Oakville is Ontario’s largest town with a population now exceeding 193,832. It is located in Halton Region on Lake Ontario. The climate is classified as humid continental with comfortable summers and freezing dry, and windy winters rarely below 3 degrees Fahrenheit. The climate data for Oakville shows that Summer weather can be quite hot often rising to the high 90s Fahrenheit.
Pros and Cons of Living in Oakville
Advantages of living in Oakville
- In 2018 Oakville Ontario was voted the best place to live in Canada. The prestigious Glen Abbey Golf Club is one of the main attractions and the Glen Abby Golf Course is the home of the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and has hosted lots of Canadian Open Championships, there is plenty for the golf lover including another golf club in Hamilton.
- Ethnic origins appear diverse with a wide cultural mix and a predominantly Christian religion followed by small numbers of others including Judaism, Islam, and Hindu people. There are more than 10 major Churches in Oakville and many other places of worship to attend.
- Employment appears to be available with major employers being Ford Motor Company, Halton District School Board, Halton Healthcare, Regional Municipal Body, and Sheridan College. Oakville residents also enjoy access to Toronto where the employment market is strong, while they reap the benefits of living in Oakville a smaller community.
- Average household incomes at $162,000 are the 10th highest in the country. Oakville is known as a great place to raise a family.
- With a population of just under 200,000, sports teams in the town seem abundant, so if you are planning to move to Oakville you can choose to play the following: Soccer, Lacrosse, Baseball, Golf, and join the largest Skating Club in Canada.
- Arts and Culture are alive and well in Oakville with the Oakville Arts Council showing films and other visual arts. Oakville even has an Auditorium for the Performing Arts where concerts are held along with other cultural events. The Queen Elizabeth Park and Community Cultural Center is a more recent addition to the town.
- There is one regional newspaper called the Oakville Beaver which is published weekly. Also Television and Radio Stations, including multicultural radio
- Major highways 403 and 407 both run through Oakville and there is a good Railway Link. The Airport is nearby in Toronto 26 km away, and also employs many people. You can take a train to the airport and good public transport options are provided.
- Policing is performed locally by the Halton Police Service, and neighborhoods are safe.
- Oakville is a very beautiful city with hundreds of parks and an extremely relaxing and picturesque environment There are ten parks that attract a lot of visitors, especially in the fall when the leaves change, they include Lion’s Valley Park, Gairloch Gardens, Coronation Park, Bronte Creek Provincial Park, and most of these gardens are very child friendly. If you enjoy walking or running there are plenty of trails to choose from.
- The Summers are quite hot, making it an ideal place to have a yacht or canoe Burloak Canoe Club is ideal for boating, and enjoy the beautiful waterways, Oakville is often said to have the best weather in Canada.
- There is a range of pubs to cool off with a drink, including The Queens Head British Pub.
- You need to own a car, as you can’t depend on public transport in such a small place, if you are a family you will need two cars.
- If you work in Toronto you will need to commute as fewer job opportunities available, and you may have to travel to work.
- If you are planning on renting the rents are quite high as Oakville appears to be an expensive area close to Toronto. This may be a disadvantage to many who are trying to break into the housing market.
- Restaurants are more expensive than in Toronto, but there are many takeaway options and fast food outlets.
Oakville is governed by the Oakville Town Council which consists of a mayor and 14 councilors. There are two provincial boundaries with local representatives. Oakville has a sister City Dorval in Quebec and another called Neyagwa in Japan.
Schools in Oakville
If you are moving to Oakville with your family you will be looking for schools and there appears to be plenty of choices, including Oakville Trafalgar High School. Abbey Park High School, Iroquois Ridge High, and White Oaks Secondary School. There is a long-established children’s choir in Oakville.
The arts community is also well established in Oakville, and an event called ‘For the Love of Arts Festival’ is held annually during Spring.
This event is entirely sponsored locally, and the focus is on shared space.
Services for the under 5 years
If you have a small child you will be concerned about daycare and preschools and high-quality Child Care is available, there is a wide range of early learning centers to choose from. If you have been approved for a Government subsidy it is not an expensive option. I have found a choice of 5 possible early learning centers in Oakville, of course, bookings are necessary. You pay for your childcare on a weekly basis and the price starts at around $50 per day. The main difference with the preschools is that some focus more on physical activity for the children while others actually start them off doing real class-based early learning. However, given their age a balance is preferable. Interestingly enough Canada took a huge step last year and bought in free child-care for all children aged two and a half, this commenced in January of this year and is means-tested so that every child has equal opportunity. This is groundbreaking as no other country provides free child care, it will be interesting to track the outcomes. Before you start your child at the preschool talk to some other Mothers either in person or on Zoom, this is such an important decision that you want to get it right.
Where is Oakville
It is located on the picturesque shores of Lake Ontario with great scenery and has a good shopping area and a selection of dining options. It has a relatively low crime rate, so you should be quite safe to go for a stroll by the lake. There are lots of things to do and if you are thinking of becoming a local here are some of them:
More Things to do in Oakville
- Spend some time walking in the park a 6.4-kilometer provincial park, Bronte Creek Reserve Park. Hiking, Biking, and Trail Running.
You can even be adventurous and go camping in the Park at night.
- Visit a Spa, there are three or four health centers and Spas to reinvigorate you.
- Play golf
- Go canoeing. The canoe club is on the banks of 16-mile creek, and you can visit the club and hire a couple of canoes to go for a paddle.
- Go Sailing, join a sailing club.
- Explore the neighborhood which has a quaint feel. There are also some galleries worth a visit.
- Visit the Museum, a historical building in Navy Street a lovely example of Georgian Architecture, built by a founder of the Community.
- Take in the Music Festival, the Jazz festival is the most popular festival in the city.
- Go hiking, get organized, and plan to hike along the Trans Canadian Trail that runs the entire length of Oakville.
- Check out the art scene which is alive and well in Oakville. You can enjoy ballet, symphony, and theatre, something for everyone.
- Go to the indoor sky diving.
- Check out the palatial indoor shopping mall, this is where the department stores are!
- Visit the Botanical Gardens which given the climate, is a beautifully unique experience.
- Walk around the shores of Lake Ontario, go swimming.
- Attend a football game at The Oakville Soccer Club
- Enjoy some fine dining, parking is free in the city after 6 pm.
- If you feel adventurous book into a Ghost and Vampire Walking Tour which leaves from downtown.
This is a really beautiful city with so much to do for all ages, there is even an old lighthouse, quite quirky, and a Farm House Museum, that is now a tourist attraction and so many truly historical buildings. If you require guidance on what to see, The Oakville Historical Society in King Street can give you some ideas, and they also run tours. So you will be able to get a feel for the town before moving there.
Oakville is an excellent choice for a family, and once you settle in the reality is that you will probably never want to move again. It is a town that appears to offer everything from shopping, schools, work, religion, and recreation. A town of this size makes it so easy to get around, not too many traffic jams. Recreational activities are right on your doorstep, so there is no reason not to stay active. You can then spend the evening dining out in an intimate restaurant right in the old part of town.