Wintertime in Montreal is synonymous with entertaining activities for singles and families throughout the city. From glittering winter villages to original sports, rides and games, get ready to put on your most colorful snowsuits and waterproof boots while soaking in some sun and fresh air while you engage in the wonders of skating, sledding, snowshoeing, zip lining and even outdoor clubbing!
Here below are some of my top winter activities for those ready to face the cold this weekend:
Chill out at IGLOOFEST, January 14th to February 6th 2016
For this year’s celebratory tenth edition, four weekends of electronic music are on the agenda for energetic party goers and dancers dressed up in colorful onesies and snow suits.
The site offers several activities guaranteed to keep you warm including two icy dance floors conveniently located on the piers of the Old Port of Montreal where internationally acclaimed DJ’s send revelers into a frenzy by spinning out the best electronic music in the industry.
In the adjacent igloo village, participants can also try local spirits and beers while partaking in unique competitions such as the first Pan-American Tree Toss competition to be held on January 30th at noon, at Place Jacques-Cartier.
All activities are run by various national sponsors such asSapporo, STM, Jägermeister, Vidéotron Mobile, GuessNight, MOJO, Tourism Québec, Pioneer DJ and Car2Go. In case the need of a little warmth arises, dancers could head to one of the “all you can eat” marshmallow stations where circular fires will warm up not only the hands, but also the hearts of Igloofest goers.
This year’s line up of celebrity DJ’s include British techno pioneer Dave Clarke ,Montreal’s Debbie Døe , Argentinian DJ Shall Ocina, French DJ Sébastien Léger and even international star Misstress Barbara !!!
SNOW made fun at SNOW FEST , La Fête des Neiges - January 16th to February 7th
A much loved family activity, Snow Fest runs for four weekends from January 16th to February 7th at Parc Jean-Drapeau. With free access to the site and most of the winter activities such as skating, sledging, snowshoeing and more, young and old will have a great time frolicking in the magical setting of the parc.
For those who are more adventurous: dog sledding rides will be offered this year by Écorécréo , a company that specializes in teaching you how to hitch several adorable dogs to their harnesses and sleds and that you will also enjoy stroking affectionately.
The festival also offers ACCROPASSE, a pass that costs $15 and provides unlimited access to the Tube Slide, Ferris wheel, and Zip-line during the 8 days of the Fête. In addition, there are discounts on equipment rentals and on various restaurant services.
The 2016 Fête des Neiges edition runs every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. January 16th to February 7th.
Montreal Highlights Festival
MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE (Montreal High Lights Festival) February 18th to March 5th 2016
MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE is the largest winter festivals in North America. This annual celebration is now in its sixteenth year and welcomes over 900,000 visitors to experience the joys of Montreal wintertime through a unique program combining performing arts, high gastronomy, numerous free outdoor on-site family activities, and a full night of exquisitely original discoveries! This year’s edition features international icons such as singer Lou Doillon, fiery Andalusian Flamenco dancing, and a focus on the delights of Shenzheng’s culinary scene!
High gastronomy is on the menu with Montreal finest chefs collaborating with the greatest culinary masters from five continents to present a series of workshops, classes and tasting evenings. Festival goers can select favorite activities among the multitude of attractive propositions offered in the gastronomy program.
NUIT BLANCHE, February 27th – from dusk to dawn !
To close the Montreal High Lights Festival, on Saturday the 27th of February the city will not sleep as Nuit Blanche ‘s exciting evening proposes a series of various free musical, artistic and culinary activities all night long. Family and friends gather to explore a transformed Montreal. This cultural and artistic blitz of over 200 mostly free activities will sweep across several of Montreal’s “neighborhoods” : From the “Quartier des Spectacles” and Centre-ville (Downtown), Vieux-Montréal (Old Montreal), Plateau-Mont-Royal and Mile-End, all the way to the Olympic park and the brand new Pôle Ligne Bleue ( Blue Line Pole) !
A night certainly not to be missed!