Toronto is the capital of Ontario and the largest city in Canada, with a population of almost 3 million. It is also the fourth most populous city in North America. The city is a centre for business, art, finance, and culture and one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world. If you are planning a stopover in the city, here are some fun and exciting facts about Toronto, Canada.
General Facts About Toronto
1. Toronto was earlier named York
Iroquois were the inhabitants when Europeans first arrived at present-day Toronto. The area came under British rule when a sub-tribe known as the Mississauga surrendered their land to the British empire in return for several items.
The British established the town of York in 1793 and later became the capital of Upper Canada. The city changed its name to Toronto in 1834 and was declared the capital of Ontario in 1867.
2. Toronto isn’t the capital of Canada despite being the country’s largest city
Toronto is not the capital of Canada despite being the largest city and the business and financial centre of the country. Ottawa is Canada's capital which is the sixth-largest city in the nation in terms of population.
During the British rule, Canadian colonies couldn't determine a capital city as it bounced between Kingston, Montreal, Toronto, and Quebec City. But in 1857, queen Victoria of England declared Ottawa as the capital hence the reason Toronto is not the country's capital.
Interesting Facts About Toronto
3. Toronto often regarded as the most multicultural city in the world
One of the most interesting Toronto facts is that it is the most multicultural city in the world.
Both the United Nations and the BBC recognized Toronto as the most diverse city in the world. Toronto is home to over 200 ethnic groups with over 140 languages spoken, and half of its population is foreign-born.
People from UK, China, and Italy represent some of the larger ethnic groups of Toronto.
4. Toronto once had the longest street in the world
Yonge Street in Toronto connects the shores of Lake Ontario in Toronto to Lake Simcoe. The street stretched over 1,896 km (1,178 mi) and was the longest in the world.
However, this was a misconception due to the merge of Yonge street with the rest of Ontario’s Highway 11. The actual Yonge street is only 56 Kilometres (35 mi) long. Nowadays, downtown development and overcrowding of the street leading city planners to search for alternatives.
5. Toronto’s St. Lawrence market is more than 200 years old
St. Lawrence, established in 1803, is a primary public market in Toronto. Another interesting fact about Toronto is that it is ranked number one food market in the world by National Geographic.
The market consists of two sites adjacent to each other. St. Lawrence market is the go-to place in Toronto to enjoy a wide variety of local and international cuisines.
6. Toronto has over 8000 restaurants
Toronto has more than 8000 restaurants and bars, about 6.5% of all businesses in the city. Choosing a restaurant might be challenging for any Toronto visitor.
Copacabana Brazilian Steakhouse, Patois, Lamanna’s Bakery, Lamesa Kitchen, and Chubby’s Jamaican Kitchen are some of the best restaurants to visit during a Toronto stopover.
7. Toronto hosts the largest single-day parade in North America
Toronto Caribbean Carnival, formally known as Caribana, is a festival to celebrate the Caribbean culture and traditions. This festival is the largest single-day parade in North America, with an overall attendance of over 2 million.
The spectators can watch many street dancing and masquerading in costumes influenced by the Caribbean culture.
8. Toronto has the most sports teams out of all Canadian cities
One of the fun facts about Toronto is that it has most sports teams in all Canada.
Toronto has the most professional sports teams compared to other major Canadian cities. The Toronto Raptors (basketball), The Toronto BlueJays (baseball), The Toronto Maple Leafs (ice hockey), and Toronto FC (soccer) are some of them.
9. Toronto’s population is declining
Toronto always had a growing population due to people moving in for employment and students coming in for educational purposes.
However, according to the StatCan report, Toronto lost around 50,300 people from July 2019 to July 2020, a record loss for the city.
Global pandemic and the desire among the Toronto residents to live outside of the large urban area were the reasons for such trend.