The Greater Toronto Area (GTA) includes diverse cities with unique charm and appeal. From the engaging streets of Brampton to the shores of Oakville, these municipalities offer a perfect mixture of cultural and economic vitality. In the heart of the GTA, these five cities are considered the best to live in. The cities include Brampton, Burlington, Markham, Mississauga, and Richmond Hill. Whether you’re attracted to Brampton’s multicultural festivals or Markham’s innovation hub, each city has a compelling reason why it might be the perfect place to call home. All these Greater Toronto Area cities highlight their key specifications, public transit accessibility, recreational and shopping opportunities, educational institutions, and living costs. Let’s search for your ideal city!


Brampton City in Greater Toronto Area
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Brampton is located in the Peel region, north of Toronto’s Lester B. It is part of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and a low-tier municipality. As of the 2021 Census, it has a population of 656,480, making it the third most populated city in the GTA.

Key Highlights

Brampton is called The Flower Town of Canada. This city boasts a multicultural community, rich in cultural festivals like Diwali and Vaisakhi. Its diverse culinary scene and central Garden Square highlight its community spirit. Brampton has lush parks and the Brampton Fall Fair to celebrate its agricultural roots. The city is a hub for economic development, with a strong focus on manufacturing and technology. Brampton is a dynamic city that combines historical charm, cultural vigour, and economic vitality.

Access to Public Transit

Brampton Transit offers an extensive citywide bus network, seamlessly connecting you to Mississauga, York, the Toronto Transit Commission, and downtown Toronto via GO Transit’s Georgetown route. Each bus has a bike rack, ensuring cyclists can easily travel to their destinations with their bicycles. Furthermore, the Brampton GO station boasts covered bike storage, offering added convenience for bike enthusiasts. The city prides itself on its 33 km of scenic bicycle routes, winding through Brampton’s charming suburban neighbourhoods, lush parks, urban forests, and verdant spaces, providing a delightful experience for recreational cyclists. Although the drive to Toronto from Brampton typically spans around forty minutes, journey times may extend during periods of heavy traffic.

Recreation and Shopping

The Rose Theatre in downtown Brampton presents performing arts, music, comedy, dance, and culture events. Many outdoor activities are available, such as ziplining and outdoor skating. You may canoe, sail, paddle boat, or fish on the tranquil lakes and rivers surrounding the city. With more than 250 shops and eateries, Bramalea City Centre is a sizable shopping centre. Alternatively, you might browse in Downtown Brampton, home to many eateries and boutiques. 


Here are several schools and colleges present in Brampton:

    • Dufferin-Peel Catholic School Board
    • Sheridan College Davis Campus
    • Innocent Hearts Secondary School
    • Aims Plus High School Brampton

Average Rent and Sale Price

As of early 2024, the average home sale price in Brampton is approximately $976,252. The median rent for all bedroom counts and property types in Brampton, ON, is around $2,499, a +28% increase compared to the national average. This information reflects Brampton’s dynamic real estate market, indicating a considerable demand for housing in the city.

Crime Rate

In Brampton, Canada, crime rates are reported to be 30% lower than the national average, with violent crimes 27% lower and property crimes 31% lower. This data suggests Brampton is safer than 74% of cities in the United States, offering a relatively secure environment for its residents.


Burlington in Greater Toronto Area

At the western extremity of Lake Ontario in Ontario, Canada, is the city of Burlington, which is part of the Regional Municipality of Halton. It is a component of the Hamilton metropolitan census region and the Greater Toronto and Hamilton region, situated roughly midway between Toronto and Niagara Falls.

Key Highlights

This is a family-friendly community that backs onto the Niagara Escarpment. Also, more than 50% of the city is a rural area. Burlington is located in proximity 

Access to Public Transit

The Rose Theatre in downtown Brampton presents events in the performing arts, music, comedy, dance, and culture. Many outdoor activities are available, such as ziplining and outdoor skating. You may canoe, sail, paddle a boat, or fish on the tranquil lakes and rivers surrounding the city. With more than 250 shops and eateries, Bramalea City Centre is a sizable shopping centre. Alternatively, you might browse in Downtown Brampton, home to many eateries and boutiques.

Recreation and Shopping

Pools, community centres, outdoor skating rinks, and neighbourhood rinks are just a few of the recreational amenities available in Burlington. The municipality is home to several parks, bikeways, and recreational pathways for bicyclists and walkers. With two restaurants, a food court, and 165 businesses, Mapleview Mall is a well-liked destination for shoppers.


Some popular educational institutions in Burlington include:

    • Halton District School Board
    • Halton Catholic District School Board
    • Fraser Institute

Average Rent and Sale price

In Burlington, the average sale price for homes is around $943,896. For rentals, the average monthly cost for a 1-bedroom apartment in the city centre is approximately $2,366.67, with prices ranging from $1,400 to $3,500 depending on the location and amenities.  Additionally, the median rent for all bedroom counts and property types in Burlington, ON, is reported to be $2,500, marking a +29% increase compared to the national average.

Crime Rate

In Burlington, Canada, the crime rates are significantly lower than the national average, with total crimes being 34% lower. Violent crimes are 32% lower, and property crimes are 35% lower than national figures. Residents have a 1 in 37 chance of becoming victims of any crime, indicating that Burlington is safer than 77% of cities in Canada.


Markham City in Greater Toronto Area

The Canadian city of Markham is located in the York Region of Ontario. It is around 19 miles northeast of Downtown Toronto. With 338,503 residents, Markham was the biggest in the York Region, fourth in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), and sixteenth in Canada, according to the 2021 Census.

Key Highlights

Markham is celebrated for its rich cultural diversity, featuring renowned Chinese restaurants and the expansive Pacific Mall. The historic Markham Village offers a glimpse into the city’s past, while the annual Markham Fair showcases its vibrant community spirit. This blend of heritage, culinary delights, and innovation makes Markham a unique and dynamic city.

Access to Public Transit

Residents can access multiple transit facilities in Markham with ease. GO transit on the Stouffville line, TTC (Toronto Transit Commission), and York Region Travel are popular transit options in Markham. Residents can take a bus or train from Markham GO to reach downtown Toronto. Highway 7 is a beneficial highway that offers seamless connectivity within the city. 

Recreation and Shopping

Markham is a vibrant tapestry of community festivities, prominently featuring the Taste of Asia Festival, Canada’s grandest Asian festival, drawing an impressive crowd of over 150,000 annually. The city is also the stage for the esteemed Markham Jazz Festival and the much-anticipated Markham Ribfest. Beyond these cultural highlights, Markham boasts over 22 kilometres of picturesque pathways, perfect for walking or cycling. Milne Dam Conservation Park, nestled within the expanse of Rouge National Urban Park, stands as Canada’s singular urban park, a sanctuary of wetlands and woodlands. Additionally, following its recent refurbishment, CF Markham Mall presents a shopping haven with more than 160 retailers, complementing the unique shopping experience at Pacific Mall.


Here are some reputed educational institutions in Markham:

    • Markham District High School
    • Markville Secondary School
    • Unionville High School
    • Stouffville District Secondary School
    • St. Patrick’s Catholic Elementary School

Average Rent and Sale Price

According to data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board, the average sale price for a home in Markham is $1.27 million as of 2024. In terms of renting, the median rent for all bedroom counts and property types in Markham, ON, is $3,000. These prices are dynamic in nature and subject to change according to market conditions. 

Crime Rate

Markham is considered to be one of the safest places to live in Canada. Markham is deemed 86% safer than other greater Toronto Area cities. The odds of experiencing or witnessing a violent crime in Markham are 30% lower than the Canadian average. This makes Markham a desirable location for those seeking a safe and secure living environment.


Situated in the Regional Municipality of Peel, on the western side of Lake Ontario and next to Toronto’s western boundary, lies the Canadian city of Mississauga, located in the province of Ontario. As of 2021, Mississauga had 717,961 residents, making it the seventh most populated municipality in Canada, third most populous in Ontario, and second most populous in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) after Toronto.

Key Highlights

The five communities that make up Mississauga, also called the “City of Villages,” are Clarkson, Downtown, Meadowvale, Port Credit, and Streetsville. Every region has its own personality. Several museums, art galleries, and cultural events are available in the city. In addition to free concerts and cultural activities, Celebration Square is a free outdoor entertainment area, including skating rinks in the winter and splash pads in the summer. Global artists are on display at the Art Gallery of Mississauga. The Blues and Jazz Festival at Port Credit is held annually in September. In addition to hosting concerts and theatre productions, the Living Arts Centre provides kids’ camps and art instruction.

Access to Public Transit

MiWay is the name of Mississauga’s local public transport system. It connects citizens to GO Train services and Square One, with 96 bus lines that run around the city. GO Transit connects Mississauga and Toronto, and the Lakeshore West line stops twice at Port Credit and Clarkson. In all directions, trains depart every two hours, with more frequent departures during peak hours. Whereas the Milton line has many stops in Mississauga, the Kitchener line only makes one stop in Malton.

Owning a car to live in Mississauga is not essential because bike paths and public transport are available. However, two-thirds of the locals drive. The city has around 500 km of shared routes, bike lanes, and multi-use trails that make up the Mississauga cycling network. 

Recreation and Shopping

Mississauga offers a wide variety of sports and leisure pursuits, including bowling, roller skating, rock climbing, axe throwing, and alpine indoor skiing. In addition to salmon fishing and wintertime tobogganing, Erin Park is a popular canoe and kayak destination on the Credit River. The City of Mississauga offers year-round leisure programmes and has more than 500 parks. The communities of Port Credit and Streetsville have a plethora of locally-owned stores. One of Canada’s biggest malls, Square One, is in the city’s heart. It has more than twenty artisan cuisine vendors and big street names. In the north, Erin Mills Town Centre and Heartland Town Centre are two more shopping centres.


Some of the reputed schools in Mississauga are listed below:

    • Burnhamthorpe Public School
    • Cawthra Park Secondary School
    • Erindale Secondary School
    • John Fraser Secondary School
    • Branksome Hall
    • The Mississauga School

Average Rent and Sale Price

In Mississauga, the average home sale price is $951,608, indicating a slight decrease of 2.6%. This figure represents a diverse housing market, encompassing everything from detached homes to condos. The median rent in Mississauga is $2,675 for rental prices, reflecting a 3%. This places Mississauga in the context of the Greater Toronto Area cities rental market, with nearby cities like Toronto and Brampton showing higher and lower average rents, respectively.

Crime Rate

In Mississauga, the total crime rate is significantly lower than the Ontario and national averages, with a 55% lower rate than the national average. Specifically, violent crimes are 54% lower, and property crimes are 56% lower than the national average. A 16% drop in crime from the previous year serves as a testament to Mississauga’s general level of safety.


Oakville City in Greater Toronto Area

The town of Oakville is located in Ontario’s Halton Region. It is situated between Toronto and Hamilton on Lake Ontario. With 213,759 residents as of the 2021 census, it is the biggest town in Ontario. One of Canada’s most densely inhabited regions, the Greater Toronto Area cities, includes Oakville.

Key Highlights

Oakville is a sophisticated Greater Toronto Area suburb known for its picturesque waterfront, upscale dining, and boutique shopping. Home to renowned golf courses like Glen Abbey, it also hosts the Oakville Jazz Festival and boasts the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts. With over 200 parks and a vibrant arts scene, Oakville melds suburban charm with upscale sophistication, offering a tranquil yet vibrant lifestyle.

Access to Public Transit

Oakville has two GO Train stations located on the Lakeshore West route. Trains arrive at Toronto’s Union Station every two hours, with more frequent service during rush hours. Despite Oakville’s ongoing expansion, walking is a viable mode of transport inside the municipality. Buses operated by Oakville Transit go across the large city, connecting it to Sheridan College, the GO station, and places where commuters may carpool near major roads. Oakville also has more than 193 km of off-road and on-road bicycle routes.

Recreation and Shopping

Oakville, Canada, boasts an array of recreation and shopping options. Notable spots include the scenic Bronte Creek Provincial Park and Glen Abbey Golf Club for outdoor enthusiasts. Oakville Place and Cornwall Road offer diverse shopping experiences, from high-end retailers to local boutiques. The downtown area is rich in gourmet restaurants and cosy cafés, while entertainment thrives at the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts. This blend of leisure and retail makes Oakville a vibrant community hub.


Here are some reputed schools in Oakville:

    • Abbey Lane Public School
    • Brookdale Public School
    • Captain R.H Wright Public School
    • Oakville Trafalgar High School
    • White Oaks Secondary School
    • Appleby College

Average Rent and Sale Price

In Oakville, the average home sale price is approximately $1,212,796. For those looking to rent, the median rent across all bedroom counts and property types in Oakville, ON, is about $2,702, a notable increase of +39% higher than the national average. 

Crime Rate

In Oakville, the crime rates are significantly lower compared to national averages. The total crime rate is estimated at 1,838 incidents per 100,000 people, which is 56% lower than the national average. Violent crime rates are 55% lower, with an estimated 472 incidents per 100,000 people. Property crime rates are also lower, with an estimated 1,366 incidents per 100,000 people, 57% below the national average. This data highlights Oakville’s reputation as a safe community.

Richmond Hill

Richmond Hill City in Greater Toronto Area
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Richmond Hill is a city located in York Region, Ontario, Canada’s south-central region. As the third most populated municipality in the York Region and the 27th most populous municipality in Canada, it is part of the Greater Toronto Area cities. Richmond Hill is located south of Aurora and north of Thornhill, sandwiched between the cities of Markham and Vaughan.

Key Highlights

The Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts, the Richmond Hill Heritage Centre, which presents the local history, and the Boynton House Art Exhibition Space are some of Richmond Hill’s cultural attractions. The Richmond Hill David Dunlap Observatory was established in 1935 and offers public programmes and guided tours. Throughout the year, the town hosts a number of festivals and events, such as Ribfest, Moonlight Movies, and a Canada Day celebration. The only indoor wave pool in the GTA is located there as well.

Access to Public Transit

Richmond Hill, Canada, offers excellent transportation options through York Region Transit (YRT) and Viva Rapid Transit, providing extensive bus services across the city and the Greater Toronto Area. Additionally, Mobility On-Request caters to specialised needs, ensuring inclusivity. The city promotes sustainable travel with well-developed sidewalks, bike lanes, and trails, enhancing connectivity for walking and cycling and reflecting Richmond Hill’s commitment to environmental sustainability and a high quality of life for its residents.

Recreation and Shopping

Richmond Hill is a hub of recreation and shopping, boasting vibrant spots like Hillcrest Mall and offering diverse retail stores and dining options. For entertainment, the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts hosts various cultural events. Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy Richmond Green Sports Centre and Park, while foodies relish the culinary delights at local restaurants featuring global cuisines. The city seamlessly blends shopping, dining, and entertainment, making it a lively community for residents and visitors alike.


Here are some popular schools present in/near Richmond Hill:

    • Richmond Rose Public School
    • Bayview Hill Elementary School
    • Richmond Hill High School
    • Stouffville District Secondary School
    • Thornlea Secondary School
    • Canadian International School

Average Rent and Sale Price

In Richmond Hill, the average sale price for homes is approximately $1,147,815. For rental properties, the median rent is $3,500, which is significantly higher than the national average, reflecting an 80% increase. This information highlights Richmond Hill as a sought-after residential area with a robust real estate market, both for purchasing and renting properties.

Crime Rate

Richmond Hill’s crime rates are significantly lower than the national average, with total crimes being 44% lower. Violent crimes are 42% lower, and property crimes are 45% lower than the national average. This makes Richmond Hill safer than most of the Greater Toronto area cities, indicating a relatively secure living environment.


Whether prioritising education, recreation, safety, or public transit connectivity, the greater Toronto area cities cater to a wide spectrum of needs and dreams. These municipalities not only promise a high quality of life but also embody the essence of Canada’s celebrated diversity and inclusivity, making the GTA an ideal destination for those seeking to put down roots in a community that feels like home.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Where do most Indians live in the GTA?

Most of the Indians are currently living in Brampton, in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area).

What is the best suburb to live in Toronto?

Brampton, Mississauga, Oakville, and Richmond Hill are some of the best suburbs to live in Toronto.

Is the Greater Toronto Area a good place to live?

Yes, many consider Greater Toronto a good place to live.

What is the cheapest area to live in Toronto?

As of 2024, East York is identified as the most budget-friendly area in Toronto. It's known for offering some of the city's most affordable housing options, in addition to its parks, amenities, and overall lower cost of living.

Is the Greater Toronto Area expensive?

Living in Toronto can be expensive for some, especially near Downtown.