The best places in Canada to indulge in maple syrup


Although it might not feel like it in many places across the country, spring is officially here, which means budding tulips, berry picking, bird watching and mountain biking are on the horizon. Our favourite springtime activity, however, is a sweeter take on the season: maple syrup festivals. It’s no surprise that Canada boasts plenty of maple syrup festivals– after all, we do produce 85 percent of the world’s supply. So why not tap into your sweet tooth and check out one of these eight maple syrup festivals across the country?

Sugaring Off Festival, Saint-Pierre-Jolys, Manitoba

The Sugaring Off Festival (April 11 – 12) honours Canada’s maple syrup legacy with horse-drawn rides, New France era soldiers, traditional French-Canadian food, fiddling competitions and historically accurate demonstrations of maple syrup production. History lessons aside, there are plenty of maple candies and syrups for tasting, which we all know is the festival’s real treat. More info: Sugaring Off Festival

Elmira Maple Syrup Festival, Elmira, Ontario

Now in its 51st year, the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival (March 28) has been recognized as the World’s largest single-day maple syrup festival by the Guinness Book of Records. While the festival is stacked with events, the real draw is exploring the sugar bushes where you’ll get to experience how maple syrup is collected and prepared. Finish off the day with old-fashioned toffee and freshly-flipped pancakes topped with Elmira’s famous maple syrup. More info: Elmira Maple Syrup Festival

Elmvale Maple Syrup Festival, Elmvale, Ontario

This one-day event brings over 30,000 visitors to sleepy Elmvale, a small town just north of Toronto. Along with tours to the local sugar bushes, the festival—celebrating its 50th anniversary this year—features plenty of activities in-town like pancake-eating contests, an arts and crafts show, log-sawing competitions, and live music. So if you’re heading up to Ontario’s cottage country on April 25, be sure to stop at the festival to pick up enough maple syrup to last all year. More info: Elmvale Maple Syrup Festival

Cabane à sucre Leclerc, Neuville, Quebec

Quebec is the maple syrup capital of Canada with almost 80 percent of the world’s supply produced in the province’s sugar shacks. One of the province’s hundreds of shacks is the Leclerc’s, who open up their family-run facilities to the public all spring long. Ride a horse-drawn wagon, practice your log-sawing skills, and try the shack’s incredible syrup. More info: Cabane à sucre Leclerc

Sucrerie de la Montagne, Chemin St-Georges, Quebec

Situated on Mont Rigaud and bounded by 120 acres of maple trees, this farm is one of Quebec’s most popular destinations during the sugaring off season. From February to April, visitors at Sucrerie de la Montagne can enjoy horse-drawn sleigh rides, nosh at the bakery and feast on all-you-can-eat traditional Quebecois dishes like pea soup, baked beans, and meat pie. Before you leave, be sure to stock up on maple delights like taffy and syrup. More info: Sucrerie de la Montagne

Riverview Annual Maple Sugar Festival, Riverview, New Brunswick

Although when we think of maple syrup we tend to envision sugar shacks in Ontario and Quebec, over 1.8 million kilograms of syrup is produced in New Brunswick every year. The climate, soil and forest of the Atlantic coast give maple syrup here a unique flavour that’s beloved worldwide. At the Riverview Maple Sugar Festival (April 10 – 12), visitors can enjoy a whole day’s worth of activities. Start off the day with pancakes smothered in local syrup and then tour the sugar camps. After, gorge on maple barbecue and enjoy some treats like taffy on the snow, maple cotton candy and maple-flavoured ice cream. Finally, grab your flashlight and hike along the Dobson Trail. Be sure to stop at the campfire where you can snack on, you guessed it, maple s’mores. More info: Riverview Annual Maple Sugar Festival

Maple Capital of Atlantic Canada Festival, Saint-Quentin, New Brunswick

According the organizers behind the Maple Capital of the Atlantic Festival (March 31 – April 4), maple syrup is like fine wine. Different regions give it different flavours and there’s nothing like a vintage syrup. At this festival, you’ll learn how syrup is made while trying plenty of varieties of New Brunswick maple syrup. More info: Maple Capital of Atlantic Canada Festival