I can’t really say that I know much about Canadian cities, other than Montreal and Vancouver. Toronto, I have always viewed as the “poor man’s” Montreal. But this is probably not fair!
After all, Toronto is the capitol of Ontario, and with almost 3 million residents, the fourth largest city in North America. I know it since I have changed planes here a few times, and know they have the Blue Jays (MLB) and Maple Leafs (hockey). It is also considered the financial capital of Canada, with the seventh largest stock exchange in the world. The crime rate is also very low.
Some famous people from Toronto include: Samantha Bee, John Candy, Jack Kent Cooke, Joni Mitchell, Alex Trabek, Joey Votto, Andrew Wiggins, and Neil Young. The rest are hockey players, in fact, the Hockey Hall of Fame is here.
What else do you want to know? Babe Ruth hit his first professional homerun here on Centre Island. It is the safest metropolitan area in North America. By 2020, Toronto will have the highest number of high rise condominiums in the world. Toronto has the third largest number of immigrants (50% of the total population), compared to Dubai at 71%, and Miami at 59.5%. The CN Tower was once the world’s tallest free-standing structure, for over 30 years!
The Toronto International Film Festival ranks second only to Cannes. America’s largest one day parade, Carabana celebrates Caribbean culture. Toronto has the world’s largest Italian population outside of Italy. The pasta must be very good! The Toronto streetcar system is the largest system in the Western world in terms of regular riders, length of track and number of cars.
Toronto has more than 8,000 restaurants. Obviously, food is taken very seriously here, along with ice hockey.
Did you know that Toronto’s Pearson International Airport is Canada’s busiest? Just what I need for my two hour window, to arrive, go through Immigration and Customs, take the train to Union Station, and board my VIA Canadian train for Vancouver.
After reading so much about the food scene here, the varied neighborhoods, and the fact that over 50% of its citizens are from elsewhere, I think a return visit to Toronto is warranted.
Actually, I will be here for at least 16hours, as my train is delayed. They gave me a hotel voucher, meal money and a cab ride, cabbie was a Paki guy. The best part is getting to see my friend Aram this evening.