Lonely Planet | Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre tops list of seven reasons to visit Toronto now

Dazzlingly white and playfully angular, the Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre complex … showcases the intellectual, artistic and scientific accomplishments of the Islamic world.

Pulling double duty, this $300-million project underscores Toronto’s multicultural reputation and the namesake benefactor’s pluralist agenda.

Among the more than one thousand pieces, highlights include 16th-century paintings from the Persian Book of Kings and the earliest surviving manuscript of Avicenna’s Canon of Medicine.

For masterpieces of a culinary nature, check out the on-site Diwan Restaurant, with its slick and subdued décor and ambitious menu paying homage to Turkey, Iran, North Africa, Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent.

– Lonely Planet | Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre
1st of 7 places to visit in Toronto

Inside the Aga Khan Museum. Photo: Gary Otte / © The Aga Khan Museum Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre Toronto tops Lonely Planet's list of seven reasons to visit Toronto
Inside the Aga Khan Museum. Photo: Gary Otte / © The Aga Khan Museum

Toronto can sometimes feel like it’s second or third fiddle to Canada’s other major cities. It isn’t as pretty as its West Coast cousin Vancouver, and it doesn’t have the same je ne sais quoi as Montréal. But with the Pan American Games set to start in 2015, more people are thinking of T-Dot as one of Canada’s best destinations. There are plenty of reasons to visit this eclectic, weird city, and here are seven attractions that capture why we love Toronto.

Dazzlingly white and playfully angular, the Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre complex (77 Wynford Dr; http://www.agakhanmuseum.org) showcases the intellectual, artistic and scientific accomplishments of the Islamic world. Pulling double duty, this $300-million project underscores Toronto’s multicultural reputation and the namesake benefactor’s pluralist agenda. Among the more than one thousand pieces, highlights include 16th-century paintings from the Persian Book of Kings and the earliest surviving manuscript of Avicenna’s Canon of Medicine. For masterpieces of a culinary nature, check out the on-site Diwan Restaurant, with its slick and subdued décor and ambitious menu paying homage to Turkey, Iran, North Africa, Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent.

Via Seven reasons to visit Toronto now – Lonely Planet.


About the Aga Khan Museum

The aim of the Aga Khan Museum will be to offer unique insights and new perspectives into Islamic civilizations and the cultural threads that weave through history binding us all together. My hope is that the Museum will also be a centre of education and of learning, and that it will act as a catalyst for mutual understanding and tolerance.

– His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan

AKM - Open for Discovery

The Aga Khan Museum (French: Musée Aga Khan) is dedicated to promoting the artistic, intellectual and scientific contributions of the Muslim Civilisations. Located in Toronto, Canada, the museum is an initiative of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture, an agency of the Aga Khan Development Network.

It houses collections of Islamic art and heritage, including artefacts from the private collections of His Highness the Aga Khan, the Institute of Ismaili Studies in London, and Prince and Princess Sadruddin Aga Khan, which showcase the artistic, intellectual and scientific contributions of Muslim civilizations.

The Museum collection contains over one thousand artefacts and artworks and spans over one thousand years of history. The objects – in ceramic, metalwork, ivory, stone and wood, textile and carpet, glass and rock crystal objects, parchment and illustrated paintings on paper – present an overview of the artistic accomplishments of Muslim civilisations from the Iberian Peninsula to China.

Discover, Explore and Learn more at AKDN: Aga Khan Museum and Aga Khan Museum


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All stories from Ismailimail reporting from Toronto during the Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre, Toronto inauguration:

Noorani Family at Ismaili Centre, Toronto and Aga Khan Museum inauguration - Mawlana Hazar Imam, Prince Amyn, Prince Rahim with Princess Salwa, and Prince Hussain

Screen Shot 2014-09-13 at 10.51.02 AM

Happy Birthday Princess Zahra

IM Reporting from TO - Discovering Ismaili Centre, Toronto - An Architectural and Engineering Gem

Discovering the Aga Khan Park - Reflections – An Interplay of Nature with the Built Environment

Discovering the Aga Khan Museum - Bellerive Room – Prince and Princess Sadruddin Aga Khan Collection

Aga Khan Museum - Welcomes the World – Doors Open to the Public

Discovering the Aga Khan Museum - Performing Arts Venues – Auditorium, Courtyard, Hallways and the Park

Discovering the Aga Khan Museum - Masterpieces from the Collection

IM Reporting from TO - Discovering Aga Khan Museum - The Gift Shop

IM Reporting from TO - Humbled and Grateful - Ismailimail invited to momentous occasion


Accelerate your Awareness – Explore, Discover and Learn more about the Aga Khan Projects in Toronto


Constellations - Aga Khan Museum, Ismaili Centre and their Park - Retrospective -  Artistic Renderings - Urban Toronto Article

Contemplation and Reflection - Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre, Toronto – Beacons of Light

Constellations - Aga Khan Museum, Ismaili Centre and their Park – Video Montage

Jubilation - Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre – Road Signs go up ahead of the opening


Aga Khan Museum Series (Perspectives on matters of the Intellect, Knowledge and Wisdom)

Constellations - Aga Khan Museum – Building a Knowledge Epicenter - His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan on the choice of Toronto

Constellations - Aga Khan Museum – Evoking Wisdom - Prince Amyn Aga Khan on Peace

Constellations - Aga Khan Museum – Triggering Intellectual Anxiety - Louis Monreal on the purpose of the Museum

Constellations - Aga Khan Museum – A Symphony of Light, Shadow and Geometry

DYK - Intellectual Perspective - Avicenna - Cannon of Medicine

Aga Khan Museum - Ready to Inform, Educate, Inspire

Aga Khan Museum Opening – Global Media Coverage - Canada, Kenya, Pakistan, Spain, UK, USA


Ismaili Centres Series (Perspectives on matters of the Soul and Spirit)

Constellations - Ismaili Centres - Foundation Stone and Inauguration Ceremonies – Special Moments and Speeches of Mowlana Hazar Imam

Constellations - Ismaili Centres - Global Centres of Confluence

Constellations - Ismaili Centres - Architecture, Design and a Video Montage

DYK - Spiritual Perspective - Prayer Book


Aga Khan Toronto Park (Perspectives on matters of Felicity, Humanity and Nature)

Constellations - Aga Khan Park, Toronto – Garden of Paradise - Peace and Felicity

Constellations - Aga Khan Park, Toronto – Echoes of Paradise - the Garden and Flora in Islamic Art

DYK - Nature Perspective - Ottoman Gold Leaf

DYK - Gardens – an important part of the Muslim civilisation’s built environment


Aga Khan Trust For Culture (Perspectives on matters of Creative Collaborations and Partnerships)

Constellations - Creative Collaborations - Masterpieces of the Aga Khan Museum European and Asian Exhibition Tours


Cultural Diplomacy - Aga Khan Museum – The Road to Toronto via Parma, London, Paris, Lisbon - Lessons from the European Tour

Cultural Diplomacy - Aga Khan Museum – Project Brief

Cultural Diplomacy - Aspirations of the Aga Khan Museum - Canadian Museums Association

Cultural Diplomacy - The Toronto Trio - Canadian ArchitectSimerg - In the Making - The Aga Khan Museum, The Ismaili Centre and The Park – A Photo Essay


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