Unwrap the Magic: Christmas Events That Will Get You in the Festive Mood
Ho ho ho! It’s the most wonderful time of the year! That’s right, folks, Christmas is just around the corner, and I know you are all excited about the festivities that come with it. Here in Canada, the holiday season is always a magical time, thanks to the amazing markets, events, and light displays that pop up in cities across the country. And with the new year coming soon, it’s time to start planning your Christmas itinerary. To help you out, we’ve put together a list of the most enchanting Christmas markets, events, and light displays to check out this year!
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The Vancouver Christmas Market is a festive event that transforms Jack Poole Plaza in downtown Vancouver into a European-inspired Christmas wonderland. Located in the heart of downtown, this market is a hub for holiday traditions, seasonal treats, and festive fun. With over 80 vendors selling everything from handmade crafts to amazing food and drink, there’s something for everyone at the Vancouver Christmas Market. From poutine to bratwurst, pretzels, Transylvanian chimney cakes, and hurricane potatoes, this market is bursting with tasty food stands. The mulled wine is a must-have!
Are you enjoying Christmas on the ski hill? Throughout December, and straight through to April, celebrate Christmas with a big bang at Big White! Finish off a day on the slopes with a cup of hot chocolate and the resort’s famous fireworks display every Saturday night!
Enjoy a spectacular light display with your family on a budget! Metro Vancouver’s largest free outdoor winter light display is Lights at Lafarge located in Coquitlam. Take a walk around the 1.2km tree-lined path transformed with a multitude of lights and displays! Food trucks and various events for the family are always available to enjoy! Conveniently located at the end of the Skytrain’s Evergreen Line, Lights at Lafarge is easy to get to!
If you’re looking for a winter wonderland, Glow Gardens Christmas is the perfect place. This dazzling light display is one of the largest indoor Christmas festivals in Edmonton, with millions of sparkling lights, interactive features, and live entertainment.
Look forward to a dazzling holiday light experience in Saskatoon’s Forestry Farm Park this Christmas season with the Enchanted Forest Holiday Light Tour. Take a leisurely walkabout, or pace through this shimmering winter wonderland program, adorned with over 75,000 bulbs. Be amazed by the various outdoor displays that bear magnificent snowflakes, a walk-through gingerbread house, and more. Experience the sights and sounds of the holiday season while roasting marshmallows and enjoying other festive treats.
Stay out of the blistery cold whilst still enjoying the brilliant Christmas lights at Canad Inns Winter Wonderland! Be dazzled by over one million lights from the comfort of your own car! Drive through the 2.5km route, enjoy outdoor photo opportunities, outdoor skating, and food stands with tasty treats and warm beverages!
The Toronto Christmas Market is one of the most famous Christmas markets in Canada. Every year thousands of visitors flock to the Distillery District to enjoy the festive atmosphere, the food, the drink, the entertainment, and the shopping. Check out the roaming elves, carolers, a candy cane forest, and meet Santa as well! This season, the Toronto Christmas Market promises to be bigger and better than ever before, so make sure to add it to your to-do list.
Nothing says winter quite like the magic of twinkling lights, and the Christmas Winter Festival of Lights at Niagara Falls is the perfect example of this. For over 39 years, visitors have been enchanted by Ontario’s largest light festival, which features over 3 million sparkling lights and an array of festive events for all ages. From the twinkling tree-lined streets to the glowing angels and snowflakes, your senses will be overwhelmed with wintertime magic. Take a stroll down the beautifully decorated Clifton Hill, explore the surrounding Niagara Parks, and visit the Winter Festival of Lights.
The German Christmas Market, or Marché de Noël Allemand in French, is an annual event that takes place in Old Quebec – a UNESCO World Heritage site. The market is held in Place de l’Hôtel-de-Ville, and it attracts both locals and tourists. The market is open from mid-November until Christmas, and you’ll find the market buzzing with vendors, music, and activities for kids. As you walk around, you’ll see a variety of wooden chalets selling traditional German foods, winter clothing, ornaments, and handmade crafts.
If you’re a foodie, the market is a haven for you. There are stalls selling typical Bavarian delicacies such as Bratwurst, Schnitzels, and Flammkuchen. You’ll find delicious gingerbread, marzipan, and Stollen cakes to satisfy your sweet tooth. There’s also a Glühwein (mulled wine) stand where you can pick up a steaming mug of wine to warm up your insides on cold winter evenings. We suggest you try the hot chocolate with a splash of rum – it’s divine.
The Halifax Christmas Market is a beloved holiday tradition in the city with over fifty East Coast artisans and food vendors. The lively space is outfitted with holiday lights and festive decor. A visit to this market allows you to sample handmade chocolates, truffles, cookies, roasted chestnuts, and other holiday treats. The Halifax Christmas Market is a must-visit destination for foodies and craft enthusiasts alike.
For a unique experience, a must-see in PEI is a Lobster Trap Christmas tree! This exceptional display represents the true resilience of the maritime community and their heritage.
One of the 10 most festive communities in Canada is in Newfoundland. The town of Bay Roberts showcases the most extensive Christmas display in the whole province with the Bay Roberts Festival of Lights. Enjoy a large live nativity scene, an intelligent light park, and Santa Claus parades in the daytime and at night! This two-time winner of the National Winter Lights celebration is an event you must put on your calendar.
Prince Edward Island
The capital city of Prince Edward Island is known for the annual Charlottetown Christmas Festival and it’s one you want to note in your calendar. There are various activities for children of all ages, including workshops, train rides, treasure hunts, and a Christmas market selling locally-made gifts and crafts. And a visit to the Confederation Centre of the Arts, where the Snow Queen will enchant everyone.
Yukon, Northwest Territories & Nunavut
No Christmas celebration is complete without the glittering and twinkling of Christmas lights. Experience lights that are beyond the commonality of those bought in a store. Up in the territories, Christmas is the perfect time to experience the majestic beauty of the Northern Lights. This unforgettable experience is a perfect event for your Christmas celebration.
There are Christmas traditions that can be enjoyed in any area across Canada. If you’re looking for a tradition that’s been around for decades, keep your eyes peeled for a local parade. The diverse array of Christmas parades allows you to see floats, marching bands, giant balloons, dance troupes, and plenty more. Dress warmly and join the thousands of people lining the streets while enjoying a cheerful atmosphere and spreading festive joy.
Lighting up your neighbourhood with colorful lights is part of a long-time Christmas tradition, which many cities have embraced. Take a walk or drive through your neighbourhood, searching for the most extravagant light displays, or find the bright, spectacular ones by checking out local blogs or social media pages.
Embrace the tradition and true heart of Christmas by attending a Christmas Eve service at one of your local churches. Enjoy carols and the Christmas message alongside a candlelit service. It is a festive way to celebrate the true meaning of Christmas with the family the night before the presents are opened, and family festivities commence.
Whether you’re in the mood for a winter wonderland, beautiful lights, handmade crafts, or festive food and drink, Canada has got you covered. With so many amazing Christmas markets, events, and light displays happening across our country, it’s time to start planning your itinerary. From coast to coast, experience the magic of Christmas. Don’t miss out on unwrapping the gift of Christmas in Canada.