Quebec Carnival's Bonhomme with Linda Aksomitis.

Quebec Carnival’s Bonhomme with Linda Aksomitis.

Quebec Carnival is the largest winter carnival in the world. Like many Canadians, Quebecers celebrate winter–in fact, the first large winter carnival in Quebec City took place back in 1894!

It wasn’t until 1954, however, that the annual tradition got underway and Bonhomme, the official ambassador of Carnival, was born.

The first official edition of the Québec Winter Carnival took place the following year, in 1955. Since then, the program has grown and grown and grown, today taking in three full weekends.

I’ve been lucky enough to attend twice–and plan to visit again some day! These are some of my favorite things to see and do.

Watch the Dogsleds Race

Sled Dogs racing through Old Quebec at Carnival

Sled Dogs racing through Old Quebec at Carnival


I love the old parts of Quebec City, the centuries old buildings, the narrow cobblestone streets, the feeling of history. So, it’s no wonder I found the excitement of the dogsleds racing over the snow-covered streets, cheered on the the Carnival crowds, a very memorable experience.


See all the Snow Sculptures

Ice sculptures at Quebec Carnival.

Ice sculptures at Quebec Carnival.

Artists seem to be able to use almost any medium to create beautiful sculptures, and snow is no exception. The snow sculpture event at Quebec Carnival started in 1973 and has grown to an international competition. The only problem with snow sculptures is that of course, they eventually melt, so all we have left of these masterpieces are the pictures.


Take a Snow Bath if You Dare!



Canadians are famous for their Polar Bear dips, so it’s no surprise that Quebec Carnival has its own version called the Snow Bath. While I only used my bathing suit in the hotel pool, you can see from this video that those who participate in the snow bath are having a lot of fun!

Go Snow Rafting

Snow rafting at Quebec Carnival.

Snow tubing at Quebec Carnival.

Snow rafting was a favorite activity for both me and my grandson at Quebec Carnival. While the line-ups at the top of the hill may seem long, it’s all worth the thrill as you fly over the snow course down onto the Plains of Abraham.

Visit the Bonhomme and His Ice Palace

Bonhomme's Ice Palace at Quebec Carnival.

Bonhomme’s Ice Palace at Quebec Carnival.


Bonhomme, a giant snowman, is the official ambassador for Carnival. Luckily, he’s always had a palace at the event, although originally it was built of snow, rather than ice. While I didn’t end up with a photo of the lights shining through the immense ice blocks, I can still see it if I close my eyes and remember all the fun of Quebec Carnival.

Visit Quebec Carnival

Visit Carnival in Quebec City, Quebec –


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