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Could Peterborough be your new home in Canada?

Thinking of moving to Canada and looking for an ideal place to call home?

As mentioned in 13 tips to choose the best place to live in Canada. You need to consider several factors when choosing a city to call home.

This time, let me introduce you to a new option; this city is called Peterborough, located in the heart of Ontario, which we visited last year when we travelled as petsitters.

With a natural beauty and a welcoming community, Peterborough is a promising place for immigrants looking for a fresh start.

Let's review why this city might be perfect for you.

Table of contents

4. Parks

Blog post cover with an image of the Lift Lock in Peterborough, Canada.

1. General Information

Peterborough is located 125 kilometres northeast of Toronto on the banks of the Otonabee River. It has a population of approximately 80,000.

The city's diverse economic activities include manufacturing, healthcare, education and technology, making it an attractive destination for career opportunities and educational institutions that accept international students.

Peterborough map extracted from Google Maps
Peterborough - Image extracted from Google Maps.

2. Education

Peterborough offers a wide range of educational options for families. It has school boards, including the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (KPRDSB) and the Peterborough Victoria Northumberland and Clarington Catholic District School Board.

For a general understanding of how education works for your children in Canada, I invite you to read New to Canada: Understanding the education system for your children.

The city is also home to universities and colleges such as Trent University, Fleming College and Seneca College. Some institutions offer international students the opportunity to pursue higher education and benefit from a post-graduation work permit.

According to the official website, when I write this blog post, four institutions offer post-graduation work permit programs for their international students. Don't forget to always check the official website at the time of your search in case this information changes.

Screenshot obtained from Canada's official website on August 31, 2023 with Designated learning institutions in Peterborough.
Screenshot obtained from Canada's official website on August 31, 2023.

3. Iconic Places

One of Peterborough's most important attractions is the Peterborough Lift Lock, an impressive hydraulic system of lift locks that is both an engineering marvel and a popular tourist destination.

This iconic attraction is a testament to the city's rich history and innovative spirit.

There are only eight such constructions in the world, and one of them is located in Peterborough. It is a delight to stop, watch the mechanism work, and see boats go up and down the river.

Lift Lock located in Peterborough
Lift Lock located in Peterborough

4. Parks

Peterborough has more than 100 parks and sports fields. So, if you're a nature enthusiast, you'll have plenty of green spaces to enjoy.

Jackson Park, for example, offers serene walking trails, picturesque gardens and a tranquil setting for those looking to relax in nature.

You can find more information about parks and trails in Peterborough at this link.

5. Family-Friendly

Peterborough is certainly a family-friendly city. From educational programs to recreational opportunities, families will find a nurturing environment to thrive.

Its library will allow you to immerse yourself in the city's activities and meet new people.

The city is open to newcomers; they even have a website exclusively for new people coming to town. You can find more details at this link.

Image with a "Welcome" sign
Peterborough has a dedicated site to welcome newcomers to the city.

6. Transit System

The system is called Peterborough Transit. It operates full-size buses running regular and express routes and an accessible van service, a community bus and PtboOnDemand, allowing you to schedule the transit trip you want.

Peterborough Transit offers contactless ticketing through an app called HotSpot, which is free to download.

The regular fare is $2.75, but they also have 10-ride passes, 30-day passes, and semi-annual and annual passes for seniors.

You can find more information about the transit system in this link.

To understand how the transportation systems of other cities in Canada work, remember to check out Understanding the Public Transportation System as a newcomer to Canada.

7. Health System

Peterborough's healthcare system comprises hospitals and walk-in clinics.

The hospital is the Peterborough Regional Health Centre, and they also have a couple of walk-in clinics throughout the city that ensure residents have access to quality healthcare services.

You can check out How we got a health card in Ontario if you are a newcomer and don't know where to start.

8. Job Opportunities

The city's diverse economy offers employment opportunities in various sectors.

Notable companies such as Siemens, Rolls-Royce Limited, and Pepsico/Quaker, among others, have established a presence in Peterborough.

If you don't know where to start when looking for jobs, remember to check out How to get a job in Canada as a newcomer.

Cover of a blog post called How to get a job in Canada as a newcomer

9. Housing and Accommodation

Housing options in Peterborough span a wide range of preferences and budgets. From apartments to single-family homes, the city offers a wide variety of options to meet the needs of newcomers.

According to, a 1-bedroom apartment in the city center costs about $1,600 CAD, while a 3-bedroom apartment can run around $2,000 CAD, which makes it much more affordable than big cities like Toronto.

Photo taken in the city centre of Peterborough
You can find different forms of accommodation in Peterborough.

West End and East City are popular residential areas, offering proximity to amenities, schools and parks. These neighbourhoods provide a sense of community while allowing residents access to urban amenities.

Remember to check How to rent your first home as a newcomer in Canada for additional tips.


In conclusion, Peterborough seems like a welcoming city for immigrants looking to build a new life in Canada.

Its mix of educational opportunities, iconic landmarks, green spaces and economy make it an attractive option for individuals and families.

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