Days out to get you in the Christmas spirit

Fancy a fab family outing to put you in the Christmas spirit? Nifa McLaughlin rounds up the best

Garden of delights

Children will love following the snowflakes guiding them through the glittering night-time trail at Kew Gardens (from 5pm). Everything will be flooded with glittering coloured lights, there'll be a chance to visit Santa's Grotto, plus enjoy vintage rides, shopping and lots of foodie treats.
26 November-3 January.


Stick around

Julia Donaldson's and Axel Scheffler's Stick Man is in Scamp Theatre, and it will warm your hearts! It's perfect for three-year-olds upwards. In London, on 23 November, there will be a special performance for children on the autistic spectrum.
From 8 November, Leicester Square. From 22 November, Underbelly's Edinburgh Christmas festival.


Happy blooming Christmas!

Forty years after his book came out, Raymond Briggs' Father Christmas is still a firm favourite as new parents and their children discover what the man in red gets up to on Christmas Eve. So everyone will love this London stage production – Pop it into your calendar for a family treat!
14 November–31 December.



Octonauts full-length stage adventure for children, and the Deep Sea Volcano Adventure Barnacles and the entire crew embark on this exciting underwater quest, full of action and music. This exciting new production is touring the country now and carries on well into 2015, so if your Christmas is too hectic, you can book it for a little post-holiday treat.


Flights of fancy

Make Christmas extra special for tots with a trip to see The Snowman at London's Peacock Theatre. Little ones will be captivated by dancing penguins, magical reindeer, the beautiful Ice Princess, wicked Jack Frost and, of course, the Snowman himself. When the orchestra starts playing 'Walking in the Air', your Christmas spirit will soar.
26 November-4 January


All aboard

On the Polar Express, dancing chefs, serve cookies and hot chocolate, there's a sing-song and a special reading of the book that started it all, before Santa arrives with his elves. Weardale and Dartmoor.
22nd November-28th December


Magic market

Want to go Christmas shopping without your toddler having aboredom meltdown? Head to St Albans and you'll find what is promised to be the most family-friendly Christmas market in the UK. Heaps of pre-schooler activities include treasure hunts, Christmas creations for toddlers, carols, Santa's Grotto.
27 November-21 December.


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