Nuit Blanche 101

On Saturday October 4th from 6:53pm- 7am, Nuit Blanche transforms Toronto to an all night art hub. This is my #1 favourite festival in Toronto. It’s incredibly fun to explore the streets of the city after hours collectively. Thousands of people roam the streets searching for unique experiences. Every year is different, and unique. Nuit Blanche is in it’s eighth year. It’s organized by the City of Toronto and sponsored by Scotiabank.

This is my mini guide to the festival! Check out my recommended projects.

Project Areas

This super handy map shows you where all of the projects are. The city is split into four different sections with a specific theme.

The possibility of everything: Chinatown/Queen West [click here to see projects]

The emphasis will be on artistic productions that make us reconsider the meanings of play and participation. The works will be unconventional and symbolic of their particular aesthetic. Projects will reflect poetically on the social and political issues affecting our present realities and possible futures. Curated by Dominique Fontaine

The Night Circus: Roundhouse Park/Bremner Blvd [click here to see projects]

For Scotiabank Nuit Blanche 2014, part of Toronto’s downtown will become its own ‘Night Circus’ activated by artists who will dazzle, entertain and enchant visitors. And as quickly as the circus arrives, like magic, it will vanish before our eyes once the dawn breaks. Curated by Denise Markonish

Before Day Break: Fort York [click here to see projects]

Motivated to challenge and surprise the viewer’s expectations, this vibrant environment will invite reflection on contemporary history, while juxtaposing it to Canada’s quest for inclusion and plurality. All of this leads to satisfaction of the eye and the intellect. Before Day Break defends and trusts the restorative power of art. Curated by Magda Gonzalez-Mora


What Should I See?

As much as you can! Check out the Nuit Blanche website to see what the night has in store for you.

Where Can I Eat? Some restaurants will stay open extra late for Nuit Blanche. This year, there will also be food trucks stationed in specific spots. Click here to see where they’ll be.

Getting Around
Nuit Blanche is from dusk till dawn, and our subway system dies around 1am. Luckily for us, TTC has been a partner with the festival since its inception. The Bloor-Danforth Subway will run all night from Keele to Woodbine and the Yonge-University-Spadina Subway will run all night from St. Clair West to Eglinton. The last train is 7am. The subway will be closed from 7:30 – 9:00 am on Sunday,October 4th.This is a good time to catch a nap while you wait for your subway home. (seriously).

Go Transit: Two extra homebound trains will run along the Lakeshore GO lines in the early hours of October 5. Bus connections will be available to Hamilton GO Centre. The Milton, Kitchener, Barrie, Stouffville and Richmond Hill GO lines will each have a special train traveling into Toronto on October 4, returning homebound in the early hours of October 5.

From personal experience, taking the Queen Street car becomes INSANE. If you can walk it, do it. It’s much better.


  • Don’t plan out your night. That’s right, don’t plan it out. The night is much more successful if you wander around the city and find projects randomly. Pick an area where you know there will be some projects. It’s really stressful to be looking forward to a project and have to wait for hours in line. The lines can be long, and they fluctuate throughout the night.
  • But if you do plan your night… Try to choose large scale projects that are outdoors and won’t be crowded.
  • Bring snacks! You will be hungry and thirsty so be prepared! Stores are catching on and are staying open later, but can’t always be depended on.
  • Dress warmly The weather is unpredictable and can be freezing cold or even raining. Be prepared and check the weather before you go.
  • Don’t try to see everything. You can’t, and will just end up frustrated and sad. Check the website and pick some of your favourites. Wander around the area that hosts your favourite projects. Try to see your project, but if you can’t, keep checking other projects in the area.
  • Take the TTC With the exception of the Queen Street car, the subways are the perfect way to get around during Nuit Blanche. If you don’t have a Metropass, then get a special event pass for you and a friend ($11.00)


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