It’s December and if you’re feeling as festive as us at Jaunt, you’re probably wondering where the best winter destinations are for 2021! Following a lockdown last year, we’ve got some making up to do on the Christmas celebration front.
So if you’re looking for a fun day out this December to stick on your woolly hat, grab a mulled wine*, maybe check out your skating talent on the ice rink, we’ve compiled a list of the best destinations this winter to make some snowy memories with the kids, your mates or partner…
1. Ice skating at Somerset House, London
Labelled the ‘very definition’ of festive fun, skate at Somerset House returns promising a dazzling season of celebration in the heart of the capital. Somerset House has unrivalled skating, contemporary music and mouth-watering gourmet food and drink, all topped off with a 40ft Christmas Tree! Grab your skates…
2. Hyde Park, Winter Wonderland, London
A Christmas classic. Running between 19th November and 3rd January, Winter Wonderland is back and caters for your every festive need. From the Ice Skating rink, to kid’s Santaland, to the magical ice kingdom, bar ice, over 100 charming traditional wooden chalets which will be turned into markets, rides and games, spectacular shows and food & drink – including the Bavarian village – there is definitely something for everyone.
3. Christmas at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire
With over a million lights, lasers and seasonal sounds, the after-dark illuminated trail is a sparkling Christmas experience for the whole family. Blenheim palace are also presenting the story of The Nutcracker re-imagined within Britain’s Greatest Palace – explore the toymaker’s workshop on a frosty Christmas Eve through the glistening Land of Snow and onto the candy-cane Kingdom of Sweets complete with larger than life gingerbread men and sweet treats. An ultimate fairy time Christmas.
Christmas at Blenheim Palace is running 19th November – 2nd January. The Christmas Market will run 19th November-19th December.
4. Alpine-themed pop up bars – various across country
A very festive way to have a few Christmas beverages* with your mates this winter, (or a top date location?) there are a host of cosy alpine pop-ups and twinkling terraces on offer across the country for 2021.
In the capital there is the Montague on the Gardens Ski Lodge in Holborn – with pine trees, skis and schnapps. Deck the Halls at Pergola Paddington, a Coppa Club Igloo in Tower Hill.
Bar Hutte has locations in Manchester, Liverpool and Edinburgh which has cosy rustic furnishing, Christmas lights and, wait for it, karaoke machines.
YurtBar in leeds also has après ski Christmas parties. Very cool.
5. Edinburgh Christmas Market, Scotland
Taking the top-spot in a recent ranking of the most Christmassy places in the UK, Edinburgh sits proudly at number one with its world-renowned Christmas celebrations. Spread some Christmas cheer with a mulled Irn Bru (apparently it’s good), pigs in blankets (and vegan pigs in blankets!), Harry Potter-themed gifts and local produce. This stunning Christmas market has it all. Santa’s Grotto is also on offer if you’re exploring this market with the kids (or a big kid – we won’t judge).
Running 20th November – 4th Jan.
6. Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market, Midlands
Dubbed the biggest authentic German market outside of Germany and Austria, on visiting Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market there is a lot of delicious food on offer including bratwurst, schnitzels, pretzels, and stollen. There are plenty of stalls to explore to find Christmas toys, gifts, decorations and ornaments, and then wash it down with a stein* or hot chocolate!
7. Belfast Christmas Market, Northern Ireland
For our friends over in Northern Ireland, the grounds of historic city hall in Belfast will become home to the Christmas Market which is famous for offering food and goods from all over Europe. The stalls are decorated as Chalets to discover unique gifts, explore the Christmas menu, or enjoy a Christmas tipple*.
8. Other various Christmas Markets running again in 2021:
With lots of markets cancelled last year courtesy of Co-vid, time to get your winter gear on, grab your mates and head down to the local Christmas market for gift shopping, a mulled wine*, Christmas crepe, a fair ride or whatever takes your fancy! There are loads of stalls on offer. Here is a list of Christmas markets and dates we’ve compiled for 2021…
Liverpool, November 12 – December 23
Lincoln, December 2-5
Gloucester, November 6 – December 19
Exeter, November 18 – December 18
Durham, December 3 – 5
Derby, November 27-28
Cheltenham, November 20 – December 19
Cardiff, November 11 – December 23
Cambridge, November 19 – January 3
Bristol, November 5 – December 23
York, November 18-December 23
Chester, November 18-December 22
Southampton, November 18-December 23
…. You’re welcome!
9. Lapland, UK – Berkshire (Final tickets on sale)
Equipped with log cabins, real huskies, and fake snow Lapland UK really epitomises the magic of Christmas! ‘Lapland’ is a secret adventure, made up of the enchanted forest with woodland elves, Mother Christmas’ Kitchen (– you’ll soon smell the delicious gingerbread!), the elven village and meeting Santa himself! There is also the toy factory – with the toy factory elves who will be thrilled to welcome your child to their workshop to help them with Christmas toymaking! – They’ll also get honorary elf status.
On Christmas morning your child will wake up to a card from Father Christmas thanking them for their help in saving Christmas but also the toy they helped the elves make (toy factory gift discreetly handed to parents on leaving Lapland). So exciting! – Where do I sign up…
10. Wensleydale Polar Express, North Yorkshire
Another great one for the kids – just like the 2004 motion picture ‘The Polar Express’ your journey will begin at Leeming Bar Station to take you all the way to the North Pole! Dress in your PJs for some ultimate Christmas magic. You will get to meet the characters from the film, including singing chefs, the conductor and the man of the hour – Father Christmas.
Santa will meet you on board and if you’re on the good list, hand you your first Christmas gift! You can have a chat with Santa and grab a cookie and authentic hot chocolate as you make your way to the North Pole – sounds pretty magical to me.
With so many exciting Christmas events back on this year, and with something for everyone and all ages, if you’re looking to take a festive day or evening out, why not take out some temporary car insurance cover with us at Jaunt! LINK. With cover starting from £0.35 per hour**.
*Please don’t drive after drinking.
** On average 28% of customers ages between 40-64 paid £0.35 per hour for a Jaunt car policy (from Jan 1st 2021 -June 30th 2021)