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Where would you go in the UK for a fabulous Christmas experience?

(52 Posts)
Venay Thu 22-Aug-13 22:16:32

Sorry - I know it is horrible to ask in August! My sister is visiting in December for 3 weeks, and I would like to take her to a traditional British Christmas event. I have tried googling, and it keeps suggesting things like we should visit Santa in Lapland or go to Germany for the Christmas markets, however we have 3 under 5s between us, and I don't think we want to leave the UK.

So, is there anywhere good in the UK that we could visit? My sister is especially interested in history, and would probably enjoy a Stately home - her children won't have seen reindeer or snow or Santa...

Does anyone have any advice?

BeachComeRainOrShine Thu 22-Aug-13 22:20:48

Longleat? Stately home, animals and special Christmas train.

bendertherobot Thu 22-Aug-13 22:21:38

Where abouts in the UK? I'm in Kent and can think of a couple of things

Lapland UK and the Christmas Dickens festival in Rochester.

oohdaddypig Thu 22-Aug-13 22:21:39

Edinburgh has a lovely winter market in December. Check it out online for more info but its a mini Xmas festival with a German market, scottish market and ice rink etc. it's a great city to visit in December time smile

BeachComeRainOrShine Thu 22-Aug-13 22:23:22

Sirzy Thu 22-Aug-13 22:23:25

Thomasland Christmas is great for young children at Drayton manor

The Christmas markets in Manchester are good.

Tatton park in Manchester often has traditional Christmas activities

seventhchild Thu 22-Aug-13 22:24:35

Chtworth has a Christmas market and does the house up amazingly.

seventhchild Thu 22-Aug-13 22:24:59


Jenijena Thu 22-Aug-13 22:27:16

What about a weekend in the longleat area, with a day at longleat, and a day in Bath. I think it has a Christmas festival one weekend in December, you could see the Roman baths, and its a nice place to visit.

Elizadoesdolittle Thu 22-Aug-13 22:34:34

Echo some of the other suggestions of Bath/Longleat. Bath is a beautiful city (have family there so maybe slightly biased). Just come back from a long weekend there. They have a christmas market in the grounds of the abbey. And longleat is fab.

ENormaSnob Thu 22-Aug-13 22:43:08


Picturesinthefirelight Thu 22-Aug-13 22:44:34

I've always wanted to go to Thursford but its probably not what you're after.

CruCru Thu 22-Aug-13 22:46:04

Osborne House (Queen Victorias house in the Isle of Wight) does a Victorian Christmas thing.

AnneUulmelmahay Thu 22-Aug-13 22:48:05

Hah did anyone else check OP wasn't dear ole DotFox? Chortle.

Another vote for Bath. Take in the markets at twilight and carol service (nice n short) in the cathedral. Lovely

I'm coming on to say Bath too, sipping hot chocolate and eating cookies from the German food stall on the Christmas market was a favourite thing of mine when I lived there.

whyno Thu 22-Aug-13 22:51:06

Santa train on the bluebell railway?

startwig1982 Thu 22-Aug-13 22:52:13

I would also say Bath/Longleat. However, the Bath Christmas market tends to be early December so if you're looking for something closer to christmas you may want to rethink.

Longleat have reindeer and an ice rink and is fantastic as a day out anyway. I think there's also usually an ice rink in Bristol.

Venay Thu 22-Aug-13 22:53:03

Thank you for all the wonderful suggestions. I will follow them all up.

We are in London, but we are prepared to travel.

Last Christmas we tried the Christmas event in park and found it very disappointing.

BrightnessAndWallpaper Thu 22-Aug-13 22:56:31

Lapland UK was a big hit with my son - a few years ago now but they executed the day with great finesse. Bewelwater in Kent.

Winchester has a fabulous Christmas market and an ice rink in the cathedral close, gets very busy at weekends unless you go early or late. Might not be the best for under 5's though. I've heard that Longleat is brilliant.

getoffthecoffeetable Thu 22-Aug-13 23:04:18

Lincoln Christmas Market.
Worcester Victorian Market

ChippingInHopHopHop Thu 22-Aug-13 23:06:44

You are in London - you really don't need to go anywhere else smile There's tons to do in London at Christmas that's 'British' & fun and of course - pray for snow smile

TulipsfromAmsterdam Thu 22-Aug-13 23:08:22

We went on the Polar Express train at Weardale last year and it is running again this year. It also runs from another venue but can't remember where. Based on the film and a truly fantastic experience for children.

littlemissnormal Thu 22-Aug-13 23:10:33

The ice rink in the centre of Bristol has closed now but they usually put a big one up at The Mall.

Longleat is amazing at Christmas; the Santa train, ice rink and they put fairy tale characters in the house. Last year they were also showing The Snowman on big screens in the central area.

Second the market at Bath too. And the panto at the Theatre Royal was great last year!

MyThumbsHaveGoneWeird Thu 22-Aug-13 23:14:26

Ice skating at Somerset house is lovely. You need to book quite early. And I heard v good things about the Christmas market on Southbank. Taxi down regent st to see the lights? I always used to find London magical at Christmas when we visited when I was little.

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