Ontario Description & Overview
The name "Ontario" comes from the Iroquois word "Kanadario" which means "sparkling water". Ontario
is bordered on the south by the Great Lakes and on the north by Hudson Bay, nestled between the provinces of Quebec and Manitoba (see Provincial Map), and has an area of over a million square kilometres. Over one-sixth of its terrain, 177,390 square kilometres, is covered by rivers and lakes.
The province's larger cities fall in three areas: (1) in the east is Ottawa, in the south are Toronto, Hamilton, Niagara Region, Kitchener, London, and Windsor, and (3) in the North are Sudbury, Sault Ste Marie and Thunder Bay (links indicate those with more info & details on this web site).
Ontario's native Iroquois and Algonquin Indians first encountered European explorers, fur traders and missionaries in the early 1600s. By 1774, the British ruled over southern Ontario, which was then part of the British colony of Quebec.
The colony was later divided and the Ontario region was renamed Upper Canada (it was higher up the St Lawrence River than Quebec or "Lower Canada"). When the Dominion of Canada was formed in 1867, it was renamed the province of Ontario.
With 14 million people, Ontario is today the country's most heavily populated province. Toronto is Ontario's capital and Canada's largest and most ethnically-diverse city. Toronto is also the country's leading producer of manufactured goods and headquarters of a large number of Canadian companies.
The "Golden Horseshoe," the area around the western tip of Lake Ontario that connects Toronto with Hamilton and Niagara Falls, is home to the bulk of Ontario's population. This area also include Oakvile & Burlington, and Mississauga & Brampton.
There is also the properous area along the western stretch of the Highway 401: Kitchener, London, and Windsor, nestled between Toronto and Detroit.
Ottawa, the national capital, has a million residents at the eastern end of Ontario, on the border with Quebec.
In the north, there are a number of key population centres strung along the Trans-Canada Highway and along the Great Lakes: Sudbury, key for nickle mining, Sault Ste Marie located at a major junction between Lakes Superior, Michigan, and Huron, and Thunder Bay at the western end of Lake Superior.
And in the busy Highway 400 corridor, connectig Toronto and Sudbury is the York Region and the Barrie-Muskoka cottage country and along Gerogian Bay.
Our Pick of Useful Links:
Ontario Communities and Neighbourhoods
Here are the major cities/regions in the province of Ontario. Explore the neigbhourhoods in & around them that you may want to live in:
ON: Scarborough lies east of the Don River, and is best know for the Rouge River parklands and the Toronto Zoo.
ON: Hamilton sits on a bay at the western end of Lake Ontario, astride the Niagara Escarpment.
ON: orth York, north of Eglinton is now amalgamated as part of the larger City of Toronto
ON: These communities straddle Highway 401, two hours west of Toronto, and are a major industrial, telecom, and university centre
ON: Toronto, is the largest city in Canada with a total population of 4.3 million, and capital city of Ontario (we focus on the portion south of Eglinton)
Here are some featured neighbourhoods in the province of Ontario. Explore the neigbhourhoods in & around them that you may want to live in:
ON: These communities straddle the Don Valley and Highway 404 (the Don Valley Parkway), close to Fairview Mall (one of the largest in Toronto) and North York General Hospital.
ON: These communities lie between Woodroffe and Greenbank to the west with Hunt Club Rd. running along the south edge and the train tracks to the north
ON: This part of Hamilton lies above (and generally south of) the Niagara Escarpment. This area is newer than the part of Hamilton below the Escarpment. The area is traversed east-west by the #86 Lincoln Alexander Parkway
ON: Alderwood is nestled between Etobicoke Creek on the west and a light industrial area, home to some major corporate employers. Dwntown acces via the Gardiner Expressway
ON: For over a century, Rosedale been Toronto's most sought-after neighbourhood, with its beautiful ravines and parkland attracting many of Toronto's wealthiest and prominent citizens.