Even after the winter holidays have passed, many cities offer family-friendly festivals with ice-skating rinks, carnival rides, workshops, fireworks, food and more. Plan to attend one of these exciting winter festival activities in late 2016 and early 2017.

Written by Lissa Poirot

Winter WonderFest – Chicago

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
650 Family Reviews
Dec. 3, 2016 to Jan. 8, 2017

Leading the winter festival activities is Chicago's Navy Pier, which hosts Winter WonderFest to coincide with the holiday season. The 16th annual event features a 170,000-square-foot winter playground, complete with indoor ice skating and fair-style slides, rides and fun for kids of all ages and sizes. Included this year are the Wintertube 15-foot-high tubing hill, Toboggan Tunnel roller sled ride, Winter Rules Mini Golf and Snowglobe Live, where you can take a photo inside a 15-foot-tall snow globe.

Recommended Hotel: Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago

Winter Carnival – Quebec City, Canada

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
1111 Family Reviews
Jan. 27 to Feb. 12, 2017

Looking for winter festival activity ideas? Quebec City knows how to celebrate winter in style. Quebec's world-famous Winter Carnival features First Night and Second Night Parades, ice skating, an ice palace and a number of unique activities for families, including a Snow Bath, sleigh race and dog sled rides. The festival also features snow sculptures and workshops, crafts, arctic spas, fireworks and plenty of food, including delectable fare found at the Sugar Shack.

Recommended Hotel: Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

Winterlude – Ottawa, Canada

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
63 Family Reviews
Feb. 3 to 20, 2017

Three weekends are devoted to this winter festival in Ottawa that celebrates its 47th year in 2017. The festival includes culinary events, ice carvings and snow sculptures, as well as Snowflake Kingdom, a snow playground filled with snow slides, obstacle courses and more fun the kids won't be able to get enough of! Be sure to lace on some skates for Rideau Canal, the world's largest naturally frozen skating rink!

Recommended Hotel: Rideau Heights Inn

Winter Carnival – Steamboat Springs, Colo.

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
233 Family Reviews
Feb. 8 to 12, 2017

For more than 100 years, families have visited Steamboat Springs for its annual 5-day Winter Carnival's snow-covered fun. As the oldest continuing winter carnival west of the Mississippi, families flock to the town's skijoring events down Lincoln Avenue. Ski jumping, racing, parades and the Lighted Man and fireworks night show are annual highlights. Don't miss the country's only skiing high school band perform in the parade!

Recommended Hotel: Sheraton Steamboat Resort

SnowFest – Lake Tahoe, Calif.

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
705 Family Reviews
North Lake Tahoe will celebrate great spring weather and skiing with 10 days and nights of fun for its 34th consecutive year. Snow events are held at popular ski resorts like Squaw Valley, Diamond Peak, Northstar-at-Tahoe, Alpine Meadows and Homewood, and include parades, races, concerts and special events for all ages.

Recommended Hotel: Resort at Squaw Creek

Cedarburg Winter Festival – Wisconsin

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
196 Family Reviews
Just north of Milwaukee, Cedarburg welcomes winter for the 42nd annual Winter Festival, which includes ice carvings, costumed bed racing, barrel races on ice, ice skating, snow golf, live music, arts and crafts, and food and an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast.

Recommended Hotel: The Brewhouse Inn & Suites

Stowe Winter Carnival – Vermont

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
1096 Family Reviews
Jan. 14 to 28, 2017

The ski destination of Stowe, Vermont, hosts its 42nd annual winter carnival, featuring ice carving competitions, snow golf, snow volleyball, ski races, and kids' carnival. At night, Carnival "meltdown" parties take place for parents, and throughout the event, competitive sports keep visitors entertained when not enjoying the slopes themselves.

Recommended Hotel: Stowe Mountain Lodge

St. Paul Winter Carnival - Minnesota

TripAdvisor Rating: TripAdvisor Owl
299 Family Reviews
Jan. 26 to Feb. 5, 2017

The oldest and biggest winter festival began in St. Paul in 1886 as a way to prove a reporter wrong: St. Paul isn't too cold for people in the winter. The event draws more than 350,000 visitors each year and includes live entertainment and a parade with the crowning a snow queen.

Recommended Hotel: Embassy Suites Hotel St. Paul - Downtown

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