~ St. Catherines & the Cities of Lake Ontario ~
St. Catharine's - Hamilton - Burlington - Oakville - Mississauga
Traveling between Niagara Falls and Toronto on part a road trip to Canada, my family followed an expressway called the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW), which circles around the south, west and north shores of Lake Ontario. This route took us through a chain of five cities that today have populations exceeding 100,000 people. Here is a snapshot of what we saw.
St. Catharine's, a short drive west of Niagara Falls, is a very Canadian looking city with brown residential towers perched along the south coast of Lake Ontario. It is here that the road begins to hug the shoreline, offering drivers with a really cool view of the CN Tower and distant skyline of Toronto on the opposite shore.
After traversing past a few small towns, the QEW then takes a turn to round the western end of the lake. In the process it skirts the industrial high rise city of Hamilton. Boasting a population of over 300,000 and located just outside the reach of "Metro Toronto," Hamilton is a major city with an identity, skyline and attractions of its own. It is also the first of a continuous string of neighboring cities that includes Toronto.
After leaving Hamilton, the QEW enters Burlington, another city boasting residential towers, and Oakville, home of a major Canadian golf tournamnent and lovely roadside landscaping.
Mississauga, the last city before Toronto, boasts a population of more than 500,000 and would easily rank among our 30 largest cities if it were located in the U.S. Size aside, it is actually not too well known south of the border as it sits in the imposing shadow of big sister Toronto.
After Mississauga, the QEW enters Toronto and combines with other expressways after reaching the downtown area.
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