Festive Fun Things to do for Christmas 2017 in Hampshire
Are you looking for fun festive things to do in Hampshire this Christmas? I have compiled a list of amazing things that are happening locally to help you plan loads of amazing Christmas activities from days out, festive craft ideas, Christmas markets and so much more. Let’s make this festive season one to remember for the whole family. Now I’m back working again we want to make the most of our time together at the weekends and with Evie at her dads, Adam working and studying, our time together is so precious. I’ll be talking about our festive frolics plans here in Andover. Our town is quite easy to get away from and whilst we might not do a lot here, there are so many amazing things less than an hours drive away so plenty to keep the kids and family busy this Christmas.
Our Christmas Plans
I am planning on doing a 12 part video series for the 12 Days of Vlogmas. I would love to be able to do a video every day but I honestly don’t have the time. Instead, I’m going to be filming twelve things we do each year during December so you can be there with us. From the Christmas lights switch on to craft ideas to visiting the man in red himself. I hope this post will leave you feeling inspired and finding fun things to do this year together. I don’t want to say too much about our Christmas plans just yet because it’s nice to leave a bit to the videos and honestly, who knows exactly how they will play out! I will be filming some of our traditions, talking about veggie and vegan meal ideas and hopefully getting some lovely action shots of our time exploring Hampshire.
Places to Visit Father Christmas in Hampshire
There are loads of fantastic places to visit Father Christmas here in Hampshire. Most shopping centres always have a little grotto and we have one here in the Chantry Centre. Festival Place in Basingstoke always have a grotto too and much more going on to be honest. However, there are some other really lovely places to visit Santa in Hampshire too.
- Finkley Down Farm – Magical Christmas from 24th November at 10am until 6pm on 24th December. A chance to see the animals of the farm and go on a Christmas adventure. There is plenty to see and do from making reindeer food, decorating gingerbread, cuddling a Christmas rabbit and of course meeting Father Christmas and getting a little gift. This is great for families and young children although it is, in my opinion, quite a lot of money. The farm does look beautiful however and there is plenty to see and do as well as a huge soft play area for the kids. A big hit with younger children especially and the staff do make a lot of effort to make everyone feel welcome and having fun. You are given a time to start your festive activities and go around in a big group. I’ve found going on the weekdays to be a lot quieter than weekends so if you can book in then, it may be a little less overwhelming.
- Christmas at Marwell – Bookings are now available on their website and if you book a festive session during the day your ticket price will include entry to the zoo. Any events after 4pm will not include visiting the zoo so it’s worth remembering that when you book. Marwell Zoo is really lovely and looks absolutely stunning at Christmas. The experience is around 60-80 minutes and includes being read a story, decorating a plate, visiting Father Christmas and getting a lovely family photo. These do cost £7 extra to be able to take home.
- Christmas at Paultons Park and Peppa Pig World – this is always a big hit for families here in Hampshire and across the country, particularly with Peppa Pig loving little ones. The event starts on 18th November and runs through to the 23rd. You can book in online and their is limited capacity. You can visit Santa’s Grotto between 9.30am-5.15pm. Park entry is also included with rides opening from 10am. All children will receive a gift with Adults receiving hot punch and a festive treat.
- Breakfast or Tea with Santa at Wyvale Garden Centres – this is absolutely on our list of things we’d love to do in our local Wyvale Garden Centre. You can book in online to have breakfast or an afterschool Tea with Father Christmas. You also get to decorate a Christmas biscuit – well, the children do, and choose a gift to take home. They also have a really lovely grotto which is a lot of fun to wonder around and I personally think the gifts are really worth the money.
- Santa and The Elves Christmas Experience at Winchester Science Centre – Now this event really does look and sound very cool and interactive. Something I’ve not done before but I’m now totally intrigued. Selected dates run from 1st-23rd December with experiences lasting around an hour. Tickets include entry to the centre and a planetarium show as well as taking part in a science-themed toy making workshop.
Hampshire Christmas Markets
I love a good Christmas Market and we are really looking forward to visiting some local ones over the next few months. We can visit ones locally in Hampshire and Wiltshire to sample brilliant local goods, food and drinks. Alternatively, with London only an hour and twenty minutes or so on the Train, there’s always winter wonderland at Hyde Park.
- Winchester Cathedral Market – This one begins 20th November and is running every day until 22nd December in the grounds of the cathedral which is nice and easy to locate from the Train Station. Late night openings until 7.30pm will be running Thursday-Saturday and you can expect to see some new exhibitors in the second half. A brilliant excuse to go twice!
- Portsmouth Victorian Christmas – This is located at the historical dockyard the first weekend in December so is a special festive event featuring Victorian characters and entertainment.
- Southampton Christmas Market – A highlight for this German-inspired Christmas market is seeing Father Christmas fly over each evening. With 40 Chalet huts for exhibitors there is plenty to see and do. An excellent place for last minute Christmas shopping too.
- Hampshire’s Christmas Farmers’ Markets – Hampshire Farmers’ Markets give you the perfect chance to buy fresh, local, seasonal produce in time for Christmas Day. From delicious meat to mature cheese, fruity wine and homemade gifts, there’s lots to whet the appetite. This year special Christmas markets will be held at the following locations: Petersfield – 24th December, Romsey – 24th December, Alton – 9th December, Winchester – 10th December, Emsworth – 16th December, Southsea – 17th December, Ringwood – 23rd December. (Source: https://www.visit-hampshire.co.uk/whats-on/christmas-in-hampshire)
I hope this has given you loads of fantastic ideas for festive events in Hampshire. I’m really excited about doing loads of fun things with family and enjoying the festive season as much as we can. What are your plans this Christmas? Will you be attending these events?