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

Canadian Rockies Ski Condo Apartment - Entire home/flat/Sleeps 8

A 3 bedroom, 2 bath on Mountain Condo situated metres from Ski Lift. Stunning scenery a 10 minute walk to Kimberley town centre. Plenty to do all year round, one of North America's great Golf destinations, white water rafting, fishing, mountain b...

Multi famiy size home minutes from the beach

No bookings accepted until after May 1, 2015 but any questions or information about the house or area will gladly be answered anytime. House consist of a 3 bedroom home on the second and third floor and a ground level one bedroom apartment. Both...

The Great Whistler Akasha House

Whistler, BC is one of the world’s most coveted recreational destinations. Consistently rated as the best ski resort in North America, Whistler boasts the largest ski area on the continent. Akasha stands in the midst of over 200 marked trails. Wh...

Stormbay Cottage And Conference Centre

Beautiful, fully equipped, lake front Cottage. Located on the shores of Lake of the Woods Ontario, this magnificent cottage features features 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a beautiful spacious kitchen/living space, and 4 private common areas. BBQ is si...

Whistler, British Columbia Whistler Mountain Town House

Our Whistler Mountain town house (1400 square feet) is located minutes from Whistler Creekside Gondola (Whistler Mountain) and Alpha Lake Beach Park, making it the perfect winter or summer retreat. With stunning views of Alpha Lake, you'll feel li...

Blue Mountain Rentals - Seven-Bedroom Chalet with Sauna

Spacious 7 bedrooms, 2 living rooms, 2 washrooms, sauna, stainless steel BBQ and more. More than 3000 sqf of living space for you to enjoy.This chalet is within walking distance from the Blue Mountain Village where all the action begins- attractio...

Downtown Montreal 2 B/R Apt!!!

The Space This is not a luxury apartment but with the basic things that you need. It is ideally located in the downtown west area. Suitable for travelers need two separate rooms. The apt has two bedrooms, kitchen and a bathroom. Good to accommodat...

Heart of Vancouver - Olympic Village

This is a shared space, bedroom and bathroom private but kitchen and lounge facilities are shared. Luxurious new building. Full access to gym, sauna and steam room. 17th floor rooftop communal area includes garden seating and BBQ, commanding views...

Downtown Montreal!!!

The studio apt is ideally located in downtown area. Shops, restaurants, bars, cafe and supermarkets are all closeby. Only minutes walk to metro station. Perfect location to enjoy the downtown life and experience what Montreal can offer!! The Spac...

Beautiful, bright, spacious one bedroom townhouse in amazing location

Beautiful, bright, quiet one bedroom townhouse in heart of Vancouver, minutes walk to False Creek Seawall, Granville Island, Canada Line Skytrain and all amenities. Walkability score of 97/100! Large patio and a wood-burning fireplace. This home...
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