics, and who wouldn’t question that?
Nearby, check out the hip Neo Coffee Bar or the St. Lawrence Market for a bite. Take a short walk to the Gooderham Building, Toronto’s only Flatiron Building and a quite distinctive one at that. On a hot day, walk to nearby David Crombie Park to dip in the wading pool or check out St. James Park to see some of Toronto’s most beautiful gardens. Sugar Beach offers a view of the piers nearby, where you can take a ferry to Toronto Islands.