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Places to go for a Christmas Day out

(21 Posts)
ThomasRichard Fri 11-Sep-15 17:22:23

I thought itcwould be nice to swap recommendations for Christmassy days out. My DC are 5 and 2 and we've made a bit of a tradition of going on a trip one weekend day in December.

Ones I'd recommend:

- Christmas at Thomas Land at Drayton Manor. The DC loved the rides and decorations, including fake snow, and the Father Christmas was very good too.

- Christmas at Peppa Pig World, Paulton's Park. The giant Christmas trees were amazing, the 4D Christmas cinema was good and the Father Christmas was great.

- The Enchanted Woodland at Syon Park. When we went last year there were lots of lights and things to spot on the trail, including a smoky dragon! and a laser show at the end.

- Quainton Railway Centre near Aylesbury. It's a really interesting place to go, especially for Thomas-loving DC, and their Christmas special is fun. We've also done the Bluebell Railway Santa train and that was good too.

ThomasRichard Fri 11-Sep-15 17:23:59

This year we're trying a Twilight Christmas evening at Hever Castle, which looks very special with the Three Wise Men on camels, a Victorian-style fair, Huskies and donkeys.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 11-Sep-15 18:08:43

My DC are teenagers now but when they were 9 and 6.6 we went to Gullivers for Hallowe'en.

They do a Christmas Event too, not sure what that's like though.

Ours loved the Hallowe'en Event. They could go on all the rides, on their own if they wanted, the staff were all really good (though some of the reviews said otherwise. We went to Milton Keynes )

Most of the children dressed up and there was a brilliant firework display at the end.
My DS was on the older end of the age that would enjoy it, but it might be worth looking online.

ChristmasZombie Sat 12-Sep-15 17:16:38

We've been to Santa's Winter Wonderland at the Snowdome in Tamworth twice, and we've booked again for this year. You get 30 minutes of snowplay, with Christmas music and lights and stuff, then a santa pantomime-style show, then time to go round Santa's farm. I'm not massively enamoured of the farm (it's cute and festive, but I do question the animal welfare side of things), but the rest of it is fab!

kiwidreamer Sat 12-Sep-15 17:39:40

We've been to Lapland UK (Windsor / Ascot way) two years running and just love it. I really want to go again this year, DD 4yrs is already talking about visiting Santa and going ice skating but I'm worried that they will really catch on to the repetitiveness of the activities. So I think we might have to try something different --or maybe I can go on my own--

Has anyone tried the Christmas experience at LEGOLAND?

autumnintheair Sat 12-Sep-15 21:14:36

kiwi I heard great reports aboUT Legoland last year and am going to try it this year.

Op. HOw much was peppa and were rides open? we have not been before.

ThomasRichard Sun 13-Sep-15 00:10:50

autumn all of the rides in Peppa Pig World were open and some of the rides in the larger Paulton's Park too - more than enough for us to have a full day there. The tickets were expensive - £25 per person for over 3's - but I felt they were good value for everything they included.

70 I'd forgotten we actually did Gulliver's Land in MK when DS was 1 smile We didn't bother with any of the Santa boys bit we enjoyed the singing and the fireworks.

ThomasRichard Sun 13-Sep-15 00:11:13

Santa bits! No idea where the boys came from!

autumnintheair Sun 13-Sep-15 16:24:18

thomas how did they do santa at peppa world? Do you queue up, or is there a train, was there a toy, would an 8 year old like?

bakingaddict Sun 13-Sep-15 16:30:33

Hyde Park winter wonderland is cool and the atmosphere is very festive but it does get very packed

Kew Gardens advertised an evening Christmas trail and carol concert which I wanted to go to but it's the other side of London from me

birdsdestiny Sun 13-Sep-15 16:38:27

Kielder winterwonderland in Northumberland is fantastic.

ThomasRichard Sun 13-Sep-15 17:27:19

autumn we had to pick a timeslot when we booked the tickets. At that time everyone for that slot went into the 4D cinema for a short film about Father Christmas, then went into the grotto part, which was an inside trail of the North Pole & Santa's workshop where we queued to see Santa. The children's ages were specified on the booking form so they got age-appropriate Melissa & Doug toys. I certainly saw lots of older children there who seemed to enjoy it.

BeamingBrenda Sun 13-Sep-15 17:37:11

My DC enjoyed legoland last year.

There is a big tent where you can write a letter to santa, decorate cookies, build lego decorations and I think something else but I can't remember what.

There are no queues and you can walk onto the rides which are open.

It's all very pretty with trees everywhere and the castle is all lit up.

I'm thinking if doing peppa pig this year as DD1 will be 8 and will be probably be too old for it next year.

AuditAngel Sun 13-Sep-15 17:40:14

We did Legoland last year. It was amazing. Not much of the park is open, none of the big rides, but it was beautifully decorated. At the appointed time you go to a special bridge by the castle, and are then escorted into a forest of Chrustmas trees. We saw some elves in the forest, but no other families. The wooden FC coins are arranged around the outside of the "forest" but you can't see them until you are in the steps and specifically look, I'm 5'7"

It is expensipve, but you get a hot drink each, the kids get a Lego present (value of ours were each about £10) there were 2 restaurants open, a burger one, and the rotisserie in the castle which served a really reasonable 2 course meal, about 3 choices each for kids and grown ups. I wanted a dessert from the kids menu, and they just laughed and said it was fine (an ENORMOUS sticky toffee pudding)

Apart from the rides, there was also a place to write a letter to Santa, colour Christmas cards and ice a gingerbread man. All included in the price.

We have also done Osterley house (3 years ago) and Ham House (2 years ago) , preferred Osterley, may try Syon this year.

BeamingBrenda Sun 13-Sep-15 18:21:39

We've also did Longleat one year which was lovely - esp the house and the fireworks around the singing Christmas tree.

Worked out expensive once you add everything on though. We used club card vouchers which helped.

BeamingBrenda Sun 13-Sep-15 18:22:08

What are wooden legoland coins?

PesoPenguin Sun 13-Sep-15 18:42:39

All these places are way to far south for us sad does anyone have any northern suggestions?

KatharineClifton Sun 13-Sep-15 18:47:16

Lantern Magic at Chester Zoo is very lovely for young DC, mine were a bit old at 12 but we made it special anyway.

AuditAngel Sun 13-Sep-15 22:01:52

Sorry Brenda that was supposed to say "wooden FC (abbreviation for Father Christmas) cabins. They were like little wooden summer houses, but beautifully decorated and cosy.

BikeRunSki Sun 13-Sep-15 22:06:32

Stockeld Park near Wetherby is meant to be lovely PesoPenguin, and someone has mentioned Kielder.

MagpieCursedTea Sun 13-Sep-15 22:13:19

Beamish is amazing anytime at Christmas Peso.

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