|Subject: Re: Toronto Area Advice Sought|
As a native Hamiltonian, and one who still lives here, I can second the recommendation for Hamilton.
It is a small city, and VERY different from Toronto. The population is culturally diverse, and largely blue collar due to the heavy industry (Steel...we're Canada's Pittsburgh) in town. But the diversity ranges in what's available in the city. We have a world class University (McMaster) that is home to one of the most famous Medical schools in the world. There is a vast array of 'back to nature' things to do, such as hiking in the Cootes Paradise area (it might still be a bit 'damp' in April), or along the Bruce trail which meanders through the City. There is also the Royal Botanical Gardens to visit, if we get a good warm spell, these could be very nice.
Personally I would stay away from the waterfront...it really isn't too attractive, and a rough part of town.
Musically, it is very good, and there are a number of good pubs to go to, especially in Hess Village (I can give you more details if you decide to come here) or an excellent Irish Pub called Slainte (pronounced Slawn-cha) in the downtown area.
Let me know if you're interested, and I can give you s'more details....
John Wiernikowski Hamilton, Ontario CANADA