Canada’s best yearly events

Annual events in Canada

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Kai Sedgwick

Kai Sedgwick
HomeAway travel expert


Canadian flag For those at one with the great outdoors, Canada makes for an alluring holiday destination. With its sprawling wilderness and expansive cities, Canada feels less like a country and more like a limitless empire. Cross-hatched with diverse landscapes and bustling cities of industry and commerce, it's a place people visit for vastly different reasons, whether they’re seeking adventure or relaxation; to sample culture or cuisine.

Due to the vast size of the country, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when plotting a Canadian holiday. After all, which region should you visit? What locale would prove best for enjoying the quintessential Canadian experience? With so much to see and do, you certainly won’t be short of options. The HomeAway Holiday Rentals website leases thousands of Canadian properties, from British Columbia to the Yukon Territory. Why not browse our cottages and condos to see what’s on offer? Before you start plotting your North American holiday, however, here’s something that should whet your appetite: our guide to Canada’s most exciting annual events.


 

Top five events in Canada


   

Winterlude Winterlude

The Winterlude festival is held annually in Ottawa, Ontario and Gatineau, Quebec. As its name suggests, it’s a festival celebrating the snowy season which is synonymous with the country itself, and runs for three weeks each February. Here, you can skate in the world’s largest ice rink, the glorious Rideau Canal Skateway, or check out incredible ice sculptures; the ones in Confederation Park are illuminated nightly. Take advantage of the programme of events which includes music and performance, tobogganing, skiing and guided tours, and make sure to check out the ice sculpture museum carved out of snow. 

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Calgary Stampede Calgary Stampede

Billed as the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth, the Calgary Stampede certainly gives visitors bang for their buck. This ten-day bonanza gets under way each July, attracting over one million visitors every year. As well as featuring one of the world’s largest rodeos, the festival of events includes carnivals, parades, concerts, agricultural competitions and chuckwagon racing, many of which are televised across Canada. There’s also a massive market selling everything from cowboy-themed artwork to the finest local produce. The festival is a great introduction to Canadian history, having been running since 1912: simply unmissable.

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Canadian National Exhibition Canadian National Exhibition

There’s something special about the Canadian National Exhibition. It’s not just the sense of togetherness one experiences when attending the concerts and parades, or experiencing the rides and fireworks, at Canada’s largest community gathering: you really get the sense that decades of history have been distilled into this 18-day Toronto event that precedes Labour Day. Walk amongst aromatic food stalls and stilt-legged acrobats, mingling with tourists from around the world. Visitors come here for the horse shows, ice skating, talent competitions, exhibits and zoo. The festivities culminate with the Canadian International Air Show, where you can watch F-16s and B-2 Spirits take to the skies over Lake Ontario.

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Just For Laughs Just For Laughs

Just For Laughs is Montreal’s equivalent of the Edinburgh Fringe, and as a comedy festival it is the largest in the world. Close to two million people jostle into the city every July, keen to catch some stand-up, a theatre show or a movie. Choose from over 1,500 shows during the two-week event, or catch the overspill on the street - there are plenty of free performances to enjoy. Like Edinburgh during the Fringe, Montreal’s cafes, pubs and clubs are abuzz during festival season; look out for world-famous comedians and entertainers mingling with the crowds between shows.

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Winter Festival of Lights Winter Festival of Lights

Few experiences literally take the breath away, but the Winter Festival of Lights comes pretty close. Not only does the festival take place amidst the spectacular beauty of Niagara Falls, but it includes 125 animated light displays, as well as a staggering three million tree and ground lights. A grand fireworks display sees rockets explode over the illuminated falls, which can be taken in from the open-air ice rink at the brink of the Horseshoe Falls. Not many people can say they’ve skated just a snowball’s throw from one of the most stunning natural attractions in the world – will you be one of them?

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Holiday Rentals in Canada

Located on Free Shuttle Route - Year Round Heated Outdoor Swimming Pool (4079)

From its perch on the Blackcomb Benchlands, this six-story condominium lodge has ski-in/out access across the street. This place has it all with a common area games room, large hot tub under a glass dome looking out onto the mountains, and the out...

Fantastic Blackcomb Bendlands Location - Year Round Heated Outdoor Swimming Pool (4078)

You'll love staying at this elegant and comfortable condo, situated on the idyllic Blackcomb Benchlands, and on the free shuttle route to quaint Whistler Village. This unit features a year-round accessible heated outdoor swimming pool and dome co...

Slopeside on Beautiful Blackcomb Mountain - Year Round Heated Pool & Hot Tub (4077)

This fantastic, modern, and stylish condo has everything you need for a wonderful mountain getaway. With an idyllic location right on the Blackcomb Benchlands, this upscale condo features a flat screen TV, unique outdoor space with bike storage, f...

Picturesque Perch on Blackcomb Benchlands - Year Round Pool, Hot Tub & Fitness Room (4076)

From its picturesque perch on the Blackcomb Benchlands, this six-story condominium lodge offers ski-in/out access across the street. There is a games room and large hot tub under a glass dome looking out onto the mountains and the outdoor pool is ...

Slopeside on Blackcomb Mountain - Year Round Pool, Hot Tub & Fitness Room (4075)

This cozy one bedroom condo is located on the idyllic slopeside of Blackcomb Mountain, and conveniently on the free shuttle route to Whistler Village. The Marquise complex features a year round heated pool and hot tub with excellent mountain views...

Highly Desirable Location - Year Round On-Site Outdoor Pool & Hot Tub (4074)

You'll love it here, at this cozy and updated condo, perfectly nestled slopeside on Blackcomb Mountain with ski in/ski out access. Perfect for a romantic couples' getaway, enjoy additional privacy on the private balcony situated amongst a scenic l...

Year Round On-Site Outdoor Pool & Hot Tub - Walking Distance to Blackcomb Base (4073)

Perfectly nestled slopeside on Blackcomb Mountain with ski in/ski out access, here at this updated and comfortable condo, you'll enjoy Whistler like never before. An ideal and relaxing choice for a quiet and romantic couples' getaway, take in scen...

Short Walk to Blackcomb Base - Year Round On-Site Outdoor Pool & Hot Tub (4072)

Perfectly nestled slopeside on Blackcomb Mountain with ski in/ski out access, here at this updated and comfortable condo, you'll enjoy Whistler like never before. Enjoy majestic mountain views from your private balcony, and relax after an excitin...

Highly Desirable Slopeside Location - Short Walk to Blackcomb Base (4071)

With additional privacy and a gorgeous natural setting, this condo is the perfect place for your next mountain getaway, complete with slopeside location and ski in/ski out access. Condo features include a cheerful, modern and spacious and open flo...

Phenomenal Mountain Views - Heated Outdoor Swimming Pool & Hot Tub (4070)

Perfectly nestled slopeside on Blackcomb Mountain with ski in/ski out access and you will enjoy Whistler like never before. Enjoy majestic mountain views from your private balcony, or take in the fantastic views from the year round accessible hea...

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