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Canberra's Coolest Winter Events and Festivals 2021

Home > Canberra > Festivals | Family | Christmas | Food and Wine | Markets
by Heidi Cee (subscribe)
Explore the food, sights and events of Canberra and the surrounding regions with me. To see what I've been up to, I'm on Instagram @heids_c
Published June 7th 2021
Canberra's Coolest Winter Events
Although the temperature drops fast in the Canberra winter, there's a smoking hot schedule of winter events and festivals to get you through the cold days and long nights. Whether you love food, wine, lights, fire, Christmas or even plunging naked into freezing water, there's something for everyone this winter. Here's a roundup of some of the best to pencil in on your calendar:


It's time to lace up the ice-skates, pop on some mittens and sip some hot chocolate because Wintervention is back in Canberra this winter. Civic Square is set to become a winter wonderland and as well as the ice-skating, there will be hot drinks, food trucks, live music, market stalls and plenty more. Running from 25 June to 11 July, this is some perfectly frosty fun for the school holidays. While the stalls and food are open to everybody, the ice skating is ticketed and more information is available here.

Pialligo Estate Christmas in July Feast

If winter has you craving some old-world atmosphere, carols and festive feels, the team in Pialligo will transform their Glasshouse into a winter wonderland complete with mulled wine, antipasto and shared platters and a soundtrack of Christmas carols. Lunch and dinner sittings are available on July 24th& 25th. Book here.

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The Yarrh winter solstice bonfire will heat up this winter

Dragon Boat Festival

The Beijing Garden will be roaring as the winter Dragon Boat Festival fires up. With live performances (including lion dance) and stalls to celebrate the annual Dragon Boat Festival, this is sure to be a great winter afternoon of fun. From 10:30am on 13 June at the Beijing Garden. More information here.

Glow On

This winter, Canberra will experience its first "Gets its Glow On" event. The night includes LED animal sculptures placed throughout the event lighting up the grounds, roving performers, and a spectacular light show at the end of the night. There will be a night market offering amazing street food, market stalls, LED animal sculptures, and kid's amusements. If you want to be part of the spectacle, head to the glow-in-the-dark tent for glow in the dark glasses, headbands and other glow items so that you can 'get your glow on' too. From 5pm on 10 July at Thoroughbred Park. This is a ticketed event. Find out more here.

French Christmas in July Market

This July, France is coming to Canberra with a magical French Christmas market experience at the Old Parliament House Rose Gardens. The event includes authentic imported wood huts from Europe, melted cheese stations, wine, shopping, light installations, Christmas decor and more. The perfect excuse to experience Christmas twice in a year! The market runs from 1- 4 July. For more information, click here.

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The coolest part of Canberra's winter is ice skating in the city centre

Winter Schnapps Fest

From the team behind Oktoberfest and Beerfest, Schnappsfest is here to warm your winter. A celebration of all things Bavarian, there will be fire pits, gluhwein, and of course, the star of the show, schnapps.

Nude Winter Solstice Swim

If you like the idea of getting naked and plunging into the near-freezing waters of Lake Burley Griffin, this is the winter event for you! An opportunity to wash away the negative energies of the past solar year and welcome the new with renewed energy and zest for life while raising money for charity. If you're brave enough, the details are available here.

Yarrh Wines Winter Solstice Bonfire

If you need some motivation to get out in midwinter, this one's for you. The Yarrh Wines winter solstice bonfire lights up the shortest night of the year with a raging blaze, a seriously impressive sight. But it also gives you the opportunity to try Yarrh's range of wines matched with canapes and stock your cellar. And the best bit? This event is a major fundraiser for the local RFS so you can eat, drink, be merry and do a good deed all in one night. At Yarrh wines from 3:30pm.

Queanbeyan Christmas in July Markets

On Sunday 11 July, the Queanbeyan Market will be featuring some festive fun. Christmas-inspired food, gourmet treats and wine, handmade Christmas gifts and even a 'Caroloke' event will add some Christmas magic to winter. For more information or to enter the Carloke, check out the details here.

Winter Red Wine Cruise

What better to warm you up on a cool winter afternoon than a nice glass of red...or five. On the Winederlust winter red wine cruise, you'll sample five wines from around Australia while cruising the beautiful Lake Burley Griffin. The cruise also includes a grazing box lunch and dessert. Departs from Kingston at 1pm on 19 June.

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Why? To make the most of Canberra's winter
When: Throughout winter
Where: Various locations around Canberra
Cost: Varies per event
Your Comment
I might dig out the winter woolies and head for Canberra Heide. I might give the Lake Burley Griffin swim a miss. I won't want to frighten the locals. The bonfire is more my go as it brings back childhood memories of bonfire and cracker nights. Far more interesting that staring at computer screens.
by Neil Follett (score: 3|3114) 109 days ago
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