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Festivals & Events

Here, music and laughter are always on tap. You’ll find it in our pubs and restaurants across the island, as our friendly cheer and sense of community often brings everyone together. Explore the island this summer and take part in local festivals, cèilidhs, and events.

Festivals & Events 7

Please Note

With the phased re-opening of the province, gathering limits may stagger in size. Some festivals and events may be canceled if another outbreak occurs. Please be prepared for last-minute changes.

Patio Lanterns Festival

Local businesses across Nova Scotia are lighting up this summer and fall with live music, food and drink specials, summer décor, fun activities, and more patio magic. Keep an eye out for the Patio Lanterns Festival logo on event listings.

photo credit: @RockPixels

Upcoming Events

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Fiddle & Folk Foliage Farewell

Next Date: Oct 21, 2021

Region: Cabot Trail

Community: Margaree Valley

The Barn Music and Theatre Society of Margaree will be holding our Fiddle & Folk Foliage Farewell, a 3-day all-ages music festival from...

Trivia Nights at the Frolic

Next Date: Oct 21, 2021

Region: Bras d’Or Lake

Community: Iona

Come test your wits & win prizes! 3 Rounds – 12 general knowledge questions each round. Play solo, or form a team. The funniest team n...

Cape Breton Winter Jazz Series

Next Date: Jan 8, 2022

Region: Sydney and Area / Marconi Trail

Community: Sydney

The Cape Breton Winter Jazz Series, presented by the Cape Breton Jazz Festival, will present more than 30 high quality jazz shows during Jan...

Live Music

Like the routes, trails, and waterways that bisect our Island, music connects our communities and cultures. Internationally renowned festivals. Weekly jam sessions. Time-honored traditions and ancient rituals. Hear our spirit in each fiddle reel, bagpipe Biri, and drum beat.


KitchenFest! Féis a’ Chidsin! is happening August 27 – September 4, just for 2021.  Expect fiddles and bagpipes, concerts and céilidhs, food and drink, Gaelic language and song, informality and hospitality — consider this your official invitation to Cape Breton’s biggest kitchen céilidh!

We encourage you to explore the many types of festivals & events
that our island has to offer when the time is right.

  • Cèilidhs & Kitchen Parties

    It simply means social visit, but here, the Cèilidh is a perennial way of life. It’s a weekly family square dance. A community gathering full of food and music. Indulge in a kitchen party and connect with our culture and heritage. Feel the rhythm of our Island through the pulse of music and warmth of our communities.  Your trip to Island would not be complete with taking in a Cape Breton ceilidh or a Kitchen Party! Experience Celtic music like never before with one of these events and understand why we’ve been coined as Canada’s Musical Coast.

  • Performing Arts & Culture

    Arts and culture don’t have an off-season here. From winter jam sessions along Canada’s Musical Coast and to sizzling summer festivals and Acadian celebrations along the Cabot Trail. Enjoy music and comedy productions live and experience the rich art and culture that exists across the Island.

  • Festivals

    History, heritage, community—there’s always a reason to celebrate on our Island. You won’t have to travel far to find a fun festival, but with so many options why not explore the Island?

  • Food & Drink

    Foodie heaven? More like a culinary cloud nine. The culinary scene on Cape Breton Island is truly unlike anything you have experienced and luckily, tasting your way around our Island has never been easier. Follow the Nova Scotia Chowder Trail to a famous lunch Cèilidh. Plan your trip around a Highland lobster supper. Experience world-class shellfish, locally grown ingredients, and award-winning sips that connect our heritage to our land. 

  • Heritage

    Pay ode to the Island’s coal mining history with food, fun, and festivities. Discover the roots of our Acadian communities by guided hike. Run head-on into history through a 300-year-old fortress. Our heritage is easy to learn, but even more, fun to live with each event.

  • Community Events

    Over 100 communities. Hundreds of days a year to celebrate. From seasonal festivals and annual sporting tournaments to weekly dances, discover each pocket of our Island with our unique selection of community events.

Illustrated map of Cape Breton Island

Easy to Find. Hard to Leave.

There are direct flights to Sydney from Toronto and Montreal and from other North American and European cities via Halifax. If traveling by ground, the Trans-Canada Highway 104 leads to Cape Breton Island.

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