As Canada’s largest city, it’s no surprise that Toronto consistently ranks high as a world-class cultural hub in various studies.
Now, Toronto has not one, but two new badges of honour to add to its arsenal, ranked as the number one city for both sports and music fans. The independent studies found Toronto topped the list as North America’s liveliest sporting city, and was also crowned the most featured city for global music tours.
Online sports betting website Betting.com recently published a study analyzing all 130 stadiums across North America’s five major sporting leagues (NFL, NBA, MLB, MLS, & NHL) and the surrounding area establishments which cater to its fans.
Data was pulled from Yelp to find restaurants, pubs, and sports bars within a 2km radius of each stadium, resulting in a list of over 75,000 businesses across the continent.
Cities were then ranked based on the best availability of sporting nightlife, taking affordability into account and normalizing cities against each other to prevent bias towards the most densely populated areas.
With 643 sports bars and pubs to choose from as well as a whopping 5,155 post-game spots where you can celebrate a win with friends, Toronto ranked number one in the list of North America’s liveliest, sporting cities with an index score of 8.74.
Home to the Blue Jays, Raptors, Maple Leafs, and Toronto FC, Toronto draws a wide range of sports fans from near and far. While its affordability rating of 18.32% was beat out by Chicago, Minneapolis, and Baltimore, Toronto still falls within the top five on the list.
Out of the hundreds of game-day offerings, the study even gave a shout out to the beloved Loose Moose Bar and Grill near Scotiabank Arena, where Raptors and Leafs fans flock to both pre and post-game fuel and drinks.
Second on the list was Chicago scoring 8.48 on the index scale, followed by New York City with an 8.45. Despite scoring lower in affordability, New York boasts nearly double the amount of Toronto sports bars and pubs, with 1,206 to choose from and an impressive 11,605 total post-game spots.
As for the least lively cities for sports fans, San Antonio, Texas was at the bottom of the list, with an index score of only 0.29. Oakland and Kansas City followed, with scores of 0.63 and 0.83 respectively.
Toronto music fans can also rejoice after their city ranked first as the world’s most popular global music tour destination, as found by a study conducted by travel blog Radical Storage.
Looking at more than 700 gigs from the most popular music artists with world tours in recent years, the study tallied which cities they visited, cancelled, or included in their future schedules for 2024.
The list was then compared against a compilation of the top 100 biggest cities in the world based on population.
Artists were selected if they had ranked among the most-streamed artists on Spotify and have performed a world tour since 2015.
The results found Toronto as the leader in world tour stops, with 85.1% of musicians attending the city since 2015.
“Our research shows that Toronto has hosted 40 world tour dates since 2015, more than anywhere else in the world. Its proximity to the mainland U.S. makes it an easy international stop for artists,” wrote Radical Storage.
In second place was London with 83.0% of world tour stops since 2015, followed by Chicago at 80.9%.
On the other end of the scale, the most overlooked global cities include Athens, Istanbul, Bogota, and Medellin, with 97.9% of world tours skipping the cities.
Factors like high taxes, small venues limiting earning potential, border crossing logistics, and pandemic restrictions may have played a role in the least-visited cities on the list.
Whether you’re a sports fan or music-lover, Toronto is the place to be. Home to countless sports bars and host of global world tours, the city lives up to its reputation as one of the best cultural destinations in the world.