Admittance is free but they ask that you donate what you can.
Riverdale Farm is a 3-hectare (7.4-acre) municipally operated farm in the heart of Cabbagetown, an urban neighbourhood in Toronto. It is maintained by Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation Division.
Between 1888 and 1974, this was the site of the Riverdale Zoo. In 1974, the zoo relocated to a much larger facility in Scarborough and became the Toronto Zoo. In 1978, Riverdale Farm opened on the west bank of the Don River adjacent to Riverdale Park. The main barn was first constructed in 1858 in Markham and moved to the present site and rebuilt in 1977. The farm is open to the public all year-round. It specializes in pioneer breeds of farm animals that are hard to find on commercial farms. Animals at the farm include poultry, waterfowl, goats, sheep, pigs, cows, donkeys, and horses.
The Simpson House
The Victorian-style farmhouse, named after the restoration architect ( Napier Simpson Jr.) who built it, is to the left of the main entrance. It is a reproduction of the original Francey farmhouse to complement the Francey Barn.
The Pig and Poultry Barn
The Barn is located to the east of the Simpson House. Domesticated waterfowl, chickens, turkeys and pigs are found in and around this barn. During the day, water fowl can be found visiting the Duck Pond located across from the Meeting House.
The Francey Barn
This barn is located inside the main gates. Originally built in 1858 on a farm in the Markham Township, it was donated by Mrs. Garnett Francey to the City of Toronto in 1977. The Francey Barn is a rare type of architecture, known as a Pennsylvania Bank Barn. Bank Barns are built on the side of hills or river banks. This has the advantage of having an upper and lower floor accessible from ground level. The animals are housed on the lower level, while upstairs the Francey Barn holds tonnes of hay, straw and feed.
Donnybrook Ruin stands beside the cow paddock. It was originally a two-storey building, but a tower and a main floor is all that remains today.
The Meeting House
The three-storey building, completed in 1993 is located at the east-end of Riverdale Farm by the duck pond. Recreational and interpretive activities are offered to the public inside the Meeting House.
The Resident Zookeeper’s House is located beside the Meeting House. It was built in 1902 by prisoners of the Toronto Don Jail and functioned as a residence, a staff building, zoo hospital, and temporary morgue for the Necropolis Cemetery. Today, the “Residence” (as it is now called) is used for a variety of farm-related and community-based programs.
We followed some of the trails.
|The former monkey house|
There was a cool carving outside the farm.