Niagara’s Winter Festival of Lights celebrates its 40th anniversary

Photo by: Winston Chen on Unsplash

One staple Niagara event that locals will not want to miss out on this holiday season is the annual Winter Festival of Lights, located in the heart of Niagara Falls.

Starting on Nov. 12 and lasting until Feb. 20, 2023, Niagara Falls is featuring 101 nights filled with spectacular lighting displays. The event is marketed towards friends and families hoping to celebrate the holidays outdoors in a unique and captivating way.

Presented by Niagara Falls Tourism, the festival consists of enormous winter-themed displays accompanied by millions of lights, all lined up along the notable Niagara Parkway. The route continues into some of Niagara Falls’ most beloved areas, such as Dufferin Islands, Fallsview Boulevard, Lundy’s Lane and Downtown Niagara Falls. The event, also recognized as Canada’s largest illumination festival and the premiere illumination festival in North America, attracts over one million visitors annually.

Included in the festival’s many features is over 50 larger-than-life displays, dozens of highly decorated trees, a two-storey tall fountain, a gingerbread house, a 60-foot light tunnel and many more incredible displays decorated in various themes.

This year, the event has even more to celebrate besides the impending winter and holiday seasons with this year marking the festival’s 40th anniversary. In light of the celebration, the festival will be featuring a new illuminating light show titled “Sparkling Winter Lights.” Produced by Niagara Falls Tourism and the Niagara Falls Illumination Board, the new addition will work to present the real life spectacle of winter by depicting the everchanging movements of winter in the north, such as gentle snowfalls and even a presentation of the aurora borealis.

This tribute to winter will be an integral aspect of this year’s display, with its five-minute shows playing on the hour at 6:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. every night for the duration of the festival.

In addition to the new “Sparkling Winter Lights” show, the Winter Festival of Lights is also featuring live performances and family-friendly entertainment on both weekends and 40 different nights. The entertainment will be featured indoors, allowing individuals a chance to warm up during their winter stroll amongst the lights. The various events accompanied alongside the festival can be viewed on the Winter Festival of Lights’ events calendar

The festival will continue to offer fantastic experiences to celebrate its 40th anniversary. Some additional events to help bring in the holiday cheer consist of the unforgettable illumination of the Falls every night, the Niagara Falls Hot Chocolate Trail and opportunities to grab photos with Santa during the month of December. 

Individuals also have the opportunity to win an overnight getaway experience to this year’s festival through a contest organized by Niagara Falls Tourism. To enter for the chance win, people are encouraged to share on Instagram photos they have taken in the past at the Winter Festival of Lights by with tagging @winterfestivaloflights and including the hashtag #wfol40.

With so much winter-themed fun to experience in the heart of Niagara Falls, the Winter Festival of Lights is an event for individuals from both near and far to attend this winter.

For more information on Niagara’s Winter Festival of Lights, be sure to check out their official website.

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