Things to do with children in Toronto: Pirate Life, Live Action Theatre

Toronto was our first stop on our epic Trans-Canadian road trip. We really enjoyed our time in Toronto. We were prepared for everything to be very busy and crowded and we expected to queue extensively for everything and that just wasn’t the case. We were very pleasantly surprised. Considering Canadian’s were also on school holidays at the time, it wasn’t overly busy. This certainly made life easier and our trip much more enjoyable.

pirate life Toronto

One of the first things we did on our trip was to board a pirate ship for some live action theatre. A few years ago we went to see the Medieval Times live action theatre show in Florida and the children loved it, so we were pretty confident that the pirate ship would be a hit.

It was an exceptionally hot day the day we boarded the ship, so we were grateful for our 9.30am booking as the heat was already pretty intense.

Pirate Life, Toronto invites families and school groups to imagine, play and create outdoors on a pirate ship while sailing the sea. This is a boat trip with a twist! A one-hour immersive theatre program aboard the pirate ship! Pirate Life is produced by Art & Water Cultural Group, a registered not for profit. Find out more on their Facebook page.

pirate life Toronto

As the ship was getting ready to set sail, the trainee pirates were invited to get pirate tattoos and take on a pirate name. You are welcome to dress as a pirate for the voyage – we whipped out the eye patches, pirate bandanas and monocular and set sail.

pirate life Toronto

Once on board we were introduced to the three pirates sailing with us and told many a tale from the seas. The actors were captivating in their delivery and the performance was a total joy to watch. The audience were engaged in the ‘show’ throughout which was fantastic.

pirate life Toronto

The views from the pirate ship were spectacular and it was a wonderful way to see Toronto Marina and amazing to look back to shore at the views of the city. Here is a bit of a flavour of what went down on board the pirate ship.

I would say age wise this is best suited to ages 3-10. However, our teens also enjoyed the show and the water cannons, so it really is a family trip. Adults can marvel at the gorgeous scenery and also test out their accuracy with the water cannons, so it’s a win/win for all family members I think.

There was a pushchair on board when we went but it was a bit in the way, so try to leave those behind if you have younger children.

pirate life Toronto

These shows also take place in the Ottawa Marina, for anyone living or visiting there, but if you are heading to Toronto with children, do check this out. You can book tickets here. There are multiple shows per day between May and October. The trip lasts about an hour in total but allow longer for the fun bits and bobs beforehand.

Parking can be found in one of the parking lots alongside the marina, make sure you use a toilet beforehand as there aren’t any near the ship or onboard.


  1. Wow, Your epic Trans-Canadian road trip sounds wonderful! I’d love to board the pirate ship, it sounds so much fun.

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