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17 Toronto Festivals and when they are

17 toronto festivals

Are you planning a trip to Toronto? Indeed, it’s a beautiful city to visit in any season, for its architecture and its many parks. While developing our Toronto Civic Center Tourist Scavenger Hunt, as well as our Old Toronto Tourist Scavenger Hunt, we identified many Toronto festivals that take place along our routes.

We’ve limited our list to the downtown core and harbourfront areas, where our scavenger hunts are located.

17 Toronto Festivals

  1. Metro Toronto Convention CenterCanadian International AutoShow
    • Annual automotive expo with everything from the latest models to concept cars.
    • When: 3rd week of February
    • Where: Toronto Metro Convention Center
  2. Toronto ComicCon
    • Annual cosplay, comic traders, conference, and celebrity photo op.
    • When: 3rd weekend of March
    • Where: Toronto Metro Convention Center
  3. Canadian Music Week
    • CNW is about celebrating local talent.
    • When: 2nd week of May
    • Where: In a large number of venues across the city. Many are located along Queen Street and elsewhere in the downtown area.
  4. Electric Island
    • Annual electronic music festival
    • When: spread over 4-5 dates from May to September.
    • Where: Toronto Islands
  5. Young-Dundas SquareYonge-Dundas Square Ribfest
    • Annual rib tasting festival with 7 of Ontario’s top craft brewers.
    • When: 3rd weekend in May
    • Where: Yonge-Dundas Square
  6. Toronto Poutine Fest
    • Annual poutine tasting festival. Try over 50 different kinds!
    • When: last weekend of May
    • Where: Yonge-Dundas Square
  7. Inside Out LGBT Film Festival
    • Annual Toronto LGBT film festival.
    • When: last week of May
    • Where: TIFF Bell Lightbox
  8. North By Northeast Festival
    • Gaming, innovation, music acts, and more across dozens of venues downtown.
    • When: 2nd week of June
    • Where: Yonge-Dundas Square mostly
  9. Nathan Phillips Square City HallToronto Outdoor Art Fair
    • TOAF is an alternative to traditional art shows as it is outdoors and wide open.
    • When: 3rd weekend of July
    • Where: Nathan Phillips Square
  10. Toronto Caribbean Carnival
    • Caribbean music, cuisine, dance, and performing arts take to the city!
    • When: end of July to mid-August
    • Where: across the city including Nathan Phillips Square and CN Tower
  11. Small World Music Festival
    • 3-day festival presenting music from around the world.
    • When: August
    • Where: Harbourfront Center
  12. Fan Expo Canada
    • Annual cosplay, comic traders, conference, and celebrity photo op.
    • When: last weekend of August
    • Where: Toronto Metro Convention Center
  13. Toronto International Film Festival
    • TIFF is an annual film festival presenting many world premiers and industry galas.
    • When: 1st & 2nd weeks of September
    • Where: TIFF Bell Lightbox and other theatres across downtown
  14. Sony CenterJFL42
    • Just For Laughs interactive 10-day festival
    • When: September
    • Where: Sony Center of the Performing Arts
  15. The Word on the Street Festival
    • Annual outdoor book and magazine fair.
    • When: September
    • Where: Harbourfront Centre
  16. Nuit Blanche Toronto
    • Annual all-night contemporary art event.
    • When: 1st weekend of October
    • Where: Nathan Phillips Square
  17. Hockey Hall of FameHockey Hall of Fame Induction Weekend & Legends Classic
    • The annual event is dedicated to Canada’s game.
    • When: November
    • Where: Hockey Hall of Fame

There are many other festivals throughout the city you might also like.

Finally, we invite you to try our Toronto Civic Center Tourist Scavenger Hunt or Old Toronto Tourist Scavenger Hunt. In fact, each is a 2-3 hour self-guided walking tour that you do with your smartphone (how it works). You might walk through one of these festivals depending on when you do your scavenger hunt. You’ll definitely enjoy solving the various challenges at each step of the way while learning the history of Toronto.

They each cost $45 for a group of up to 6 people. Also, there is an Explorer version of the Old Toronto scavenger hunt available for $60 – it’s longer and has more challenges.