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Festive Things to Do with the Family

Handpicked Christmas activities to make the season magical


Parkdean Resorts by Parkdean Resorts on 16/11/2018
Kids running through the forest with Santa hats on

With Halloween and Bonfire Night out of the way – it’s now all about Christmas! To get you and the kids into the festive sprit we’ve handpicked some of the Uks best Christmas days out for 2019. They’re all within an hour’s drive of one of our holiday parks welcoming guests during the season, so why not treat yourself to a festive break?

Where can I meet Santa?

The Santa Train, Cornwall

  • Where is The Santa Train? Lappa Valley, Newquay, Cornwall, TR8 5LX
  • Where can I stay nearby? White Acres Holiday Park is under a 15 minute drive away

If riding a magical steam train to Santa’s Grotto sounds like something you and the little ones would enjoy, they’ll love Lappa Valley’s Santa Trains! Starting with a festive steam train ride into Lappa Valley’s leisure park, the Santa Train includes a return train journey, a visit to Santa’s Grotto (and a specially selected present!). Mums and Dads will also be treated to a warm mince pie and mulled wine. As well as meeting Santa, there are plenty of other Yuletide activities taking place, including live entertainment, balloon making and face painting.

This award-winning family day out offers plenty to see and do, with woodland walks, a toddler’s maze, children’s play area and even a miniature railway to ride through the woods. Running on selected dates throughout December, tickets for the Santa Train are £13.50 per person.


Santa Express steam train at Lappa Valley 
Image courtesy of Lappa Valley

Sail with Santa, Dorset

  • Where is Sail with Santa? Poole Quay, Poole, BH15 1HJ
  • Where can I stay nearby? Sandford Holiday Park is less than 20 minutes' drive away

For a unique festive experience, why not explore the Dorset coast on board a cruise with Santa Claus? Set sail around Poole Harbour passing famous landmarks such as Brownsea Island, Studland Bay and Sandbanks Peninsula. During this 1 hour and 15 minute trip, the kids will enjoy a magic show and balloon modelling whilst adults can sit back with some mulled mine and a mince pie, listening to some Christmas carols. During the trip, Santa will be walking around the boat to meet all the children and give them their own Christmas present directly! Running every weekend in December, plus 23rd and 24th December this will be a festive day out to remember.

After the trip is over, you can take in all that Poole has to offer over the festive period with their famous Christmas tree or make your own festive candle at Poole Museum’s Make and Take. After the trip is over, you can take in all that Poole has to offer over the festive period with their famous Christmas tree or make your own festive candle at Poole Museum’s Make and Take.


Footprints in the snow at Poole Harbour
Poole Harbour

Where can I visit a Christmas Market?

Swansea Christmas Market, Swansea

  • Where is Swansea Christmas Market? Oxford Street, Swansea city centre, SA1 1ED
  • Where can I stay nearby? Trecco Bay Holiday Park is 40 minutes' drive away

It’s impossible not to feel the magic wandering around Swansea’s Christmas Market. With over 40 German-style chalets selling unique foods, handmade gifts and local produce, you’ll be spoilt for choice. You can easily spend a few hours here browsing the wares of talented crafters. You’ll even be able to pick up some unique Christmas gifts at the jewellery, glass, cheese, and ceramics stalls. And if you’re feeling really creative, you can get hands-on at the Christmas colouring hut where you and the kids can customise Christmas decorations and colour your own velvet art!

Don’t worry if you need a break to refuel and stay warm - after the excitement of the market you can head to the Bavarian Bar where you’ll find a cosy festive seating area, where you can sit back and relax after some shopping. Adults can choose from a range of tasty German craft beers, and of course a traditional cup of mulled wine.

Top off your festive visit with a trip to see Santa in his grotto on Portland Street. The little ones will have the special chance to meet Santa’s elves and then Santa himself. They’ll be given a Christmas gift and also have the opportunity to have their photo taken!


A father and sun enjoying christmas decorations at a christmas market

Glasgow Christmas Markets, Glasgow

  • Where are Glasgow's Christmas Markets? St Enoch Square and George Square, Glasgow city centre

Glasgow is a city that goes all out when it comes to Christmas markets and here you’ll find two fantastic spots just a stone’s throw from each other – St Enoch and George’s Square Christmas Markets. Make sure to check out both if you’re heading north for a festive weekend away, break your journey up in Glasgow for the ultimate festive day out.

St Enoch Christmas Market

Opening its doors on November the 9th and running until December the 22nd, in St Enoch square you’ll find an extensive Christmas village, with over 50 stalls. St Enoch Christmas Market is a food-lovers heaven, so we suggest you sample a few of the delicious dishes on offer. Some standout highlights include an Isle of Arran cheese stall, toasting your own marshmallows and of course a currywurst!

George Square Christmas Market

Running from the 24th of November to the 29th of December, George Square is under a 10 minute walk from St Enoch market. After indulging in the foodie delights at St Enoch Square, take a stroll over to the George Square Christmas market for a spot of shopping. At George Square you’ll find stalls from all over the world selling their bespoke pieces, so it’s the perfect place to pick up some impressive festive gifts. As an added bonus, the little ones will love the traditional carousel, Ferris wheel and Helter Skelter that sit at the heart of it all.

Christmas Decorations at George Square Market in Glasgow
George Square Market

Where can I see Christmas lights?

Christmas Tree Wonderland, Bournemouth

  • Where is Christmas Tree Wonderland? Bournemouth, BH2 5AY 
  • Where can I stay nearby? Sandford Holiday Park is a 30 minute drive away

If you’re looking to experience the magical feel of festive illuminations, then look no further than the Christmas Tree Wonderland trail in Bournemouth. Running from the 15th of November to the 2nd of January, the Christmas Tree Wonderland is a huge spectacle that features over 100 Christmas trees and illuminations.You can wander along at your own pace around the festive trail, which will take you through enchanted walkways, gardens and fairytale worlds. A trip to the Wonderland promises to be a festive occasion you’ll never forget. There’s plenty to entertain the little ones, from playing spot the teddy bears, to ice skating and marvelling at the staggering 60ft Wonderland Tree, there’s lots keep them occupied and get everyone into the festive spirit!


A christmas tree with lights in Bournemouth

Where can I see a festive show?

Warmwell Holiday Park, Dorset

Get into the Christmas spirit at our very own Warmwell Holiday Park - our festive weekends are bursting with exciting activities and shows to entertain everyone. The kids will love having the chance to get involved with making some Christmas crafts, including getting creative and painting their own pottery, making their own chocolate Christmas treats and even meeting Santa and his reindeer!

If this wasn’t enough to get you in the Christmas spirit, we also have a whole host of Christmas shows on offer. You can get cosy with some snacks and enjoy some of your favourite Christmas movies as a family, or you can sing along to our ultimate celebration of the best Christmas songs. Finally, get ready to yell at the top of your lungs “He’s behind you” whilst enjoying our fantastic Sunday afternoon pantomimes!

A family enjoying christmas crafts

Have any recommendations for Christmas days out? Share them with us on our Facebook page!