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Canada: Destination Guides - Must read

City guide: Toronto (Canada)

Learn all about life in one of Canada’s major cities including what to visit in Toronto, the city’s history and more...

Toronto
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An introduction to Toronto

Toronto is located on the northern shore of Lake Ontario, Toronto is Canada’s largest city and the capital of the province of Ontario. Originally known as ‘York’ when founded by the British in the 18th century, 6 million people reside in the greater Toronto area today. It’s no surprise that as the largest city in Canada – a country which was the first to develop a national policy for multiculturalism – Toronto has three different Chinatowns, in addition to Little Italy and Greektown to satisfy not just Toronto’s diverse population of residents but also the thousands of international students choose the city to study in. Toronto is a major hub for Canada’s economy and culture. Did you know that Toronto is home to one of the largest Somali communities outside Africa? The three biggest sectors in the city are financial services (several major banks have their headquarters in Toronto), real estate and wholesale & retail trade.

 

 

 

 

A quick tour of Toronto

So what should you visit in Toronto? Well, Canada’s largest city is perfect to explore on foot though the city is serviced by bus, tram and subway networks too (traffic can be bad though). There are numerous districts each catering to a different sector, ethnicity or nationality. You would be forgiven for thinking that with so many different groups living in this city, that there might be tension between them; but that is definitely untrue with good crime rates compared to other major cities – you’ll definitely be safe as you explore the various districts.

 

Yorkville has various fashionable shops and stores to shop for something a little more unique. Old Town is home to the St. Lawrence Market where you can peruse many, many stalls offering food, produce and crafts. While modern Toronto doesn’t have the deep history of London in the UK, it’s still pretty to look at. Check out the Victorian houses of Cabbagetown; the neo-Gothic Annex near University of Toronto; and the lovingly maintained lawns of the European-eseque Roncesvalles.

 

Some of the major Toronto landmarks include the world famous CN Tower which dominates the city’s skyline; the Rogers Centre which is home to Toronto’s baseball team the Blue Jays; the Toronto Islands, which is just a short boat ride away; the Hockey Hall of Fame; and the Royal Ontario Museum. 

 

 

Where can you study in Toronto?

The University of Toronto is the most respected of Toronto’s higher education institutions, regularly ranking in the Top 25 in world league tables each year. However there is also Ryerson University, York University and Ontario College of Art and Design to choose from, to name just a few.

 

 

Your Toronto playlist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Toronto movies to watch

  • Scott Pilgrim vs. The World
  • Take This Waltz
  • Crash
  • Last Night
  • Empz 4 Life

 

Toronto is actually a popular filming location for many big American television shows and films including American Psycho, X-Men, Mean Girls, Good Will Hunting and Suits – you might just bump into some big name stars as they film around the city. The Toronto Film Festival also comes to town each year which is where you can get a sneak peek at some of the smaller films which will be making big waves in the following year.

 

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About Author

Toronto

Paul Ellett is the editor for Hotcourses Abroad. His role is to plan, produce and share editorial, videos, infographics, eBooks and any other content to inform prospective and current international students about their study abroad experience. When he's not thinking about student visas in Sweden and application deadlines, Paul is an avid fan of comedy podcasts and Nicolas Cage films.