What’s not to like about Toronto’s Roncesvalles neighbourhood? Streets are lined with beautiful homes, friendly faces, burgeoning local businesses, and some of the city’s best parks. Walking down Roncesvalles Avenue, the smell of homemade bread and rich coffee coming from nearby Mabel’s Bakery serves as a reminder that “Roncey” is a neighbourhood abundant in life’s simple pleasures.
No longer one of Toronto’s best-kept secrets, the restoration of Roncesvalles has resulted in destination-worthy restaurants, boutiques, pubs, and indie coffee houses. Staying true to its roots, authentic Polish butchers, delicatessens, and restaurants stand strong with the area’s newest entrepreneurial ‘allies’. The seamless mixture of old and new combine effortlessly to create a tight-knit community that has everything a resident would need—or want.
Bordering High Park, Roncesvalles is the perfect place to run the dog, go on a stroller-clad coffee date with friends, or be first to the High Park Cherry Blossom watch. Suitable for any active Torontonian or nature-loving family, Roncesvalles fosters well-being and community at every corner. And how can we forget the Annual Polish Festival, held each September—a testament to the neighbourhood’s strong Polish community presence.
Roncesvalles brims with turn-of-the-century brick homes, inviting porches, sweeping gardens, and charming laneways. Houses are located within walking, or short driving, distance to local schools and amenities. Real estate in this vibrant area is highly sought-after and homes listed in the neighbourhood normally sell within days of being listed on the market.
Fun fact: Roncesvalles Avenue takes its name from the Battle of Roncesvalles, which took place in Spain’s Roncesvalles Pass in 1813. (The name ‘Roncesvalles’ means ‘valley of thorns’ in Spanish.) It was at this gully that Colonel Walter O’Hara — an early 19th-century Irish settler who played a significant role in the establishment of the neighbourhood — once led the winning regiment that fought against Napoleon’s army.