Edmonton's Ice Castles (December-March): Edmonton's breath-taking ice castles are back at Hawrelak Park this winter. Explore an acre-sized winter wonderland crafted by hand using only icicles and water, with sights resembling organic formations found in nature, such as frozen waterfalls, glaciers or ice caves.Entry costs from $13.95 (around £8) for adults and $10.95 (around £6.50) for children (aged 4-11). icecastles.com/edmonton
 Jasper in January (10-27 January): Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Jasper in January is the ultimate winter festival set in Jasper National Park. Come and celebrate the beauty and spirit of winter with three weeks of fat biking, dark sky storytelling, ice skating, skiing, brewery tours, wildlife camera safaris, dog sledding, sleigh rides, slalom races, and ice walks around Maligne Canyon. Events and activities are priced individually.jasper.travel/january
 
Ice Magic Festival (17-27 January): Set amidst the spectacular surroundings of iconic Lake Louise, this world-class event has been running for over 20 years. The festival centres on a 34-hour ice carving competition at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Banff National Park where talented ice artists from around the world skilfully combine gruelling physicality with precision artistry in the 25th annual Lake Louise ice carving competition. Tickets to enter the Ice Magic Competition Carving Site lakeside at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise are only required during peak visitation over the competition weekend at a cost of $12.50 (around £7) for adults and $5 (around £3) for children 12 and under. ALL other days and times are FREE. banfflakelouise.com/ice-magic-festival
 
Boardwalk Ice on Whyte Festival (24-27 January and 31 January-3 February): Two long weekends of winter fun in Edmonton's Old Strathcona neighbourhood on Whyte Avenue including activities such as a professional International Ice Carving Competition (requiring 15 blocks of crystal-clear carving ice), live music, learn to ice carve sessions and a climate-controlled ice bar of -2℃. Entry costs $7 (around £4.15) for adults and $4 (around £2.40) for kids. iceonwhyte.ca
 
Waterton Wildflower Festival (13-18 June): Taking place in Waterton Lakes National Park in southern Alberta, this event celebrates the more than 1,000 vascular plant species located in the Rocky Mountain region, including 175 species that are considered rare and 20 species that can only be found in this special corner of the province of Alberta. The festival celebrates natural beauty with wildflower photography and painting classes, wildflower identification activities, horseback rides, the iconic Waterton Lake Cruise wildflower tour and afternoon tea with local wildflower experts. Ticket prices and sales available from April. watertonwildflowers.com
 
The Calgary Stampede (5-14 July): A high-energy annual rodeo, exhibition and festival held in Alberta's largest city, which offers a true introduction to the Wild West. Daytimes see cowboys and cowgirls compete in an attempt to reach Showdown Sunday – Rodeo's Richest Afternoon and win over $2 million in prize money. Evenings are focused on the GMC Rangeland Derby and the Calgary Stampede Grandstand Show which combines nine heats of four chuck wagon races with elaborate song and dance numbers, acrobatics and fireworks. A two day 'Thrill Package' costs from $315 (around £185) and includes entry to Stampede Park, the Rodeo, Evening Show, WestJet Sky Ride Tickets and souvenirs. calgarystampede.com
 
Taste of Edmonton (22 July – 2 August) / Taste of Calgary (8-11 August):Local summer foodie festivals that celebrate talented chefs, local ingredients and popular restaurants that the cities have to offer. Geared toward food-enthusiasts, the festivals offer visitors the chance to sample dishes from a wide range of cooking styles. Complementing the range of flavours are live performances by local musicians. Free event entry. Food sampling tickets from $1 (around 60p). tasteofedm.ca / www.tasteofcalgary.com
 
The Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede (24-27 July): One of the oldest stampedes in North America, a trip to Medicine Hat's annual event offers a great taste of the Wild West and a chance to explore a lesser known area of Alberta, the Badlands. Find it three hours from Calgary. Entry costs from $20 (around £12) for adults and $14 (around £8.50) for kids (aged 12 and under).mhstampede.com
 
Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival (15-25 August): As North America's largest and longest-running Fringe Festival and the second biggest in the world after The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, attracting 700,000 visitors each summer with 1,600 performances from worldwide artists. Individual show tickets start from around $16 (around £10) and festival passes go on sale in early August from around $115 (approximately £68). fringetheatre.ca
 
Jasper Dark Sky Festival (October): As daylight hours begin to recede in Jasper National Park, stargazers come out to explore the night sky. Named one of Canada's largest Dark Sky Preserves, Jasper National Park has very little light pollution, making it an ideal location to see the stars. Lucky stargazers are sometimes treated to a performance by the elusive Northern Lights. During the festival, night sky experts gather to provide tours of the constellations, stars and planets above, while during the daytime, space-related activities take place around the Rocky Mountain town of Jasper. Most events are free entry, but some activities may be ticketed. jasperdarksky.travel
For more information on Alberta, visit www.travelalberta.com/uk/ 

Edmonton's Ice Castles (December-March): Edmonton's breath-taking ice castles are back at Hawrelak Park this winter. Explore an acre-sized winter wonderland crafted by hand using only icicles and water, with sights resembling organic formations found in nature, such as frozen waterfalls, glaciers or ice caves.Entry costs from $13.95 (around £8) for adults and $10.95 (around £6.50) for children (aged 4-11). icecastles.com/edmonton

Jasper in January (10-27 January): Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Jasper in January is the ultimate winter festival set in Jasper National Park. Come and celebrate the beauty and spirit of winter with three weeks of fat biking, dark sky storytelling, ice skating, skiing, brewery tours, wildlife camera safaris, dog sledding, sleigh rides, slalom races, and ice walks around Maligne Canyon. Events and activities are priced individually.jasper.travel/january

Ice Magic Festival (17-27 January): Set amidst the spectacular surroundings of iconic Lake Louise, this world-class event has been running for over 20 years. The festival centres on a 34-hour ice carving competition at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Banff National Park where talented ice artists from around the world skilfully combine gruelling physicality with precision artistry in the 25th annual Lake Louise ice carving competition. Tickets to enter the Ice Magic Competition Carving Site lakeside at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise are only required during peak visitation over the competition weekend at a cost of $12.50 (around £7) for adults and $5 (around £3) for children 12 and under. ALL other days and times are FREE. banfflakelouise.com/ice-magic-festival

Boardwalk Ice on Whyte Festival (24-27 January and 31 January-3 February): Two long weekends of winter fun in Edmonton's Old Strathcona neighbourhood on Whyte Avenue including activities such as a professional International Ice Carving Competition (requiring 15 blocks of crystal-clear carving ice), live music, learn to ice carve sessions and a climate-controlled ice bar of -2℃. Entry costs $7 (around £4.15) for adults and $4 (around £2.40) for kids. iceonwhyte.ca

Waterton Wildflower Festival (13-18 June): Taking place in Waterton Lakes National Park in southern Alberta, this event celebrates the more than 1,000 vascular plant species located in the Rocky Mountain region, including 175 species that are considered rare and 20 species that can only be found in this special corner of the province of Alberta. The festival celebrates natural beauty with wildflower photography and painting classes, wildflower identification activities, horseback rides, the iconic Waterton Lake Cruise wildflower tour and afternoon tea with local wildflower experts. Ticket prices and sales available from April. watertonwildflowers.com

The Calgary Stampede (5-14 July): A high-energy annual rodeo, exhibition and festival held in Alberta's largest city, which offers a true introduction to the Wild West. Daytimes see cowboys and cowgirls compete in an attempt to reach Showdown Sunday – Rodeo's Richest Afternoon and win over $2 million in prize money. Evenings are focused on the GMC Rangeland Derby and the Calgary Stampede Grandstand Show which combines nine heats of four chuck wagon races with elaborate song and dance numbers, acrobatics and fireworks. A two day 'Thrill Package' costs from $315 (around £185) and includes entry to Stampede Park, the Rodeo, Evening Show, WestJet Sky Ride Tickets and souvenirs. calgarystampede.com

Taste of Edmonton (22 July – 2 August) / Taste of Calgary (8-11 August):Local summer foodie festivals that celebrate talented chefs, local ingredients and popular restaurants that the cities have to offer. Geared toward food-enthusiasts, the festivals offer visitors the chance to sample dishes from a wide range of cooking styles. Complementing the range of flavours are live performances by local musicians. Free event entry. Food sampling tickets from $1 (around 60p). tasteofedm.ca / www.tasteofcalgary.com

The Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede (24-27 July): One of the oldest stampedes in North America, a trip to Medicine Hat's annual event offers a great taste of the Wild West and a chance to explore a lesser known area of Alberta, the Badlands. Find it three hours from Calgary. Entry costs from $20 (around £12) for adults and $14 (around £8.50) for kids (aged 12 and under).mhstampede.com

Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival (15-25 August): As North America's largest and longest-running Fringe Festival and the second biggest in the world after The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, attracting 700,000 visitors each summer with 1,600 performances from worldwide artists. Individual show tickets start from around $16 (around £10) and festival passes go on sale in early August from around $115 (approximately £68). fringetheatre.ca

Jasper Dark Sky Festival (October): As daylight hours begin to recede in Jasper National Park, stargazers come out to explore the night sky. Named one of Canada's largest Dark Sky Preserves, Jasper National Park has very little light pollution, making it an ideal location to see the stars. Lucky stargazers are sometimes treated to a performance by the elusive Northern Lights. During the festival, night sky experts gather to provide tours of the constellations, stars and planets above, while during the daytime, space-related activities take place around the Rocky Mountain town of Jasper. Most events are free entry, but some activities may be ticketed. jasperdarksky.travel

For more information on Alberta, visit www.travelalberta.com