Sometimes heading to a sunny destination in the winter is a great dream, but it’s just not reality for all of us. That doesn’t mean we can’t find family fun within our own city or take a mini road trip to enjoy winter activities! Whether you want to make your road trip a weekend getaway, or just plan a day full of fun, we have a great place you can check out: Fête des neiges in Montréal.
This annual winter event at Parc Jean-Drapeau (now in its 36th year) takes place every weekend (Saturday and Sunday) between January 19th and February 10th. You’ll love the low-cost event with the kids because there is so much to do, including outdoor activities, live entertainment and delicious bites to eat. Here’s why you’ll want to book your next mini winter getaway to Montréal.
What is Fête des Neiges?
This outdoor winter festival is located at Parc Jean-Drapeau in Montréal, and while entry to the event is free (and includes many special activities, live music and other delights), you can purchases passes or tickets for dog sledding and the ice slides. You’ll also want to bring a few extra dollars for the snacks and warm beverages that will be served.
Which activities are free?
There are plenty of activities for the kids that are free making the entire event a fairly low-cost one. The inflatables are free, as is the extremely unique and fun ice pirate ship that the kids can explore. There are even mini ice slides on the ship!
Kids can get hands-on at the handy beavers workshop where they’ll use blocks of snow to help create a snow house.
At the mini ski slope, kids can take short skiing/snowboarding lessons.
The free fun doesn’t stop there! There’s a giant foosball arena (where people are the foosball players!) as well as Penguin Village for the smaller attendees to enjoy some tiny fun. There’s also a ball hockey rink for your hockey fans to grab a stick and join in, and for older kids and adults, there is an axe-throwing area. Yes, all of these activities are free (plus, so many more).
Not to mention, there are stage shows and music, plus characters roaming around the grounds ready to interact and have some silly fun with families.
Does everything require tickets?
There are some activities that will cost a fee. This includes dog sledding (priced by age, although this activity is not recommended for children under 2 years old or pregnant women). The frost slides will also require tickets or a family pass. These larger, icy slides will be a lot of fun and at $25 for the entire family to participate (unlimited) it’s a great deal.
What about the food?
Of course you’ll find some tasty bites on site too! You can indulge in maple taffy or roast marshmallows by the fire, and get a cup of steaming hot chocolate to warm everyone up in between sliding and dancing to the music. There is a schnitzel truck, Subway and Beaver Tails!
The event is only on the weekends for a limited time.
While the temperatures may vary each weekend of the event, there is a warm-up area for your family, and a baby rest stop area with a microwave, nursing spot and changing tables. Also, if you are thinking about making it a weekend event, there are hotels in the nearby area to check out.
Fête des neiges is happening every Saturday and Sunday, between 10 am and 5 pm starting January 19th and running until February 10th. Within just a short drive, you and your family can find a new way to make the cold days of winter so much more fun.