Great Hamilton Neighbourhoods to Raise a Family

Read about these family friendly neighbourhoods in Hamilton, Ontario, photo GV Chana at Unsplash
Read about these family friendly neighbourhoods in Hamilton, Ontario, photo GV Chana at Unsplash

As someone who recently moved to a new house in Toronto, I can attest to the fact that living in Toronto is very expensive. As a result of this, many people I know have moved to Hamilton. And why not? Hamilton is about an hour southwest of Toronto so living there still allows you to come into Toronto for shopping, Toronto Maple Leafs or Blue Jays games or to visit Toronto attractions such as Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada or the Ontario Science Centre.

Hamilton is very appealing to Toronto families who want more parks, greenspace and less traffic. With the rise in remote work, many people are leaving Toronto for smaller cities and towns. Many people simply cannot afford to live in Toronto anymore.

With a plethora of parks, excellent schools and a wonderful arts and culture scene, Hamilton is the perfect place to raise a family and still have all the amenities of living in the city. With distinct neighbourhoods and communities, it’s easy to find exactly what your family is looking for when you move to Hamilton Ontario. Here are just a few of the best neighbourhoods for families.

Read about these family friendly neighbourhoods in Hamilton, Ontario, photo GV Chana at Unsplash
Read about these family friendly neighbourhoods in Hamilton, Ontario, photo GV Chana at Unsplash

East End

With the green space of Gage Park and the amenities of Crown Point, this is a perfect area for first-time buyers and young families. This large area actually encompasses several smaller neighbourhoods, and there are some affordable areas for young families. Close to King’s Forest and featuring stunning views of the Niagara Escarpment, this is the perfect place for nature lovers and young explorers. It’s home to Ottawa Street Shopping District, where you’ll find many small businesses. Hamilton’s East End is also very close to CF Lime Ridge Mall with anchor stores Hudson’s Bay, H&M and Old Navy. It’s a pedestrian-friendly area with easy transit access and charming homes and streets lined with mature trees.


One of the original downtown neighbourhoods, Corktown has it all. It’s rich in history and charm, featuring a lot of character homes and close to any and all amenities you could want including parks, transit, restaurants and shopping. This is the perfect place for young families and professionals. If you need to commute to Toronto, you’ll be steps away from the Hamilton GO station, as well as Locke Street shopping and the Hamilton Art Gallery. As for parks, there’s Corktown, Shamrock and Woolverton Parks, as well as some Niagara Escarpment trails to provide plenty of green space and places to play.


Home to many young families, this neighbourhood features Westdale Village Shopping District, a shopping area providing easy access to a variety of small businesses and favoured by locals for its small-town feel. Westdale is where you’ll find the venerable McMaster University and, as such, it’s a popular area not just for students but also professors and their families. Westdale offers a great mix of nature and city life with the Westdale Theatre and McMaster Museum of Art, as well as beautiful hiking trails in Cootes Paradise, a sanctuary for wildlife. Westdale is also next to one of Hamilton’s treasured landmarks, Dundurn Castle.

Hamilton Northend

The Hamilton Northend has recently become a trendy and up-and-coming neighbourhood with the new North Harbour GO train line and easy access to highways for those who commute. The Hamilton Northend is also a popular area due to being on the lakeshore and Hamilton Beach.

These are just a few of the family friendly neighbourhoods in Hamilton, Ontario. With a great mix of amenities like nature, parks, transit, shopping, combined with the charm and character of specific neighbourhoods, there’s a neighbourhood for everyone.


  1. *smh* Lori, do your research, especially as you are from Toronto and clearly don’t know what you’re talking about. Limeridge Mall is on the Hamilton Mountain and nowhere close to the East End of Hamilton? Just look at a map. All the areas you listed are high crime areas (Westdale is notorious for mischievous students who vandalize properties and have no respect for their neighbours, Corktown is being gentrified but it is still frequented by street drug users and gangs, the North End is known for drug dealers, mafia and prostitution, and the East end is getting better but still has its share of bedbug infested apartments and high crime). As a resident of Hamilton I would definitely not recommend these areas – check out the Hamilton Mountain (do your research for home with asbestos, apartments with bedbugs and cockroaches as that’s been an ongoing issue in the city), Stoney Creek is a nice suburb but costly & Locke St neighbourhood.

  2. The article certainly lacks depth and useful information, Tom.
    I am always amazed by how little attention Westdale gets in these types of articles. Westdale is very close to the ideal neighbourhood for families, certainly according to Toronto expectations. The houses all have driveways, the schools are all great, the main park backs on to acres and acres of Royal Botanical Garden trails and connects to the destination-quality waterfront trail. There’s a walkable movie theatre, grocery store and library, plus banks, drug stores, bakeries, coffee shops, restaurants, book stores, fitness options, and various professionals (lawyers, accountants, dentists…)
    It’s not a high-crime area, as Tom suggests, but there are many student houses, so front gardens are often just mowed weeds and you can expect loud parties for Frosh-week, Homecoming, and St. Patrick’s Day. That’s really the worst of it. Otherwise, it’s fabulous. But so are many other parts of Hamilton.
    I wouldn’t generally recommend the North End yet for typical families with children, but certainly for a starter home for young people with energy and a higher tolerance for risk. It’s close to the downtown, the houses are interesting; the North End has a lot to offer. There are some very desirable homes and pockets in this area, but it requires some serious consideration of pros and cons.
    Hamilton has been Toronto’s dumping ground of undesirables for decades. We are the recipient of many one-way ticket travellers. While there are very few no-go areas, there are many don’t-raise-your-kids-here areas (by middle-class expectations), which tend to cluster in the downtown areas where the social service and charity agencies also cluster.
    The best advice to anyone thinking of moving to Hamilton is just to drive here by yourselves, pick a general area, and spend a day scoping the area out. Not house hunting, just walking, driving, shopping etc., in that general area. You’ll find your fit.

  3. Hamilton is filthy. Litter everywhere. If you actually work a 9 – 5 job, you can only access the big chain stores during the week because all the independent shops close at 5 or 6. Before anyone using transit can actually get to. Then the owners whine about nobody shopping local.
    Several years ago this city was offered a truckload of free money to build an LRT . Well it’s finally been approved after years of wrangling and delaying tactics by city councillors. All the time costs are increasing. Yes some locals complained that it would increase their property values!!! That’s the mindset here. It’s a city on the lake but the whole eastend is cut off from the lake by heavy industry that is more likely to sponsor parks and recs on the mountain not the areas that are next door. If you are coming from a vibrant neighborhood, like The Danforth, or Parkdale, or The Beaches, you won’t like Hamilton. Yes there are some good restaurants and really nice hikes, but rinks and pools depending on the area are harder to find in the east end. You can’t take a dog on a leash on a bus. There is only a handful of dog parks. If you don’t drive your dog will probably never ever get to run free again. The mayor can bring his dog to work, I can’t bring mine to a vet on a bus unless he’s in an enclosed carrier. Not something I am able to do. Think hard before moving here because you can’t go back and it’s really not that much cheaper. A previous commenter mentioned crime, it’s mostly petty, don’t leave anything of value on your porch, and there’s a lot vandalism.

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