Best Cities/Towns to Live and Thrive in Greater Toronto

Different people have different opinions about Toronto and the surrounding areas.  I have lived in the Toronto area for 50 years, downtown, uptown and all around the suburbs and satellite cities.  Toronto has been my home for all except for 6 months (Montreal). Southern Ontario has about 13 million in population of which the Greater Toronto Area is the major shareholder.

Greater Toronto is a fantastic place to live and have a family. In the greater Toronto Area we have a variety of cities and cultures. Different cities have different flavors and life.  Choose a Canadian area or one with exotic culture and food.

See the Toronto ethnicity maps here.


Brampton – East Indian Makeup

Malvern (Scarborough) – Filipino

Agincourt (Scarborough) – Chinese

Take a look for yourself at the maps.


Click here for Toronto Regional Housing Prices

Below is list of the best cities/towns in the greater Toronto area listed based on family life and livability.  While I highly value the Rosedale area and uptown Yonge and Eglinton, I would not consider raising a family there.   I  had a great time downtown at the University of Toronto, but once again the suburbs win when it comes to family. You can get a small detached home for about $200,000 in 2018 if you pick the right suburb.

Also note that some of the satellite cities are expanding, needing skilled workers, while the inner city has lost a lot of jobs to outlying areas as industry moves looking for land.

Best Places in Toronto to Live and Thrive

(Places that are good to live but economical too).

Brantford (Winner) – Detached homes in a Victorian city for about $200,000, jobs galore, and the Grand River (a river runs through it).  Live and thrive in an beautiful modern city on HWY 403.   The telephone was invented here by Alexander Graham Bell.   Also the birthplace of Wayne Gretzky.  This is a city that is expanding in a massive way, needing skilled workers to fill their jobs.  See promotional videos below.  VIA service, GO Service, Brantford City Transit, airport, major shopping, restaurants, live theatre, a city striving to reach its potential.  Massive expansion plans.

Community Winner  –  Brantford . A dynamic super beautiful city which has houses for about $200,000 and a solid job market.  Multiple global manufacturing companies.  A city on the rise which has come back from economic lows.  Currently being managed well.  All sorts of shopping and easy to drive around.  An old city with a rich history and a University where your children can obtain their degree.  Also and importantly a fisherman’s paradise.   

The Best Place to live in Toronto


Keswick –  Living by the lake on the 404.  Cost effective solution.  Go fishing after work.


Keswick by the Lake

Oshawa – An older Toronto Area community.  Birthplace of GM (formerly McLaughlin carriage company established 1876).  Nice beach on lake Ontario.  Easy drive to Toronto via 401.


Oshawa – The Birthplace of GM

Other Places to Live around the Toronto Area

Port Perry– Live by the lake in a Victorian town.  Incredibly scenic small town living on lake Scugog.  North East of Toronto.  This small town has its own hospital.

Port Perry Lake Scugog

Port Perry

Oakville – Beautiful neighborhoods.  Nice place to live on the shores of Lake Ontario to the west of the city core.  easy access to the 403 and QEW.

Oakville in the golden horseshoe.

Oakville, a lovely town just west of Toronto

Uxbridge – Quaker Village.  Incredibly scenic small town living in the country side North East of Toronto.

Uxbridge of Greater Toronto

Uxbridge – A beautiful community to the north-east of Toronto.

Georgetown – A very nice town to the north east of Toronto.  Away from the city crime and smog.


One of the nicer enclaves of Toronto

Stouffville – A town in the green belt. On the 404/Don Valley with easy access to downtown Toronto.  Estate homes on acreage and country side within easy commute.


Stoufville Country living near Toronto.

Whitby – A fantastic place.  The wealthy suburb of Oshawa.  Lake Ontario, HWY 401 and nice homes with an easy commute.

Whitby on the Lake.

Whitby – A beautiful town to the east of Toronto. Nice Lake front.

Peterborough – A beautiful city in the Kawarthas.  Lakes fishing and the Canadian lifestyle.  Peterborough has manufacturing such as Pepsico.  One of my favourites is the free Zoo.  A great place to take young children.

Peterborough Ontario

Peterborough a beautiful cottage city near Toronto

Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge – Ontario’s own technology triangle.  High tech jobs, nice homes and out of the smog of Toronto.  Take a drive here.  Maybe go through Victoria park or talk a walk on the Grand River.  Upscale area providing Universities with a home. A smaller city similar with the feel of Montreal  (less people than Toronto and a slower pace).


Kitchener Waterloo


Leave a Reply