Unless you're real-life Scrooge, then you definitely love Christmas. The vibe is just so different all in December. People are nicer (yes, that's possible in Canada), Christmas music is blasting no matter where you go, and the dark nights aren't so bad when you drive around to see all the beautiful Christmas lights. I can't be the only one that's already excited?!
Aside from spending time with family, going out and having adventures in December (and even November!) is what it's all about. Maybe you're a Christmas fanatic and you want to go to allll the places that have festivals, markets, or things to do that revolve around the holidays. I'm not saying you have to do this, but you could also make this a road trip and make a Christmas playlist and get snacks and hot chocolate. It's just a suggestion, though. Sounds horrible, eh?
Here are the best places to visit in Ontario if you're obsessed with Christmas.
Where: Parliament Buildings, Ottawa
People who find Ottawa boring clearly haven't been during Christmastime. Christmas Lights Across Canada is a light show on the Parliament Buildings that have been around for 30 years! So obviously, it's amazing. Thousands of lights illuminate Parliament Hill, and they're all different scenes. Of course, this happens at night from 5:30 pm to 11 pm.
This stunning light show starts December 5th and runs until January 9th. A little fact for you: This light show was created back in 1985 to brighten up the darkest of days. How thoughtful! Really, Ottawa is a great place to be during the holidays. You can also venture out to see all the beautiful lights around the Rideau Canal.
Where: Niagara Falls
This is an award-winning festival, can you see why?! Niagara Falls' Winter Festival of Lights is one of Ontario's favourites, and it's all for great reasons. First of all, it's Canada's largest light festival so that speaks volumes! It takes you through an 8-km walk through stunning lights, trees, and everything you could ever want to see in Niagara Falls.
Every year, 1.5 million people take a walk through this lit-up festival and you need to be one of those people. There are two million lights glistening in most of the famous tourist areas in Niagara Falls. What are you waiting for?! Even better? This festival is totally free.
Where: Fort Henry, Kingston
Ever wanted to walk through a lit-up Christmas festival? Same. But this is like that times a million. Lumina Borealis, if you've never heard of it, happens every year in Kingston and you can't miss it. It's a path of lit up Christmas trees, walls, and you get to walk through Fort Henry and experience all the colours and magic.
Open from November 30th to January 5th, this needs to be on your Christmas bucket list. For only $16 a ticket, you'll find yourself making plans to go back next year too! I mean, just look at the photos. They speak for themselves.
Want to feel like you're actually in a Christmas movie? No problem. All you have to do is hit up the Toronto Christmas Market with your BFFs or SO and the rest is done for you. Truly, out of all the places on the list, this is the one all Christmas lovers need to attend. From November 15th to December 23rd, the Toronto Christmas Market will be packed and filled with people who love the holiday just as much as you.
There are a few things to expect at the Toronto Christmas Market: Beer, a huuuge Christmas Tree, 100-foot light tunnel, Santa Claus, vendors, carolers, and so much more! Admission is free on the weekdays, but there is a $6 fee on weekends. I mean, that's a steal!
Where: Ottawa and Hamilton
I mean, who hasn't wanted to drive through two kilometers of holiday lights? I know I have! This is also the perfect opportunity to perfect your playlist making skills. But of course, it must be Christmas music! Or even just Michael Buble's Christmas album on repeat. I don't judge. The Magic of Lights is the event that runs from November 16th to January 5th in Ottawa. The Gift of Lights is the event that happens on the exact same dates, just in Hamilton!
Tickets are very reasonable at $25 per car, and you get to drive through over 200 feet of lights. Some light displays are animals, signs, houses, etc! I mean, if this isn't the definition of lit, then I'm not sure what is. If you and your family or friends are people who go and see the Christmas light displays every year, put this on your list too! This one is bound to beat all of them.