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Christmas at Manor Farm Park & Woodlands, Loughborough, Sat 23 Dec 

Visit Santa in his cabin, join in with the woodland fun and cook toast on the open campfire. New this year, join Molly the Donkey to hear her Christmas Story, join in the Christmas songs and meet Molly’s friends, Barry & Betty the sheep, Charlie & Mac the Llamas as well as County the goat. Visit our Christmas craft room to make something to take home.  (Small extra charge £2 to meet Santa, gift included).

Castle Hill, East Leake, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE12 6LU

Santa Steam Trains at Great Central Railway, until Sun 24 Dec 

Climb aboard a heritage train and meet Santa and his helpers. Travel from Loughborough to Leicester North and back on the steam hauled Santa Special train. Children receive an exciting gift from Santa, a drink and sweets, whilst adults enjoy festive refreshments too or choose the Deluxe train journey and you can enjoy cookies and chocolate toys for the children, refreshments for adults and an entertainer on board to keep everyone in the party spirit.

Great Central Railway, Great Central Road, Loughborough, LE11 1RW

Winter Wonderland Christmas Eve Fireworks, Twinlakes, Sun 24 Dec

Join the Twinlakes festive team as the park closes to wave Santa on his way as he heads off to spread the festive joy to children all over the world with a tiny Elf sized firework display! Discover a truly incredible experience as Twinlakes Family Theme Park, Midlands is magically transformed into an enchanted Winter Wonderland. Fireworks start at 4pm after park closes.

TwinLakes, Melton Spinney Rd, Melton Mowbray LE14 4SB
Santa at Oakham Castle, Rutland, Sat 23 Dec

Remember how much fun we had on Christmas Eve last year? Well we thought we’d do it again, but over two days this time. Santa will be back with his reindeer, there will be festive crafts, yummy nibbles, lovely mulled wine and Prosecco, games, live music and storytelling. All set in the stunning medieval Great Hall beneath our sparkling real tree.  10am – 2.30pm. Free entry, £7 to visit Santa’s Grotto

Oakham Castle, Castle Grounds, Market Pl, Oakham LE15 6DR

Christmas in Rutland, Rutland, until Sun 24 Dec


Soak up the festive atmosphere in the run up to Christmas at Oakham Castle, with 10 days of Christmas themed activities for all the family to enjoy. Try ice skating in the castle grounds, enjoy music and entertainment. and Mrs Claus’s Pantry where you can pick up some last minute gifts and enjoy some time with your loved ones in these beautiful surroundings. Start a new family tradition with the Rutland Winter Wonderland. 11am to 9pm everyday, except the 24th when it closes at 3pm.

Christmas Elf Hunt, Bosworth Battlefield, until Sat 23 Dec

Pick up a sheet from our ticket office, explore the Heritage Centre and Country Park to find the missing Elves and return to collect your prize. Cost: £1.50 per child.

Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre, Sutton Cheney, Leicestershire, CV13 0AD

Ice Skating, Jubilee  Square, until 8 Jan 2018

Get your skates on and head down to Jubilee Square for some festive fun on real ice. Whether you’re an amateur or fancy yourself as a Torville and Dean, it’s the perfect time to give skating a whirl and don’t worry about the weather as the ice rink sits under a clear roof. Skate hire and a 45-minute session is £8 for adults and £6.50 for children/concessions at off-peak times (11am-4pm Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays). Tickets for all other times will cost £9 for adults and £7.50 for children/concessions. Scroll down to see opening times. Special theme nights are also running.

Visit Leicester, Leicester, LE1 5LD.

Twycross Zoo, Leicestershire, Sun 2 Dec – Sun 24 Dec

This year, Santa is taking time out of his busy schedule and visiting the zoo so that children can spend as much time with him as they want. This year, there will be the chance to take a photo with Santa, as well as story-telling sessions with him, feed and meet animals with Santa and then watch festive films or take part in arts and craft sessions and more. Check the website for the available dates when Santa will be visiting. Some activities need to be booked in advance

Twycross Zoo, East Midland Zoological Society, Burton Rd, Atherstone CV9 3PX

Visit Conkers, Winter Wonderland 4d Cinema Experience, until Wed 3 Jan

Watch a brand new ‘Winter Wonderland’ film in the 4D cinema and follow the short but magical film of how fairies make a special cake for a young girl. You’ll be amazed at the thrilling adventure as the fairies cook the cake with 4D effects including snow. The film runs for approximately 13 minutes and is included in the general admission price.

Visit Conkers, Rawdon Rd, Ashby-de-la-Zouch DE12 6GA

Santa’s Grotto, Wistow Rural Centre, until Sat 23 Dec

Come and visit Santa and his elves, and at the same time buy your Christmas Tree, do some Christmas shopping in all the lovely shops and then visit the Cafe for a nice cup of tea and delicious homemade cakes. The grotto is open weekends 2/3, 9/10, 16/11, and then daily from 18-24 Dec (11am-4pm), except Christmas Eve (10am-2pm). Cost is £8 (which includes a present from Santa) and you can takes some food home with you to leave out for Santa’s reindeers and also start writing a letter to the man himself. Adults go free. Head to the Ken Bailey Plant Centre.

Wistow Rural Centre, Wistow Rd, Leicester LE8 0QF.  0116 259 2009

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside - Leics & Rutland