Discover a world of culture during your visit to Montreal through the various cultural festivals and events in Montreal. Cultural festivals & events in Montreal range specific cultural events such as Festival International Nuits d’Afrique and the Magic of Lanterns to large community events such as the Highlights Festival and the International Circus Arts Festival. Many of Montreal’s cultural events and festivals are recognized internationally and attract thousands of visitors annually.
The following are the top cultural festivals & events in Montreal.
| Divers/Cité |
Montreal's Divers/Cité Festival is an international arts and music festival that takes place each year in the heart of downtown Montreal and Montreal's Gay Village. It is considered to be one of Canada's largest and most festive gay celebrations. This week-long arts and music festival features parades, wild parties, music and cultural activities celebrating sexual diversity. This annual Gay Pride Celebration attracts nearly one million people to Montreal.
| Festival International Nuits d’Afrique |
Montreal’s Festival International Nuits d’Afrique is a 10-day world music festival that features music from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America. Remaining at the forefront of promoting musical creativity and the arts, the Festival International Nuits d'Afrique annually deploys a wide range of mixed talents here and across the ocean from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America. It is considered to be the largest festival of its kind in North America.
| Festival Montréal En Lumière (Montreal High Lights Festival) |
The Montreal High Lights Festival (Festival Montréal en Lumière) is one of the largest winter festivals in the world and Montreal's most popular winter festival. Occurring in the Month of February, the High Lights Festival is a 10-day celebration of light shows, free events, live music, performance arts and fine food and wine.
| Fête nationale du Québec à Montréal |
La Fête Nationale du Québec is the National Holiday of the province of Québec. On this day, various events, shows and spectacles are planned in Montreal and throughout the province of Quebec. La Fête Nationale always occurs on June 24, which happens to be St. John the Baptist Day. Festivities take place on both June 23 and June 24. It is one of Montreal’s most popular holidays and it is a paid holiday in Montreal and the rest of Quebec.
| International Circus Arts Festival (Montréal Complètement Cirque) |
Montreal’s International Circus Arts Festival (Montréal Complètement Cirque)is an international festival celebrating circus arts. Hundreds of circus artists from around the world participate in this summer festival. The festival features performances, showcases, conferences and exhibitions all over the city of Montreal. You’ll find circus artists, magicians, clowns, acrobats, makeup artists and much more.
| International Reggae Festival (Festival international de Reggae de Montréal) |
Montreal’s Reggae Festival is an annual reggae festival held at Montreal’s Quays of the Old Port during the summer. Since 2004, the festival has been celebrating reggae music and other forms of Caribbean music. This outdoor festival is one of Montreal’s most popular festivals.
| Montreal Fashion and Design Festival (Festival Mode & Design Montreal) |
The Montreal Fashion and Design Festival (Festival Mode & Design Montreal) is a popular event that turns the streets of Montreal's downtown area into several free outdoor fashion shows. This fashion and design festival takes place on McGill College Avenue, at the heart of downtown Montreal and features hundreds of fashion labels and designers.
| Montreal International Dragon Boat Race Festival |
The Montreal International Dragon Boat Race Festival is an annual International festival that takes place in the Olympic Basin on Île Notre-Dame in Jean Drapeau Park. This weekend event features dragon boat teams from around North-America competing in 250 meter and 500 meter races. The festival also features live entertainment such as music groups, folk dancing and other cultural entertainment.
| Montreal International Jazz Festival (Festival International de Jazz de Montréal) |
Montreal's International Jazz Festival (Festival International de Jazz de Montréal ) is the largest jazz festival in the world. This 11-day summer music festival takes place between late June and early July in the heart of downtown Montreal. Located inside the Quartier des Spectacles, around the Place des Arts, the festival features some of the most famous artists from around the world. Each year, over 2 million spectators attend the International Jazz Festival.
| Montreal Museums Day |
The Montreal Museums Day takes place every year in the month of May. During this day, many of Montreal's most popular museums offer free admission, free activities and free shuttle buses. It is the perfect occasion to explore Montreal's museums network for free.
| Nuit Blanche a Montréal (Montreal All-Nighter) |
The Montreal Nuit Blanche (All-Nighter) is an all-night event that takes place every year to mark the end of the Montreal High Lights Festival (Montreal en Lumiere).
| The Magic of Lanterns (La Magie des Lanternes) |
The Magic of Lanterns (La Magie des Lanternes) is Montreal’s annual fall festival of lights that marks the arrival of autumn in beautiful style. It is a remarkable celebration of light in the Montreal Botanical Garden's Chinese Garden. The festival is marked by hundreds of silk lanterns that illuminate various areas of The Chinese Garden.