(Written by a Torontonian who moved to Oakville)
My family and I moved to this beautiful town a year and a half ago from Toronto. These are my top observations.
First of all, it’s a Town not a City. Which basically means you just put Town in front of everything instead of City. Example: Town Hall vs City Hall. Town Councillors vs City Councillors. The advantage; smaller population, higher potential for your voice to be heard and stronger sense of community.
Driving. When driving in Downtown Oakville, beware of people crossing the street at any given time. Here in Oakville people just pop out of nowhere to cross the street. And I don’t mean jaywalking, they just walk out and stroll across the street at their own pace. So, slow down and let them cross. Speeding up only makes them walk slower. And when you feel like crossing, don’t worry about walking to the light, just stick your stroller out and walk. (Carefully of course)
Neighbours. Be prepared to have the nicest neighbours ever. I had cookies delivered, Christmas gifts given, party invites and many well wishers when we moved in.
The lake. In my opinion, one of the best parts to living here. I’ve written about the benefits before, but I’ll say it again, living by the water is known to have health benefits and also reduces stress!
The people. They say “Hello!” All the time! Everyday! So join in, say hello to everyone you pass on the sidewalk, it’s really wonderful.
A sense of community. I have never experienced such a sense of community as I have since I moved here. The community has open arms so embrace it! For such a large town, it’s amazing how everyone knows everyone.
The Mall. It’s getting better. Pusateri’s is coming soon so….. it must be getting better. Right?
Burlington. Our neighbours to the West. My suggestion, give them a chance. My first instinct when I moved here was to always run back to Toronto. (Which I mostly still do) But it’s not always the best option. Burlington has tons of great stuff to offer so check them out. Is everyone aware that there is a MEC in Burlington?! No more driving all the way downtown to King Street and getting stuck in traffic?! Amazing.
The Highway. This far west the Gardiner is actually called the QEW. (I still call it the Gardiner)
Toronto. From Trafalgar and the “QEW” Sherway Mall is only a 15 minute drive. If you are trying to decide whether or not to leave Toronto and move here, just know that Toronto is only a hop, skip and a highway drive away.
Niagara. Also just a hop, skip and a highway drive away, Niagara. So take advantage! Niagara-On-The-Lake is a lovely place to visit in the summer. And bring a picnic! A relaxing and “easy” option with kids.
Cheers to Oakville!
ps. Don’t forget to say “hi” if you see me around town!