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The CN Tower Toronto, Canada

The CN Tower was originally conceived as a transmission tower and continues to be used by over 30 radio and TV broadcasters.

The CN Tower was originally conceived as a transmission tower and continues to be used by over 30 radio and TV broadcasters.

Top Of The Beanstalk | Sharon Henry

Just like a magic, giant beanstalk would, Toronto’s CN Tower demands your attention. It’s gangly, rocketing height is hard to ignore, plus the tower pretty much photo bombs every picture you’ll take in the city.

We usually steer clear of the more pricey attractions but made a last minute decision to ‘do’ the tower when we were in town.

Thrill Seekers On The CN Tower Edgewalk

Stood at the bottom we spotted teeny, tiny people way up above us, suspended precariously on the outside rim of the tower pod. These were adrenalin junkies crazy enough to do the ‘Edgewalk,’ tethered to a harness to prevent a 356m plummet as they walked around the outer edge of the platform. We heard a few screams and shouts; either from fear or just showing off!

It looked fun and we fleetingly considered having a go (very fleetingly) but our legs buckled at the thought. So that was a no-no.

The EdgeWalk is the world’s highest full circle hands-free walk on a 5 ft (1.5 m) wide ledge encircling the top of the CN Tower’s main pod, 356m, (1168 ft, 116 stories) above the ground. This adrenalin-fueled experience allows thrill seekers to walk the edge of one of the world’s greatest man-made wonders. Adventure lovers walk “hands-free” in groups of six, while attached to an overhead safety rail via a trolley and harness system.

The EdgeWalk is the world’s highest full circle hands-free walk on a 5 ft (1.5 m) wide ledge encircling the top of the CN Tower’s main pod, 356m, (1168 ft, 116 stories) above the ground. This adrenalin-fueled experience allows thrill seekers to walk the edge of one of the world’s greatest man-made wonders. Adventure lovers walk “hands-free” in groups of six, while attached to an overhead safety rail via a trolley and harness system.

Over 80 miles of post-tensioning cable was used to produce a strong and secure 'skeleton' for the CN Tower's concrete structure. The CN Tower was built between 1973 and 1976 at a cost of $63m.

Over 80 miles of post-tensioning cable was used to produce a strong and secure ‘skeleton’ for the CN Tower’s concrete structure. The CN Tower was built between 1973 and 1976 at a cost of $63m.

An innovative energy efficient LED exterior lighting system was added in 2007. Lightning strikes the CN Tower an average of 75 times per year. Long copper strips, running down the CN Tower to massive grounding rods buried below ground level ensure that each lightning strike safely finds its way to ground.

An innovative energy efficient LED exterior lighting system was added in 2007. Lightning strikes the CN Tower an average of 75 times per year. Long copper strips, running down the CN Tower to massive grounding rods buried below ground level ensure that each lightning strike safely finds its way to ground.

The CN Tower is located two blocks from Union Station in the heart of the Entertainment District, adjacent to the Rogers Centre, near the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and Air Canada Centre.

The CN Tower is located two blocks from Union Station in the heart of the Entertainment District, adjacent to the Rogers Centre, near the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and Air Canada Centre.

The CN Tower gift shop, located inside the base of the tower.

The CN Tower gift shop, located inside the base of the tower.

The CN Tower claims North America's first and the world's highest glass floor panelled elevators which present a thrilling perspective on the view 346m (1,136 feet) straight down. The elevator rides takes 58 seconds to reach the Lookout. Six of the CN Tower's elevators are glass-fronted so you can enjoy the view going up and down.

The CN Tower claims North America’s first and the world’s highest glass floor panelled elevators which present a thrilling perspective on the view 346m (1,136 feet) straight down. The elevator rides takes 58 seconds to reach the Lookout. Six of the CN Tower’s elevators are glass-fronted so you can enjoy the view going up and down.

We played it safe, handed over $35 (Canadian) each for the ‘Tower Experience which began with a super speed elevator ride to the top, everyone squeezed in tightly. In less than a minute (58 seconds to be exact) we soared 346 metres inside the glass- paneled, capsule including the floor. It was a little bit of a jelly-legged moment watching the ground fall away rapidly below us, Darrin couldn’t look.

Spectacular Toronto

Emerging onto the Lookout Deck at the top we joined the excited crowd of people, everyone trying to find a clear spot at the panoramic windows.

A space opened up for us, then wow! The spectacular view of the city of Toronto stretched out below us like a giant 3D display on Google street view. In the distance we watched planes take off and land on Toronto Islands runway; below us cars streamed along motorways, trains and trams ran through the city and boats ferried back and forth across Lake Ontario. It was fascinating, like gazing over an elaborate toy set. Who could tire of that amazing birds-eye view?

The views from the Lookout Deck on CN Tower include the Toronto Island runway.

The views from the Lookout Deck on CN Tower include the Toronto Island runway.

The Lookout Deck of Toronto's CN Tower with everyone competing for window space.

The Lookout Deck of Toronto’s CN Tower with everyone competing for window space.

The sprawl of Toronto stretching into the distance. Spectacular views of up to 163km are possible from the top of the CN Tower on a clear day.

The sprawl of Toronto stretching into the distance. Spectacular views of up to 163km are possible from the top of the CN Tower on a clear day.

The Rogers Centre (originally SkyDome) is a multi-purpose stadium at the base of the CN Tower in Toronto. It is home to the Toronto Blue Jays baseball team but also hosts other events including trade fairs and concerts.

The Rogers Centre (originally SkyDome) is a multi-purpose stadium at the base of the CN Tower in Toronto. It is home to the Toronto Blue Jays baseball team but also hosts other events including trade fairs and concerts.

Horizons Restaurant is located on the Lookout Deck level of the CN Tower. The restaurant has seating for 130 and a party capacity of 300 plus a dance floor.

Horizons Restaurant is located on the Lookout Deck level of the CN Tower. The restaurant has seating for 130 and a party capacity of 300 plus a dance floor.

Almost directly under us the Rogers Centre stadium really brought home how high we were; it looked miniature from where we stood, surrounded in every direction by the matchbox-like buildings.

Walking On A Glass Floor

One deck down, we literally had our breaths taken away outside on the open SkyTerrace as winds buffered through the safety wire mesh. That’s where we (or me to be precise) found the highlight of the Tower Experience; the 2.5 inch glass floor.

Stopping for our selfie moment on the SkyTerrace of the CN Tower, with Lake Ontario helping to make up the Toronto backdrop.

Stopping for our selfie moment on the SkyTerrace of the CN Tower, with Lake Ontario helping to make up the Toronto backdrop.

Not a stop sign you see every day! A warning (as if you need it) to not go climbing on the safety mesh around the CN Tower's SkyTerrace.

Not a stop sign you see every day! A warning (as if you need it) to not go climbing on the safety mesh around the CN Tower’s SkyTerrace.

Standing right on top of the SkyTerrace glass floor, looking straight down the column of the beanstalk onto the little ant people below was a pretty freaky sensation. Just looking down past my feet suspended over the 342 metre drop was – thrilling! The SkyTerrace too was crowded, not quite how it’s promoted in the brochure pictures. The glass floor was full of selfie-takers of all ages, some kneeling, some crawling and others just nervously standing on the edge. Kids especially seemed unfazed by heights. Darrin, stayed well back!

Designed to hold more than 21 metric tonnes, the glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto's CN Tower is a major draw for thousands of people every day.

Designed to hold more than 21 metric tonnes, the glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto’s CN Tower is a major draw for thousands of people every day.

Competing for space on the glass floor of the SkyTerrace with the Rogers Centre far below me! The CN Tower glass floor is (apparently) the highest glass floor in the world and constructed five times stronger than required weight bearning standard for commercial floors.

Competing for space on the glass floor of the SkyTerrace with the Rogers Centre far below me! The CN Tower glass floor is (apparently) the highest glass floor in the world and constructed five times stronger than required weight bearning standard for commercial floors.

Standing and looking straight down through the glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto's CN Tower.

Standing and looking straight down through the glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto’s CN Tower.

The glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto's CN Tower is a major draw for thousands of (very trusting) people every day.

The glass floor on the SkyTerrace of Toronto’s CN Tower is a major draw for thousands of (very trusting) people every day.

According to the sign nearby, the glass floor could withstand the weight of 3.5 orca whales or 35 moose (we were in Canada) or 41 polar bears, in total an equivalent of 21,835kg. That’s a lot of people and their cameras, so I felt quite safe, enjoying the walking on air experience. Then the selfie bug struck me too.

CN Tower Facts and Figures

Rising 553 metres, the CN Tower was completed in 1976 and was the tallest building in the world for 34 long years. That’s before the crown was snatched by Dubai’s, Burj Khalifa when it opened in 2010, which stands at a whopping 829.8 metres tall. The CN Tower is now demoted to the tallest tower in the Western hemisphere.

In 1995 the CN Tower was designated an Engineering Wonder of the Modern World in the company of the Empire State Building, the Golden Gate Bridge, the English Channel Tunnel, Panama Canal, Itaipu Dam and North Sea Protection Works.

In 1995 the CN Tower was designated an Engineering Wonder of the Modern World in the company of the Empire State Building, the Golden Gate Bridge, the English Channel Tunnel, Panama Canal, Itaipu Dam and North Sea Protection Works.

That said, the super structure of the CN Tower remains very popular attracting 1.5 million visitors a year.

Another fact. The CN Tower was chosen in 1995 as an Engineering Wonder of the Modern World. In the company of the Empire State Building, Golden Gate Bridge, English Channel Tunnel, Panama Canal, Itaipu Dam and North Sea Protection Works.

Between 1976 – 2010 the CN Tower in Toronto was the world's tallest building. It was superseded by the opening of the Burj Khalifa (829.8 metres) in Dubai.

Between 1976 – 2010 the CN Tower in Toronto was the world’s tallest building. It was superseded by the opening of the Burj Khalifa (829.8 metres) in Dubai.

Cost of the CN Tower to build? $63 million.

A total of 1,537 workers were employed to construct the Tower. Today the Tower employs 400 staff to run the facility, increasing to 550 during peak seasons.

At 70 Canadian dollars per couple, would we recommend the CN Tower? Absolutely. From the moment you step inside the base of the Tower to stepping out on the observations decks and then deciding when you’re ready to come back down, this is one very impressive attraction. Don’t miss it!

Canada's CN Tower, vital statistics: Lookout altitude, 346 metres. Skypod altitude, 447 metres. Top of Tower, 553 metres.

Canada’s CN Tower, vital statistics: Lookout altitude, 346 metres. Skypod altitude, 447 metres. Top of Tower, 553 metres.

Tickets to the LA Tower can be bought at the entrance Box Office, online with discount or included in the CityPass.

Tower Experience, general admission: Adult: CAD $35 Seniors & Children: $28. Children aged 3 and under get free admission.

Online: Buy online and save $3 per ticket.

Skypod: $12 (all ages) including a Tower Experience ticket.

The Edgewalk: $195 conditions apply. Seasonal opening.

Waiting for the elevator ride back down there are plenty of CN Tower facts and figures to keep visitors occupied.

Waiting for the elevator ride back down there are plenty of CN Tower facts and figures to keep visitors occupied.

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