Christmas and Winter in Dorset

Christmas and New Year Events


19th Nov – 3rd Jan 2019

Bournemouth Ice Rink

visitors to Bournemouth can skate on real ice under the trees in the resort’s historic Lower Gardens. For an extra treat, the town centre businesses have also clubbed together to bring a giant snow globe to four locations across two weeks from 23 November – 6 December. Visitors will be able to climb in for a photograph which will be printed and available to take away the same day.

santa in his grotto

30th Nov – 22nd Dec

Farmer Palmers Farm Park Visit Santa

Visit Father Christmas in his traditional, Winter cabin in the Little Farmer’s Fun Barn. What’s at the top of your Christmas list? Our clever Elves use a time-slot system so no long queues for you! Yay! We don’t charge you for taking photos either; you’re welcome to take lots of your own photos and there’s sure to be lots of giggles too! The Farm Park gets a full festive makeover and there’ll be a cracking Christmas atmosphere all around!

Simply purchase your Visit Santa tickets on the day of your visit from reception (Groups need to pre-book). Tickets are £6 in addition to normal admission.

Farmer Palmers Farm Park FREE ADULT ADMISSION


Upton Country Park Christmas Grotto 

NO NEED TO BOOK – just turn up. Each child will visit Santa in his grotto and will receive a huge Christmas sack filled with over 25 gifts and activity items. The children will also be able to meet Santa’s real life reindeer.  Each sack will include: a large Xmas sack to put your presents in; a beautifully wrapped quality present; a large bar of Upton Country Park chocolatea large pot of chocolate reindeer droppingsa carton of Christmas fruit juicea pot of magic bubbles and a free ticket to ride Elizabeth, the new Poole Park Railway train! 


From 14th Dec 2019

Corfe Castle Lanterns 

Visit Corfe Castle this Christmas, who will be presenting the lantern lighting experiencein a magical way. As you explore the grounds, discover the lit contemporary lanterns and a few other surprises along the way. 1st- 4th December.


Dorchester Christmas Cracker- Let There Be Light! The town’s Christmas lights will be switched on. Cracker Night is also an opportunity to do some late night shopping, with a large number of the most popular shops and other businesses staying open into the evening for you to peruse at your leisure.

Christmas stalls are a big part of the Cracker Night experience, creating an authentic Christmas market feel with everything from mulled wine to mince pies and hog roasts. Dorchester Cracker Night begins at 5.30pm until approx 9:30pm. Hopefully there will even be an appearance from Father Christmas himself, accompanied by one of two of his elves and reindeer!


30th Nov – 24th Dec

Meet Santa at the Swanage Railway

This Christmas! There is always a lovely and unique atmosphere on the Santa Special due to the excitement and atmosphere of travelling on a Southern Railway steam train while excitedly waiting to meet Father Christmas in person during the journey.


Avon Heath Christmas Trees

The rangers at Avon Heath are selling Christmas pines outside the Heathland Discovery Centre from now until 21 December. These pines have been cut down from the park, which allows the heather and all the special creatures to survive. All money raised goes back into conservation work at the park. Pop along anytime between 11am and 4pm. Prices from £5. These pines do not drop their needles! Go and choose one today before they run out!

Avon Heath Make your own Christmas Decorations

‘Pop Up Pottery’ returns to Avon Heath. Come and make
and decorate your own Christmas themed decorations from air dry clay. Please book on 01425 478082.
Photo by Moon Studio Ceramics

santa going down the chimney in wareham

Santa visits Wareham

Following the wonderful Christmas parade. Father Christmas will be appearing on the roof of the Red Lion Hotel before disappearing down the 125ft chimney, ready to meet all the children in the grotto. How will he arrive this year?

Santa Pudding Run

Get yourself ready for the exciting 5k  at 11:00am on Weymouth Beach. Hundreds of Santa’s will be chasing the lonely Christmas pudding down the beach in what can only be described as ” The best thing YULE see this Christmas!” By taking part in this festive event you will be supporting The British Heart Foundation

21st Dec

Winter Solstice

Experience the rare opportunity to watch the sun rise on the shortest day of the year from the Corfe Castle ruins followed by a hot breakfast in the tea rooms. Booking is essential.

Santa Visits Your Cottage!

Book a cottage with Dorset Cottage Holidays for Christmas, and receive a very special visit from Santa and his elves! Click here for availabilty

If you would like to visit Dorset in December why not check out our holiday cottages for Christmas and our holiday cottages for New Year