Montreal’s Top Summer Festivals and Events [List & Guide]

Montreal’s Top Summer Festivals and Events [List & Guide]
There is no question that Montreal truly is the city of festivals. This summer alone there are dozens of significant events taking place. Whether you’re going alone, with friends and family, on a date, or otherwise, enjoy yourselves! Here is a partial list of festivals planned for this summer. Note that dates are subject to change, and events may be cancelled at any time so check with the official sources to be sure of all the details. Now come celebrate summer with Montreal’s top events, festivals, and activities!
  1. The Salon de la Passion Médiévale (May 3-5): Montreal’s largest a medieval fair. (Also see Bicolline which takes place a couple of hours away in August).
  2. K-Town Collectables Expo (May 4-5): One of the largest shows in Montreal for collectibles in general including comics, cards, records, toys, video games, horror, cosplay, wrestling, and countless other items and activities.
  3. International Beer Festival (May 24-26): The Mondial de la Bière is a celebration of beer with many different types to be sampled.
  4. St-Ambroise Montreal Fringe Festival (May 27-June 16): An eclectic arts festival with performances in English and French across multiple venues.
  5. Piknic Électronik (Every Sunday, May 19 – October 6): A very popular weekly electronic music dance event at Parc Jean-Drapeau, often featuring more popular DJs.
  6. First Fridays (June 7-August 4): A monthly gathering of food trucks at Olympic Stadium.
  7. Tam-Tams du Mont Royal (Every Sunday, May 1 – September 30): The “tam-tams” as they are called in a lively (some would say almost hypnotic) gathering that features drum circles, dancing, and picnicking at the base of Mount Royal. Truly a great event every week throughout the summer. Starts in the morning and stops around 8pm.
  8. Pouzza Fest (May 17-19): A punk rock music festival featuring bands and artists at various venues.
  9. Beachclub Montreal (May 19 – August 20): This is a must-visit weekly party for electronic music enthusiasts. This season features some of the top EDM DJs on the planet including David Guetta and Fisher.
  10. Festival Accès Asie (May): Celebrates Asian culture and arts throughout the month of May.
  11. Eureka Festival (May 24-26): Celebrate science and innovation at this family-friendly event, featuring interactive workshops, live demonstrations, and engaging talks designed to inspire a passion for knowledge in attendees of all ages.
  12. Elektra Montreal (May 31 – July 21): Showcases digital arts and experimental electronic music across multiple locations.
  13. Mural Montreal (June 6-16): Combines live music and street art with artists painting murals across the city. You can see the results on buildings all over the city, especially closer to the downtown region. Expect to see some remarkable artwork.
  14. Grand Prix Weekend Montreal (June 7-9): This is the single busiest weekend of the year in Montreal as it is a 3-day party. The race itself is one thing but the parties are next level!
  15. Saint-Jean-Baptiste (June 24). Also called Saint John the Baptist Day in English, this is a holiday celebrated across the province of Quebec as a national day. Don’t forget to try these local beers!
  16. Montreal International Jazz Festival (June 27 – July 6): The world’s largest jazz festival! It’s more than that, though. Catch the free outdoor shows, day and night, and take in the great atmosphere. Expect huge, but civil, crowds.
  17. Mtl en Arts (June 27 – July 1): Montreal’s largest open-air arts gallery in the Village (eastern side of St. Catherine Street), showcasing hundreds of artists.
  18. Canada Day celebrations (July 1): Even though Canada is falling apart as a country, if you’re looking for something to do on July 1, there are festivities around the city to commemorate this national day and what it used to be. You’ll find fireworks, concerts, and other events.
  19. L’International des Feux Loto-Québec (June – August): The international fireworks competition has evenings dedicated to specific countries who compete all summer. Expect a spectacular fireworks competition set to music (if you’re close enough to the source), although you can see the fireworks from all over the Old Port and higher parts of downtown.
  20. Montreal Comiccon (July 14-16): The city’s largest celebration of pop culture featuring comic books, sci-fi, fantasy, video games, movies, TV shows, and so much more. Many major celebrity guests, concerts, Q&A with celebs, lots of activities and a very large vendor floor with sellers from around the country and some from the US. Not to be missed!
  21. Montréal Complètement Cirque (July 4-14): A city-wide circus festival celebrating Montreal’s rich circus arts heritage.
  22. Festival International Nuits d’Afrique (July 9-21): A festival celebrating African music, with performances from international artists.
  23. Taste of the Caribbean (July 11-14): A festival celebrating Caribbean culture, food, and music​.
  24. Fantasia Film Festival (July 18 – August 4): Features a mix of horror, sci-fi, fantasy, and anime films.
  25. Montreal Pride (August 1-11): A celebration of LGBTQ+ communities with parades, concerts, and events.
  26. Osheaga Festival (August 2-4): A major music festival in Jean-Drapeau Park featuring a blend of big names and indie artists. This year some of the headliners include Green Day and Smashing Pumpkins.
  27. MUTEK Montreal Festival (August 20-25): An international festival of digital creativity and electronic music focusing on electronic music and digital arts in downtown Montreal.
  28. The Montreal World Film Festival (August 24-25): An international film festival celebrating global cinema.
  29. Shakespeare-in-the-Park (July-August): Free outdoor performances of Shakespeare plays in various parks around Montreal.
  30. ItalfestMTL (August 2-11): Also known as Italian Week, the event celebrates Italian culture, cuisine, and entertainment.
  31. Île Soniq Music Festival (August 9-11): The largest EDM music festival in Canada. A must-visit event for electronic music enthusiasts. It translates to Sonic Isle since it’s on an island.
  32. Lasso Montreal (August 16-17): A music festival dedicated to country music. Lasso Montreal brings together local and international artists for a weekend of performances, line dancing, and cowboy culture in the heart of the city.
  33. Montreal Highland Games (August 4): This day-long event showcases Scottish culture with athletic competitions, music, and food.
  34. Montreal Symphony Orchestra (Dates throughout the summer and year): The MSO (in French OSM) hosts classical music concerts in various venues​.
  35. POP Montreal (September 25-29): An annual music and cultural festival showcasing emerging art and music talents.
  36. Grand Prix Cycliste de Montréal (September): A world-class cycling race through the scenic Parc du Mont-Royal.
  37. Psicobloc (August 30 – September 1): This is an extreme free-climbing speed competition over deep water at Parc Jean-Drapeau.
  38. Palomosa (September 5-7): The Palomosa music festival is in its first year. It features pop, rock, R&B, Latin, and electronic music.
  39. Montreal Westie Fest  (October 10-13): A celebration of West Coast Swing dance with workshops and performances.
  40. Ramen Ramen Fest (October 14-27): A culinary festival celebrating the diverse world of ramen and Japanese food.
  41. Kampai Montreal (October): A festival dedicated to Japanese sake, featuring tastings and food pairings from top local Japanese restaurants.
This is a guide for tourists and locals alike. Tourists to Montreal should note that Just for Laughs, the world’s largest comedy festival, featuring stand-up performances, galas, and street acts has been cancelled apparently due to financial issues. This is a big loss for the city but there are clearly a lot of other festivals to choose from. There may also be L’OFF Jazz Festival in October. Also, note that some of the larger festivals that didn’t make the list still don’t have dates or confirmation of happening this summer.
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