There are tons of spots to see Christmas lights in Quebec, but sometimes a little road trip outside of the province is totally worth it for a colourful adventure. Canada's largest illumination festival is already well underway and another great excuse for a weekend getaway. The Winter Festival of Lights transforms Niagra Falls into a dazzling animated delight featuring millions of twinkling lights and displays. There are so many displays to see and snap a pic in front of, it may be difficult to fit it all into only a few days.
It's not a short trip, the drive can take 6 to 7 hours. But with the promise of fireworks, an 8-kilometre illumination route, and 32 massive illumination displays, it's more than worth it.
Winter of Festival Lights is so popular that it attracts over 1.8 million Christmas light lovers every year.
The displays, open every night from 5 p.m. until midnight, are set up around Niagara Parks, Dufferin Islands, and surrounding tourist locations.
You can catch one of the 25 fireworks shows that take place each season every Friday night in December and nightly from December 21 to January 5. There is also a special New Year's Eve show if you should want to ring 2020 under a brightly lit sky.
There's no entrance fee, but donations of $5 - $10 per car are subtly suggested.
The displays are pretty wild and include everything from life-size polar bears, a two-storey tall fountain, the world’s largest Canadian-American Flag, and a giant rendering of Noah's Ark.
There are so many displays throughout the area, that there is even a tourist map to make sure you don't miss anything.
Some of the displays are interactive and will change colours with sound or movement - perfect to capture for your Insta.
There is also a sound and light show on the Toronto Power Generating Station choreographed to music by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra and another mesmerizing show against the city-facing side of the Oakes Hotel.
Niagra Falls has even created a mobile app for this year's Winter Festival of Lights. You can browse, check out descriptions and images of the displays, and view the event calendar for time and information on special events.
There is an extra function where you can take a photo and add a specially designed festival frame or collect prizes using the augmented reality feature (think Pokémon GO).
The festival runs through to January 12, so there's still lots of time to visit and plan your road trip. Dress warm, make sure your phone is charged, and get whisked away to this brightly lit wonderland.