winter festival lights niagara falls

A magical lights festival opens at Niagara Falls this week

If you're looking to get into the holiday spirit, there's no better way than going to a lights festival, and luckily, Niagara Falls's famous winter celebration of lights kicks off this week.

The Winter Festival of Lights is back starting this weekend for its 40th annual run.

Similar to Holiday Nights of Lights in Vaughan, the event is an outdoor, self-guided lights festival where visitors can either drive or walk through the experience.

The festival is set to transform Niagara Falls into a sparkling winter wonderland for 101 nights with over 3 million lights and more than 50 massive displays.

This year there will be four different themes you can explore around the festival, including Royal Promenade, Frosted Falls, Enchanted Forest and Great Canadian North.

A few of the event's other main features include the two-storey tall Zimmerman Fountain, a gingerbread house and a 60-foot light tunnel.

Like last year, indoor family-friendly entertainment will also be at various venues every weekend, including a hot chocolate trail. These indoor activities will allow you to defrost along the route. Stay tuned for the event schedule, as an announcement is expected soon.

Set on foot or by car through the 8-km route where trees wrapped in light will lead you through different displays along the Niagara Parkway through Dufferin Islands and into tourist districts, including Fallsview Boulevard, Lundy's Lane and Downtown Niagara Falls.

Fireworks displays are back again this year on selected nights during the duration of the festival, starting at 8:00 p.m., so make sure to stick around to see the Falls illuminated with colour.

Don't forget to bundle up before heading out, or if you don't want to walk the entire 8-km trail in the cold, it's recommended to drive through the route and then park to grab photos of your favourite displays.

There's no need for reservations or tickets as the lights festival is completely free.

The Winter Festival of Lights is back on November 12 through February 20. 

Lead photo by

Winter Festival of Lights

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