Montréal's winter festivals shine bright

Winter Festivals and events
Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden

A festival city through and through, Montréal keeps celebrating all winter with festivals made for snowy days and nights. Montréal's winter festivals delight in seasonal fun from December to March, keeping everyone warm with outdoor activities, gourmet food and drink, art and cultural events and world-class entertainment.

Rue Wellington / SDC | Cabane Panache et Bois rond

March merrymaking

MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE (February 29 to March 10, 2024, gastronomic programming starting on February 22, 2024) Montréal's biggest winter festival, MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE merges gourmet food and drink events with arts, culture and an exciting outdoor activity site in Place des Festivals. Enjoy themed restaurant meals, workshops by guest chefs and more. While outdoors you can listen to live music, ride a Ferris wheel and ice slides, watch playful video projections and warm up with food and drink too. And join the jubilant Nuit Blanche crowds in a citywide all-nighter celebration of art, culture and urban life.

Old Montréal's Happening Gourmand (March 1 to 30, 2024) A winter restaurant event made to warm body and soul through the power of great food, Happening Gourmand features gourmet dining experiences at a fraction of their regular cost, with nine restaurants in Old Montréal offering table d'hôte menus for dinner and brunch.

Festival de Casteliers (March 6 to 10, 2024) A puppet theatre festival that features incredibly creative shows made for both children and adults, Festival de Casteliers brings together emerging puppetry companies from Montréal and around the world. With shows and activities held in the neighbourhood of Outremont and in various theatres across the city, the festival is a great way to explore Montréal's performing arts scene.

Cabane Panache et Bois Rond (March 21 to 24, 2024) Experience an authentic Québécois winter lumberjack village in the middle of the city. Cabane Panache et Bois Rond brings late-winter and sugar-shack season celebrations to Wellington Street in Verdun, with live music, traditional dancing, family-friendly activities and maple-inspired food.

 Luminothérapie - 14th edition

December holiday delights

The Great Christmas Market (November 25 to December 30) One of several holiday markets in Montréal, the Great Christmas Market transforms downtown’s Place des Festivals into a winter village of wooden chalets and twinkling lights, where you’ll find creations by local artisans, speciality foods, mulled wine, music and more.

Christmas in the Park (December 8 to 31) Twinkling lights in the trees, fires for roasting marshmallows and stacks of Christmas trees to bring home set the scene for the annual Christmas in the Park events. Enjoy live music, hot chocolate, mulled wine and more at Jardins Gamelin downtown and in Parc des Compagnons and Parc Lahaie in the Plateau neighbourhood. 

Noël sur l’Avenue (annually in December) The celebrations continue along Mount-Royal Avenue in the Plateau neighbourhood all month long. Take a break from holiday gift shopping and restaurant-going along the avenue to hear choirs and other live music in the street and in the parks, beautifully illuminated and decked out in Christmas trees.

Complexe Desjardins Santa’s Kingdom (November 25 to December 24) Complete with a mini train and a colourful fountain show set to music, art activities for kids, daily performances by choirs, orchestras, dancers and more, the Complex Desjardins Magic Kingdom turns a visit with Santa (and even the wait in line!) into a festival atmosphere for everyone.


January and February festivities

Luminothérapie (until March 10, 2024) This annual interactive art event transforms downtown's Place des Festivals and the Quartier des spectacles into an illuminated playground. Luminothérapie features colourful high-tech art installations along Sainte-Catherine Street and original video projections on the facades of the Quartier des Spectacles. Also experience an interactive ice skating experience, Au Bord du Lac Tranquille, on the Esplanade Tranquille skating rink, where trails of light stream behind you as you skate.

Igloofest (January 18 to February 10, 2024) An outdoor music festival unlike any other, Igloofest turns January and February's cold weather into an excuse to dance with thousands of Montréalers on the Old's Port's Jacques-Cartier pier every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. Hear electronic music by top international and local producers, DJs, hip hop artists and more in an electro winter wonderland – this year catch Marc Rebillet, Miss Monique, Diplo and more high-energy artists on two stages.

Wildside Theatre Festival (January 18 to February 8, 2024) A showcase for new and daring theatrical productions at the historic Centaur Theatre in Old Montréal, Wildside presents thought-provoking contemporary theatre by local and independent artists. 

Poutine Week (February 1 to 14, 2024) The name says it all: a week dedicated to the Québecois signature dish of French fries and gravy topped with cheese curds. It's also a chance to try specially created new poutine dishes made by chefs at dozens of restaurants throughout Montréal.

Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden is a Montréal-based writer and editor who searches out city secrets, new bands, life-changing art and things to do with her perpetually active kid. Robyn has covered major events for HOUR, MUTEK, ARTINFO, CKUT 90.3FM and more.

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