split image of Toronto skyline and Vancouver skyline

Toronto and Vancouver are Canada’s two most prominent major cities. It’s no wonder they are hot destinations for people looking to make a change. Despite their popularity as moving destinations, these two cities are quite different. 

In this blog, we do a living in Vancouver vs. Toronto comparison, so that you can get an idea what makes each of these cities unique and decide on which Canadian city you want to call home.


If you’re looking for mild weather, Vancouver is the place for you. Nestled by the Pacific Ocean in British Columbia, its average monthly highs during the winter months are around 7°C, compared to Toronto’s near freezing temperatures. 

However, Vancouver experiences more dark and rainy days, with an average of 165 rainy days annually. These occur primarily between October and April. In contrast, Toronto, located beside Lake Ontario, has greater temperature swings throughout the year. Once you get through the brisk winters, you get to enjoy warmer summers with average highs of 24-27°C.

Cost of Living

Both cities have high housing costs. Vancouver is one of, if not the most, expensive places to live in Canada in terms of housing prices: in metro Vancouver, the average cost for a one-bedroom apartment hovers around $3,000 per month. In downtown Toronto, it’s slightly lower at about $2,500. Nevertheless, Vancouver and Toronto both have highly competitive real estate markets, meaning it may take time and financing to find a home to rent or buy that meets your needs.


Toronto is home to the University of Toronto, which consistently ranks among the world’s top universities. It also hosts other notable institutions like Ryerson University and York University, which contribute to a vibrant academic community. 

On the other hand, Vancouver’s educational scene is anchored by the University of British Columbia, which is renowned for its research achievements and beautiful campus. No matter which city you choose, you can’t go wrong if you value education; whether your kids are elementary, high school, or university age, there are top-tier public and private school options available. 

Job Opportunities

Toronto as Canada’s financial capital has a vibrant job market, especially in finance, technology, and media. It hosts the headquarters of major Canadian banks and numerous multinational corporations, making it a hub for those in the corporate world. The city’s diverse economy also supports a thriving startup ecosystem, particularly in tech and creative industries.

Vancouver, while smaller in scale, offers opportunities in film and television production. It’s also proving to be a growing market for businesses in green energy, environmental sciences, clean technology and digital media. 

Culture and Events

Vancouver and Toronto both have vibrant cultural scenes, but each offers events and experiences that cater to different tastes. Toronto shines with its bustling array of events like the Toronto Caribbean Carnival, an explosion of colour and culture that lights up the city every summer. This event, along with the Toronto International Film Festival, attracts global attention. The beautiful Toronto Music Garden offers a peaceful escape in the heart of the city, while the Royal Ontario Museum presents rich cultural artifacts and exhibitions.

Meanwhile, Vancouver’s cultural calendar is as engaging as Toronto’s, though with a distinctively laid-back West Coast vibe. Vancouver hosts signature events like The Vancouver International Film Festival, the Vancouver Folk Music Festival, and the Vancouver Pride Parade in downtown Vancouver. These festivals underscore the city’s commitment to multiculturalism and inclusivity.

Natural Beauty

Vancouver has a lot to offer to outdoor enthusiasts with the natural beauty of mountains, forests, and the ocean. People have easy access to hiking, kayaking, and skiing within and outside of the city, as well as world-renowned parks like Stanley Park.  

While Toronto is much more of an urban landscape, you can enjoy nature around the Great Lakes or in the Muskoka region, which is just a short drive away.

Sports Fans

Toronto and Vancouver have passionate professional sports cultures, but their offerings differ widely in variety and scale. Toronto is a powerhouse in professional sports, hosting teams in nearly all major leagues: the Raptors (NBA), Maple Leafs (NHL), Blue Jays (MLB), and Toronto FC (MLS). This diversity gives sports fans year-round entertainment. Vancouver, while smaller in terms of team variety, holds a fervent sports scene centered around the Canucks (NHL) and the Whitecaps FC (MLS). 

Orbit Moving – Simplify the Start of Your Next Adventure

As you can see, both cities have a lot to offer. We hope our Vancouver/Toronto comparison has given you some clarity as to which city may be best for you and your family. No matter where you decide to go, whether you’re moving from Toronto to Vancouver, moving from Vancouver to Toronto, or just doing some local moving within your city, Orbit Moving has you covered. Our comprehensive service offering will simplify your moving process and make starting your next chapter an enjoyable experience. Contact us today to get started!

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