Spring is a season of fits and starts in Canada. One day you can see the patio's potential, the next day you're looking at snow. While for many of us Spring is more of a feeling or idea than an actual season, there are some things that are unequivocally linked with Springtime. While it's unlikely you'd be able to attend all of these Springtime activities in a single season, I hope this list will give you something to plan for.




For many Canadians, a sure sign of warmer weather is the Ottawa Tulip festival. Technically called the Canadian Tulip festival, it began with a gift of 100,000 tulip bulbs from the Dutch Royal family, as thanks for Canada's role in liberating Holland and acting as hosts to the Dutch Royal family during their exile. Since then, the festival has grown to include artists, musicians, pavilions and food trucks. Best of all, most of the areas of the festival are free for guests to explore. That's not to say you won't want to bring cash though, as many of the vendors don't accept cards and the onsite ATMs charge a ridiculous fee.




If you're able to travel further afield, a destination to consider is the Epcot Flower and Garden festival. Set at the Epcot theme park, in Disney World, the festival is a riot of colour and sunshine. With flowers positioned in every possible corner (including in floating pots on the lagoons) and stunning floral sculptures around the park, there's a lot to recommend the festival to winter-weary Canadians. Especially fun for kids who haven't been able to play without ten layers of clothes in months, the festival also has a number of pop-up playgrounds for them to run and explore. If you do decide to make the trek to Orlando to grab some Spring sunshine, make sure you also plan a stop at the Grand Floridian hotel, which hosts a display of chocolate eggs that are more art than food.




Another way to welcome Spring a bit closer to home is by visiting a provincial or national park, many of which have festivals centered around the season. A great example of this is Point Pelee Island's Festival of Birds. At this southernmost point in Ontario, migrating birds are a big attraction. At the festival, guests can learn from experts, attend drawing and journaling classes, spend time practicing oral bird song identification and much more. What a great way to celebrate the season's return!