December Festivals and Events in Montreal 2016

Christmas Lights. Photo Rachel Levine Christmas Lights. Photo Rachel Levine

December has got to trump November. One hopes. Montrealers get to do one of the things they do best. No, it’s not eating poutine. It’s shopping and cultivating holiday cheer with friends and colleagues. Find out how Montreal compensates for early sunset by keeping the spirit alive every day with a different festival or event.

La Biennale de Montréal

October 19, 2016-January 15, 2017

The annual art show is a hub for international artists to showcase the most innovative and challenging pieces in Montreal. The works are generally intriguing and provocative. Amog those participating are Le Grand Balcon, Valérie Blass, Myriam-Jacob Allard, and many more. For info, click HERE.

Bach Festival

November 18-December 4


As the church composer extraordinaire, enjoy works by Bach in a variety of venues performed by musicians who range from classical to avant-garde. 193 concerts and Yo Yo Ma.  More info HERE.

A Victorian Christmas

Saturdays and Sundays, November 19 – December 30

Sir George-Étienne Cartier National Historic Site (458 Rue Notre-Dame E)
Parks Canada transforms the George-Étienne Cartier residence with all the charm of the 17th century. If drinking wassail punch and revisiting Christmas past is your kind of thing, this is for you. More info HERE.

Image + Nation

November 24-December 4

Montreal’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Trans film festival knows that the dreary end of November is a good time to celebrate your identity, no matter what your sexual preference. The line-up includes feature-length films intended for wide release and other films that only appear on the festival circuit. This year the festival seems larger than ever before. More information can be found HERE

Sefarad Festival

Theatre Outremont

November 26 – December 11

Montreal celebrates the richness of Sephardic culture with this festival. Artists from around the world perform. Beyond music, the festival looks at history, community, philosophy and tradition. More info HERE. 

SAT Souk 2015. Photo Yolanda Marie Ruzilo

Caribou. SAT Souk 2015. Photo Yolanda Marie Ruzilo

SAT Souk

November 29 – December 4

SAT (1201 St Laurent)

The annual Christmas market at the SOUK is a not to be missed event where you can get one-of-a-kind gifts from local artisans who produce high quality stuff. It has a real designer flair. Keep an eye HERE for more info.

Montreal en Fetes

Old Port and Old Montreal

December 1 – January 1

In an attempt to brighten spirits and keep everyone moving, the Old Port hosts a range of events over the month. Some things to check out include outdoor holiday films, Karaoke, an outdoor market on Thursdays to Sundays. Everything culminates in a New Year’s Even ball. More info HERE. 

Christmas in the Park (Place Émilie Gamelin)

December 1 – 25

Berri and St. Catherine

Place Émilie Gamelin has become a must stop place when it comes to checking out free events daily. Noel dans le Parc is an outdoor festival that has music and multicultural activities. For details on what’s happening, click HERE.

Dix Ans des Ateliers Jean Brilliant

December 1 – December 10
Ateliers Jean Brilliant (3520 St Jacques)

Celebrating 10 years in his space, Jean Brillant is hosting a celebration. Among those participating are artist in residence, Erik West Millet and the West Trainz teams. As always, the welding artistry will collaborate with the public on ways to connect art and people. Info HERE

La Petite Floride Opening

December 2

5705 Avenue de Gaspé

Awesome sauce and palm trees. Gaspé hosts the opening of its outdoor Mile End pop up city-boutique, La Petite Floride. If only! Music, karaoke, hot wine bar, and trees are for sale, among other things. Come and check it out. The area has been designed by La Pépinière Espaces collectifs. Info HERE.

Montreal’s Grand Christmas Market

December 2 – 24

Place des Arts

Looking for that perfect gift? Want something one of a kind or something that will support a local artist instead of a big box store. Check out Montreal’s christmas market at Place des Arts. Different artists will be offering their wares at different times, so make sure to check the schedule HERE.

Gospel Celebration with the Montreal Jubiliation Gospel Choir

Place des Arts

December 4

34 years of holiday concerts with uplifting music. It’s a popular annual event that warms the heart and fills it with joy. Sing out! Information HERE. 

Marche de Noel aux Flambeaux

Departure point Parc des Compagnons at Mt. Royal and Cartier

December 6, 17:00-19:00

Carry a candle and join the beautiful passing of the light around the park. After exchanging the flame, enjoy the party. Info HERE.


Quartier des Spectacles

December 8 – January 29

If you don’t have one of those SAD lights and are pining for some light, hit the Luminothérapie event at Quartier des Spectacles. Light shows, projections, and 30 illuminated seesaws (called Impulsion) promise to add some extra hours of light to the darkest days of winter. Every year new artists are featured. Food trucks on opening night. More info HERE.

Urban Tails. An Undead Christmas

Centaur Theatre

December 8-17, 8 p.m.

Stories are so much better when you add the spice and nothing nice. Six stories with eerie themes hit the stage at the Centaur, including Emile 1976, I Saw Mommy Eating Santa Claus, and The Double Goer.  If there’s one way to fight the chill of winter, it’s to see something that chills your blood. More info HERE.

Montreal Drunken Crowd Christmas Karaoke

Pompette, 4128 ST. Laurent

December 9

Singing with friends is fun. Singing Christmas carols with friends for a record is even funner. Join in the bash with Montreal’s quirky event king, Sherwin Sullivan Tjia (he hosts those Slowdances and Strip Spelling Bees). More info HERE.


POP Montreal : Puces Des Neiges

December 9-11 and 16-18

Eglise St. Denis (5075 Rivard, at Laurier Metro)

As fans of things you can buy that come from local artists, we adore the Puces POP events. With a room full of craftsfolk, you’re bound to find something. True to the POP team, things begin with an opening party and continue on for two weekends of solid POP Shopping. For more information, click HERE.

Nutcracker Market. Photo Lily Huynh

Nutcacker. Nutcracker Market. Photo Lily Huynh


December 10 and 11, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Palais de Congrès

If you are pining for the costumes, the guests, and the goods, check out the Mini-Comiccon, a pop-culture pop-up. Shopping is at the fore, but it’s a chance to squeeze into those tights one last time before it gets too cold. Admission is free, so make a point of getting their for that perfect statue-toy-t-shirt-comic-dvd you must have or must give. More info HERE.

The Nutcracker Ballet

Place des Arts

December 10-30

The holiday season would be incomplete without Clara’s misadventures and sugarplum fairies. This annual ballet highlight is a popular event that enchants year after year. For info, click HERE. 


Salon des Métiers d’Art

Place Bonaventure

December 8-18

More incredible one of a kind goods of high quality can be found at this annual shopping event. Whether its ceramic, food, wool, wood, or stone, chances are you can find an artisan here that has what you need. Bring a credit card! Information HERE.


About Rachel Levine

Rachel Levine is the big cheese around here. Contact: Website | More Posts