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What's up people, I know this forum has people from all over Canada and just wanted some opinions on these cities. What are the best / worst things about each. Also some specifics: Cost of living, people/social life, proximity to activities/other cities, enviorment/nature, climate, highlights (parks, resorts, resturants), job oppourtunities, etc. Anything relavent to the living experience.

Would love to be in close proximety to both parks and downtown. Love to get away from work and go have a bite to eat and then go hiking. Big fan of nature & nightlife too.

Would love any input (even on cities not mentioned here!) would like to get a grasp on the different cities in Canada.

If any has an advantage in medical oppourtunities that would be great too, ie: big hospitals, research, etc

(from what I gather: vancouver is really expensive and rains a lot but has really nice views, lakes, mountains. Calgary/Edmonton is really cold and is more of a small city pretty far from everything but also has nice mountain ranges but nightlife is questionable, Toronto is just a big city great nightlife but with really small parks uncomparable to the others).

 

Cheers,

Richard

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9 hours ago, RichardUnderwoodMTB said:

What's up people, I know this forum has people from all over Canada and just wanted some opinions on these cities. What are the best / worst things about each. Also some specifics: Cost of living, people/social life, proximity to activities/other cities, enviorment/nature, climate, highlights (parks, resorts, resturants), job oppourtunities, etc. Anything relavent to the living experience.

Would love to be in close proximety to both parks and downtown. Love to get away from work and go have a bite to eat and then go hiking. Big fan of nature & nightlife too.

Would love any input (even on cities not mentioned here!) would like to get a grasp on the different cities in Canada.

If any has an advantage in medical oppourtunities that would be great too, ie: big hospitals, research, etc

(from what I gather: vancouver is really expensive and rains a lot but has really nice views, lakes, mountains. Calgary/Edmonton is really cold and is more of a small city pretty far from everything but also has nice mountain ranges but nightlife is questionable, Toronto is just a big city great nightlife but with really small parks uncomparable to the others).

 

Cheers,

Richard

What you gather is about right haha. Toronto has a more work focused culture. It has research, big hospitals, nightlife but not much by the way of nature. Seriously, if you go to Vancouver just once, you'll never be satisfied with "nature" in Toronto ever again. Toronto is often in on the latest trends, if you like food, Toronto is fantastic, if you like nightlife, Toronto is the best, if you love working/research, Toronto is great. Toronto is a bit NYC lite if you will. 

The other cities I can't comment on as much, but Edmonton to me is very cold and I think that does limit its growth in many ways, if you spend half your year indoors, it stops you from really exploring the city. 

 

 

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Hey Rich,

I’ve lived in both Toronto and Edmonton previously. I’m familiar with Vancouver however I’ve never personally lived there. I have only visited.

I love Toronto. I currently live in Saskatchewan and can firmly say I’ll be moving back to Toronto as soon as I can. Toronto is full of culture. It’s a very business oriented city. The people that do the best in Toronto are the ones that can network well or get along with others very well. Toronto represents many different cultures and a vast majority of different personalities throughout the city. Each neighbourhood in Toronto presents itself differently.

Renting in Vancouver or Toronto is incredibly competitive. Prepare to come with multiple past references, the appropriate forms from each province for rental units, first and last months rent, credit history and a credit check, a letter of employment etc. It doesn’t take long to find a place but they typically only stay on the market for 24-48 hours unless something is wrong with the unit. Toronto’s buildings are much newer and  nicer than Vancouver’s. To rent in the downtown core expect to pay 1800-2200 a month CAD in Toronto and 2000+ in Vancouver for somewhere equivalent. Edmonton you can rent anything quite easily. 

Toronto has many large hospitals and is very focused on improvement. They strive to be the best city in Canada. If you want tons of opportunity move to Toronto. Not to mention they have an NHL, NBA, and great soccer team.

Vancouver is much more laid back. Toronto is very fast paced and often times you can go to the PATH-way (an underground mall that connects all the banks together) and find a 20 some year old just leaving his office at midnight long after the PATH has closed. Vancouver is also very cliquey. Most people only associate themselves with their own friends and don’t really get to know anyone else. Everyone in Vancouver is quite closed off. 

The whole reason people move to Vancouver is because of the ocean and the mountains. You can go to Whistler only an hour and a half away and take part in any outdoor activity you can dream of. Both of the cities night life’s suck. 

In terms of climate Toronto is quite warm all year until December. If you’re used to the cold it typically only dips to -10 degrees Celsius with cold sprees of -25 a few times a year in January. Vancouver never really dips below -5 however it rains non stop 2/3 of the year. It’s also a damp cold that cannot be combated by a jacket. It tears right through you. 

Edmonton sucks and is dying. Just like Alberta. I much prefer Calgary however. I’d never move back to Edmonton. There isn’t much to do and the city is primarily focused around the oil & gas industry which is dying. It’s a very “redneck” city and everyone lives for fast cash and partying. 

 

TLDR:

Toronto is fast paced. It’s built upon the financial world. Each neighbourhood is very gentrified and each one has a very different feeling to the next one. The crime rate seems higher than normal but most crimes committed there are gang and drug related. Toronto has great shopping and the best cuisine in Canada. There’s a million events and things to do or see at all times of the day. The nightlife is great and not just for partying. You can eat out at many of the 24/7 restaurants. The transit is quite convenient. Large hospitals. Many opportunities. If you can network you’ll meet some of the most successful people in Canada. Kind of an ugly city aside from downtown. Nothing like Montreal in terms of architecture. 

Vancouver is all about the outdoors. The mountains are incredible and so is the ocean. The ferry sucks. Transit sucks. It’s very expensive. People often only associate themselves within small groups and are offput by speaking to others. The weather is warm 1/3 of the year and very rainy and cold (-5 to -10 but a wet cold) the other 2/3 of the year. There’s a lot of activities to do but they don’t compare to Toronto’s offerings. If you bike or hike and need to be outdoors all the time, move to Vancouver. 

Edmonton AKA deadmonton - it sucks 

If you have any questions dm me, Cheers! Regan

(Not sure if MTB in your username relates to Mountain Biking but Whistler has some of the best downhill mountain biking I’ve ever participated in and is very close to Vancouver)

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Second that Edmonton is too cold. 

From my experience (having a bunch of friends from Vancouver and living in Toronto), they've both got big city vibes to them. But I would say Toronto is better than Vancouver if you're looking for an exciting big city. Canada is stupid big and my friends in Vancouver miss out on being able to travel to Quebec (Montreal). Toronto can get a bit like a trash dump sometimes in terms of impersonal big city feel, but it is very lively and has a SHIT TON to do there. I'm from Ottawa and I travel to Toronto 5+ times every year.

 

Toronto also has the advantage of having some of the best research and hospitals in Canada. I'm not sure about Vancouver.

 

It is lacking on the nature, especially compared to Vancounver, but it's not bare... it has a beach, a boardwalk, a few large parks... but you won't find much green downtown. I got in a few lovely bike rides down the beach! 

 

Also, I'm biased but you could also consider Ottawa ;) definitely not a big city, but it's "boring" reputation is becoming more and more wrong. It is also a quick stop to Montreal if you want to go to any large concerts or festivals. It's also much cheaper. It has a decent nightlife, I've always found new stuff to do, and it's a very beautiful city with a lot of green.

 

If you want more detail about Toronto or Ottawa, I can tell you! I just didn't want to write an essay.

 

EDIT: My friend just looked at me and laughed and said Toronto does everything better than Vancouver. She's from Vancouver.

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I grew up in Toronto, lived in Montreal, now live in Edmonton. And visit Vancouver regularly and have stayed up to a month there at a time.

The quick summary is Toronto's best strength is its diversity of people and what experiences they bring to the city. Its really a unique city because of this that you will not find in most cities in the world. The night life is good, and because everybody is always working you can do anything at almost any time. Being eastern seaboard you are also close to a lot of other Canadian and US cities. The downside is Torontonians do not realize there is more to Canada than Toronto, unless they actually leave for a good solid 3 years. This means they never realize the terrible flaws of city and the lifestyle: cost of living is way higher and not proportional to what you are getting, you live to work....for all the talk about the great things of Toronto you will not have much time outside of work to enjoy it, you get to enjoy some of the longest and shittiest commutes in the world, and generally you make less money for the same job. Its like NYC, except not even close to as awesome, and with a lower standard of living. Also, Toronto's "nature" scene is laughable. It frequently gets hot AF in the summer, and recently with climate change the winters are pretty mild. Also Toronto people are....as can be expected for a big city with "center of the universe" attitudes.

Vancouver is awesome for outdoor lifestyle. Its awesome for seafood and Asian cuisine and activities (superior to Toronto easily), its very close to good US cities like Seattle. Its got great summer activities and winter activities ridiculously close to the city. The night life is not too great, and dies by like 11pm. The weather is generally good but there is definitely lots of rain happening for most of the year. It tends to wear on some people. The big problem is cost of living, rarity of good jobs, and the surprising lack of quality in public services, ex: healthcare. When I first went there I really wanted to live there, but then the realities of living there started to become apparent.

Edmonton is my chosen home and where I have happily lived for the last 5 years. Its not quite deadmonton anymore IMO....it has grown by a lot in the last 10 years and is now about as happening as Ottawa. Minus Parliament hill and some of the cool museums of Ottawa. Thanks to climate change its winters are not as atrociously cold as when I first visited it 8 years ago. Its actually one of the sunniest cities in Canada and has almost 0% humidity constantly, and no more snow precipitation than Toronto. We don't get "big snow dumps" and almost never get the slushy snow. Only the white fluff. The summers....they're amazing. Coming from Toronto I wasn't used to how clear the skies are so especially the first few summers I was staring out of my sunroof at every stop light. There is lots of nature and outdoors stuff happening right in the city (the river valley) and a few hours away at the Rockies and in Banff/Jasper/Lake Louise/etc. The people are quite down-to-earth people too: they're not trying to be another NYC wannabe. The biggest reason I like Edmonton though is the standard of living is quite a bit higher. You get paid more and your cost of living is far lower. The quality of public services is very good: I much prefer working with the resources in this healthcare system than Ontario, BC, or especially Quebec. The cons: its -20C today and when these days happen they definitely suck, the drivers on the road suck (though not life-threateningly negligent like Toronto), there is way too much country music in the nightlife here so I avoid it like the plague, though there is now some ethnic diversity its definitely not as much as Toronto, and other than Calgary, Edmonton is quite far from any other major city.

At the end of the day home is wherever you make it. Each place has its pros and cons and no place is clearly superior to any other. Most of the people on this board are connected to Toronto and will think its the only choice, but after leaving Toronto behind for the last 9 years I'm pretty happy with my choice. Every time I go back (my parents still live there) and catch up with my friends I'm reminded how much better my lifestyle is in Edmonton, and how much more progress I've made in life in AB that I couldn't have made in other provinces. So for me I'll be the sole Edmonton supporter here. :)

 

EDIT: in terms of the "world-class" health care institutions in Toronto....70% of that is self-hype. Its in Toronto, Toronto is best in Canada, so everything is best in Toronto right? No...not really. There is a lot of things done reasonably well, but its not a leader in everything by a long shot. There is also the issue of opportunity, because many of the people in these institutions are not very collaborative and are quite cut-throat even. There's a constant struggle to survive. You have to balance resources with opportunities in choosing where you want to locate yourself for your career. I personally have done much better in my career than I could have ever dreamed of by leaving Toronto behind.

 

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