When enjoying all that Ontario has to offer, you will want to keep in mind Ontario’s seasons and weather, how they vary depending on location, as well as the natural requirements of particular outdoor activities. There are also activities that are limited to busier tourist periods or with restricted hours off season. You will also want to be aware of long weekends and other statutory holidays where special events occur, hours are often extended, and crowds are bigger.
Ontario has four seasons: winter, spring, summer, fall. Because the province is so big, average temperatures can vary considerably from north to south, but January is usually the coldest month of the year, and July and August are the warmest.
Winter – December 21 to March 19. We have cold weather in late fall and winter, especially in Northern Ontario, often below 0°C both day and night, and temperatures that can drop below -30°.
Spring – March 20 to June 20. It is a rainy season in most parts of Ontario with temperatures rising slowly through the season, although nights are cool.
Summer – June 21 to September 21. From June until mid September the weather is typically warm to hot, with July and August often being very hot and humid.
Fall – September 22 to December 20. Like the spring in Ontario, the weather is moderate, especially in Southern Ontario.
New Year’s Day – January 1
Family Day – Third Monday in February
Good Friday – Friday before Easter Sunday
Easter Monday – Government employees only
Victoria Day – Monday before May 25
Canada Day – July 1
Civic Holiday – First Monday in August – not an official stat holiday
Labour Day – First Monday in September
Thanksgiving Day – Second Monday in October
Christmas Day – December 25
Boxing Day – December 26
Downhill skiing in Ontario usually opens in mid or late December and ends in March for southern Ontario and in late March / April further north.
Winter Festivals occur between January and February, They can run from one day or weekend to multiple weekends. Most population centres in Ontario hold winter festivals – check your location for specific weekends and details.
Polar Bear Dips in Ontario Lakes also happen between January and February, and sometimes coincide with winter festivals. Check your location for specific weekends.
Maple Syrup Tapping & Festivals are a mid-February to mid-April activity in Southern Ontario. Check your location for specific details.
Swimming season depends on the size of the lake, where in Ontario you are situated, and personal preference. In Southern Ontario, July and August have fairly consistent swimming conditions, but swimming can start as early as late May and can run into October.
Summer festivals happen throughout July and August in Ontario. They can have general summer themes or specific themes around music, art, theatre, etc.
January – icewine grapes harvesting
mid February to mid April – maple syrup harvesting
late April early May – fruit tree blossoming (cherry, apple, peach, apricot, nectarine, pear)
late April early June – daffodil, tulip, hyacinth, magnolia tree blooming
spring and fall – rhubarb harvesting
June / July – strawberries and cherries harvesting
July to September – blueberries, raspberry, peaches harvesting
July to October – plums harvesting
August / September – nectarines harvesting
August to October – grapes, pears harvesting
late August to early October – pumpkins harvesting
late September to mid/late October – fall colours – leaves changing
November / December – christmas tree harvesting