Holiday Experiences in Burlington

Holiday lights with snow at Spencer Smith Park

November 11, 2021

Light up your holiday season with lots of festive fun in Burlington. From a gorgeous evening walk by the waterfront amidst the Festival of Lights to warming up with holiday cocktails in Downtown Burlington. No matter what your heart desires, Burlington is sure to have a holiday experience to remember.

Burlington Teen Tour Band Solders at Festival of Lights

Festival of Lights

Spencer Smith Park
Friday, November 26th to Saturday, January 8th, 2022

The Festival of Lights illuminates Burlington’s waterfront from the end of November, through December, to early January each year. Thousands of local residents and visitors from across the region and beyond have made it a seasonal tradition to wander through the park with family and friends to view the themed displays. Tens of thousands more take in the attraction while driving along Lakeshore Road at the city’s waterfront throughout the holiday season. It represents a popular annual tradition in the community. The Festival marks its 26th anniversary in 2021.
Come, share your holiday spirit with family and friends while strolling through the magical lighting displays this year!

Local residents and visitors from across the region and beyond have made it a seasonal tradition to wander through the park with family and friends to view the themed displays. Tens of thousands more take in the attraction while driving along Lakeshore Road at the City’s waterfront throughout the holiday season. It represents a popular annual tradition in the community. The Festival marks its 26th anniversary in 2021.

Come share your holiday spirit with family and friends while strolling through the magical lighting displays this year!

People walking looking at lights

Bright Nights

Throughout Downtown Burlington
December 1st to mid-January 2022

The streets and businesses of Burlington’s downtown core are about to get a whole lot brighter. The 2nd annual Bright Nights will start December 1st and run through January 2022, downtown Burlington will be illuminated by holiday light installations from 4:30 pm to 11:00 pm daily designed to create a magical experience within the downtown business area. It’s the perfect way to celebrate and enjoy the season safely with those we hold dear.

“From City Hall and Civic Square, up and down Brant Street to the new Elgin Promenade, Village Square, and the Lakeshore, Bright Nights has Burlington downtown covered in a spectacular display of festive, holiday lights,” says presenting sponsor, Lisa-Marie Winning. “Residents and visitors are invited to stroll the streets, stopping to experience interactive displays like the ‘singing tree,’ or capture the moment at one of the featured displays. ” Local businesses also have their storefronts decorated, so be sure to do some window shopping as you stroll along.

Holiday cocktails and cuppas

Holiday Cocktails & Cuppas Crawl

Throughout Downtown Burlington
December 1st to 31st, 2021

Throughout December, the cafés, restaurants, and bars in Downtown Burlington will be mixing up their favorite holiday concoctions. Get ready to sip and savour boozy cocktail delights alongside specialty coffees and non-alcoholic hot chocolate cuppas mounded with whipped cream. There’s a festive libation for everyone! Participation is easy – download the free passport to your phone.

Then, start checking in through the passport at participating businesses. The more check-ins you make, the greater chances are to win the weekly $50 gift certificate giveaways. There’s also a grand prize, where the lucky winner will be treated to $500 in various downtown Burlington restaurant gift certificates of their choice.
So bundle up, enjoy some festive drinks in an outdoor après-ski type fashion and celebrate the holiday season while supporting local!

Stay tuned to in late November to download your free passport.

Festival of Trees

Burlington Performing Arts Centre
November 18th to December 18th, 2021

The Burlington Performing Arts Centre’s 5th Annual Festival of Trees will be sparking yuletide joy in patrons who visit the Performing Arts Centre. Pre-lit artificial Christmas trees, generously donated by Canadian Tire – Burlington Stores and sponsored by local businesses, will light up BPAC’s Lobby for over four weeks – until their silent auction ‘winners’ take them home for the holidays.

You have the chance to take home one of 10 beautifully decorated trees by entering the Silent Auction.

Tree bidding ends on Sunday, December 19th at 4:00 pm.
The minimum bid for trees is $10.

All proceeds support BPAC’s ‘Live & Local Artist Development Initiative’ – no bid is too generous! View more details here.

Holiday Themed Shows at Burlington Performing Arts Centre

Dates as per event

From Christmas Spectaculars to Sean Cullen’s Christmas cocktail hour (& a half!), the Burlington Performance Arts Centre has something for everyone! Here are a few of the shows available during this holiday season. For more information, visit

  • A Christmas Spectacular starring Pete Paquette and guests
    • Saturday December 11th at 7:00 pm
  • Sean Cullen Christmas cocktail hour (& a half!)
    • Wednesday December 15th at 7:30 pm
  • Burlington Symphony Orchestra: A Christmas Spectacular
    • Sunday December 12th at 3:00 pm
  •  DLUX Puppets: Alice In wonderland
    • Monday December 27th at 4:00 pm & 7:00 pm
    • Tuesday December 28th at 1:00 pm & 4:00 pm

And more!

Light display at RBG for Winter wonders, castle with soldiers

Winter Wonders

Royal Botanical Gardens, Hendrie Park
Wednesday to Sunday, November 24th to January 9th, 2022

Follow incredible festive lights through picture-perfect Hendrie Park and discover something new at every turn!

Experience the magic of the holiday season under the stars as historic Hendrie Park transforms into a winter wonderland of nature and light. This unique outdoor experience guides visitors along Hendrie Park’s picturesque pathways adorned with charming festive lights, including 7 magical displays that tell the stories of unique winter wonders.

Timed tickets required and now on sale.

*This is a time-ticketed experience. Upon registration, you will be required to select an entry time. 

Holiday Train waiting for passengers at RBG

Ride the RBG Express

Daily, November 24th to January 9th, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm; at Hendrie Park

All aboard! Take a ride on the RBG Express through the winter beauty of Hendrie Park. The train is available for paid rides throughout the garden.

$5 per car for a maximum of 4 people per car (General Admission or Membership also applies).

This activity is NOT available: December 24th to 26th, December 31st, or January 12st

Nickle Brook Holiday Market

864 Drury Lane
November 27, 10 am- 3 pm

The Holiday Market is back Saturday, November 27 at Nickel Brook Brewing from 10 am – 3 pm. There will be beer (obviously), food, and a great selection of vendors so you can get some things checked off your holiday shopping list. Santa will be visiting at noon.

Tree Lighting ad with date of Sat Nov 20

Aldershot Tree Lighting

Plains Road, Burlington
November 20th, 2021 3:00 to 6:00 pm ** Tree Lighting | 6:00 PM**

This annual tradition has become a favorite among the local community and its business members.


  • Hand Bell choir from St. Mathew’s Church and the Enchorus Children’s Choir!
  • The Holiday Vendor Market will feature some new vendors to meet your holiday shopping needs!
  • Enjoy a visit with Santa, and please consider bringing a non-perishable food item to donate to Compassion Society of Halton & Burlington Food Bank as we Cram A Cruiser with the Halton Police.
  • The lighting up of the tree and Plains Road will be at 6pm!

Burlington Holiday Market

December 9th to 12th

Need holiday gift ideas? Visit our downtown Burlington Market where we have something for everyone while having music, entertainment, and more!

Santa’s Holiday Magic Trail

December 4th & 5th, 2021 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

Back by popular demand, Santa’s Holiday Magic Trail will be happening again this season. Santa will be driving a route throughout Burlington neighborhoods on an antique firetruck on December 4th and 5th, 2021 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Unfortunately, Santa will not be stopping to accept letters, milk or cookies, or posing for photos this year. Please use caution, and stay safe when near the road. Watch for route information posted here. Make sure you let others in Burlington know when you spot Santa by using #SpotSantaBurlON on any social posts.

Please note: December 12th, 2021, is an inclement weather date. This date will be scheduled if one of the previous dates is cancelled due to poor weather conditions.

Victorian Christmas

Victorian Christmas Tour & Treats

December 3rd to 4th at Ireland House Museum

Don’t miss this festive holiday tour at Ireland House Museum. Festive treats, a costumed guide, outdoor open fire, and more. Book your tickets.

Burlington Centre Virtual Santa Experience

November 8th to December 24th

A variety of Virtual Santa experiences are being offered, including storytime with Santa Claus, pet photos with Santa, jingle bell traditions, and more. Reserve your time online.

Country Bright

December 2nd to January 2nd

Immerse yourself in a charming country setting with 19th-century barns and natural scenery brought to life through lights and sound under a winter nighttime sky. Encounter whimsical displays, life-size snow globes, and familiar characters as you stroll through listening to your favourite holiday tunes in Country Heritage Park, located in Milton just north of Burlington. Use code Burl20 and save 20% on tickets.

Enjoy all that beautiful Burlington has to offer this holiday season! Don’t forget to tag us in your social media pics. Happy Holidays! Stay Safe.