Pros and Cons of living in Hamilton, Ontario

Pros and Cons of living in Hamilton

Hamilton is a Canadian city popularly referred to as the hammer town or steeltown with a population of a little over seven hundred and fifty thousand people.  A major city in Ontario, Hamilton’s greenspace and beauty is one of the many reasons why you might consider moving there. This list contains some pros and cons you should consider if you would want to move to Canada.

Pros

1. Affordability

A lot of people fleeing Toronto usually make Hamilton their new home as it is a lot less expensive to live in, affordability is usually a big factor for this move. The average cost of living in a detached home in Hamilton is priced at just over $500,000 and a lot of housing properties are valued between $300 and $400,000 which is cheaper compared to the major cities in Canada.

2. Location and Transportation

Hamilton is a Canadian port city with a population of a little over seven hundred and fifty thousand (750,000). It is located about forty-five minutes away from Toronto and it is also less than an hour drive to Niagara falls from here. Hamilton is within the golden horseshoe, described as Canada’s most industrialized and populated area. 

Hamilton has access to the major highways, the 401 and the 403 highways, it also has its own airport -the John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport which is small and easy to navigate.

3. The Steel Industry

For years, the economy of Hamilton has been greatly affected and improved by the steel industry, providing almost 60% of steel made, the steel industry has become a major employer of residents within this city.

4. College and university education

Hamilton has loads of colleges and universities that prioritize quality education if you are looking to further your education in this city, Mohawk College which is one of the top government-funded colleges in the area, specializing in healthcare and technology

The Redeemer university is a small Christian literary and arts university. Hamilton is home to McMaster University which, with its world-renowned medical school ranks amongst the top one hundred in the world.

5. Hamilton’s Healthcare

Named as Canada’s best city for hospitals and leads the park of Canada’s top healthcare system. Its seven collective hospitals rank high in healthcare and medical research worldwide.

6. Festivals

People love Hamilton because of its festivals, its festival of friends which takes place in gage park (which is a usual site of gay pride in this part of the city) which started in 1975, the largest music event in Canada, and it is absolutely free. Hamilton also has a food and drink fest which is foodie’s dream, and also the fringe festival which is another celebration of music in Hamilton.

7. Waterfalls

Hamilton is very popular for its waterfalls, it is said that there are more than one hundred and forty waterfalls and cascades in the area, sometimes even referred to as the waterfall capital of the world. Some famous waterfalls are webster, buttermilk, sherman, tiffany, chedoke and tews falls to name a few.

Sites to see and places to visit:

The city has a lot of fun spots and tourist hubs, a friendly atmosphere on warm summer afternoons when there are loads of visitors in town, and if you are looking to have an adventure and make new friends, Hamilton is the city for you. Some really cool places to visit are;

  • African lion safari : This park is one of Ontario’s premium tourists destinations and has been around for 50 years, African lion safari is a beautiful wildlife park and is home to over a thousand exotic species of animals and birds that roam freely.
  • Royal Botanical Gardens: With over two thousand four hundred thousand acres of gardens and nature sanctuary, it is Canada’s largest and most popular botanical garden. This serene and large garden spans Hamilton and Burlington, Ontario. Four distinct gardens are contained with about a thousand and one hundred acres of natural reserves.
  •  Hamilton’s Farmers Market: The farmer’s market on york boulevard was established in 1837 and is open all year round with about sixty vendors including local, national and international foods, produce, meat, fish,poultry to mention a few.
  • The Escarpment: The Niagara escarpment (sometimes referred to as the mountains by the locals) is one of the world’s natural wonders, a true representation of nature’s beauty, the escarpment overlooks Hamilton with beautiful views of the city from the top of the escarpment.
  • The Durdun Castle: The iconic Durdun Castle in Cuells, about eighteen thousand feet in size, took about three years to build back in 1835. The 40 room castle features the latest conveniences of gas, lighting and water.

Cons of living in Hamilton

1. The city alters it’s traffic lanes too often to accommodate tourists

There are a couple of one-way streets through the city’s downtown, and the city alters them quickly too, this could really confuse a car’s gps tracker. Then there’s the Sherman’s Access which is a road that leads to the escarpment, at different times of the day this road becomes a one-way street instead of a two-way street to allow for better traffic flow at peak times, some barriers and warning lights could assist commuters but those navigating with a gps might have a hard time here.

2. If you aren’t exactly a very friendly extrovert you might not like the influx of tourists.

As a local, the many waterfalls in Hamilton are good places to go unwind, however, it is the top tourist attraction in the area and is usually very packed. If you are considering living in Hamilton and visiting the waterfalls and going on hikes, then it probably shouldn’t be on a warm Saturday and Sunday so as naughty to be caught in the mob of tourists visiting the area.

3. A lot of houses within the area have been left dilapidated. 

It is a beautiful city with a lot of really nice architecture in many places although there are some areas that are dilapidated and with rundown houses.

Many of these areas also have intricate designs which are really beautiful but are masked by the ruin, however most of these areas are experiencing gentrification and a massive transition that could change the look of the area.

4. The steel factories affect the quality of some motorable roads

The steel industry and factories in the area have a very adverse effect on the conditions of the roads in those areas and could wear them out as they do most times, recently resurfaced roads in these parts almost have to be redone often.

Is Hamilton a good city to live?

In conclusion, if you’re looking to move to Hamilton or are considering it, it would be a great move as it is a fantastic place to live, play, and work. With very friendly people and a close-knit welcoming community, it really is one of the best places to live in. You should enjoy it.

Thais R

I moved to Canada in 2016. This was the best decision that I ever made. I created this website to share what I’ve learned with anyone who’s thinking of moving or travelling to Canada.

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