Toronto is Canada's biggest city and the country's economic epicenter, with a population of 5.7 million in the greater metropolitan area, and it's booming. Each year, the population expands with about 140,000 new arrivals, most of them coming not from maternity wards, but from around the globe, further augmenting Toronto's extraordinary multicultural makeup. Tourist attractions rate, too, if that's your thing, but the city's sheer cultural diversity, which has been compared with London's, is what ultimately gives pulse to the place. Ethnicity infuses great dining spots, theater, music, and other cultural festivals and bargain-busting shopping strips, such as Little India and multiple Chinatowns.
There's a lot that's new about this place, which has its pros and cons. Although bike lanes, roads, and other systems of infrastructure struggle to keep up -- the forest of cranes is testament to an ongoing building boom -- there's plenty of energy in new culture, environmental initiatives, innovative architecture, food and drink, and even science and technology.