Christmas is a magical time for kids, and there is nothing more sparkly than a trip to see Santa in his grotto. But where do you go and how do you choose?
Santa and a Panto at Fishers Farm
Until 24 December
Until Christmas Eve, Fishers Farm has been transformed into a Winter Wonderland! Follow the magical pathway lined with twinkling lights to Santa’s Grotto and treat yourself to a festive mulled wine (it’s obligatory right?) while you enjoy a panto performance of Aladdin in the Fisher’s Barn Theatre. Before you end your visit, ‘Pick Your Own Present’ in the enchanting Toy Factory full of cheery elves and stop by the ‘North Pole Post’ with your letters to Father Christmas before joining in the carols at the interactive nativity
These festive visits cost £20 per child (includes admission to the park and seeing Father Christmas) and adults pay the normal admission price for that day but be aware that panto tickets are at an additional cost. All details on prices and times are on the Fishers Farm website
Fly with Santa on the i360
Until 24 December
Father Christmas really does fly, at 450 ft to be precise!
If you’re looking for a Santa visit with a difference, he’ll be on board special flights with his Elf on the British Airways i360 pod in the run-up to Christmas, meeting families and giving presents to children.
Child prices which include flight and a gift, start from £4.50 and you can save by booking online in advance.
Winter Wonderland at Drusillas
Until 23 December
Drusillas have gone all out for Christmas and their Winter Wonderland with its light shows running daily at 4.30pm, will run until New Year’s Day. We’re looking forward to seeing this, it looks spectacular!
Visitors can see Santa in his cosy Christmas cottage and receive an early gift from the big man himself but that’s not all. Two of Santa’s reindeer will be meeting visitors throughout the day in the Events Arena, fans of the Hello Kitty Parlour can pop in for festive tattoos and face painting and (this is our favourite bit!) there will be an opportunity to hug a husky in the Ice Cave. More than enough there to make a whole day of it.
You can pre-book your tickets online and all of the Winter Wonderland attractions are included in the entrance price to Drusillas with the exception of Santa tickets which can only be purchased at the gate on the day from £11.
Reindeer Spa at Chessington
Until 24 December
OK so this one isn’t quite Sussex but we loved this one!
Christmas can be a stressful time of year – not least for Santa’s reindeer who have to circumnavigate the globe come Christmas Eve. Chessington World of Adventures have set up a special pop-up spa which has been specially designed by their Zoo Keepers to help the reindeer cope with the stresses and strains of the festive season with some truly relaxing treatments.
What’s more, reindeer Willow and Drizzle – who guests can see now at Chessington’s Winter’s Tail event – have an entire menu of spa sessions to choose from, including a Merry Mud Bath, Elk-Aseltzer Soak, Christmas Party Antler Polish and a Finnish Full Body Massage for ultimate relaxation this Christmas! It’s a little bit different – we like that – and you do still get to see Santa as well.
Winters Tail day tickets including admission, a gift for each child (or hot drink and snack if you’re a bit old for Santa’s knee), Gruffalo activities and selected rides are £25 pp and booking online is advisable for guaranteed entry as tickets are limited.
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