If it wasn't for Montréal en Lumière, February would be the worst period of the year. But fortunately, the harsh cold and altogether awful weather that comes with February is offset by all the fun stuff going on at the annual multifaceted festival that is Montréal en Lumière.

Upholding many of the usual Montréal en Lumière traditions, with some exciting new additions in the mix, the 17th edition of the winter arts, food, and fun festival looks to be just as fun as years past.

No, scratch that, even more fun. Countless artistic performances will be held throughout the two weeks (and change) that make up Montréal en Lumière, with plenty of gastronomic events and sites on the festival's grounds to keep you fuelled.  But that merely scratches the surface of what to expect.

As you could probably guess, Quartier des Festivals will once again house Montréal en Lumière, transforming into a multicoloured wonderland of vibrant lights and energy. Expect some grand changes to this year's free outdoor site, which will be open to the public starting on February 2nd.

Another new element of the 17th edition of Montréal en Lumière is this year's featured international city: Shenzen, China. Paying homage to the Southern Chinese province, the chefs and artists of Montréal en Lumière will create works inspired by the culture of Shenzen, with plenty of free events held outdoors doing the same.

Perhaps most exciting, however, is the lead up to Nuit Blanche on February 27th. While Montréal en Lumière will extend a bit past the yearly evening of all-night artistic (and mildly debaucherous) fun, you simply know the festival will reach new levels of energy on Nuit Blanche.

Montréal en Lumière will be taking over Quartier des Festivals on February 18th until March 5th. For more details, head over to Montréal en Lumière's official website and Facebook page here.

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