Top 5 Winter Festivals in Canada

For many, Canada evokes idyllic images of winter. While this may not be true overall, it is certainly true when it comes to winter festivals. Not only does Canada have the largest outdoor ice rink in the world within its borders, but they also have winter festivals dedicated to food and other winter sports.

No matter what you are looking for or whether you’re planning to bring along your family, one of these five festivals is likely to appeal to you.


Location: Ottawa

Winterlude is a large festival that will please any member of your family. It incorporates nearly every winter activity you can imagine and centers around one of the largest, if not the most significant, ice skating rinks in the world. The ice rink is also used for two events, including a triathlon and dragon boat racing.

In addition to ice skating, there is an ice carving competition, snowboarding, markets, and at least one parade. The festival lasts for three weeks during February, with different activities, or a combination of, going on each day.

Montreal High Lights Festival

Location: Montreal

Nearly a million people will attend this festival each year. There, they can attend themed meals and tastings. There will be theatrical performances and art installations. The activities will be held indoors, outdoors, and even in tents.

The Montreal High Lights Festival is best for adults that can attend and enjoy all of the events on offer. This festival lasts for eleven days, with each day being unique.

Niagara Icewine Festival

Location: Niagara

If you love wine, the Icewine festival is a must for once in your life. It begins in January, though some of the leftover wine may be found at festivals throughout the year. The magic starts early in the season, just after the first intense frost, when frozen grapes are carefully picked during the night and pressed into a thick, sweet syrup that will then be turned into ice wine.

Many local vineyards participate in this tradition, and these wines are available nowhere else on earth. There are several ways to enjoy this festival during its season. You could book a Vineyard tour, pick up a discover pass, or attend one of the local wine and food events.

Winter Festival of Lights

Location: Niagara Falls

If you want something a little more festive, or something more family-friendly than wine near Niagara falls, you can also attend the Winter Festival of Lights. Here, there are more than three miles of light displays as well as some scheduled performances, and even fireworks over the falls.

This festival runs for several months, through nearly the entirety of winter. The light shows themselves are free, and you will get the chance to see well over three million lights across all of the displays.


Location: Toronto, Ontario

Interested in the cuisine you can get in Toronto? Houses for sale in Brampton put you right in the lap of one of the biggest food festivals in the world. With the Winterlicious festival, hundreds of restaurants attempt to dazzle patrons with prix fixe menus, three-course meals, and reduced prices for two weeks. Many restaurants are fully booked months in advance, if not as soon as the dates are announced.

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