Someone flying over Toronto could be forgiven for confusing the Canadian metropolis with any number of other large North American cities. Rising up along Lake Ontario’s northwestern shore, Toronto appears at least cosmetically similar to several major urban centers in the United States, replete with grid plan-like layout, Major League Baseball stadium, and multi-use arena that hosts National Basketball Association and National Hockey League teams. At street level, the bustling business district and crowded neighborhoods surrounding it conjure images of the Big Apple and the Windy City, and the variety of languages found alongside English in conversations reflects the broad diversity found in many international hubs. However, beneath the big city exterior Toronto has a surprisingly small town feel and its own, uniquely Canadian culture.
Lake Ontario rises up behind the Toronto skyline as seen from a mile above the city.
A couple skates down the main road on Toronto Island on a cool fall evening.
Two friends light up as they walk past a large aquatic-themed mural in Toronto’s “Graffiti Alley,” a city-sanctioned art space parallel to Queen Street between Chinatown and the Fashion District.
Commuters take shelter from a rainy day inside one of Toronto’s ubiquitous red trams.
A boy slides down the Simcoe WaveDeck, one of several stylized platforms that are equal parts artwork and boardwalk along the Toronto waterfront.
A man walks down Spadina Avenue in Toronto’s Chinatown district on a rainy fall evening.
The warm glow of incandescents beckons passersby at AAA, a popular Toronto BBQ restaurant and bar.
Dundas-Yonge Square pulsates with light and energy at dusk.
A colorful light sculpture brightens the public square in front of Toronto City Hall.
Check out all the high-resolution shots from my trip to Toronto in my Flickr album.