A Comprehensive Guide to Moving to Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge

A Comprehensive Guide to Moving to Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge

Moving to a new city is incredibly exciting, and it’s a great opportunity to start a new chapter and to grow.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through what you need to know when moving to Kitchener, Waterloo, or Cambridge.

We’ll cover topics about the cities themselves, as well as the region overall.

Getting to Know Kitchener, Waterloo, and Cambridge

Known to those familiar with the region as the "tri-cities", Kitchener, Waterloo, and Cambridge are the three main cities that constitute what is also called Waterloo Region, along with several additional townships, including Woolwich, Wilmot, North Dumfries, and Wellesley, which are also located within the region's official borders.

Waterloo Region is located about an hour's drive from downtown Toronto (Canada's largest city), or approximately 107 kilometers.

Waterloo Region and Toronto are connected by the 401 Highway (aka King's Highway 401), Canada's busiest, and also widest, highway.

When combined with Autoroute 20 which runs out of Quebec, these two major roadways form the Quebec City-Windsor Corridor, which passes directly through Waterloo Region heading towards London, and is considered Canada's main transportation route, in and around which about half the country resides.

Local public transportation is provided by the Grand River Transit (GRT) bus system, as well as the region’s Light Rail Transit (LRT) system.

In terms of land size, Waterloo Region contains 529 square miles of rich eco-diverse land, including many conservation areas, trails, two large rivers (namely, the Grand River and Speed River), expansive farmlands, as well as the aforementioned city centres which are, themselves, hubs of vibrant activity.

There is even a full service airport located in Breslau, which is part of Woolwich township, called the Region of Waterloo International Airport.

In terms of employment opportunities, recent polling has shown that Waterloo Region takes 3rd place in the entire country, making it a go-to destination for job-seekers, and those looking to buy a home and build a family.

Are Kitchener, Waterloo, and Cambridge All One City?

Kitchener, Waterloo, and Cambridge are each their own different cities, with each their own personality and flair, however they are fully connected and integrated with each other. They benefit from a cohesive transportation system, along with streamlined infrastructure and services.

Kitchener and Waterloo are sometimes referred to as one entity, Kitchener-Waterloo, or KW for short. Cambridge is also seamlessly connected to Kitchener forming what is known as the “tri-cities”.

One key historical detail about Waterloo Region that new residents living in the area should be aware of, is the amalgamation which occurred in 1973, which saw the formation of Waterloo Region itself, from the individual municipalities of Galt (now Cambridge), Kitchener, and Waterloo.

Waterloo absorbed a settlement called Erbsville, and Kitchener absorbed a settlement called Bridgeport. Cambridge, for example, is the result of its own amalgamation of three smaller populations, namely the City of Galt, the village of Blair, and the towns of Hespeler and Preston.

Together, all of these cities, towns, and settlements became Waterloo Region, and this is significant because this merger saw the regional consolidation of many services, including civic planning, roads, social services, police, waste management, and, especially, transportation within the region.

Waterloo Region being connected as a municipality, as it has been since 1973, this was done with the intention of streamlining and therefore increasing the efficiency of all of the services that are integral to quality of life in the area.

See Homes for Sale in Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge

Take a look at latest listings in the area:

Neighbourhoods and Local Area

You can get acquainted with the different areas of Kitchener-Waterloo by looking at our comprehensive neighbourhood breakdown here.


One of the things the region is definitely known for is education. There are two local school boards, Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) and Waterloo Catholic District School Board (WCDSB).

You can learn more about the area’s schools, the boards themselves, and also homes for sale in each of the school districts here.

For post-secondary education, Waterloo Region features three very prestigious institutions: University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University, and Conestoga College


One thing that Waterloo Region prides itself on, is the sheer number of amenities in the region, such as community centres, libraries, gyms, culture and entertainment hotspots, shopping, and more.

The region's community centres offer their own programs, and a place to go after school for wayward young, as well as daycare services for those in need. There are plenty of such centres in the region (typically one for each neighbourhood), and many also offer courses, sports, entertaining community events, and more.

There are a number of libraries in the area as well, which also feature computers, art displays, study areas, and also places to relax and collect your thoughts. They are branches of Kitchener Public Library (KPL), Waterloo Public Library (WPL), and The Idea Exchange in Cambridge.

Along with that, the region has a strong backbone of culture and entertainment, with plenty of museums, art galleries, heritage sites, concert venues, and more.

Some notable names are the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, The Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum, and The Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery.

In terms of things to eat, and places to get food, Waterloo Region is jam-packed with markets large and small, grocery stores, and restaurants featuring all manner of cuisine.

As mentioned earlier, a lot of food is grown locally, from meats, to produce, to dairy, and more, as a result of the extensive farmlands in the region, which serve to supply most of the area’s local markets.

For those who love a good outdoor farmer's market that offers fresh and healthy food, you have the Kitchener Market, Cambridge Farmer's Market, and nearby St. Jacob's Market to choose from, which are all very popular and quite busy on weekends, with residents showing up very early on weekends for the latest fresh food products.

There are also a vast array of restaurants in Waterloo Region, from fine dining establishments, to quaint diners, to fast food joints, to cafes of all kinds.

By now, you will have gathered that Waterloo Region has a lot going on, so that even on your average day, there is plenty to do.

While a busy and vibrant urban cluster, Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge also elegantly encompass a great number of forested areas, parks, and trails.

The region is a haven for hikers, bikers, and travellers of all kinds who both live in the area, or are just passing through on a visit.

There is the notable Victoria Park in Kitchener, which is a picturesque place to walk and cycle during the day, with a playground for the kids, and various events throughout the summer such as the previously mentioned Blues Fest, and the ever-popular Rib Fest. Busker Fest in Waterloo is a staple of the region which is also worth mentioning.

Waterloo similarly has Waterloo Park, connecting Uptown to the campuses of UW and WLU.

Health Services

There are three main hospitals in the area: Grand River Hospital, St. Mary's Hospital, and Cambridge Memorial Hospital. These three hospitals serve as the backbone of the area's emergency medical care coverage for local residents.

In terms of walk-in clinics and doctor's offices, there is no shortage of these as well. Most people in Waterloo Region have access to a family doctor, and if not, there are plenty of other options as well.

Medical care is proportionately placed throughout the region, and so, no matter what part of the tri-cities you live in, you generally have access to adequate medical care for yourself and your family.

The same goes for dental offices, not to mention mental health facilities, physiotherapy clinics, chiropractors, dermatologists, physical rehabilitation centres, and, basically, any other type of medical care you can think of - we do offer it here in Waterloo Region.

Working With a Local Real Estate Agent

Moving to a different city is no easy task. It’s a big decision that takes research and planning.

Working with a local real estate agent can help you navigate the logistics and the details involved, making the process as straightforward and efficient as possible for you.

If you are looking to buy a home in the area, you can learn more about How We Help Our Buyers.

If you are looking to sell your home before moving to the area, you can take a look at How We Help Our Sellers.

Ask a Question

If you have any questions about the local area, what it’s like to live here, or what you need to know when moving here, you can always feel free to reach out.

You can leave a comment on this page, text us a quick question, inquire by email, or give us a call any time.

Our office hours are 7am to 11pm, Monday to Sunday.

Office: (519) 570 - 4447

George Dmitrovic (direct): (519) 575-5903 | george@wrxpropertygroup.com

Vince Dmitrovic (direct): (519) 807 - 4015 | vince@wrxpropertygroup.com

640 Riverbend Drive Kitchener, ON N2K 3S2

WRX Property Group

Keller Williams Innovation Realty