Travelling around Canada in the summertime is a great adventure. The days are long and warm, the endless green forests are filled with dappled sunlight and the cool tranquil lakes are begging you to jump in. During the summer season Canada comes to life, mostly because the locals are so excited that the long and cold winter is over and they want to get outside in the sunshine and celebrate.
Canadians know how to celebrate the summer in style and there are a range of great festivals across the country every year. Here are a few of the best summer festivals you can attend during your travels across Canada:
Montreal International Jazz Festival – June 29th-July 9th
This festival of jazz music is the largest in the world and it features around 3,000 artists from all across the globe who play their tunes at more than 650 concerts. Approximately 2.5 million people will flock to Montreal from June 29th-July 9th to take part in the fun. If you are a fan of jazz music, you will want to catch a few of the great concerts at this festival.
Niagara New Vintage Festival – June 13-14 & 20-21, 2015
This festival takes place in the wine region of Niagara, Ontario and highlights the vintages that have just completed their maturation. There are more than 35 different wineries in the Niagara region involved and they will offer tastings, tours and other special experiences including cooking and food pairing workshops, wine education seminars and much more.
Quebec City Summer Festival – First Thursday to Second Sunday of July
This 11 day music festival takes place during the first week of July in downtown Quebec city and attracts around 1.5 million people every year. There are hundreds of performances to choose from all throughout one of the most picturesque and historic cities in Canada. Some of the performers you can look forward to at the 2015 festival include the Foo Fighters, Keith Urban, Iggy Azalea and the Rolling Stones.
Calgary Stampede – July 2nd – July 12th
Referred to as the “Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth”, the Calgary Stampede is a celebration of the Wild West heritage and cowboy culture of Alberta. The entire town comes out to party in ten gallon hats, jeans and huge belt buckles and there are a range of events including a rodeo, pancake breakfasts, barbeques, concerts, parades, a midway and an exhibition.
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival, Vancouver – Beginning of June – End of September
See the classic works of Shakespeare performed, with the beautiful mountains and sea views of Vancouver as a backdrop. This festival includes performances throughout the summer of plays such as Love’s Labour’s Lost, King Lear and The Comedy of Errors as well as lecture series and wine and cheese tastings.
Toronto Pride Week – June 19-28th
The vibrant LGBT community in Toronto celebrates with Pride Week, a 10 day event held at the end of June. Everyone is welcome and it is all about celebrating with respect, openness and support. Join the Pride Parade, a colourful celebration that makes its way from the corner of Church St. and Bloor St. all the way down Yonge St. to Yonge-Dundas Square.
These are just a few of the best festivals to look forward to during the brief yet beautiful Canadian summer. Better start planning your trip to Canada!