Oshawa (population 141,590, CMA, 330 594) is a city in Ontario Canada, on the Lake Ontario shoreline, approximately 60 km east of downtown Toronto. It is commonly viewed as the eastern anchor of both the Greater Toronto Area and the Golden Horseshoe. It is not, however, part of the Toronto CMA but has its own metropolitan area, the fourteenth largest in Canada. It is the largest community in the Regional Municipality of Durham. The name Oshawa originates from the Ojibwa term aazhaway, meaning "crossing to the other side of a river or lake" or just "(a)cross".
Oshawa offers beautiful natural areas to explore: 2,100 acres of parklands and open spaces, extensive trail systems that meander throughout the city and 46 acre Lakeview Park on Lake Ontario that includes a sand beach and boardwalk. We also are home to the Pumphouse Marsh, the Second Marsh, the McLaughlin Bay Wildlife Reserve and the Oak Ridges Moraine, which is a unique glacial landform that spans Oshawa and beyond.
Two of Ontario's top festivals happen in Oshawa: our annual Fiesta Week and our annual Canada Day Celebrations at Lakeview Park. We also host AutoFest, Ribfest and North America's largest contemporary Peony Festival, as well as many other community events. Durham Region's premiere entertainment centre, the General Motors Centre in downtown Oshawa, is home to the Oshawa Generals Hockey Club and the Sports Hall of Fame. It also showcases a variety of spectacular entertainment for all ages and interests.
Discover a choice of hotels where you can enjoy our hospitality in comfort. When it's time to grab a bite to eat, Oshawa has a restaurant to suit every taste. If you need a little inspiration, take a look at the Downtown Oshawa World Cuisine Guide. Downtown Oshawa offers a variety of unique specialty shops and restaurants. Come to shop and stay for lunch - you might discover a new favourite place to dine.
The Oshawa Centre is the largest shopping centre in the Durham Region and provides a well-rounded shopping experience. You will find a multitude of nationally branded stores and a variety of restaurants to enjoy a meal.
Throughout Oshawa, you will also find many convenient neighbourhood shopping malls and plazas, including big-box retailers at the Harmony/Taunton Shopping Centre and Stevenson Road interchange.
For those looking for a touch of culture, Oshawa offers musical performances, live theatre, art shows, museums and heritage sites. Now a National Historic Site, Parkwood Estate, the remarkable home of Colonel Sam McLaughlin, is one of Ontario's most popular filming locations (Billy Madison and X-Men to name a few!). Parkwood features characteristic architecture and magnificent gardens, restored to look as they did in the 1930's. A tour of Parkwood is a definite highlight in the Oshawa experience.
Scenic Lakeview Park provides the setting for the Oshawa Community Museum's three restored nineteenth-century homes, which attract thousands of visitors each year. The Canadian Automotive Museum is located in the heart of Oshawa. There, over 70 vehicles are displayed in an authentic 1920's car dealership. The Oshawa Municipal Airport is the site for two of Oshawa's most intriguing museums, the Oshawa Aeronautical, Military & Industrial Museum and the Robert Stuart Aeronautical Collection. Visitors can have a first-hand look at tanks, scout cars, military hardware, photos, certificates, letters, radios, medals and other military memorabilia from the Second World War and specifically Camp-X, the military spy base in the 1930's.
Don't don't forget to drop by one of our Oshawa Public Library branches, which offer unique programs for all ages. You may also want to take a tour of the impressive Durham College/University of Ontario Institute of Technology campus, which hosts unique art and buildings.
In late 2004, the Greater Toronto Airports Authority announced a plan under which the Oshawa Airport would be closed and its traffic diverted to a major new Toronto reliever airport to be constructed in Pickering. The Oshawa airport handles occasional traffic related to General Motors (emergency spare parts and executives); GM has indicated that a move of its air traffic to Pickering would not affect its operations. The airport also handles significant general aviation, two flight training facilities, and numerous other aviation and non-aviation related companies, all of which would need to be diverted or relocated. The city has considered ambitious proposals to repurpose the airport lands, but as of January 2006, significant upgrade work is being performed on the main terminal building by the city itself, signalling that the city has no immediate plans to close the busy facility, understanding its importance to the community and local economy. Additional aviation related construction is also taking place on the airport lands.
Public education in Oshawa is provided via the Durham District School Board. As of late 2006, there were 32 elementary schools and six secondary schools. The Durham Catholic District School Board, which has its headquarters in Oshawa, oversees public Catholic education in Durham Region. There are 14 Catholic elementary schools and two secondary schools. The Conseil scolaire de district du Centre-Sud-Ouest operates one French Public elementary school, while the Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud runs one publicly-funded French-language Catholic elementary school. Private schools include Durham Elementary School and Immanuel Christian School.