Monday, March 21, 2016


Rochester dominates the category of "big-city culture, small-town convenience." The region provides a majority of what makes huge cities great while minimizing the factors that make huge cities painful.  But on (rare) occasion, a field trip to a huge city can be invigorating, and having one available can help complement life in a more mid-sized metro.  In Rochester's case, directly across Lake Ontario lies arguably one of the world's greatest cities, Toronto.  The need to drive around the lake turns a 90-mile trip into a 165-mile journey, but here are a few reasons why the occasional visit is warranted:

  • With a population of 2.8 million, the city of Toronto is the fourth largest in North America.
  • If diversity is of interest to you, the over 140 different languages spoken in the city might be appealing.
  • Along with a ludicrous number of languages comes an amazing array of ethnic food, enough to make Toronto a destination even among New Yorkers (as in New York City residents.)
  • Rochester, thanks to Buffalo and Syracuse, has easy access to the NFL, NHL, the highest level of NCAA basketball, and the highest level of NCAA football.  Toronto completes our big-time sports package by providing MLB, NBA, and MLS.
  • Spending a few hours in traffic on the Queen Elizabeth Way serves as a nice reminder why living in Rochester is phenomenal.


  1. There's more. Toronto is Rochester's gateway to the rest of the world. It's the megalopolis we can drive to and from in a day. From YYZ one can fly to all 5 continents without changing planes. At risk of sounding impolite, on the whole Canadian society is lots more prosocial than BosWash. I love it even in the winter. They aren't moaning about weather like some people here. They are having fun. It's called life. I've never understand why Rochester doesn't look north more.

    1. I totally agree - Toronto is a gateway to the world, both through its people and its airport. And I don't think it's impolite to state that the people create a vibe that is unique and definitely pleasant relative to BosWash. Finally, the whining about weather in Rochester is quite possibly the worst part of living here (and definitely way worse than the weather itself.)

  2. Great post! It is cool to be so close to another country. It only adds to our cultural and social outlets and enhances our already great quality of life.