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- Visiting North America
Toronto City – Located in southern Ontario, the 5th largest city in North America, is commonly referred to as the world’s most multicultural city. If you take the time to walk around downtown, and see all that it has to offer, you will see that this is most certainly true. From Little Italy to Greektown, Chinatown to Little India, the Gay Village and the Fashion district, Toronto offers everything you could possibly think of, and then some. Toronto, Huron for 'meeting place' has always been an important trading centre and still loves up to its name today.
Chances are that even if you've never set foot in Toronto, you've seen the city a hundred times over. Known for the past decade as "Hollywood North," Toronto has stood in for international centers from European capitals to New York -- but rarely does it play itself. Self-deprecating Torontonians embody a paradox: Proud of their city's architectural, cultural, and culinary charms, they are unsure whether it's all up to international snuff.
After spending a single afternoon wandering around Toronto, you might wonder why this is a question at all. The sprawling city boasts lush parks, renowned architecture, and excellent galleries. There's no shortage of skyscrapers, particularly in the downtown core. Still, many visitors marvel at the number of Torontonians who live in houses on tree-lined boulevards that are a walk or a bike ride away from work.
Out-of-towners can see the fun side of the place, but Torontonians aren't so sure. They recall the stuffiness of the city's past. Often called "Toronto the Good," it was a town where you could walk down any street in safety, but you couldn't get a drink on Sunday.
Then a funny thing happened on the way through the 1970s. Canada loosened its immigration policies and welcomed waves of Italians, Greeks, Chinese, Vietnamese, Jamaicans, Indians, Somalians, and others, many of whom settled in Toronto. Political unrest in Québec drove out Anglophones, many into the waiting arms of Toronto. The city's economy flourished, which in turn gave its cultural side a boost.
Natives and visitors alike enjoy the benefits of this rich cultural mosaic. More than 5,000 restaurants are scattered across the city, serving everything from simple Greek souvlakia to Asian-accented fusion cuisine. Festivals such as Caribana and Caravan draw tremendous crowds to celebrate heritage through music and dance. Its newfound cosmopolitanism has made Toronto a key player on the arts scene, too. The Toronto International Film Festival in September and the International Festival of Authors in October draw top stars of the movie and publishing worlds. The theater scene rivals London's and New York's.
The 'Megacity' is a melting pot of culture, business and the arts. Torontonians take pride in their diverse city, and celebrate their differences by being respectful of each others cultures and through a multitude of festivals throughout the year.
Unlike many large cities, Toronto is known for its cleanliness. The streets are well maintained and the city cared for. In comparison to other cities, the crime rate is extremely low, making Toronto a safer holiday destination. Torontonians are friendly, happy to help, and most of all; happy to show off the wonderful place they call home. The city is user friendly, utilizing a fantastic public transportation system and making it easy for you to get wherever you want to go at any time of day or night.
If you’re looking for an exciting getaway filled with the world’s most exciting people, a multitude of attractions, sports, a thriving nightlife and amazing shopping, Toronto, Canada is the place for you. Toronto has many faces, from its downtown business district, to its huge inner city parks and quaint neighbourhoods and old world architecture. Visit one of the theme parks, or take a day trip to the Toronto Islands. Walk down Queen St. and take in the multitude of artists and street performers. Take the time to explore Toronto, it’s guaranteed something new and exciting will pop up wherever you are.