Guelph is one of Canada’s fastest-growing cities and its dynamic neighbourhoods each have their own distinctive charm.
For a breakdown, this community guide put together by local REALTOR® Nick FitzGibbon is a great resource. It was compiled by people who call the city home and is particularly helpful for anyone who is looking at Guelph real estate.
It includes detailed information on everything you might be curious about, from schools to restaurants, transit to daycare. You’ll learn what you can expect to enjoy—and take advantage of—when you live there, whether you’re a newcomer to the area or a lifelong Guelphite.
First-time buyers would be wise to consider Guelph because it is a growing and vibrant city that offers a mix of urban and rural living. It also has a strong job market, with major employers such as the University of Guelph, Linamar, Hammond Manufacturing, Cooperators Insurance, Sleeman Breweries and, coming soon, Conestoga College.
The city is known for its beautiful parks and trails, recreational opportunities, and excellent schools, making it an ideal place to raise a family. Guelph also has a wide range of housing options, from affordable starter homes to high-end properties, making it an accessible and desirable location for first-time buyers.
Families with kids will find that throughout Guelph, there are top-notch public, Catholic and private schools, as well as French immersion, IB, STEM and SHSM programs. Read on for more details.
Everything you could want is here in Downtown Guelph: a vibrant social scene, nightlife, amenities, river views and walkability, as well as an incredible sense of community. Watch a play at the River Run Centre, see a hockey or a basketball game across the street at the Sleeman Centre or sit down and enjoy one of Guelph’s many local breweries. This is where you’ll find a farmers market, shops, restaurants, bars, grocery stores, art shows, community events, family services–even GO train access–all set amongst the charm of mid-19th-century homes, modern condos and townhomes. A walker’s paradise, the area has an impressive Walk Score of 97.
“Downtown Guelph has something for everyone,” says FitzGibbon. “Historic charm and walkability make downtown Guelph highly sought after by all age groups and newcomers to the city.”
- John McCrae Public School
- King George Public School
- Ottawa Crescent Public School
- École Edward Johnson Public School
- Victory Public School
- Central Public School
- Paisley Road Public School
- Willow Road Public School
This quiet rural township in Wellington County is a natural beauty. Just five minutes from Guelph and surrounding the south end of the city, it boasts scenic views and top-rated schools. Puslinch is home to a lovely farmers market that is held weekly in the summer at the Optimist Recreation Centre. You can go looking for antiques at the Aberfoyle Antique Market.
The area has many local farms and small shops to explore, and be sure to check out Puslinch Lake–it is the largest kettle lake in North America! The main source of production here is agricultural, spring water bottling and mining. You’ll enjoy beautiful landscapes and lots of privacy, as well as an ideal location that offers easy access to 401, Cambridge, Guelph, Milton and beyond.
The North End is unique and consistently sought after. Known for its charm, convenience and a real sense of community, it also happens to be home to numerous parks, including two of the city’s biggest: Exhibition Park and Riverside Park.
The area is full of tree-lined trails that connect to other neighbourhoods. Many of the city’s biggest community and cultural events happen here, including the ever-popular Hillside Festival. This is also where you’ll find the Guelph auto mall, Wellington Brewery, Guelph Lakes Golf & Country Club and Woodlawn Bowl–the only bowling alley in the city. You are close to downtown, the rivers, Guelph General Hospital and all of the historic charm Guelph has to offer.
“The St. George’s Park area is highly sought after and a great place to put your real estate dollars,” says FitzGibbon. “There are a lot of century homes that have been given a little refreshing, making every property unique and beautiful.”
- École Edward Johnson Public School (French immersion) in the General Hospital neighbourhood
- June Avenue Public School
- Waverley Drive Public School
- Brant Avenue Public School
The East End is safe and kid-friendly, with parks and extensive trails systems nearby that make this a particularly great option for active families. Homeowners often find they can get more bang for their buck here, with newer construction and beautiful homes available. With lots of new developments and facilities here, this is a fast-growing community.
“The east is a family-oriented neighbourhood with easy access to the rest of the city. Residents who live in the East End can enjoy great parks, trails and a great community,” says the REALTOR®.
- Victor Davis Pool in the Victoria Road Recreation Centre
- Guelph Airport (& airport restaurant)
Made up of old and new, this fast-growing area is a family-friendly neighbourhood with a strong community feel. There are lots of new homes here, as well as schools, restaurants, grocery stores and shopping. It’s also a great spot for golf enthusiasts, who will love being able to play a round close to home. Because you’re at the southern point of Guelph, there is easy access to the 401 for commuters and those heading to the cottage.
“The growth seems constant in this area, giving new and old residents to Guelph lots of living options: condos, high- and mid-rise, townhouses, stacked towns, duplexes, detached homes and estate lots,” says the REALTOR®.
- Rickson Ridge Public School
- Arbour Vista (French Immersion)
- Westminster Woods Public School
- Sir Isaac Brock Public School
- Jean Little Public School
- École Fred A. Hamilton
- Kortright Hills Public School
- Priory Park Public School
- Denso Manufacturing
- City of Guelph
- OCAS Application Services
- Reid’s Heritage Homes
- Sleeman Breweries Ltd.
- Preservation Park
- Guelph Public Library
- Longos, Food Basics, Zehrs, Shoppers Drug Mart, PetSmart
- Stone Road Mall
Guelph’s West End is well-rounded, with great schools, recreation centres and parks. There are lots of affordable housing options here and you’re within walking distance to many amenities.
“With easy access to Kitchener and Waterloo and all the amenities you will ever need, the West end of Guelph has so much to offer,” says FitzGibbon.
- Westwood Public School
- Mitchell Woods Public School
- Taylor Evans Public School
- Gateway Drive Public School
- LCBO, Zehrs, Costco etc.
- West End Community Centre