As the days grow shorter and the air colder, many crawl under the blankets on the couch seeking comfort and coziness from the fall and winter weather.
And then there are those who are already planning their escape from cabin fever by buying concert tickets and perusing other cultural events to keep their minds whirring and their hearts pounding amidst yet another hockey strike.
Just because it is cold outside doesn’t mean that the province of Quebec has closed up shop for the winter. There is a whole flurry of activities for those venturing south looking for good times with family and friends.
Whether it’s outdoor winter dance parties to hot techno or artisan craft fairs to stuff Santa’s sack with or taking in the likes of Neil Young or Leonard Cohen or “the Beib” at the Bell Centre, the Nation has listed it for you in one easy-to-use guide.
And with that we bring you our first-ever fall and winter tourism guide.
Festival Fun, Special Events and Public Parades
While Montreal may be the ultimate destination for festivals and outdoor concerts during the hot-and-sweaty summer months, the city’s hearty folk are just as adamant about good times and cultural celebrations during the cooler seasons.
While a great deal of the kinds of festivities Montreal is known for move indoors, there are major events designed to keep bodies warm and moving during even the darkest times.
Arab World Festival of Montreal
Designed to celebrate the many wondrous artistic jewels of the Arab world as a means of bridging the gap between Arab culture and the Western world, this diverse and fascinating festival runs from October 26 to November 10.
Offering performing arts, a culture forum, cinema and much more, this celebratory festival presents a myriad of different artistic disciplines designed to engage the spirit while simultaneously evoking reflection and experimentation during the cultural exchange.
Come and see the famous whirling dervishes, Middle Eastern cinema and listen to world-beat music.
For more info: www.festivalarabe.com
Oh-la-la! Cinemania, Montreal’s exclusively French cinema festival, is back for another jam-packed event of Francophone fun, running November 1-11.
The leading French film festival of the Americas, Cinemania has been celebrating the best of French-language cinema of the year; this little fest began in 1995 and has been growing year after year.
For those who feel that their French may not be up to snuff to enjoy these fabulous flicks, worry not, the entire festival is subtitled in English to make the films accessible to both locals and tourists alike.
For more info: www.festivalcinemania.com
The Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM)
Bringing cinema-goers the absolute best of this year’s documentary films, the RIDM annually presents an incredible selection from Canada and around the world for both professional and general audiences.
Telling society’s truths through cinema while giving audiences an up-close and personal view into little-known worlds, documentary film has always been the backbone of Quebec’s cinema culture, making Montreal the hub to celebrate it in style. RIDM takes place at various locations November 7-18.
For more info: www.ridm.qc.ca
The Montreal International Dog Show
This show has gone to the dogs, literally! Are you in love with your pooch-a-marooo? On the market for a new breed of pup? Want to see what dog breeders are like up close? Well, than this is the show for you!
This pup-o-ramic event includes three Canadian Kennel Club Licensed Conformation Dog Shows, four Obedience Trials and two Rally Obedience Trials.
At Place Bonaventure November 2-4, hundreds of dogs, exhibitors and breeders will be onsite. Patrons can meet breeders at the Eukanuba’s Breeders Village for a one-on-one chat and peruse the many vendor kiosks at the show to check out the latest in services, supplies, crafts and gifts for dogs and their owners.
For more info: www.dess.ca
The 53rd Annual Gem and Mineral Show
If you are all about rocking it out, literally, the Gem and Mineral show is for you. Just in time for you to start making your holiday gifts and shop for some incredibly unique gifts, this show features a wide variety of semi-precious gems, jewelry, sculptures, pearls, beads, fossils, tools and minerals coming from many local vendors and an additional 100 from outside of Quebec.
This year’s show will feature gems from mines in Afghanistan, Africa, Brazil and North America. There will be all sorts of sculptures made from agate, serpentine, amazonite, rose quartz, jasper and other minerals as well as one-of-a-kind handmade sterling silver jewelry, semi-precious stone beads, a large collection of pearls, and silver and gold fittings for do-it-yourself jewelry projects.
Also an educational event, this show is an excellent opportunity for the whole family to learn about gems and minerals. At Place Bonaventure November 2-4.
For more info: www.montrealgemmineralclub.ca
Le Salon Mieux-Vivre 50+
Despite the many generations below them, the baby-boomer generation is still the most dominant force out there, with many of them now in their 60s.
Looking at the best ways to live healthy for those over the age of 50, this exposition is all about how to extend your longevity and the best in health, fitness and nutrition for those who may not be young but want to remain young at heart. At Palais des congrès November 3-4.
For more info: www.salonmieuxvivre.ca/images/stories/pdf/Pub_Montreal.pdf
La Grande Dégustation de Montréal
Formerly known as the Wine and Spirits Show of Montreal, La Grande Dégustation de Montréal is the new annual edition of this specialty wine, spirit and beer show put on by the SAQ.
With literally thousands of new alcoholic products to test and often purchase, this is the ultimate showcase for the budding sommelier or Scotch aficionado. In its new format, this show not only brings out all sorts of products that would usually have to be specially ordered but also showcases and celebrates certain regions of the world with each show to introduce the public to new delights and delicacies.
This year Portugal is the country of honour, so expect to see many fabulous Portos (port wine) up for tastings. Cabernet sauvignons and rums from all over the world will also be highlighted.
If you are looking to stock up on impressive and exclusive alcoholic products for your executive gifts this year, this is the ultimate place to find a rare champagne, a spectacular Armanac or a fanciful liqueur. At Palais des congrès November 8-10.
For more info: www.lagrandedegustation.com
Le Salon du Livre
If you are a bookworm looking to expand your collection or want to see what is new in Francophone literature for youth or adults, the Le Salon du Livre is the premier event to celebrate literacy and the French language. At Place Bonaventure November 14-19.
For more info: www.salondulivredemontreal.com
M for Montreal
The only major music festival in November, M for Montreal was launched in 2006 by Montrealer Sébastien Nasra of Avalanche Productions and legendary British festival programmer Martin Elbourne, who is famous for putting on the Glastonbury Festival and The Great Escape in the UK and co-founder with Peter Gabriel of the WOMAD festival.
Running from November 14-17, this incredible event will be staging acts like Of Monsters and Men as well as Plants and Animals for exclusive shows.
While the whole lineup hasn’t been announced yet, expect a whole host of goodies, dance parties and major musical events geared at stealing your heart while blowing your mind.
For more info: www.mformontreal.com
The Santa Claus Parade
While the holiday-themed commercials may have already started on TV and festive decor will pop up within an hour or two of Halloween being over, nothing heralds the Christmas spirit like the arrival of Santa Claus during his own parade down St. Catherine Street on November 17.
This special children’s parade takes place on a Saturday morning at 11am and features a whole host of family activities for folks small or tall. With shows, shopping and so much more, the Santa Claus parade is a magical tradition to start now or maintain for generations to come.
For more info: www.destinationcentreville.com/en/santa-claus-parade
Running from November 17-18 in a small church basement in Montreal, this incredible but little known festival is all about “zines” or small magazines, often put out by very dedicated groups to showcase alternative writing and perspectives as well as fan-zines and so much more.
Come and find little mags on your favourite bands, handmade comic books, and zines from around the world. Many of these products are made just for this event and are fascinating worlds within themselves. Hosted in the basement of the Église Saint-Enfant Jésus near the Laurier métro.
For more info: www.expozine.ca/
The Nutcracker Market
As the Nutcracker ballet is another cherished holiday classic and a traditional event to take in for many families, now you too can wander into the magical world of Clara’s dreams to shop in a majestic holiday-themed environment for specialty items.
Featuring delectable gourmet delights, exclusive jewelry, eye-dropping holiday decor (that nobody else has), incredible fashions, toys, gifts and lots more, the Nutcracker Market is the ultimate place to go Christmas shopping.
At Palais des congrès November 28-December 9, this is the ultimate in spectacular places to bring the whole family for some one-of-a-kind shopping to get everyone into the holiday spirit.
For more info: www.congresmtl.com
The Hockey Expo
Do you have a budding NHL star in your home? Well if you do or you don’t but you want to learn everything there is to know about hockey and be among like-minded folks then the Hockey Expo is the place for you.
At Place Bonaventure November 30-December 2, the Hockey Expo is the place to get in touch with a full range of resources and information related to all aspects of the development of a hockey player, for kids and adults alike.
Geared towards players, parents, coaches, referees and other volunteers, this show is about showcasing the latest when it comes to everything our national sport entails, including mental preparation, the latest equipment and technologies, on-ice and off-ice training, sports medicine and therapies, and coaching and nutrition.
For more info: www.expohockey.com
Salon des métiers d’art du Québec
If you are looking for unique Christmas gifts and quality hand-crafted goods, the Salon des métiers d’art du Québec is the ultimate place to check out fabulous creations when shopping for your loved ones and even yourself.
This event began in 1955 and over the last six decades it has become Canada’s largest show and sale of professional crafts.
The Cree Native Arts and Crafts Association has even had their own booth at this event in the past.
Featuring everything from handmade craftworks to leather, wood, wool, knit and canvas creations, this is the place to purchase everything from local artisanal confections and wines to state-of-the-art fashions.
An experience for the whole family, this event is at Place Bonaventure December 7-22.
For more info: www.metiers-d-art.qc.ca
The Snow Village
As we call in the New Year, a new seasonal favourite for Montrealers and tourists is our very own snow village on Île Sainte-Hélène.
While ice hotels have been constructed all over the world, Montreal is the only city to get not only a hotel, but a series of incredible attractions, all made out of ice and snow. The village includes the ice hotel, heated spas, snow igloos, an ice restaurant with a well-known chef, an ice bar with a terrace, meeting rooms, an ice chapel for weddings, a snow sculpture exhibit, a snow labyrinth, a snow slide and a series of incredible replicas of Montreal buildings.
The projected construction completion date for this year’s village is January 4, 2013, and this is the ultimate venue for your next party, romantic getaway, executive meeting or dinner on the town.
For more info: www.snowvillagecanada.com
Le Grand Salon Marions Nous/Let’s Get Married
Are you planning a wedding for 2013 or 2014? If so, why not check out the ultimate one-stop shop to look at everything from dresses to flowers to venues.
Featuring the latest in bridal fashions, makeup, decor, honeymoons and everything wedding related, this event will help you plan your special day. At Place Bonaventure January 5-6.
For more info: www.marionsnous.ca/index.cfm
Right when the peak of cabin fever begins to hit in January, the folks from Piknic Electronik start the good times rolling again with the ultimate event to boogie down in your snowsuit at Igloofest.
Running three days a week for four consecutive weeks, Montrealers and tourists alike don their warmest and craziest winter gear and head down to the quays of the Old Port for an intensive rocking dance party amidst the most breathtaking setting, a scenery made from snow, ice and an intensive amount of lighting.
Also featuring some of the world’s best DJs, this incredibly innovative festival is all about breaking a sweat amongst several thousand other folks dancing it up, having tacky snowsuit competitions and celebrating the beauty of winter in the city.
Held on January 17-19, 24-26, 31 and February 1-2, 7-9, this is one of the greatest parties of the entire winter season and is not to be missed, no matter how cold it is.
For more info: www.igloofest.ca
The Car Show
Automobile enthusiasts can rejoice. The Car Show is finally back and takes place at Palais des congrès January 18-27.
Featuring the latest in automobile technology, the 2013 models, luxury cars, the sweetest in leather seats, the trucks with the most muscle and the latest in hybrids and electric cars, this is the ultimate event to get your own motor running and heart pumping.
For more info: www.salonautomontreal.com
Le Salon de l’Amour et de la Séduction
The ultimate event to get your internal motor running and your senses aroused, the Love and Seduction show is all about keeping it lively and sexy and how to enhance your love life.
Featuring everything from live entertainment (think Magic Mike) to lingerie and sexual enhancement product sales, seminars, body painting and lots more!
This sexy show is the place for couples looking to keep things lively or singles looking to beef up their game. Running from January 18-20 at Place Bonaventure.
For more info: www.montreal.everythingtodowithsex.com
The Fête des neiges de Montréal
If you happen to be in Montreal between January 19 and February 10 with the family, why not bring them down to the Snow Village for some good-old-fashioned family fun?
The city’s top family event of the season, families are invited to play together in the magical winter wonderland while participating in some tube sliding, zip-lining and boot or ice hockey and skating along the river.
With mascots, warm-up stations and loads of hot chocolate, this is a great way to have an active day in the dead of winter.
For more info: www.parcjeandrapeau.com
The Montreal Boatand Water Sports Show
Are you on the market for a new vessel? Whether you are shopping for a new boat or you just want to check out the latest in fishing boats, outboard motors, canoes and every other aspect of boating, this is the ultimate show for you. Running from February 7-10 at Place Bonaventure.
For more info: www.salondubateau.com
The Montreal Travel Show
Have you been thinking about doing some actual globetrotting? Travel legs itching to go? Whether you are looking to plan a family getaway that is more than the average trip down south or the trip of a lifetime to somewhere exotic that you have always dreamed of, one of the best places to start planning is the Montreal Travel Show.
Featuring information on all kinds of world travel that you may or may not have dreamed of, travel tips, speaker series and much more, this exotic show runs February 16-17 at Palais des congrès.
For more info: www.montrealtravelshow.com
Montreal Hunting, Fishing and Camping Show
This show is the ultimate event to bring the bushmen (and women) into the big city to see the latest in gear, guns and much more.
Featuring hundreds of kiosks with information on the latest hunting, fishing and campaign technology, trips to outfitting camps, boats, trucks, hunting dogs and, strolling through the isles of this convention you are more than likely to run into some Crees flogging their own wares. Runs February 21-24 at Place Bonaventure.
For more info: www.montrealcampingshow.ca
Montréal en Lumière
In the dead of dreary February comes a brilliant ray of sunshine in the form of culture, parties, exclusive gastronomic events, an electrical light playground and lots more with the Montréal en Lumière festival.
From the same folks who put on the Montreal International Jazz Festival and Les FrancoFolies de Montréal, this L’Équipe Spectra event has the same incredible large-scale professionalism that the company is known for.
Also known as the Highlights Festival, it is one of the largest winter festivals in the world with annual celebrations attracting over 900,000 to enjoy Montreal in all its winter splendour with a unique program that combines performing arts, gastronomy, free outdoor family activities, and one incredible evening of all-night activities.
Since its beginning in 2000, this festival has attracted some 400 chefs from around the globe to participate in the special culinary events, while some of the best talent in music, circus arts, song, theatre and dance from home and aboard take over the stages of this festival.
A special glow-light playland is set up in the quays of the Old Port that features ice slides, rides, warm-up fires, s’more stands and live entertainers.
Held February 21-March 3 at various locations, this festival is guaranteed to chase your winter blues away.
For more info: www.montrealenlumiere.com
The Port Symphony
Imagine a symphony comprised of trains, tugboats and boats moored in the Old Port for the winter, and other urban instruments? For two Sundays (March 3 and 10), this unique, free and absolutely fabulous event goes down much to the joy of Montreal and tourists alike.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Celebrating the Irish in Montreal and the day that St. Patrick supposedly drove all the snakes out of Ireland, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade of Montreal is North America’s longest consecutive-running parade.
St. Patrick’s Day has been celebrated in Montreal as far back as 1759 and the parade itself began on March 17, 1824.
Now in its 190th edition, this parade tells Montrealers that spring is finally on its way and is synonymous with Irish-style partying in the streets.
On Sunday, March 17, 2013, down St. Catherine Street.
For more info: www.montrealirishparade.com
Expo Manger Santé et Vivre Vert
Ultimately one of the Nation’s favourite shows to cover, this health food and green living expo is about showcasing all of the latest food and lifestyle trends when it comes to living well.
With hundreds of delightful new products to sample, new green products for your home to learn about and purchase as well as all sorts of information on physical fitness, massage, spa getaways and lots more, this is a great show to attend if you are starting a health kick or want to improve your life.
An ideal show to visit for those with dietary restrictions as well, this show always has the latest products for those who can’t eat things like gluten or sugar and will frequently have all sorts of organic products on sale. At Palais des congrès March 15-17.
For more info: www.congresmtl.com
Other events and cultural shows to consider
There is a lot going on during the fall and winter in Montreal that it can look like an ongoing cultural extravaganza. From knock-your-sox-off concerts to spellbinding dance shows to world-class theatre experiences, there is never a dull moment when you’re looking for entertainment in the city.
Major Concerts and Shows
Whether or not the hockey season resumes, it’s no reason to cut your travels short as there is a whole world outside of hockey to discover .
While we can’t list all of them, here is a list of some of the bigger shows coming to Montreal.
At the Bell Centre
Check out ’90s grunge-rock sensation, Smashing Pumpkins on October 28, The Australian Pink Floyd Show on November 2, Journey on November 5, ZZ Top on November 7, Bob Dylan and his Band with Mark Knopfler as his opener on November 16, The Who on November 20, Metric on November 21, Neil Young and Crazy Horse on November 23, teen sensation Justin Bieber on November 26, and the incredible Leonard Cohen on November 28-29.
December 2 brings dog whisperer Caesar Millan and on December 9 it’s comedian and showman Jeff Dunham. Then as a special holiday event, the Cirque de Soleil classic, Saltimbanco, returns to the Bell Centre for 10 shows running between December 19-30.
Cultural entertainment does not start up again at Montreal’s largest venue until February 1 when songstress and one-time Andrew Lloyd Webber muse, Sarah Brightman, takes to the stage. Later that month, pop diva and performance artist Lady Gaga takes the stage on February 11 and Swedish House Mafia plays on February 27.
On March 12, Pink takes the stage for a night of rockin’ pop fun, Barbados singing sensation Rihanna plays March 17 and finishing off the winter season, Heart plays March 25.
For more info: www.centrebell.ca
If you are looking to see a show in a more intimate setting, perhaps one where you can actually see what the artists are wearing, see the sweat roll down their foreheads and get what they are feeling from the vibes they give off, look no further than some of the incredible acts coming to Metropolis.
Here are a handful of upcoming shows to check out:
October 25 brings ’80s band, Air Supply, followed by The Weekend on October 29, Sonar on Tour November 3, Dethklok on November 5, Sum 41 on November 10, followed by Bassnectar on November 11, Of Monsters and Men play Novemer 17, the Dropkick Murphys on November 18, A$AP Rocky play on November 20, Dumas on November 23 and Emeli Sandé on November 24.
December brings Band of Horses on the 6, Xavier Rudd on the 7, Tegan & Sara on the 16, Alexisonfire on the 23 and La Revue de l’année Des Zapartistes running from December 27-29.
For more info: www.montrealmetropolis.ca
Place des Arts
If world-class entertainment and classic arts are more your style, there is no better venue than Place des Arts to catch an enthralling ballet or modern-dance show, some of the world’s most famous actor/comedians, an opera or a symphony concert.
Here are some highlights of the incredible acts coming to Place des Arts in the coming months; please note that MSO means Montreal Symphony Orchestra.
The end of October sees Sinfonia Toronto chamber orchestra on October 28.
November kicks off with modern dance show Political Mother by the Hofesh Shechter Company of the United Kingdom running from November 1-3. The MSO does a special night of Mendelssohn, Voríšek and Mozart on November 4, the Zemlinsky Quartet on November 5, bluesy pop rock sensation Melissa Etheridge on November 6, modern dance presentation Usually Beauty Fails by the Frédérick Gravel / Grouped’ArtGravelArtGroup (Quebec) runs on select dates from November 7-17.
On November 7, the MSO puts on Dvořák’s Cello Concerto. The MSO is back two days later on November 9 to present The Sibelius Violin Concerto with special guest Hyeyoon Park on the violin.
Opera fans can also rejoice in November as the Opéra de Montréal stages the German classic of The Flying Dutchman on the 10, 13, 15 and 17.
Then November 13-14 brings modern dance show, Diptych, a new piece by José Navas of the Compagnie Flak of Quebec, followed by Military Marches: classical or electronic? Put on by the MSO on Novembr 14, a double-bill dance show on the 16 & 17 features Busk + Awàa by Aszure Barton & Artists and on November 18, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra plays Shostakovich.
Running for eight engagements from November 21-25, Broadway Across Canada, Evenko, producers Thomas Schumacher of Disney Theatrical Productions and Cameron Mackintosh proudly present Mary Poppins for the first time in Montreal.
Jazz fans can enjoy Montreal sensation Susie Arioli on November 22, the Magic of Dance show put on by the Bellydance Superstars on November 24 and the MSO returns November 27 with Bartók: Sonata for pianos and percussion and then The Shostakovich 10th on November 28.
Those looking for something exotic can catch an incredible dance double bill with Weight X 3 + 2 and Tao Ye put on by the TAO Dance Theater of China running from November 27 to December 1.
Jesse Cook plays on November 29, followed by renowned soprano Anne-Marie Faniel in the Quebec production of Vincerò on November 30,
December starts out big at Place des Arts with Jerry Seinfeld doing two shows on December 1. And four days later, Robin Williams takes the stage on December 5 and Celtic pop sensation Loreena McKennitt plays December 6-7. The MSO puts on Bach and the Romantics on December 7 and on the December 8 sees the Distant Worlds Philharmonic put on the Music from Final Fantasy. Also on December 8, Bach and the great Romantics return with an evening of Bruckner.
Then, running December 13-30, is holiday classic The Nutcracker put on by Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal.
Also getting into the holiday spirit, the MSO puts on Christmas according to Bryan Perro December 14-15.
If you’re in town with the family on December 22, why not take the kids to see a live presentation of Pinocchio put on by the Théâtre Tout à Trac?
Coming to Place des Arts for 2013:
Salute to Vienna on January 1; Shen Yun runs from January 3-6; Billy Elliot runs from January 8-13; La Verità – Compagnia Finzi Pasca (about the life of Salvador Dali) from January 17-February 3; La chauve-souris/ Die Fledermaus (Opera) January 26-February 2; Louis-José Houde / Les heures verticals February 12-16; Celtic Women February 25; Diana Krall February 26; and Dead Man Walking (opera) March 9-16
For more info: www.pda.qc.ca
When it comes to the best that English-language theatre in Montreal has to offer, there is no better venue to enjoy a gut-wrenching drama or a knee-slapping comedy than The Centaur. A classic and truly gorgeous theatre, the building was at one time the Montreal Stock Exchange and is a majestic setting to take in a slice of life for a night.
Running from November 6-December 9 is the Canadian premiere of Pulitzer-Prize-winning playwright David Lindsay-Abaire’s Good People. Directed by Roy Surette, this wildly funny play is about an out-of-work hard-luck Boston mom’s struggle to care for her disabled daughter and the lengths she will go to in pursuit of the American Dream.
Running from January 29-February 24 is Innocence Lost: A Play About Steven Truscott, a bone-chilling drama by playwright Beverly Cooper. Also directed by Roy Surette, this Canadian play tells the true story of a sleepy Ontario town in 1959 where justice goes horribly wrong after the rape/murder of a 12-year-old girl.
Then Mark Doherty’s Trad runs from February 24- March 26. Directed by Andrew Shaver, this is the tale of an Irish centenarian and his father, both disabled, and their epic journey across the Irish countryside to find the last remaining successor in their family line.
For more info: www.centaurtheatre.com
The Centaur and Place des Arts aren’t the only venues for incredible theatre in Montreal, to see more listings for smaller productions in theatre and music, check out what’s playing at the Segal Centre (www.segalcentre.org) or Mainline Theatre (www.mainlinetheatre.ca).
Like any major city, Montreal has its own incredible laundry list of museums for arts, science and nature. Here are some highlights of upcoming shows and information other Montreal museums.
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
At Montreal’s biggest and brawniest art museum, there are some major collections coming this year that are bound to inspire any spirit.
From October 13 to January 20, there is a special collection of Renoir and Monet works celebrating light and colour entitled Once Upon A Time… Impressionism: Great French Paintings from the Clark.
Running from January 30 to June 16 is Peru: Kingdoms of the Sun and the Moon, an exhibition that will redefine anyone’s outlook on Peru through its historical artifacts and artworks.
For more info: www.mbam.qc.ca
The Montreal Science Centre
Whether you want to take in the latest IMAX film or explore in an environment that is all about science learning for kids and families, there is no better place to spend a gloomy day inspiring your mind than the Montreal Science Centre.
Don’t miss Musik: From Sound to Emotion, from November until March, this major exhibit from Edmonton is all about the creation of music and its connection of the mind and body. This is a special project in collaboration with Montreal rock group Simple Plan.
Dinosaurs Unearthed features some of the world’s most realistic animatronic creatures, including some feathered dinosaurs, along with life-size skeletons and lots of fossils, this incredible show runs from October 20 to March 11 and is all about the pre-historic world.
With several other shows coming to this museum, including amazing exhibitions on the science of glass, human sexuality, water and respiration, there is much to discover at the Montreal Science Centre that one visit can change your outlook forever.
For more info: www.montrealsciencecentre.com
Whether you are looking to explore history, archeology, architecture, fine arts, modern art, learn about the tragedies of the Holocaust or the beauty of exotic ecosystems from around the world, there is a museum for just about everything in Montreal.
For more info: www.museesmontreal.org/en/Montreal_Museums.htm
Other major events and festivals not to be missed
Festival du cinéma international en Abitibi-Témiscamingue
Film buffs of the north can rejoice for this major international event in Rouyn-Noranda. Running from October 27 to November 1, this 31st annual cinema event brings films and film-industry folk to the north for this cultural extravaganza.
For more info: www.festivalcinema.ca
Zoom Photo Festival/Saguenay
This photojournalism expo brings mind-blowing shots from around the world to the Chicoutimi borough of the Saguenay from November 1-25.
Check out this world-class event that features 20 exhibitions, including the World Press Photo 12 and National Geographic exhibits as well as projections, workshops and seminars.
For more info: www.zoomsur.ca/
Experience the magic of Quebec City during the holidays with QuébecAdabra!, a special festival of holiday enchantment and wonder running from December 15 to January 15 throughout the city.
Experience exclusive and unique evening entertainment, including architectural projection and encounters with Santa Claus.
For more info: www.quebecadabra.com/en/Home/
Carnaval Glisse et Glace Terrebonne
This unique festival is all about ice and what can be done with it. Running from January 15 to February 15 in Terrebonne, the Île-des-Moulins lock forms a skating rink and central stage for this winter carnival that includes shows and entertainment, evening skating to music by guest DJs and an outdoor wintertime bar with two special major event weekends of fun.
For more info: www.iledesmoulins.com
Pohénégamook Haut en couleur
If you happen to be in the Bas-St-Laurent region why not check out the province’s largest winter gathering for families January 25-27.
Featuring extreme skating races, fireworks, professional-calibre snowmobile drag-racing, children’s entertainment, a lumberjack competition, an outdoor snow rave and ice fishing.
For more info: www.pohenegamook.net
Quebec and Ontario are united in activities during Winterlude as it connects the two provinces via the Rideau Canal.
Running from February 1-18, this event features everything from skating to fireworks to ice sculptures. This family event is all about celebrating the best that winter has to offer in Canada’s capital.
For more info: www.canadascapital.gc.ca/celebrate/winterlude
The Quebec Winter Carnival
Quebec City’s mega party is on par with Carnival in New Orleans and in Rio de Janeiro as it has been the largest winter carnival in the world for the last 50 years.
Running from February 1-17, Bonhomme Carnaval plays host to the world as hundreds of thousands descend upon Old Quebec for days and days of fun and excitement. Featuring shows, snow rafting, horse-drawn sleigh rides, dogsledding rides, a children’s village, the International Snow Sculpture Competition and so, so, so much more with events for just about everyone in the entire family.
To find our more about this incredible event, go to : http://www.carnaval.qc.ca/fr
La Fête d’hiver de Rouyn-Noranda
If you are looking for a winter celebration in the north, look no further than the La Fête d’hiver de Rouyn-Noranda!
Running from February 15-17, this fantastic family festival is all about celebrating outdoors! Featuring dog sledding, tubing, snow sculptures, a boot hockey tournament, foot races, live entertainment and a whole host of indoor and outdoor activities, don’t miss this major northern fun fest!!!
For more info go to: http://www.lafetedhiver.com/
REGARD – Saguenay International Short Film Festival
If you are looking to soak up some international art and culture in the form of cinema, the Chicoutimi borough of Saguenay has a fun little short film festival running from March 13-17 to chase your winter blues away.
Québec’s most important short film rendezvous and one of the biggest short film fests in North America, find out more about this festival at http://www.regardsurlecourt.com/en