Can’t-miss music festivals in Ottawa this summer

The Ottawa region boasts numerous can’t-miss music festivals every summer. Whether you love singing along to country tunes, dancing the night away to EDM, or rocking out to classic rock, there’s an Ottawa music festival for you. From world famous artists to rising stars, you can experience a diverse range of music, enjoying your favourite songs and discovering new ones. Below is a list of nine music festivals in the Ottawa area to add to your summer bucket list!

Ottawa Bluesfest

Ottawa Bluesfest is a can't-miss event that takes place during two weeks in July every summer. With its electrifying atmosphere, unbeatable lineup and diverse range of musical genres, Ottawa Bluesfest offers an unforgettable experience for music enthusiasts of all tastes. From July 6-16, 2023, at Lebreton Flats, you can see legendary blues artists to chart-topping pop sensations like the Foo Fighter, Ludacris and Mumford & Sons, the festival showcases an incredible array of talent. Whether you're captivated by soulful melodies, mesmerized by rock anthems or yearning for the groove of funk and jazz, Ottawa Bluesfest delivers it all. The festival's upbeat energy and picturesque setting on the banks of the Ottawa River make the perfect backdrop for music lovers to gather and immerse themselves in the music.

Ottawa Jazz Festival

The Ottawa Jazz Festival captivates jazz enthusiasts and music lovers from all walks of life. Taking place in the heart of Canada's capital in Confederation Park, this annual event infuses the city with the sounds of jazz, creating a festival brimming with rhythm and soul. Showcasing a rich tapestry of musical talent, the festival brings together distinguished jazz artists, emerging talents and innovative performers like Feist, Lord Huron and Buddy Guy. From smooth melodies to energetic compositions, the Ottawa Jazz Festival, taking place June 23-30, 2023, offers a diverse range of jazz styles that captivate and inspire. Beyond the music, the festival boasts an inviting ambiance with its picturesque venues, outdoor stages and welcoming community spirit. Whether you're a die-hard jazz aficionado or simply someone in search of an enchanting summer experience, the Ottawa Jazz Festival is a must-attend event that promises to leave you with unforgettable memories and a deeper appreciation for the art of jazz.

Escapade Music Festival

This must-experience music festival has an electrifying and unforgettable energy. Renowned for its impeccable lineup of artists and pulsating beats that reverberate through the city, Escapade Music Festival will be delivering an exhilarating experience from June 23-25, 2023. From heart-pounding EDM sets that ignite the dance floor to soul-stirring live performances that captivate the crowd, Escapade promises an immersive sonic journey like no other. The festival's lively atmosphere, coupled with its stunning stage production and state-of-the-art sound systems, creates an immersive and euphoric experience that brings you into a realm of pure musical bliss. Located in the trendy Lansdowne area, Escapade Music Festival is an extraordinary celebration of music, camaraderie and endless moments of pure joy that leaves a lasting imprint on everyone who attends.

Kemptville Live Music Festival

The Kemptville Live Music Festival is a summer music extravaganza located just outside of Ottawa in Kemptville. From the moment you step foot onto the festival grounds, you're immersed in an atmosphere of pure musical bliss. The lineup boasts a diverse array of artists spanning various genres, ensuring there's something to captivate every musical taste. Whether you're grooving to the infectious beats of a dynamic rock band, swaying to the soulful melodies of a blues legend or losing yourself in the rhythm of a folk troubadour, the festival offers a sonic journey that transcends boundaries. See headliners like Melissa Etheridge, Blue Rodeo and Colin James live. The energy of the crowd, combined with the idyllic outdoor setting, creates a truly unforgettable experience.

Nostalgia Music Festival

Drawing upon the timeless classics and iconic hits that have shaped generations, Nostalgia Music Festival takes attendees on a journey back in time, evoking a sense of euphoria and sentimental bliss. With its impressive lineup of artists and bands from various decades, the festival creates an immersive experience that transports fans to the golden eras of music. From rock 'n' roll anthems that ignite the crowd's energy to soulful ballads that stir emotions, every performance resonates deeply with attendees, creating a shared nostalgia and unbridled joy. With its animated stages, top-notch production and curated selection of food vendors and retro-themed activities, Nostalgia Music Festival offers a full sensory experience that immerses fans in the music, culture and spirit of bygone times. Experience the nostalgia for yourself on August 23-27, 2023 at Lebreton Flats.

Fiddles on the Rideau

Held in the heart of Ottawa, the Fiddles on the Rideau Festival is a summer music festival happening July 14-16, 2023, in Manotick, that embraces the spirit of traditional folk and Celtic music. Bringing together renowned fiddlers and musicians from across Canada and beyond, the festival delights audiences with its masterful performances and infectious energy. Fiddles on the Rideau showcases the rich heritage of fiddle music, providing a platform for both established and emerging artists to showcase their talent. With its foot-stomping melodies, the festival creates a welcoming environment that encourages attendees to dance, sing along and immerse themselves in the joyous celebration of music and culture. The Fiddles on the Rideau festival also offers workshops and interactive sessions, allowing visitors to learn about the techniques and history behind fiddle music.

Ottawa Chamberfest

The Ottawa Chamberfest music festival is a remarkable celebration of chamber music that enriches the cultural landscape of Canada’s capital city from July 20-August 2, 2023. Renowned for its exceptional performances and artists, Chamberfest, held at the Carleton Cominion-Chalmers church in downtown Ottawa, hosts talented musicians from around the globe to create a musical experience like no other. The festival showcases a diverse range of chamber music styles, from classical masterpieces to contemporary and experimental compositions, providing a platform for both established and emerging artists to showcase their virtuosity. With its intimate and acoustically rich venues, Chamberfest offers an immersive and captivating experience that allows the audience to connect deeply with the music. Beyond the concerts, the festival also hosts workshops, lectures, and interactive events that promote engagement and education, fostering a deeper appreciation for chamber music.


CityFolk brings together a diverse lineup of renowned artists spanning a wide range of genres, from folk and indie rock to blues and world music at the great lawn in Lansdowne Park. The festival, taking place September 13-17, 2023, creates an immersive experience that transcends musical boundaries and leaves a lasting impact on attendees. With headliners like Hozier, Iggy Pop and Bush, you’re bound to have an incredible time. Beyond the incredible music, CityFolk also embraces the vibrant local arts scene, featuring artisans, craft vendors and culinary delights that showcase the city's creativity and culinary prowess. The festival's lively and inclusive atmosphere fosters a sense of unity and connection, creating a space where music lovers from all walks of life come together to celebrate the universal language of music.

Festival Country du Grand Gatineau

Embodying the spirit of country music is The Festival Country du Grand Gatineau happening August 2-6, 2023, just across the Ottawa River in Gatineau. Situated in the breathtaking region of Gatineau, just outside of Ottawa, this festival showcases a lineup of exceptional country artists, both local and international. Moreover, the festival's picturesque location, surrounded by stunning natural landscapes, enhances the overall ambiance, providing a truly memorable setting for music enthusiasts. Whether you're a die-hard country fan or simply appreciate the genre's charm, the Festival Country du Grand Gatineau promises an unforgettable music festival experience that will have you tapping your boots and singing along to the rhythm of country tunes.

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