Toronto is getting a taste of winter Sunday, as flurries and lake-effect weather coat the region with the season's first snowfall.

The flurries, which began early Sunday, could continue through till Monday and leave up to 8 centimetres of accumulation.

Before noon on Sunday, central parts of the city looked like a snowglobe, as freezing temperatures brought whiteout conditions.

The same weather system is sending snow squalls blowing into cottage country that could lead to accumulations of up to 50 cm of snow by Tuesday.

In Toronto, temperatures will reach a high of 0 degrees Celsius, with northwest winds gusting up to 30 kilometres per hour for much of the day. Temperatures will dip to a low of -4 C by Sunday night, according to Environment Canada. The flurries are to end Monday with winds gusting up to 60 km per hour in the early evening with a high of -1 C.

In cottage country, snow squalls that began early on Sunday will create whiteout conditions through to Monday. The squalls are expected to become more intense late Sunday and into Monday, when as much as 20 to 30 cm of snow may fall every 12 hours. Total accumulations in excess of 50 cm are possible in some areas by Tuesday morning.

"Cold northwest winds of 30 to 50 km/h will cause substantial blowing and drifting with visibilities reduced to near zero at times," Environment Canada said.

Snow squall warnings are in effect from Sarnia across to Barrie and Orillia, while snow squall watches are in effect from the Oxford-Brant region to the Durham region.