Festive Family Days Out

Every December, in the run up to Christmas, we like to take the children on a festive day out. It helps build up the excitement towards the big day (like they need any help) and it’s just seems like a nice thing to do, with the whole family, to get us all in the festive spirit.

These days there is an absolute wealth of places to go and “Santa experiences” are springing up left, right and centre in all manner of places so it can actually be hard quite hard to choose one. I’m starting to find it even harder now my children are getting that much older as I worry that some of the experiences might be a little too young for them, and these days out aren’t cheap so I’m really conscious of making the wrong decision.

I am just at the point now of planning our festive family day out for 2014 (and I realise I’ve left it a little late as it seems lots of places are already booked up!) and I thought I’d take a look back at some of the festive fun we’ve had in the past. Here are our top three festive experiences!

Drayton’s Magical Christmas

When we first went a couple of years ago this was completely centred around Thomas Land and therefore really was a day for the little ones. It seems now that they’ve incorporated a lot more for older children and the whole family. My two children loved Thomas Land when they were younger and enjoyed meeting Father Christmas, watching festive shows and the highlight of the day for them most certainly was the “snow” that fell in Thomas Land through out the day.  The majority of the attractions were outside though so it was pretty chilly in December!

Image Credit: http://www.jdtravelservices.co.uk/
Image Credit: http://www.jdtravelservices.co.uk/

Great Central Railway Santa Specials

One of our favourite trips was on the Santa steam train with Great Central Railway. We completely surprised our children with this trip so they had no idea what was coming – they nearly popped when they realised they were going on a train trip. We hopped on the train for a round trip, enjoyed cookies, mince pies and even a cheeky glass of sherry and the children got to meet Santa on board who gave them each a present. There was also a children’s entertainer on the train to get everyone into the festive spirit. It was a really nice experience and one I would definitely do again.

Image Credit: http://www.inloughborough.com/
Image Credit: http://www.inloughborough.com/

Santa at the Servants Quarter at Shugborough Hall

Last year we went to the magnificent Shugborough Hall in Staffordshire to meet Santa (actually one of the best Santa’s I’ve seen recently). The Victorian Servant’s Quarters had been festively decorated and we even got to help Mrs Claus stir her Christmas pudding and make a wish. There was a little land train to ride on and lots of Christmas activities to partake in. And best of all? Yes, they also had fake snow showers! Such an amazing hit with the children.

Image Credit: http://enjoystaffordshire.wordpress.com/
Image Credit: http://enjoystaffordshire.wordpress.com/


That’s really whet my appetite now, I’m looking forward to planning this years excursion!

What about you? Have you been on any Santa experiences or festive days out that you recommend? Let me know by leaving a comment below!

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